Grape varieties selected for cultivation in this province must be winter hardy, as temperatures regularly drop as low as -22 F (-30 C) in January and February. However, viticulture is possible due to a growing season tempered by Lake Champlain and the St. Lawrence River, as well as the Laurentian and Appalachian mountains. French hybrids such as Eona, Vidal, Seyval Blanc, Marechal Foch, De Chaunac and Ste. Croix are planted here. Vignerons have to bury vines in dirt and hay for protection against winter kill.
Quebec’s winegrowing history started with its early colonists, who made wine from native varietals. Today, Quebec has over 50 wineries located in three growing areas, with vineyard acreage growing annually. One region is just south of Montreal, in the foothills of the Laurentians, another is on Isle d'Orlean near Quebec City, with the bulk of the vineyard being in the Eastern Townships area.
In the southern Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina and Georgia vineyards are small and few, yet the establishment of the Upper Hiwassee Highlands could bring much more.
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