Overall Planning for Developing a New Vineyard: Site Selection and Assessment. Ed Hellman Viticulture Extension Specialist

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1 Overall Planning for Developing a New Vineyard: Site Selection and Assessment Ed Hellman Viticulture Extension Specialist

2 Critical Site Selection Criteria Climate (plant adapted varieties) Diseases and Pests (climate & soil influence) Irrigation water availability Irrigation water quality Soil depth Soil drainage Cold air drainage (topography)

3 Where should I plant my vineyard? Ideal Situation: Search for the best location Common Situation: The family ranch

4 Ideal Situation: Search for the best location

5 Ideal Situation: Search for the best location Macroclimate (Region) Temperature Sunlight Precipitation Relative Humidity

6 Average Annual Precipitation

7 Pierce s disease Probability Map Cotton Root Rot Losses Map Heavy Light None

8 Irrigation Water Availability

9 Spatial Variability of General Soil Types Soil Associations Texas High Plains AVA Texas Hill Country AVA

10 Successful Vineyards Exist on Many Different Soils

11 Other Site Selection Considerations Proximity to market American Viticultural Area

12

13 American Viticultural Areas (AVA) of Texas Texas High Plains Texoma Mesilla Valley Texas Davis Mountains Escondido Valley Texas Hill Country Bell Mountain Fredericksburg in the Texas Hill Country

14 Site Assessment the local level The family ranch

15 Critical Site Selection Criteria Climate (plant adapted varieties) Diseases and Pests (climate & soil influence) Irrigation water availability Irrigation water quality Soil depth Soil drainage Cold air drainage (topography)

16 Site Assessment the local level Macroclimate (Region) Temperature Sunlight Precipitation Relative Humidity Mesoclimate (Site) Temperature Sunlight Precipitation Relative Humidity Wind & air circulation Cold air drainage (topography)

17 Cold Air Flows Downhill Tony Wolf Cooperative Extension Virginia

18 Avoid Frost Pockets

19 Critical Site Selection Criteria Climate (plant adapted varieties) Diseases and Pests (climate & soil influence) Irrigation water availability Irrigation water quality Soil depth Soil drainage Cold air drainage (topography)

20 Great Vineyards Program Potential Vineyard Site Assessment Form

21 Irrigation Water Quantity & Quality

22 Irrigation Water Needs Texas High Plains (peak ET o ) Reference Evapotranspiration ET o = in/day Grape Crop Coefficent K c = 0.50 Grape ET = in/day X 0.50 = in/day Vineyard water use = in/day

23 Irrigation Water Needs Vineyard water use = in/day 1 acre-inch = 27, 154 gallons/acre Daily replacement need = 27,154 gal/a X in Daily replacement need = 3500 gal/acre 3,500 gal/acre 480 min (pump time) = 7.3 gpm Minimum well output = 7.3 gal/min/acre

24 Irrigation Water Needs Minimum well output = 7.3 gal/min/acre Calculation Assumptions: Irrigation supplies 100% water needs Irrigation replaces 100% Grape ET (50-75% replacement sufficient if no cover crop) Plan for well output to decline in future Plan for more than current needs Perhaps 2X output: 15 gal/min/acre

25 Irrigation Water Quality for Grapes Salinity Electrical Conductivity Total Dissolved Solids Increasing Problems > 1.0 mmhos/cm > 640 ppm

26 Salt Buildup in Soil

27 Irrigation Water Quality for Grapes Salinity Electrical Conductivity Total Dissolved Solids Increasing Problems > 1.0 mmhos/cm > 640 ppm Soil Permeability to Water Sodium Absorption Ratio (SAR) Increasing Problems SAR 6

28 Water Infiltration Rate (Permeability) Irrigation water with high sodium levels causes soil clay particles to disperse Water infiltration is reduced

29 Irrigation Water Mineral Toxicity Increasing Problems Sodium Chloride Boron > 460 ppm 140 ppm 1 ppm

30 Salt Injury Furrow Irrigation

31 Vineyard Site Assessment: Soils

32 General Criteria for a Suitable Vineyard Soil Depth of at least 3 ft (Great Vineyards minimum 2 ft) Good water-holding capacity Moderate to high water infiltration rate Good internal drainage ph between in the root zone Absence of toxic concentrations of salts or nutrients Source: Nicholas, Soil, Irrigation and Nutrition

33 Soil Physical Properties

34 Soil Depth Influences Water Availability

35 Available Water Capacity Good available water capacity 0.10 to 0.20 inches water per inch soil depth

36 High Available Water Capacity + High Rainfall (or irrigation) = High Vigor

37 Water Infiltration Rate Hydrologic soil group = Moderate or high infiltration rate Saturated Hydraulic Conductivity micro m/sec

38 Good internal water drainage Drainage Class: Moderately well-drained to well-drained Saturated Hydraulic Conductivity micro m/sec

39 Soil Chemical Properties

40 ph 5.2 to 8.2 Absence of toxicity Sodium < 690 mg/l Chloride < 350 mg/l Boron < 1 mg/l Salinity conductivity < 2.5 mmhos/cm

41 Where to Find Soil Information?

42 Soil Survey for Entire U.S.

43 Find your location & outline it

44 Area of Interest outlined in red

45 Select Soil Map tab

46 Soil Map

47 Select Soil Data Explore, Soil Reports

48 Report Physical Soil Properties

49 Report Chemical Soil Properties

50 Verify Soil Physical Properties Dig soil pits throughout site Compare with soil survey Observe: Depth Texture Variability Problems

51 Verify Soil Chemical Properties Collect soil samples from throughout site

52 Soil Conditions Favorable to Cotton Root Rot Alkaline soil ph > 7.3 High in Calcium Bicarbonate Low in Sodium High soil temperature High soil moisture traps CO 2 (clay soils)

53 Management of a Less-Than-Ideal Vineyard Soil Pre-planting Remediation Options: Increase rooting depth by deep-ripping with chisel plow Improve soil drainage with drain tile system Modify ph with amendments (lime, sulfur) Fertilizer additions if necessary (P, Mg, K)

54 Management of a High-Capacity Vineyard Soil Vineyard Development and Post-planting: Low-vigor rootstocks? Competitive cover crop in alleys (maintenance required) Divided canopy training system Canopy management (hedging, leaf-pulling)

55 Less than Ideal Vineyard Site Soil Drainage Frost Pocket Cotton Root Rot

56 Less than Ideal Vineyard Site Compromise accept lower yields accept lower fruit quality accept higher loss risk Reduced Returns Remediation modify soil drainage hedging vigorous canopy disease & pest control practices frost protection Increased Costs

57 Critical Site Selection Criteria Climate (plant adapted varieties) Diseases and Pests (climate & soil influence) Irrigation water availability Irrigation water quality Soil depth Soil drainage Cold air drainage (topography)

58 Other Site Selection Considerations Good roads Good neighbors

59 You only get one chance to select your vineyard location

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