2016 End Of Year Wrap Up

January 4, 2017
It was a busy year along the Red Trail.    With hail, birds,and deer that tried to destroy our crop the weather seemed to be the savior.
We started with an early spring and we finish pruning on May 3rd.   We could see that with the nice weather early I thought it was to our benefit to prune as late as possible and on May 14th we had a lite frost, but it didn't seem to hurt the vines.   I think with our elevation of 300 ft above the valley and the late pruning our vines remained healthy with the potential for a large crop.    As the vines continued to flower and then shoot out the little clusters of grapes and weather decided on the 4th of July that it was time to do a pruning as a hail storm with 60 mph winds and hail the size of BB's swept across the vineyard, destroying about 30%.    Even though we had a 30% loss , I think when the damage berries dried the extra juice went into the remaining berry's.    The results at harvest was very good with a record crop.....I think we produced more grapes at the Red Trail Vineyard than anyplace in North Dakota.

We continue to propagate more Crimson Pearl and will have about 200 vines this year with half of them starting to produce a crop.  Along with the Petite Pearl that seem to take longer to establish and I look forward to expanding these varieties in the future.    The other varieties include, Frontenac, Frontenac Gris, Sabrevois, Marquette, King of the North, Prairie Star, Valiant, and LaCresent,    All of these were harvested and delivered to Wolf Creek Winery in Coleharbor, ND and are currently getting happy.    
It was also a busy year in the restaurant as we continued with our Friday Nite Supper's and expanding to some Thursdays Nite's also.   We seemed to be book full every night.    We doubled our area for seating when I screened in the porch this spring and it became a hot spot for dining at the vineyard.    
This winter as the wine continues to be processed we hope to take a trip to the wine country in Oregon and California and see what we can learn and meet up with friends.  
Susan and I would like to thank you once again for your support your help and your friendship as we continue on our journey at the Red Trail Vineyard.
      
Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
The Hogen's
 

Spring 2016

April 11, 2016
It's hard to believe that 14 years ago I was in search of grape vines to plant.   In the spring of 2003 I was trying to chose what site would work best for growing grapes as to the slope of the land and also trees that would give us some wind protection.    The area I picked became our north vineyard and as I measured and staked the vineyard area I thought wow ....these 5 acres would be a big garden and I wondered how many times I would be walking up and down each row in the coming ye...

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Year #12 comes to a close...

November 3, 2015
Another year at the vineyard is over.....number 12.     Our vineyard continues to change with the removal of some vines and the planting of exciting new varieties.    In January we started out with a little pruning in our test area, of our 2-1-17 and I took over 100 cuttings to NDSU to be put in their Greenhouse and rooted.    These we planted in the spring on the west side.
   
Also in January and February, our juice from the 2014 crop was now getting happy at the two wineries.   Un...

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Fall Grape Harvest Coming Soon!

September 9, 2015
It's September already!   What a busy year it has been.     The grapes decided to bud a little earlier than normal and almost to early, as we had a late may frost, but they survived and throughout the summer it looked like our production would hit a new high.     But on August 14th we got hit by a hail storm that took out about 40% of the crop.    We are still looking forward to a good crop but it could have been better.    Oh well     Maybe next year !        Yesterday I tested the ...

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Latest News from the Vineyard

April 27, 2015
Looks like Spring has arrived and we are currently half done with the pruning.     I have the North Vineyard finished and will start of the South Vineyard today.     The south  vineyard are a bit younger and smaller plants and is done on a VSP Trellis so it  will go a lot faster.   All the varieties are looking good after our mild winter and the new Petite Pearls that were planted last year are looking good.     The Petite Pearl takes longer to get established and to produce fruit,  I'...
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Wrap Up

November 20, 2014
It was another busy year at the vineyard !        Thank you to the many that came and enjoyed our Friday Nite Suppers and we plan to continue and hopefully do a few more next year.    One of the High-lites of the year was our wine event introducing some of the new wines the Petite Pearl,  2-1-17, and 1-1-34.   The last 2 are experimental and don't have a name but all 3 have a great potential of becoming a variety to grow in the future.  We have over 200 Petite Pearls in the ground and ...

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Grape Harvest starting Sept. 27th

September 22, 2014
It's that time of the year for harvest.   Even though our production will be down we consider ourselves lucky because many vineyards lost most of their grapes.    Saturday the 27th we will begin to pick the white grapes and de-stem, crush and press.    We will also harvest some of the reds.  We will be serving beef stew for noon lunch.    So please let me know if you can attend by calling my cell   701-238-3337. 

Saturday is also the day when we host the Vine & Dine event at the vineya...

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July 2014 Vineyard News

July 23, 2014
On my last trip through the vineyard, it looks like our production this year will be down.    All of our vines survived the winter except the Louise Swenson which died back to the ground and we plan to pull all of these to plant something new.    The other vines struggled with the cold and later spring, setting the flowering back about a week and when they flowered we had a rainy period that affected the pollination as the clusters have more shot berrys.     Our new plantings of Petite ...

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Vineyard News - May 2014

May 13, 2014
Greetings:)

Finally we finished pruning the last of our 2,500 vines on Saturday, May 10th.   A HUGE Thank You to all of our wonderful volunteers who helped out this year!   We had a handful of "vine die back" from the winter so we pruned quite heavily. Time will tell how tough the winter really was on the vines.  We decided to remove all the Louise Swenson varieties that were planted in 2005 as they didn't perform that well, probably due to pH levels in our soil. They'll be replaced with two r...

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It's Spring (soon maybe?) & Time To Prune

April 3, 2014
As I watch the snow fall outside and notice that my calendar says it spring, I have to wonder "when"?  Well!   It always has in the past and I think our grapes are starting to move around a bit and getting ready to wake up for another year.     So!    The plan is to start pruning the week of the 7th and continue till we are finished.    If you would like to learn more about pruning we are setting aside Saturday 12th and 19th as  " Prune and Learn Days".   Food and refreshments will be ...

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About Me

Red Trail Vineyard
Buffalo, Nd
Red Trail Vineyard