Cover crops: No rest for grape growers! Prosecco Diaries October

A lot of people think that once the harvest is done our work is through until we begin pruning again. But that’s not the case.

The month of October is important for our vines, especially for our vineyards in Cornuda, where we spray, mow the grasses, and do the work between the rows using a tractor.

October is time for cover crops!

As you can see in the video below, there’s a big difference between the ground where the tractor has passed over and the ground at the center of the row. The clods are more compact where the wheels have passed over the ground. And they are definitely less dense where the wheels don’t pass over the ground. It gives us great statisfaction to see that our efforts, however small, are making a difference. Even the denser clods are rich with small flowers and they are full of earthworms. They are indication of the soil’s richness. And they help to aerate, drain, and increase the quality of the soil.

October 4: We finally received the seeds for the cover crops fro 2016. This year we are going to start a project called “the colors of the land.” Stay tuned for some beautiful images!

sovescio asolo docg

October 5: We begin preparing the Cornuda vineyard for the cove crops. It’s really important for the soil in this vineyard.

The four phases are as follows:

1. We till the soil deep enough to drain out the water and to make it easier for the tractor to pass through.
2. We aerate the soil.
3. We prepare the mixture of seeds. The blend we have selected improves the soil structure. And since there are a number of flower seeds included, it is great for beekeeping.
4. We plant the seeds by hand so that we can avoid making the soil more compact by passing over it again with the tractor.

October 6: This is what happens to the soil when you till and aerate to prepare it to be planted with cover crop seeds. This is what we do to make our soil more fertile.

October 7: We plant the cover crop seeds by hand.

sovescio prosecco docg

October 11: Just under a year ago, we bought an old and poorly maintained vineyard. It breaks are hearts to grub up these old dry vines that don’t bear any fruit anymore. But new vines will grow in their place in this splendid growing site.

vigna vecchia monfumo

October 21: We grub up dead vines on the hillside. This has to be done by hand using a spade.

sostituzione viti monfumo

October 22: Monfumo at dawn.

alba monfumo prosecco docg

October 25: We’ve completed our work on the soil. Now we need to fix up broken stakes and wires.

lavori vigna prosecco docg

Author: Bele Casel

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.