The buds are breaking out all over our estate Margarita Vineyard as we head into mid April—the first signs of life of the 2022 vintage to come.

Spring bud beak is the process whereby the vine buds break open to reveal the first green growth of the season. At first, you just see a tiny whisper of greenery. But within few days, things really start leafing out.

As of late last week, bud break was already underway across all varieties in the warmer parts of the vineyard, with the rest not far behind—particularly after an unseasonal three-day heat wave that topped out at 95 degrees.

“The warm weather definitely kicked bud break into overdrive,” says Ancient Peaks co-owner and viticulturist Doug Filipponi. “But things are cooling down dramatically this week, and there’s even a chance of morning frost.”

In the grand scheme of things, the timing of the 2022 bud break is normal for Margarita Vineyard. “Late March to mid April is the typical window,” Doug says.

The next crucial phase in the vineyard will be flowering, whereby the baby clusters self-pollinate to set the coming crop, typically starting in later May.

Until the recent heat wave, the early spring weather had been steady and mild, and we hope conditions return to that groove through the flowering period.

Nevertheless, Doug reminds us of this hard-fought piece wisdom gained after more than 30 years of growing wine grapes: “You just have to be prepared for everything.”