Now Now that the cold temperatures have set in, the vines go into dormancy for the winter months. This is the time of year to cut back all of the 2009 growth, so that in 2010 there will be controlled new growth. Two to three canes (canes are the shoots from 2009 that have hardened into wood) will be kept per vine. Two are kept for the next year’s growth. In cool climates it is good idea to keep three canes for insurance purposes against winter damage. It's a tricky task, almost like a puzzle. It is important to cut the right canes, because they can't be glued back on.
In the photo above, Kyp the Vineyard Manager, is pruning Marechal Foch. The canes from two rows will be kept in one aisle so that they are easy to collect and take to the compost pile.