#160 - April 5, 2011

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Staff Changes at Midwest Grape & Wine Industry Institute

Change is constant and there has been some recent changes going on at the ISU Midwest Grape and Wine Industry Institute. The pictures below tell the story:

(Left) Jennie Hansen has been working as a wine lab technician for over a year. Her responsibilities have grown to working more directly with the wineries and being involved with workshop training activities.

Jennie is shown here standing in the doorway at the “NEW” wine cellar installed next to the wine lab. The cellar is made of red cedar and can hold 1,500 bottles of wine.




(Left) Dr. Jun Dang is our new Wine Lab Manager. Jun is originally from China and just recently received her doctorate in Chemical Engineering from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln.

Jun is working closely with Dr. Murli Dharmadhikari to identify and work on research priorities. Murli tells me that Jun is very good at what she does and will be a huge asset to our program.




(Left) Tamara Martin (Tammi) came on board about one month ago as our new Administrative Specialist. She is the one who helps to keep Murli, Jun, Jennie and myself informed and moving “somewhat” in the same direction. GOOD LUCK!

Tammi keeps our WWW page up to date and is the person who will greet you when you call the Institute.

You can contact Tammi here: Office: 515-294-3308 or e-mail: tkmartin@iastate.edu, http://www.extension.iastate.edu/Wine/



Dormant Liquid Lime Sulfur treatments

Liquid Lime Sulfur (calcium polysulfide) is used in vineyards primarily as a dormant application to disinfect the cordons and canes just prior to bud break to get early season Anthracnose control. Whether or not an early season lime sulfur application is needed should be based on past experience and the susceptibility of the grape cultivars being grown. My experience here in Iowa has shown that many of the Elmer Swenson cultivars like Brianna, Edelweiss, Esprit and others seem highly susceptible to Anthracnose. Page 22 of the 2011 Midwest Small Fruit Spray Guide has a good chart showing the susceptibility of many of the other cultivars we grow here in the Midwest. Chambourcin, Chancellor, Concord, Dechaunac, Delaware, Fredonia, Marechal Foch and Leon Millot are a few of the ones listed as very susceptible.

Application during the first 10 days of April in Iowa would be a good time-frame to get this done. Liquid lime sulfur is also toxic to the overwintering innoculum of Phomopsis and Powdery Mildew that reside in the bark crevices, canes and buds of the grape plant. Applying liquid lime sulfur just prior to bud break provides excellent control of anthracnose, good control of early season phomopsis and some control of powdery mildew. Reducing the amount of overwintering innoculum can dramatically reduce and delay the infection rate of these diseases as the new shoots and leaves emerge from the buds. Rain splash and runoff down the cordon and canes are the primary methods of infection of the new shoots.

Most liquid lime sulfur labels (28-29% calcium polysulfide) recommend mixing anywhere from 2-20 gallons of liquid lime sulfur in 100 -200 gallons of water/acre and spraying with at least 100 psi of pressure. . Many vineyard operators will mix 1 gallon of liquid lime sulfur to 10 gallons of water and spray their recently pruned cordons and spurs or canes with a sprayer handgun. They typically will end up using only 2.5-3 gallons of liquid lime sulfur per acre when applying it in this fashion. Others are using only 1 to 2 nozzles of their air blast sprayer directed at the cordon. This normally requires higher amounts of liquid lime sulfur per acre because of the overspray that misses the cordon. Liquid lime sulfur in 5 gallon jugs normally runs around $14 per gallon. Many forms of liquid lime sulfur are approved for organic grape production.

(Above) Anthracnose lesions on Esprit

BSP Sulforix (27.5% calcium polysulfide) is a liquid lime sulfur product that contains proprietary wetting agentss that BSP claims to have better spreading and retention than the common liquid lime sulfur products. Many commercial vineyards have been using this product instead of the typical liquid lime sulfur product. The Sulforix label recommends a rate 1 gallon of Sulforix per acre applied as a dormant application. Many growers are mixing around 1 gallon of Sulforix per 25 gallons of water and spraying through a handgun. BSP Sulforix costs approximately $28 per gallon in 2.5 gallon containers. BSP Sulforix is NOT approved for certified organic production.

