Domaine de Belle Mare

Les Vignes du Domaine de Belle Mare S.A.S.
CD 18 - Route des Salins - 34140 MEZE, FRANCE
Tel: +33 (0)4 67 43 17 68

What is vine budburst ?

What is vine budburst ?

After reading this article, you'll be well-versed in vine budburst.

Budburst is a crucial moment in the life cycle of the vine and marks the beginning of its growth. It's an essential process for viticulture.


Before we dive in, here's a simple overview of the vine's life cycle:

  • Budburst: emergence of the first buds
  • Leafing: leaves develop
  • Flowering: appearance of flowers
  • Berry set: grapes start to form
  • Leaf removal: removal of leaves that could compromise grape growth
  • Veraison: grapes start changing color
  • Ripening: grapes mature and fill with sugar
  • Harvest: grapes are picked
  • Dormancy: the vine goes dormant for winter.


Budburst occurs in spring, between March and April, as temperatures start to rise. This period follows the vine's winter dormancy. At this stage, the buds, which have been protected by scales during winter, begin to develop and emerge.


When temperatures reach a critical threshold, growth hormones present in the buds start to be activated. This triggers a series of biochemical reactions that lead to bud bursting. This marks the beginning of active vine growth for the new season. Buds burst to form new shoots that will become the vine's future canes. For buds to appear, two conditions must be met: sufficiently high temperatures and sunlight. Once these two conditions are met, the vines awaken, roots absorb water and nutrients from the soil, sap flows again, and the vine starts producing buds.


The timing of budburst is crucial as it largely determines the vine's yield potential for the upcoming season. Unfavorable weather conditions, such as late frosts, can damage buds in full growth, leading to reduced yields. That's why we closely monitor weather forecasts during this period to take measures to protect buds if necessary. If it freezes, the buds burn, impacting the harvest.

Moreover, if the budburst period is prolonged and spread out over time, there's a risk of inconsistency at harvest time. Indeed, some clusters reach maturity earlier than others, posing a problem during harvest.


In conclusion, vine budburst marks the beginning of the growth season and is a crucial moment for us. It's when buds start to burst, and the vine prepares to produce new shoots, leaves, and grape clusters. It's an exciting and hopeful period that heralds the vine's renewal and the promise of future quality harvests.


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