On a lovely early summer's day I take a drive to admire the farmlands between Malmesbury and Piketberg. The popular crops are wheat, vines, our local herbal Rooibos tea and proteas. It seems on the road that I'm on that most farms have opted for wheat and vines. The result is so pleasing to the eye and one is met by alternating patches of gold and green.
The workers in my painting are pruning the neat rows of vines. We sometimes complain that wine is expensive, but should consider for a moment all the labour and cost that is involved. The cuttings are grafted, cultivated, treated and dusted and then planted in ploughed and fertilised furrows. Take into account the trellising and pruning, protection against pests and diseases, irrigation, picking, sorting, distilling! What a process! The workers are usually part of the large farm "family" and will have homes, salaries, schooling and medical attention..........is wine really that expensive?