May 2008 Douro Insider

May started a little curiously, with the weather still undecided (as it has been for most of the year so far) but it was changeable in a different way from April.  Rather than fluctuating from one extreme to another from week to week, there were a number of days that, at breakfast time, appeared to have little idea as to what they were going to do until dinner.  There were often spells of overcast skies bringing with them some light showers but these gloomy patches were broken up by sticky, sunny spells that tempted out the  first snakes of spring.  Whilst precipitation was not especially high by the usual standards, it trickled in consistently throughout the month (particularly in the second half), a slow but steady stream that ensured that the air remained decidedly humid and, coupled with the cloudy conditions, might have favoured powdery mildew had precautions not been taken.  Unfortunately things didn’t really clear up in time for flowering and by mid-month a heavy depression could be found camped broodingly over the Iberian peninsula for about a week or so.  Thus things remained variable but thundery, basically quite grey but with plenty of showers.  In any case, it is turning out to be quite a challenging spring as far as the treatments go. Full Report

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