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2010 to be rare vintage of Napa 'hobby' wine

Napa County residents who grow a few grapevines to produce homemade wine are being asked to destroy their crop this year to break the life cycle of a pest threatening the county's fabled wine industry, according to an article in the Weekly Calistogan.

The European grapevine moth was first detected in the United States in Napa County in 2009. About 1,500 square miles are now under quarantine in Napa, Solano and Sonoma counties, according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

The Napa County agricultural commissioner's request that backyard producers voluntarily cut off the fruit and dispose of it does not apply to commercial grape growers, who have been treating their vines to combat the pest for months under the guidance of experts, including the University of California Cooperative Extension, the story said.

One small-scale winegrape grower told reporter Kerana Todorov he considered the request drastic, but probably necessary.

“I understand the commissioner’s concern is with small, urban patches that are hard to monitor and control. I have around a half-acre vineyard in the county with over 20 rows and over 400 vines, and to lose the fruit would be quite a loss," the story quoted John Intardonato.

Feeding damage by European grapevine moth larva.
Feeding damage by European grapevine moth larva.

Posted on Wednesday, August 4, 2010 at 6:36 AM

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