Wrap your vines in a fleece to protect them against the frost!

Friday June 04 2021 by Vitisphere

 “We have two problems to solve”, says Emmanuel Ogereau: “The wind and the time it takes to install the fleece. It took us 50 hours with several people”. “We have two problems to solve”, says Emmanuel Ogereau: “The wind and the time it takes to install the fleece. It took us 50 hours with several people”. - Photo credit : Patrick Touchais

For the second consecutive year, two estates in Anjou-Saumur took part in a trial monitored by the national institute for origin and quality INAO, to confirm the benefits of protecting vines against frost using a winter cover (P 30 type). In 2020, neither of the two winegrowers suffered any damage. But in 2021, they had plenty of opportunities to test the solution as temperatures dropped below freezing on a dozen occasions over a four-week period.

On the 0.40-hectare plot he covered at the beginning of April, before the arrival of the first black frost, Emmanuel Ogereau ultimately experienced 10% damage, whereas the control rows next to the fleece-covered vines were 90% damaged. “The results are impressive. According to temperature measurements, we gained between 1 and 2°C”.

A few kilometres away, Alexis Soulas and Dominique Sirot also conducted a trial on a plot of their Domaine du Fief Noir. “We covered 0.50 hectares with a double layer of fleece following the direction of the row, leaving no air space”, explains Sirot. “It was spectacular. We now have a beautiful, untouched green island in the middle of a lunar landscape”. A 4°C difference in temperature was recorded under the fleece and outside it.

INAO is closely monitoring the trials. “There are technical developments, like the fleece experiments here in Anjou, or other materials in other regions. The Institute must come to a decision”, says Jean-Baptiste Moulènes of the Centre-Loire Valley. One of the questions raised involves the way the vine reacts under the fleece.

 

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