As spring advances, usually anywhere from six to 12 weeks after budbreak, vine flowers emerge as tiny little clusters on the tips of young shoots. These minute little spheres are called calyptrae and will pop open to reveal the rudiments of flowers. Timing, of course, depends on grape variety, viticultural practices and vineyard location, but flowering is prompted by a sustained rise in daytime temperatures, usually somewhere between 15ᵒC and 20°C.

A few weeks after the initial clusters appear, (usually from November) the flowers start growing and pollination and self-fertilization occur to produce individual grape berries. That is provided there are no frosts, storms or other climatic mishaps. About 30% of flowers - sometimes a little more - are fertilised. The rest fall off the vine.

Learn more about different varietals and harvesting on