These dormant applications can be applied to both sulfur tolerant and intolerant grape varieties prior to bud break. Good coverage on all sides of the cordon, arms, spurs and/or canes is required to be effective. Only sulfur tolerant grape varieties should be treated after bud break. Page 22 of the 2011 Midwest Small Fruit Spray Guide has a good chart showing the sulfur susceptibility of many of the other cultivars we grow here in the Midwest.

Example Liquid Lime Sulfur labels:

Note: Liquid lime sulfur is very corrosive. Suggest spraying spray vehicle with a light coating of PAM, diesel fuel, kerosene or mineral oil to protect the paint and metal surfaces.

“I don’t want to apply Liquid Lime Sulfur, what else can I do?” This is a common question. Many do not like to spray a messy and corrosive liquid lime sulfur. I can completely understand. My suggestion would be to use a preventative fungicide or fungicide mix that is effective on anthracnose as soon as the shoots begin to emerge. Mancozeb/Penncozeb would come to my mind first due to its low cost and effectiveness on Black Rot and Phomopsis. The fungicides; Abound, Endura, Captan, Pristine, Sovran, Topsin and Ziram are also listed as highly effective on Anthracnose on Page19 of the 2011 Midwest Small Fruit Spray Guide.

Individual pesticide labels can be found here: http://www.cdms.net/

Remember! – Always Read and Follow Label Directions


Grape Grafting Workshop – Pella, IA – 4-12

What: Grape Grafting Workshop

When: 6:pm to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 12, 2010
Registration will start at 5:30 p.m.

Where: Black Creek Vineyards, owned by Larry and Vi Engbers, Pella, IA
1155 Hwy 102 • Pella, Iowa • 50219 • (641)628-2304 (Approx. 3.25 miles northeast of Pella on the north side of Hwy 102)

Who: Dr. Paul Domoto, ISU Extension Fruit Specialist will be demonstrating
grafting techniques that can be used in the vineyard.

Sponsored by: ISU Extension and Black Creek Vineyards

Cost: $10 each, at the door.

Pre-registration requested: by contacting Mike White at mlwhite@iastate.edu or 515-961-7286.

Note: This workshop will be held rain or shine.


Best Practices Wine Workshops – 4 Iowa Locations – April 5, 12,19, 26

What: Best Practice Workshops: SO2 Management, Analysis and Calculations, Winery Cleaning & Sanitation, Identifying Wine Faults, Individual Q & A (open topics)

Where & When: 1-4:30 p.m.
Tuesday, April 5 South Central Iowa
Schade Creek Vineyard & Winery, 1230 Warrior Lane, Waukee, IA 50263
Tuesday, April 12 North Central Iowa
Fireside Winery, 1755 P Ave. (V77), Marengo, IA 52301
Tuesday, April 19 Western Iowa
Santa Maria Vineyard & Winery, 218 W 6th St. Carroll, IA 51401
Tuesday, April 26 Eastern Iowa
Heartland Harvest Winery, 2116 290th Ave. Fort Madison, IA 52627

Cost: "FREE", but advance registration is required!

To Register: Contact Tammi Martin one week in advance with your name, address, e-mail, phone and date of choice. tkmartin@iastate.edu or 515-294-3308

Sponsored by: Midwest Grape & Wine Industry Institute

Donations are always appreciated: Visit http://www.extension.iastate.edu/wine


Comments from Readers

Hi Mike,

If you know of anyone that could use some grow tubes (FREE) let me know. I have about 500 that someone can have. They are plastic, two parts that snap together to make one tube.

