1. Tell us about your experience in grape growing?
From my early teens I grew up in Langhorne Creek surrounded by vineyards. My parents established Bremerton Wines in 1988 and my studies in the industry started at Roseworthy in 1991. 30 years later I’m still learning!
Our grape growing journey has constantly evolved with changes in approach to canopy management, soil health, irrigation, P&D control, varietal selections, and technologies in viticultural equipment. Never a dull moment.
2. What prompted you to want to be involved in the EcoVineyards project?
Hearing about the inspiring Dr Mary Retallack’s work in this space. I have always had a brooding interest in, and awareness for improving the environmental sustainability of our properties.
This was an opportunity to learn more from Mary and practically apply these learnings to our vineyard and at the same time be part of a group with similar interests and share our experiences.
3. What do you hope to achieve from your involvement in the EcoVineyards project?
- Increased biodiversity.
- Improved awareness and conservation of native/ indigenous species.
- Reduction in chemical inputs.
- Increased interactive education to our team and customers regarding biodiversity in our area.
4. Have you tried to increase biodiversity on your property before undertaking this project? If so, how?
- planting nature strips in surrounding vineyards.
- Utilising multi species flowering cover crops.
- Reducing pesticide use.
5. Why do you think it is so important for growers to try and build natural resilience on their property?
- Increased biodiversity and long-term sustainability.
- Improved soil and vine health.
- Reduced input costs.
- Clean green image for the industry.
6. Looking to the future, what do you see as a new ‘normal’ for grape growers on their properties?
Conservation and management of native flora not just in surrounds but on the vineyard floor also.
Reduced pesticide use due to increased biodiversity and movement away from monoculture.
Increased awareness of viticultural environment and desire to sustain and improve for the long-term future.
Constantly improving technology to assist with lower inputs.
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