Cane Ripening

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

cane ripening, or lignification, aoûtement in French, is a viticultural term used to describe a stage in the development of the shoot when the stem matures, and changes colour from green to yellow and thence to brown. The change involves the formation of corky tissue known as periderm and cellular changes including the accumulation of carbohydrate reserves, which collectively prepare the stem to withstand the cold of winter. The process begins at the base of the shoot and progresses up towards the tip, as does the dormancy status of its buds. veraison, the change in colour of the grapes, usually occurs at about the same time.