The cover crop, the agronomic practice, for the protection of environment
With this practice, we improve the production of our vineyards in all our estates.
For our winery, the cover crop is one of the agronomic practice for caring vineyards from Etna to Favignana island.
This soil management is aimed at controlling weeds among the rows of the vineyards. In all our estates, cover crop is temporary, with sowing of leguminous species (generally fava beans) which joins with spontaneous seeds already presence in the soil.
We consider the time of sowing based on the ability of soil-vine system to support a plant species for a certain period of the year, instead interrupting the practice depending on development of grassland.
Everything is related to the amount of rainfall and phenological state of the crop.
The cover crop is an example of how agriculture contributes to the protection of environment.
In the past, it was believed that cover crop was a limit to the productivity of plants due to the competition for physiologically small water resource in the arid and hot areas of Mediterranean viticulture.
However, at the beginning of the new millenium, lot of research has shown how this technique was able to significantly improve the productive resources of the vineyards.
For positive effects of cover crop, it is important to choose a good seeds, the density of seeds, the time which it is carried and the time of bury.
In summary, the benefit of cover crop are:
- increasing the organic substance and the vitality of the soil.
- reducing erosion as well as,
- water retentation capacity,
- increasing general fertility of the vineyard.