John - Norwalk, IA ejab2@aol.com


Notable Quotables

  1. “Which brings me to another irksome instance of cultural inertia in the wine world, the Wine Aroma Wheel………Because the Wheel is so much a product of the 1980s California wine world, it's about as useful for describing the aromas of wine in 2011 as a 1958 World Atlas is for naming countries in Africa or Eastern Europe.”
    From: Rethinking the Aroma Wheel, 3-27-11 – Huffington Post
  2. “In the recession era, the fastest-growing segment of the wine industry is in the $9-$12 range. High-end wineries, on the other hand, have found it nearly impossible to sell bottles for their $50 or $75 retail price…….Rather than mark down their merchandise and do permanent damage to their reputations as sellers of luxury products, many wine makers are turning to companies that'll sell the vino anonymously on the cheap—and buyers and drinkers never find out exactly who made the wine.”
    From: How to Buy a $75 Bottle of Wine for $25: Just Remove the Label, 3-28-11 – It’s Your Money Blog.
  3. “The state now has 81 wineries, up from 68 last year, and they are spread all around the state. While sales of all wines in Michigan were up 4 percent last year, sales of Michigan wines were up 12 percent, according to the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.”
    From: State’s wine industry growing more fruitful, 3-31-11 – Detroit News


Marketing Tidbits

  1. Six ways companies cash in on Facebook, 3-28-11 memeburn:
  2. “FREE” social media monitoring for your winery. Type in your “winery’s name and see what people on the WWW web are saying about you here: http://cruvee.com/


Show n Tell

(Left) On Monday, March 29th, I was invited to sit in as Joe Hannan presented a seminar on “Potassium-magnesium Antagonism in High Magnesium, High pH Soils in Upper Mississippi Valley Vineyards” in room 118 of the ISU Horticulture department. Joe is just about done finishing up his graduate work for his Master’s degree at ISU.

Joe was recently hired by ISU Extension as a Commercial Horticulture Specialist working out of the Adel, IA office. You can contact Joe here:
Office: 515-993-4281 Cell: 515-971-9503 e-mail: jmhannan@iastate.edu

On Friday, April 1st I drove up to northwest Iowa so that I could conduct a pruning workshop for the Northwest Grape Growers Association at Paul and Sheila Thomsen’s vineyard located just northeast of Linn Grove. I stopped by Dale Valley Vineyard & Winery located just north of Stuart, IA on my way up. There I met up with Tracy Mahlstadt (CEO) and her dad Jim Lonsdale working at the winery. Ed Mahlstadt (COO & husband) was working at his full-time job in Des Moines. Tracy also has a full-time sales job with Office Max, but gets to work out of her home which is right next to the winery.

Dale Valley Vineyard & Winery opened in 2007. Winestock has become their most successful event. The 4th annual Winestock will be held again this summer. Winestock is composed of a full day of multiple bands, wine, food and fun. Below are some of the pictures from my visit:

(Left) Just a few of the 11 different wines Dale Valley Vineyard & Winery has for sale.






(Left) A 100+ year old one room school house is used as their tasting room and gift shop. Additional deck space and larger restrooms are being installed this year.






(Left) This one room school house was purchased from Guthrie County for $10 and moved for $7,200 to the vineyard. Pictures of the move can be found under “Gallery” on the Dale Valley Vineyard & Winery Homepage.






(Left) Original blackboard still remains in the school.








(Left) Jim Lonsdale and his daughter Tracy Mahlstadt at the tasting room bar. The large 1873 map of Iowa hanging on the wall was in the school house when they purchased it.






(Left) 1”galvanized plumbers pipe with a 45° elbow used to hold trellis wire that is run through the trellis post.







(Below) Who says that you have to remove the old insulators from the old telephone poles before using as a trellis post?

(Left) 12” x 18” No Spray sign posted in the vineyard. These signs can be purchased for $5 from the IA Dept. of Ag’s Sensitive Crops Directory Program.






(Above) Two humorous signs found in the Dale Valley Winery’s tasting room.

A 4:00 minute Video about Dale Valley Winery produced by the Midwest Partnership EDC can be found here: http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=794598496250&ref=mf

(Left) One more final pic from my trip up to Linn Grove, IA. I stopped by the HyVee liquor store in Carroll, IA to purchase some Iowa wines. The shelves on the left are filled with a variety of Iowa wines. The shelves on the right are filled with Santa Maria Winery wines. Santa Maria Winery is located just down the street from this HyVee store. I have never seen so much shelf space given to any one winery before!!






