Vineyards are in bloom all across eastern Washington. Today brings two pictures of this. The first comes from Nostra Terra Vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley courtesy of the folks at Dumas Station. The second comes from Canoe Ridge (Chardonnay) courtesy of Dave Minick. Click on the pictures for larger images.

Jay Dewitt of Dumas Station explains the first picture as follows:

“Each berry comes from a single bloom. The little green globular items are flowers ready to open. The very small white dots are the pollen grains attached to the pollen tubes, indicating that particular flower is open. The ovary is in the middle of the flower. The honey bee is collecting pollen as a food source, but grapes are self-pollinating, so bees aren’t really important. This is in contrast to apples which need pollen from a different variety of apple tree, and are dependent on bee activity to carry pollen grains from the pollinator tree to the desired fruit tree.”

Next up comes fruit set – a critical step to determining the 2012 crop.

Read an explanation of the growth cycle of grapevines here.