Secrets of winter pruning

Samantha Cole-Johnson pruning in a Willamette vineyard

Samantha Cole-Johnson, who will collect her WSET Diploma at the annual awards ceremony in London's Guildhall tonight, provided us with last season’s illuminating Diary of a Willamette cellar rat. Here she ventures into the vineyard to submit a further despatch from Oregon wine country.

The clayey Jory mud sucks at my boots, forcing me into an awkward half skip in order to keep up with Antoine, the vineyard manager. It’s sleeting sideways, my toes and fingers are frozen, and somehow my protective glasses are already smeared with mud. The notebook I’m clutching is starting to become sodden and the pen is...