particularites_engel.jpg

A process of constant monitoring

Constant observation of the vine in its environment and a strict monitoring of weather conditions are crucial in organic farming, the aim being to favour preventive rather than curative action.

The installation of a weather station containing plant disease prediction models for the 2 major diseases that affect vines means action can be taken where most needed.

Keeping to the Sowing calendar

The earth’s organic processes repeat themselves in « time » and as part of a regular cycle. This is partly due to cosmic influences. We acknowledge the effects caused by the earth’s rotation or the influence of the moon, for example. And yet, other planets have their influence as well.
To influence weather conditions, the planets use the four elements : fire, earth, air-light and water as channels towards the Earth.
In practice, there is no need for specialist knowledge of astronomy in order to take these influences and their effects on our vines and wines into account. It’s enough to simply keep a check on the lunar calendar and the sowing calendar (published annually by the "Mouvement de culture biodynamique").

The sowing of plants that are useful to the vine

Before the vine is planted, the ground must have a long fallow period. Then the ground is sown with plants with nematicidal properties (nematodes = roundworms that infect plants with the grape-vine fanleaf virus).
In this manner the soil is renewed in a perfectly natural way.

Bernard also sows plants between the rows of vines. Certain species are used to improve the soil’s structure and ensure a thriving micro-fauna, others are used as nitrogen supplements.

Other methods of fertilisation

On thinner soils, the sowing of plants is supplemented by spreading « organic » compost produced by the estate itself. This compost is made from cattle and horse manure. This material’s fermentation process is helped by adding bio-dynamic preparations.

The shredding of vine shoots and branches in the Winter and the spraying of a preparation of dung contained in a cow’s horn also help recycle the vine’s own goodness and constituent parts back into the plant.

Ploughing

Ploughing is the only method used in organic farming to remove weeds.
The passage of the plough and the use of inter-vine hoes generally enables us to pull out most plants that compete with the vines. However, for some vines, we have to use a pickaxe.

Ploughing also helps bring the qualities of the terroir to the fore. By getting rid of shallow roots, the root system will descend right down to the bed rock and draw up all its goodness.

Disease and pest control using plants

The use of herbal infusions and plant decoctions (nettle, horsetail, camomile,…) helps to strengthen the vine, control parasites and produce good quality grapes.
These plants are fed into a mixer to extract as much of their goodness as possible.
Every year, we test new combinations of plants and we’re often left amazed at the incredible things that nature can achieve on its own.


Natural recycling of the water used to clean equipment

We have installed a special washing area for our spraying equipment. This installation allows us to recover the water used to clean the equipment and therefore to recycle it naturally in a biobab (a container holding soil and straw in which soil-based bacteria will break down the residue).


Cellar operations

Down in the cellar, the juice that comes from these grapes is monitored using the same holistic philosophy. Xavier tries to ensure each individual wine preserves its own identity.
The grapes are harvested at the moment of optimal ripeness so as to reduce human interference to a minimum and the wines are aged on the lees (sur lies fines).
We do not use genetically modified products. The products used to clean the wine storehouse are also chosen for their environmentally-friendly nature.





























Facebook Widget