Bud Break on the East End

bud break macari 2

It usually happens around the first week of May, but it’s been a weird winter. I’m talking about bud break, when the newly formed buds on grapevines finally break open and the leaves meet the sunlight to start the active part of the growing season. Gone are the worries of the former season — winter kill and hungry vermin chewing on stems (this happened in North Country this year) — to be replaced by the worries of the coming season. And they are many. A sudden frost could kill the tender buds; if the buds make it and the clusters start to form, bad weather could knock out fruit set. I won’t go on. I can see the vineyard managers cringing.

But for now, the news is good. A late bud break doesn’t have to be a bad thing. It means a late start to the growing season, but on Long Island, we usually have enough warm days to get everything ripe, about 100 days do it. If we get the kind of fall we had last year, there’s nothing to worry about.

We put out a call for bud break pictures. Macari was the first to respond. Let’s see ’em people! Tag them #budbreakli on Twitter and Instagram.