Just Right: Not Too Hot, Not Too Dry – Southern Oregon’s Wine Industry Would Please Goldilocks!
While California’s wine industry is suffering from epic mega-drought, Southern Oregon’s wine industry is growing like a bean stalk (to mix agriculture metaphors). With the epically dry condition in California has crimped the flow of wine out of California, that scarcity has created an opportunity for other regions to step into the supply chain. (The U..S. government’s 2014 National Climate Assessment projected that California’s ability to grow wine-producing grapes may decline as much as half its current volume by later this century.) As well, point out some climatologists, the silver lining to global warming has been that the slight increase in temperatures and drier summers has actually moved eco-regions like Southern Oregon into prime conditions for grape growing; more akin to Italian vineyards than the cold and drizzle people often associate with Oregon.
And, it isn’t just an abundance of sun that creates a good growing zone: To grow effectively, grapes require specific winter conditions as well as the warmth of the growing season; proper winter and spring temperatures allow buds to safely emerge, and Southern Oregon has that!
Yes, it is the dawn (or, really, a bit later in the stage-growth than that; mid-morning?) for the wine industry in Southern Oregon. Moreover, with the economy once again ramping up, there feels like a celebration and party happening in the dozen of vineyards that make up the region’s wine industry.