The minute you arrived at The Wine & Country Club, it became clear to you just how incredibly fortunate you were. An area of outstanding natural beauty, this is the perfect country retreat to witness the turn of the seasons through the changing landscape and blossoming vineyards; a multi-sensory and magical experience if ever there was one. Not only have you gotten used to savouring such precious little moments, you have also learned to relax and commute with nature.
Mother Nature is most generous and wise, and it provides plenty of smells, sights and sounds to stimulate your senses; you just need to take the time to become responsive to such subtle details and learn to value them.
Spring is the most invigorating of all seasons—come March time and the countryside comes to life and becomes lush and green, thereby showing its best side—.
Most of the large trees in the meadows around The Wine & Country Club are holm and gall oak trees—two wholly distinct types of oak trees—. Holm oaks are centenary evergreen trees and have dark-green glossy foliage; and while their dense evergreen canopy provides year-round coverage and shelter for birds, with the advent of spring, small bouquets come into flower and later yield delicious acorns.
For their part, gall oaks are deciduous trees. However, rainfall along with rising temperatures bring green growth back in earnest, and the trees begin sporting new deep green leaves – such a mood booster!
In the small meadows around your winery estate, the soil starts to warm up and takes on bright hues of green, and cereal crops begin to wake up, thereby creating an infinite tended lawn. For their part, the organic kitchen gardens and orchards that supply our winery estates get ready for some new seeds to be sown—bell peppers, onions, courgettes, aubergines and lettuces—, which will reap a bountiful harvest as soon as May.
Deliciously scented emerald green peonies begin to flower in May, reaching peak season in June; but it is now, at the end of March, when the buds are about to sprout. To witness nature coming through after the bitter winter is such a valuable life lesson.
Hares, deer and a dense scrum of birds keenly await the appearance of the first green shoots to start rooting around for food.
On rainy days, the winery is a hive of activity as staff members begin to bottle the ripely extra virgin olive oil from the organic olive groves dotting the land at The Wine & Country Club.
Spring In The Vineyard
Not only do the meadows depict the changing of the seasons; strolling through the vineyard in the springtime is quite an experience and a veritable feast for the senses.
Succeeding the drabness of the winter, springtime—prompted by rising temperatures, rather than by the calendar marking its start—heralds budburst, the start of the growing season and the beginning of the vine’s life cycle. The ever so delicate buds begin to break and the vines develop initial green shoots and leaves.
The new green shoots grow at a pace until they flower and later on develop into grapes. Warm temperatures and plenty of sunshine (with little or no rain) ensure that pollination occurs smoothly. Spring is also the right time to prune and remove any damaged, errant or unproductive stems—including overly tangled stems—. It is also the time to trim and thin out to reduce excessive leafiness—remember that pinching back shoot ends helps balance their growth and, when pruning, you should cut cleanly and not leave a stub, which is an invitation to bugs and diseases—. Spring is also the time to plough to aerate the soil, and when every precaution should be taken to prevent plant diseases.
The arrival of spring becomes readily evident in the country, as plants wake up to show an extravaganza of colours and aromas.