Training Vines Through Shoot Positioning

How To Train Vineyard Vines

Great wine starts with great grapes and great grapes need lots of tender loving care. Today we’re showing you how training vines through shoot positioning helps us grow the best grapes possible.

Shoot Positioning

Left to their own devices, grape vines are a wild bunch. They want to run free in all directions. So, it’s our job to tame them. The process is called shoot positioning.

We position grape shoots in catch wires to guide them towards the sky. Catch wires are pairs of flexible thin wire. We gently guide the growing vines between the wires. Each trellis row has three sets of wires so the plants have continued support as they grow toward their full height.

We don’t need to hook the grape vines with any fasteners because tendrils will naturally loop around the wires.

Earth Friendly

The catch wires support the vines so they don’t flop on the ground. This serves as a natural way to reduce fungicide use. Vines that hang in the dirt are much more likely to get mold, mildew, or fungus.


Some people call the process “combing” because once the vine crawl up the wires, they are straight and spaced out like the teeth on a comb.

Sun and Air

The “comb” arrangement of the vines provides excellent air circulation. Those plants have plenty of room to breath and lots of leaf surface area to soak up the sun. The amount of sun the vines get this year, determines the quality of the vines next years.

The work we did today, will support the vines for a little while. By this time next week, they will have grown enough to guide them into the second row of wire.

With thousands of vines on the farm, we’ll be busy with this for a while.

We certainly think we’ve earned ourselves a nice big glass of wine! Don’t you?

If you’d like to learn more about grape farming, you can check out our blog about how we set vineyard posts or how mulch helps our sustainable farming efforts.

If you’re interested in seeing a particular vineyard or winemaking topic on the blog, let us know in the comment section.


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