SHERWOOD, Ore. -- Oregon vineyards are facing a new challenge with all this heat, but it's not sunburn or heat damage. Vineyards are actually getting too many grapes.
The hot weather is not only causing more grapes to grow, but it's also setting the stage for an unusually early harvest.
At Ponzi Vineyard, crews are busy pruning the vines and actually "dropping" just about every other grape cluster.
In fact, the crop is so big that president Maria Ponzi said Monday the vineyard will have to cut down, and basically get rid of, nearly half of its grapes.
This "dropping" gives the clusters that remain the best chance to ripen, and the remaining grapes will likely ripen much earlier than normal.
"Here at Ponzi we're potentially thinking about the first or second week of September to start picking, which is nice," Ponzi said. "In previous years we've been picking the end of September. So this is definitely three weeks earlier, perhaps two to three weeks earlier, than what we've seen in the past."
Ponzi said one challenge could be the rain in the forecast. Hot weather followed by rain can cause the grapes to mildew.
But she said as long as we get a cool down in the coming days and don't get too much more rain, 2014 should see a rather large harvest that yields a nice and fruity wine.