Olives, honey bees, chickens, bats, owls, farmer’s market, and wine…the list of farm projects at Hydeout Sonoma is growing every day. I think you’ll enjoy following along:
Olives and the dreaded fruit fly
The olive fruit fly is ubiquitous now in wine country. Perhaps due to the sheer number of olive trees, or the years of drought, and/or so many olive trees in residential yards that receive zero pest management. But there are several 100% organic and cost effective methods to control the olive fruit fly. See the photo captions:
Honey bee project
We currently have three honey bee hives here at the Hydeout – one hive from a captured wild swarm, one hive from Bee Kind bees in Sebastopol, and one hive from Mann Lake bees.
Tuesday Farmer’s Market on Sonoma Plaza
Neighbor and friend Lori Murray of Lola Sonoma Farms is an expert in pasture-raised 100% organic heritage “Kune Kune” pork resulting in very clean healthy meat. And a great sense of humor too.
Bats are one of the most important and totally misunderstood animals. We are crazy for bats and are encouraging their place here at the Hydeout. Bats are a critical interstitial species (see this link: more about bats). And are a crucial and fully organic living tool in wine country integrated pest management. Bats can eat 1,000 or more mosquitos and insects per night! It is so great that we finally had a very wet winter. But pools of standing of water have created a haven for insects of all kinds. And bats help keep things under control.
Weather, gophers, rabbits, water – the pressure on vineyards and grapevines is painfully constant. Even in a small vineyard of just a few acres, it is not unusual to lose 30 or 40 vines per year. Like everything else in farming, it is important to constantly replace the losses with new vines, so that the vineyard is always maintained at peek performance.
Sonocaia – our new winery here at Hydeout Sonoma
Many of you are aware of our multi-year project to launch our “estate reserve” Sagrantino wine. The new name associated with our Sagrantino based wine is “Sonocaia” (pronounced So-No-Kaī-Yah).
Coming this spring with the first invitations going to our blog post readers like you – the grand release of our first Sonocaia (So-No-Kī-Yah) Estate Reserve Sagrantino. Never heard of the Sagrantino grape? It produces a deep dark delicious red wine, originally from Monte Falco, Umbria…and now from the Sonoma Valley c/o Hydeout Sonoma. More on this soon with a new winery, label, website, and more.
See this chart for some astounding information on this little-known grape variety:
Wine tasting with clients
Faith Armstrong and I routinely meet with our Forward Vines and Wines clients – to taste wine from barrels and bottle samples. We taste not only the wine we’ve made for our clients, but often many other local wines – as a guide to client preferences, i.e. color, acidity, tannin, alcohol, blending, etc. Here we are in the Sonoma Mountain AVA tasting several local Chardonnays.
Mowing the fence line
What could be better than a Sunday afternoon on the tractor mowing the fence line? For a walking path, a dog run, and especially access and fire prevention, mowing the fence line should be done early and often.
Moonrise at the Hydeout
A rising full moon at the Hydeout, or anywhere in Sonoma Valley, the “Valley of the Moon,” is a wonderful and heartwarming event.
What a wonderful, newsy post. A pleasure to read and learn, as always.
Now those KuneKune live with me!
They do indeed, except for the one “Kune Kune” that got ate!
Truly fun to see my brother working the land.
Olives, honey, eggs, pork, bats, wine, and mowing a spring meadow: You can’t get better than that. Can you do it on a one-third acre lot?
Ken, you are AMAZING!
Congratulations on all your wonderful project. Everything looks beautiful