The meaning of organic production
In our organic vineyards we aim to preserve both plant and animal biodiversity. We try to increase and encourage it in a natural way so that the vine can grow and mature in a land full of life.
Organic Farming is the production system that aims to provide consumers with natural products, without chemicals and with a high “social-ethical value”, and at the same time tries to minimize the environmental impact of the activity itself, by ensuring that every piece of land is used in accordance with its nature and in an environmentally-sustainable way.
The strategic and critical factors of success in organic viticulture all revolve around the concepts of wellness and nature, in fact, organic agriculture doesn’t use chemicals, it maintains and improves the soil respecting all forms of life and useful organisms, it protects the environment and what is most important, it safeguards consumers’ and operators’ health.
Even soil fertilization is made in a natural way by seeding green manures; organic farming is responsible for the rediscovery of an ancient technique that is particularly important in soil tillage: green manure, a healthy and efficacious method to provide nutrition for soil organisms, thus protecting and enhancing the soil’s biological activity.
The technique is to sow seeds of herbaceous species, such as legumes, grasses and cruciferae, not to collect them but turned into the soil in an undecomposed, green tissue stage. The benefits of using green manure in organic farming are very significant: the root mass of a green manure crop loosens and aerates the soil and improves drainage.
Green manure between the rows of the vines helps to control weeds while they absorb micro-nutrients and give them back to the vines in an easily digestible form. When green manures are turned into the soil and decompose, they provide nutrition for soil organisms and enhance the growth and activity of humus.
Humus is, in fact, the most active part of the organic matter content of the soil; it interacts with minerals and influences the chemical and physical properties of the soil: this is fertility.
The working steps are two:
1. Plowing in alternate rows in the vineyard: in the plowed soil we sow grass seeds; in springtime they are mowed and buried to enrich the soil and its microorganisms.
2. Sowing of herbaceous species between the rows of the vines in spring – between the rows of our vine, we grow polyphytic herbaceous species that can enhance biodiversity permitting many species of insects and microorganisms to live, which in turn prevent vine pest spreading. These plants also encourage the presence of “good bacteria” that help the vines absorb more nutrients from the soil, enrich themselves of minerals, develop disease resistance and improve their production capacity.
In organic farming it is fundamental to take care of the vines. The battle against pests starts with prevention because this is the only way to have healthy vines without using chemical products:
1. Pruning of the sprouts: is the removal of the sprouts that grow at the base of the vine, close to the roots. In our vineyards we do this manually because it is the only way to guarantee a complete and accurate job.
2. Pruning of the non-fruit-bearing tendrils: In many cases, during this operation, fertile shoots are also removed (such as double ones or those in excess). The removal is easier when the sprouts are tender (20-30cm). This operation is performed entirely by hand. The elimination of sterile shoots helps leaf microclimate.
3. Thinning of flowers and grapes – allows the control of the production and encourages the best vegetative-productive balance.
4. Leaf – stripping – helps to prevent vine pest attacks (especially from oidium and botrytis), allows to reduce the number of treatments required and improves solar radiation of the grapes.
5. Green pruning – is performed during the veraison period and it is used to improve the health of the vines and to prevent the development of some pathogens that are difficult to control in organic farming.
The phyto-sanitary protection and defence involves the use of substances such as sulphur and copper, and some natural products (plant extracts, etc..) only in simple compositions and in limited quantity.
In order to treat the plants only when it is really necessary, we adopted a valid monitoring system of the vines, the IMT200: a weather station from Pessl Instruments GmbH. This technological instrument is able to make weather forecasts, monitor rainfall, measure the amount of moisture in the ecosystem and in the leaves thanks to a sophisticated sensor. It also has a forecasting model specific for vines that detects the presence of downy mildew, powdery mildew or botrytis. This helps us to prevent pest attacks and to plan the timing of every action. Treatments with copper will be done only if necessary and not periodically as once. Also the IMT200 winks at ecology and is in line with our organic philosophy, in fact it is powered by a solar panel and works independently thanks to renewable energy.
In organic farming all operations are natural and non-invasive and are made to improve the well-being of the vine. The plant absorbs more nutrients and minerals from the soil and develops major protection from diseases and enhances its production capacity and the grapes have thicker and more resistant skin.
Organic farming fruits, which we interpret with love and passion, offer us natural, organic unique and stylish wines.