Spring In The Vines of Burgundy

Young leaves and tendrils glow iridescent under the late morning sun. A white-van rattles through the vines kicking up a billow of dust, dispersed with the dandelion seeds that parachute lazily back to earth.

April is exciting in Burgundy. The muted greys and browns of winter steadily make way for the electric greens of spring and as if over night the landscape of the Cote D'Or changes colour. The wiry silhouettes of trees transform into an soft mass of verdant foliage and dormant spring flowers burst from the ground.

The vines are awakening too. Almost over night young leaves appear on branches and the dull covering of the winter months begins to change texture and hue and the coveted slopes of Pommard, Volnay and Beaune are carpeted in a collection of rich greens.

April 2015 in Burgundy has been dry until the this week. There has been little rain, unusually hot days and crisp nights.  As a result the vines are well advanced causing panic among the men and woman whose job it is to keep this growth spurt in check.  Juvenile leaves are already busy sucking in the sunlight and the scarlet-tipped buds that will become this year’s harvest are already visible. Any day now the de-budding (L'ébourgeonnage) and clearing (L'épamprage) of the vines will be begin.

Taking an afternoon in the vines with my camera here is a collection of images to journal the spring in the vines of Burgundy.