Toolkit

Here you will find information on each of the practices we consider are useful in farming vines regeneratively. We hope these pages give you the information you need to become more regenerative. We've also included a glossary as there is a lot of new terminology. Remember to introduce changes incrementally and with professional guidance. And if you have ‘before and after’ data from trials carried out on adoption of regenerative techniques, we’d love to learn about your results.

Glossary

Regenerative viticulture has a whole vocabulary of terms associated with it. This glossary defines the top 100 terms.

Monitoring soil health

Monitoring soil health is essential to improve your soil health. Lab tests every three years can show trends over time. Tests for soil structure can be performed in the vineyard

Soil organic matter

SOM is an important biological property, the essential food stuff for the soil food web. Minimise losses by minimising tillage. Increase through compost, cover crops, mulch

Interrow Tillage

Tillage exposes the soil to the air, leading to carbon lost to the atmosphere. Native species or cover crops can be managed by mowing, crimping and rolling, grazing

Undervine Tillage

Undervine tillage damages soil biology. Vineyard context will determine the most appropriate alternative for managing this more challenging area

Decompaction

The best way to avoid poorly performing compacted soils is to develop a healthy soil biology: minimise vineyard passes, use plants with deep root systems and encourage earthworms

Soil/ground cover

A key principle is to avoid bare soils. Ground cover reduces soil temperature/evaporation. Living maximises photosynthesis, provides habitat and biodiversity, helps store carbon

Cover crops

Soil life depends on having things growing and living in it. Selection and management of cover crops is context-specific, preferably native species, direct drilled to minimise soil disturbance

Vine fertility/nutrition and composting

Vine fertility is preferably managed through analysis of deficiencies and use of non-synthetic tools to optimise nutritional uptake through the microbial life in the soil

Animal Integration

There is great potential with animals to accelerate soil health and regeneration through planned, strategic grazing management. They require good seasonal planning.

Water use

Regenerative viticulture looks at the natural water cycles within vineyards and develops systems that enhance the ability to capture, store and recycle water

Herbicide use

The goal of a fully regenerative system is the elimination of herbicides. While transitioning requires time, other methods should always be the preference as they are negative for soil health

Fungal control

Synthetic fungicides and copper are detrimental to soil health. RV practices can build resilience but this takes many years. Fungal resistant varieties require little treatment. Biofungicides may be a solution.

Insect control

Increasing biodiversity in the vineyard with native species encourages populations of beneficial predatory insects to control insect populations. Mating disruption is also effective

Certification level

Certification is not a requirement of regenerative viticulture. However, certain schemes are highly recommended and RV specific ones are emerging

Biodiversity

Above ground biodiversity is primarily promoted through continuous species-rich ground cover, but also agroforestry and habitat creation

Agroforestry

Incorporating trees can reduce temperature, provide shade, retain water, prevent soil erosion, improve soil fertility, sequester carbon, provide habitat

Ecosystem design

The intentional, strategic planning and creation of the vineyard to form part of a wider ecological system which is both sustainable and resilient