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Sustainable Winegrowing.

 

The Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand program is rapidly becoming the benchmark for viticultural management in New Zealand. The program involves the evaluation of the environmental impact of vineyard operations and encourages the adoption of best practice methods which minimise environmental degradation. The program encompasses resource management, soil health, biodiversity, water use and agrichemical use 

According to a report by DANA Publishing (The NZ Wine Industry Review 2005 Ed:- An Independent Perspective), participation will become essential in order  to maintain access to our export markets and the supply chains of the major overseas supermarkets and liquor distribution retailers. Sustainable Winegrowing certification provides the grower and winemaker with a competitive advantage when competing with other producers for access to export markets.

An integral aspect of the SWNZ program is the co-ordination of fungicide and pesticide applications with regular monitoring of insect pest and fungal pathogen populations; then spraying only when a predetermined threshold has been reached. This maintains crop quality while benefiting the environment through reduced chemical use. Costs for the grower are also reduced; a true win-win situation.

Pest and Disease Monitoring

The Viticulture Practice has extensive experience working with the SWNZ program and is able to provide a pest and disease monitoring service along the SWNZ guide-lines. A full schedule of seven visits per block co-ordinated with grapevine’s key growth stages is available (see Table 1. below) One-off assessments or other schedules determined by the grower’s specific requirements are also available. A single assessment is often of benefit to a grower as will provide an evaluation of the amount and type of the diseases present in the vineyard.

With each assessment a qualified scout will identify and record disease incidence, populations of insect pests and also the presence beneficial insects. The presence of virus symptoms, nutrient deficiencies and crop damage will also be noted. A written report will be presented after each visit.

Pest and Disease pressure is not static in any grapegrowing region and Marlborough is no exception: Mealy bugs and the associated Grapevine Leafroll-associated Virus type 3 are being observed more frequently, as are symptoms of the trunk diseases Botryosphaeria and Petrie vine decline. Black spot,usually a disease of warmer and more humid reigons, has also been recorded. The Viticulture Practice's scouts are familiar with the symptoms of these diseases.

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Other P & D related services offered by The Viticulture Practice include installing and monitoring pheremone traps to record Light Brown Apple Moth numbers in the vineyard and the measurement of Grass Grub populations.

Viticulturists Lex Thomson and Franzi Grab both have degrees from Lincoln University and have studied with renown plant pathologist Dr Marlene Jaspers.Go to Grapevine Pest &Disease Gallery to view photos and details of the pests and diseases that they have observed in Marlborough.

P & D Monitoring Price List.

Full Program (7 assessments). $55.00/assessment./block
Partial programs and one-off assessments. $65.00/assessment/block
All prices are GST exclusive.
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Powdery mildew Eutypa die back

The Viticulture Practice: Full P & D Monitoring Schedule.

Table 1. SWNZ recomended Pest and Disease Monitoring Schedule.

Assesment

Growth Stage

 

Target disease and pest.

1

Shoots 25-35cm. p_d1
  • Powdery mildew on flag shoots.
  • Erinose mite.
  • Phomopsis.

2

Pre-flowering. pre-flowering
  • Powdery mildew on leaves.
  • Erinose mite.
  • Downey mildew.
  • Phomopsis.

3

Full bloom. flowering
  • Leafroller caterpillar.
  • Downey mildew.
  • Mealy bug.

4

Pre-bunch closure. pre-bunch
  • Powdery mildew in bunches.
  • Downey mildew.
  • Mealy bug

5

Bunch closure. closure
  • Powdery mildew in bunches.
  • Leafroller caterpillar.
  • Botrytis rot.
  • Mealy bug.

6

Veraison. veraison
  • Powdery mildew in bunches.
  • Leafroller caterpillar.
  • Botrytis rot.
  • Mealy bug.

7

Harvest. harvest
  • Botrytis and sour rots.
  • Leafroller caterpillar.
  • Mealybug.
(Graffics from Eichorn and Lorenz,1977. Stages in shoot development in the Grapevine.)