Washington Vineyards Don't Have To Worry Too Much About Dry Wint - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Washington Vineyards Don't Have To Worry Too Much About Dry Winter

Posted: Updated:

SPOKANE, Wash. - The state of Washington is having its driest winter since 2000. Local wine growers here, however, are not worried about their crops.

"We're fortunate because most of our vineyards have good irrigation and the vines don't use a lot of water," said Jim van Loben Sels, who runs Spokane's Arbor Crest Wine Cellars. "When we come out of the spring, even if we don't have a lot of rainfall, we'll probably be looking pretty good."

In California, wine growers are facing extreme drought conditions in over 60% of the state and wine growers there are rightfully worried about their crops.

van Loben Sels explained that most farmers in Washington, however, "put their vines to bed" at the beginning of the winter so they are more fully irrigated and not as likely to be affected by a particularly dry winter.

And, since there is not usually excessive rainfall in Washington state, van Loben Sels is fairly confident his crops will fare well.

"For right now, we're confident with what happens in Washington, with already low rainfall, that we're going to have a great crop," he said.

In fact, when it is extra dry in the winter, van Loben Sels said wine growers sometimes produce higher quality wine for the spring season because the wine has less water and higher fruit concentrate.

van Loben Sels also said dealing with weather extremes is par for the course in the wine business.

"For the wine industry, it's mother nature, we're always dealing with the elements, you never know what hand you're going to be dealt, and you never know until the grapes come through the door," he said. "You just roll with it, and make the best wine you can."

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • PHOTOS: Flash flooding & mudslides trap people in Okanogan County

    PHOTOS: Flash flooding & mudslides trap people in Okanogan County

    Friday, August 22 2014 9:12 PM EDT2014-08-23 01:12:14 GMT
    OKANOGAN COUNTY, Wash.- Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers tells KHQ that as of 5:00pm Friday evening, Highway 20 is back open and no homes are threaten after numerous mudslides washed out roads and stranded drivers Thursday night and Friday morning. >>
    OKANOGAN COUNTY, Wash.- Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers tells KHQ that as of 5:00pm Friday evening, Highway 20 is back open and no homes are threaten after numerous mudslides washed out roads and stranded drivers Thursday night and Friday morning. >>
  • PHOTOS: CASH REWARD offered for information leading to the arrest of these FUGITIVES

    PHOTOS: CASH REWARD offered for information leading to the arrest of these FUGITIVES

    Friday, August 22 2014 7:41 PM EDT2014-08-22 23:41:09 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Crime Stoppers of the Inland Northwest is offering cash rewards for any information leading to the arrest of the fugitives listed on their website as of August 21, 2014. If you recognize any of these fugitives, you are asked call 1-800-222 TIPS.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Crime Stoppers of the Inland Northwest is offering cash rewards for any information leading to the arrest of the fugitives listed on their website as of August 21, 2014. If you recognize any of these fugitives, you are asked call 1-800-222 TIPS.>>
  • Dog recovering from gun shots looks for loving home

    Dog recovering from gun shots looks for loving home

    Friday, August 22 2014 5:00 PM EDT2014-08-22 21:00:29 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Just for a second, forget everything you think you know about Pit Bulls. Forget that you think they are vicious or that you've heard they attack children. Approaching this story with an open mind might just change your opinion of what can actually be a very sweet, people-loving breed. A very special pit bull is lucky to be alive after enduring two gun shot wounds and abuse that left her blind in one eye.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Just for a second, forget everything you think you know about Pit Bulls. Forget that you think they are vicious or that you've heard they attack children. Approaching this story with an open mind might just change your opinion of what can actually be a very sweet, people-loving breed. A very special pit bull is lucky to be alive after enduring two gun shot wounds and abuse that left her blind in one eye.>>
  • Top Stories from KHQTop StoriesMore>>

  • Spokane County Sheriff's Office gets new helicopters thanks to donation

    Spokane County Sheriff's Office gets new helicopters thanks to donation

    Saturday, August 23 2014 2:35 AM EDT2014-08-23 06:35:27 GMT
    SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash.- In mid-August the Spokane County Sheriff's office announced they're getting new helicopters. The new helicopters will replace the aging Air One chopper that the Sheriff's office uses right now. On Friday we got a first hand look at one of the two helicopters, which were donated by the U.S. Army and cost taxpayers nothing.>>
    SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash.- In mid-August the Spokane County Sheriff's office announced they're getting new helicopters. The new helicopters will replace the aging Air One chopper that the Sheriff's office uses right now. On Friday we got a first hand look at one of the two helicopters, which were donated by the U.S. Army and cost taxpayers nothing.>>
  • Gleason Fest 2014 set for Saturday, August 23rd

    Gleason Fest 2014 set for Saturday, August 23rd

    Saturday, August 23 2014 1:57 AM EDT2014-08-23 05:57:35 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash.- You've been watching the ALS ice bucket challenges all week, but on Saturday, August 23rd, the mother of all ALS events is set to take place: Gleason Fest 2014. Named for Spokane native and former New Orleans Saint Steve Gleason, the event will be held in downtown Spokane at Division and Main.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash.- You've been watching the ALS ice bucket challenges all week, but on Saturday, August 23rd, the mother of all ALS events is set to take place: Gleason Fest 2014. Named for Spokane native and former New Orleans Saint Steve Gleason, the event will be held in downtown Spokane at Division and Main.>>