Precision Viticulture Programme for Vineyard in Manavi

Precision Viticulture was pioneered in Australia and the United States over the past fifteen years. Like its sister methodology, Precision Agriculture, it uses a mixture of soil scanning, aerial imaging, targeted soil and tissue testing, GPS-enabled fertiliser application equipment, and intelligent irrigation design, to enhance yield and quality while reducing waste and excess cost from production. Winemakers in Australia and the United States report that correct utilisation of the suite of techniques increases their wine sales income by over USD$20,000 per Ha, with production cost changed very little.

Aus Vineyard

This season we will be testing soil on a 110 ha vineyard in western Kakheti’s Manavi village prior to the spring application of fertiliser, followed by petiole (vine tissue) testing later in the season to guide the vigneron in what subsquent fertiliser will be needed later in the vine’s production cycle for acceptable yield and quality at the lowest possible cost. The vineyard is supplying a large, well-known winery in Kakheti with grapes for table wines.

Later in the season EMI (Electromagnetic Induction Imaging) performed by our British geophysical partners will provide precise information on soil water holding capacity and composition for every square metre of the property. This will guide us in developing irrigation management zones and location of irrigation line valves, to ensure that vines receive exactly the right amount of water at the right time. Too little, and yields suffer, sometimes calamitously. Too much, and concentration and quality are affected. We use intelligent design (assisted by our Australian engineering partners) and objective measurement with soil moisture sensors to keep vine hydration in the “Goldilocks” zone for optimal yield and quality.

EMI Map

Use of aerial imaging by our Italian contractors is of further use at veraison in scheduling time of harvest for different parts of each land plot. Vigour and stage of maturity commonly varies greatly within each plot, making pre-determination of what to harvest when a useful technique. By doing so, grape quality can be dramatically enhanced in less vigourous parts of the vineyard, and profits increased.

Vineyard Aerial Imaging.

We will post pictures of our activities over the next month for your interest.

Email us at enquiries@yfn.com.ge if you have any questions

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