The Riverland Viticultural Technical Group (RVTG) met at Banrock Station last Friday to review the current range of projects underway in the 20 13-14 grassroots program and to agree priorities for the new program from 1 July.
Final reports will soon be published for the subsurface drip and mulching trials. An inspection of the subsurface drip trial site will be organised as part of a field day later in the year. The sunscreen trial, under the watchful eye of Nicole Pitman is progressing well. All PFT applications have been applied and data loggers are in place to record canopy temperatures. This report should be finalised well before 30 June. The Gazania control trial program has been delayed because of the (warm) seasonal effects on the patches pegged out for the trial. This program will resume as soon as the roadsides begin to bloom again.
In terms of next year’s programme, the committee were unanimous in their support for the recommendation that there should be strong focus and acceleration of the clonal and rootstock trials. While the other programmes are important in terms of generating incremental improvements, the outstanding work thus far with new clones and rootstock’s indicates that the two programs together have the potential to produce widespread long term benefit for this region’s stakeholders.
The group was pleased to welcome another young member, Scott Peterson from Renmark. Scott said after his 1st meeting that he had learned much from listening and observing the committee at work and it had provoked him to realise that there really is a future to Riverland growers as long as we continue to evolve and adapt and to take direction from the RVTG.
The group has agreed to prepare a weekly technical information commentary to be published as part of the weekly newspaper column and emailed to the database of Riverland growers, winemakers and supporters in the form of the Tuesday morning e-flyer. The first of these weekly reports will be delivered from next Tuesday 4 February.