Great moments in pedantry: How do you grow wine in a land without predictable seasons?


17 Responses to “Great moments in pedantry: How do you grow wine in a land without predictable seasons?”

  1. LYNDON says:

    Vintner is coming.

  2. Editz says:

    So many questions.

  3. feetleet says:

    Worshippers of the Old Gods just smoke monster.  

  4. Ian Osborne says:

    The answer is to grow wine [sic] in a land with predictable seasons.  

    Thanks, I’m turning in my 2 weeks notice. I need to re-evaluate my life and your world in it. Science is hard, so are rocks.  So my colleagues, stay strong, stay hard, go long, go deep, but not too deep.  It hurts the lymbic.  

  5. John Smith says:

    I knew there was a good reason not to watch this.

  6. $19428857 says:

    Westeros is only Earth-like, not Earth. Why would Westeros grape vines have to respond to seasons like Earth grape vines? Wouldn’t the wild grapes in Westeros have evolved under the conditions of extended seasons and be presumably fit for that environment? What brings people to argue counterfactuals about a work of fiction (counterfictionals?) is beyond my ken.
     I once listened to an extended argument about the impossibility of warp drive and therefore Star Trek was stupid. This is the same sort of thing, just more relaxed.

    • Shane Simmons says:

      Maybe it’s because my fantasy experience is colored by fantasy like Lord Valentine’s Castle, but given the number of Earth-like creatures on the planet in addition to fanciful creatures, as well as an intelligent race which obviously hasn’t fully adapted to this world, I always assumed this world was a bit like Majipoor, hospitable to humans but not humanity’s origin, possibly mineral-poor, with this race’s possible extraterrestrial origin being lost in the mists of time.

      Or maybe the weather got funked up by the Doom of Valyria.

      It’s fun to speculate about how a fictional world, one which the author likely just waved the hands and left it to the reader to think about, could work.

  7. Alchematter says:

    Sabeletodo has a pretty fair point. Seasonal ripening is really only “necessary” for plants which are in temperate climates — but there are plenty of tropical fruits which set fruit, develop, and ripen without significant swings in temperature or day length. Even, apparently, grapes!

    Weirdly, though, there don’t seem to be any fruits or seeds which take more than one year to ripen (Arbutus unedo is one which has new flowers and ripe fruit on at about the same time, with a 1-year ripening time). So that does seem to suggest that, at least as far as life on earth is concerned, it would be very unlikely that a plant would be able to evolve a ripening cycle that was greater than 1 year (otherwise, it would have happened in the tropics, where just about any differentiation can confer an advantage to somebody).

    In any case, the highly erratic nature of the seasons on this hypothetical world would make it difficult to imagine an evolutionary route which would result in complex plants at all (those with differentiated systems like flowers and seeds which take time to mature, and therefore require some consistency)

    Unless these plants could predict the weather. Then that would work :)

  8. SedanChair says:

    We’re sure as hell about to find out.

  9. welcomeabored says:

    I’ve been trying to figure out, how to baby a french lavender we planted this spring, through the cold and dry of a Colorado winter.  I understand that this is a variety of lavender that dies back to the ground.  We put up a cloche to protect it from the northern winds.

    It makes sense to me that Westeros could make wine from a variety that dies back to the ground (however weird that would be here on Earth).  What stretches the imagination of my inner gardener however, is the notion of a plant whose roots remain viable for a ‘generation’. The definition of a ‘generation’ varies on google between 20-25 years.  A seed could last that long… but a root?  So, I’m going to go with the magic theory.

  10. gt bear says:

    I have heard somewhere of marijuana growers doing something similar, using light fluctuations to have a year cycle in two months.

  11. Dlo Burns says:

    Those grapes are being abused like foie gras geese.

  12. leon peon says:

    In the books they are always drinking mead, not “wine”, which is derived from honey, no?

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