Articles of Interest

  1. DMACC’s wine courses grow in popularity, 3-27-11 – Des Moines Register:
  2. The Cult of Wine of 121 B.C., 3-28-11 Wine Spectator:
  3. Sustainable Wine Growers While Organic Wine Flounders, 3-29-11 – The Gray Report:
  4. Cedar Ridge Bourbon Wins Gold Medal, 3-31-11 – Eastern Iowa Business:


Videos of Interest

  1. Vineyard Pruning Tools, 3-17-11 - Mike White, ISU Extension, 8:53 min.:
  2. Cold Climate Oenology & Viticulture Institute (CCOVI) Online video lecture series:


Neeto-Keeno WWW Stuff

  1. Amateur Winemakers Club of Nebraska: http://newineclub.org/
  2. Herb & Wine Pairing Chart (courtesy of “newwineclub’s” March 2011 newsletter:
  3. VinoEnology: http://vinoenology.com/
  4. China is developing GMO disease resistant Thompson Seedless grapes:
  5. “New” NRCS Soils beta site. Type in your address and play with the zoom bar to pull up your Soils map: http://hydro_bm.esri.com/Soils/soilOrderMap1Beta.htm


Calendar of Events:

4-(5, 12, 19, 26), 1-4:30 p.m. Best Practice Wine Workshops – 4 Iowa locations “FREE”. Contact: Tammi Martin for details and registration: tkmartin@iastate.edu or 515-294-3308

4-(8 & 9), Midwest Aronia Berry Annual Conference,: Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites, Des Moines, IA. 515-278-4755, Registration info: http://midwestaronia.org/

4-9, Hop & Barley Production for Wisconsin – 2nd Annual Seminar, Tomah, WI. Registration due by 4-1: http://buffalo.uwex.edu/agriculture/barley-and-hops/

4-12, Grape Grafting Workshop, at Black Creek Vineyards, Pella, IA. Sponsored by ISU Extension. Contact: mlwhite@iastate.edu or 515-681-7386
4-(12-14), - License to Steal National Wine Marketing Conference, Geneva, Ohio. Details: http://www.nationalwinemarketing.com/

4-(18-21), 14th Wildlife Damage Conference, : Lied Lodge & Conference Center, Nebraska City, NE. Details & Registration: http://joomla.wildlife.org/WildlifeDamage//index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=180

4-21, 1 pm -The next Iowa Alcohol Beverage Division commission meeting at the Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division offices in Ankeny: http://www.iowaabd.com/about/updates/event/55

4-28, Wine Chemistry Basics for Midwestern Winemakers, Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery, 4746 N. Ford Rd. Galena, IL. Sponsored by the Northern Illinois Wine Growers Association: http://northernillinoiswine.com/

5-(5-8), Kothe Distilling Spring Workshop, Kothe Distilling Technologies, Chicago, IL. Details & Registration: http://www.kothe-distilling.com/en/products/workshops/60-kothe-distilling-technologies-spring-2011-workshop

5-21, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Airblast Sprayer Workshop with Dr. Andrew Landers author of Effective Vineyard Spraying at the ISU Horticulture Research Station, Ames, IA. Details later. Contact: Mike White at mlwhite@iastate.edu

6-(4+5), Kothe Distilling Summer Workshop, Kothe Distilling Technologies, Chicago, IL. Details: : http://www.kothe-distilling.com/en/component/content/article/15-workshop-information/75-kothe-summer-2011-workshop

6-7, Viticulture Field Day, Missouri Grape Growers Assn. (MGGA) & the Institute for Continental Climate Viticulture & Enology (ICCVE). Details here: http://www.missourigrapegrowers.org/

6-(20-24), American Society for Enology & Viticulture – Portola Hotel & Monterey Conference Center, Monterey, CA: http://asev.org/national-conference-2011/


Total Circulation of 1,300+ recipients in AZ, CA, CO, FL, OH, IA, IN, IL, KS, KY, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NV, NY, OK, OR, PA, SD, VA, VT, WA, WA DC, WI, Australia, Canada, Israel, Norway & Turkey

Michael L. White,
ISU Extension Viticulture Specialist
909 East 2nd Ave. Suite E, Indianola, IA 50125-2892
ph: 515-961-6237, fax: 6017 or mlwhite@iastate.edu

Iowa State University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, sex, marital status, disability, or status as a U.S. veteran. Inquiries can be directed to the Director of Equal Opportunity and Compliance, 3280 Beardshear Hall, (515) 294-7612.

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