Cold Mornings and Sleeping Grapevines

Grape leaves covered in frost blanket the ground on a cold morning
Cold and beautiful, frost covers grape leaves that have fallen to the ground.

Like people, vines sleep. As winter approaches, grapevine leaves turn a vibrant gold. Eventually, frost runs white along their veins and etches their edges. Curled in upon themselves, the dried tissues become frail and drop at the first gust of wind or rain.

Cold winter days encourage these plants to go dormant. Besides offering us a change of scenery, however, the shift in weather sets the stage for a new phase of growth.

Dormancy is survival. Frost-covered ground puts delicate plant tissues at risk. During this latent period, the grapevine’s metabolism slows and the plant undergoes changes that permit its delicate buds to endure the harsh winter—and to be ready to awaken when the weather warms in springtime.