The principles of the gentle vine-pruning technique developed by Simonit & Sirch were the focus of the kick-off module of the Basics course by the School of Vine Pruning at Hochschule Geisenheim University in early November 2019. The idea behind this pruning technique is to respect vascular flow and optimize vine branching through minimal and precise cutting. Keeping the vascular structure intact is expected to increase the longevity of the vines.
The seminar's theoretical principles were accompanied by lots of hands-on practise in the vineyard. The trainers explained how to apply the pruning technique to both young as well as older vines with conventional training systems; participants then had the opportunity to put what they learned into practise on both.
The three-day module was rounded off by presentations by Prof. Dr. Manfred Stoll, Professor for General Viticulture at Hochschule Geisenheim University, on the physiology of grapevines and Dr. Mustafa Selim from the Department of Crop Protection on current research into Esca and other wood diseases.
The results of the new pruning technique in the various vineyards will be assessed and discussed at a further one-day event next spring.
The participants hailed the kick-off event as a success and said they would be interested in participating in similar events going forward. The current and planned program of events organized by the Geisenheim Institute for Continuing Education can be found at: www.hs-geisenheim.de/giw.
Dr. Matthias Schmitt + red