Winter Damage Report From Ohio
It was a cold February in Ohio. The -17F reading in Cleveland on February 20th was the coldest temperature recored in Cleveland during February. East of Cleveland and not far from prime grape growing areas, the city of Chardon, OH crashed to -29F on the same frigid night.
Needless to say, grapevines were damaged, as reported by the Ashtabula Star Beacon. (The Star Beacon does a much better job of covering Northern Ohio wine than the much larger Cleveland Plain Dealer.)
One interesting item from Star Beacon story titled Despite Rough Winter, Winemakers Optimistic 2015 Will Be Better, is Tony Debevc of Debonne Vineyards comment that last year’s cold wiped out “native” grapes like Catawba and Concord too.
Midwest wineries can survive by buying juice and grapes from other regions, but we really need a good crop in 2016.