Hickory Creek’s vineyards all fall within the Lake Michigan Shore AVA. The uniqueness of the LMS AVA is its varied soil types, caused by the Wisconsin glacial period 12 to 13 thousand years ago. In general, every hilltop is slightly different, giving each vineyard it’s own unique signature. Most soils are loamy and well drained. Base is 50° F, which is greater than Burgundy and Bordeaux France, but equal to Bolzano Italy and St. Helena California. The length of the LMS AVA growing season is from 165 days to 195 days and has, on average, less than 2 days below –4° F per year. This is important because at –5° F the vine suffers from cold.
Hickory Creek Winery uses sustainable vineyard practices and focuses on overall vineyard health, including promotion of beneficial insects and herbs. Our vineyards are trellised to vertical shoot position (VSP) and are pruned to 30 to 40 nodes per plant. This keeps crop levels consistent and requires less green harvest at véraison. Vineyards are summer hedged and leaf pulling is done on most varieties.