How does water quality affect wine making?
Water management and water resourcing are vital factors in the wine making industry, as small changes to the volume and quality of available water can have serious impacts on grape yield and condition.
In particular, dry growing seasons can lead to vineyards developing water stress. While the effects of this may be desirable in some cases, such as when a wine maker is crafting a varietal with high-sugar content, water stress is more often unwanted and can have serious implications for a wine making business.
For this reason, grape growers in very dry regions often rely heavily on irrigation to maintain ideal water levels, rather than being able to rely on rain alone. Irrigation ensures that plants remain active and productive, as extremely dry roots can cause leaves to fall, resulting in a premature end to vine growth.
However, irrigation can also result in water-logging through increased salinity and mineral buildup within the root zone. This is troubling for grape growers who know it can lead to a decline in yield as some types of salt are toxic to grapevines.
While most vines are able to exclude the majority of salt entering from the root zone, the withdrawal of liquid from the soil by plants increases the concentration of salts that were introduced by irrigation. It is therefore important for wine makers who use irrigation to dilute or deal with the salt content during growth seasons.
Additionally, irrigation water that is only moderately saline can still damage certain plants if it contains high concentration of specific mineral salts. In particular, excessive chloride or sodium ion levels cause symptoms similar to salinity.
Fortunately, avoiding and controlling these issues is easy with Hydrosmart water conditioners. This low-energy, environmentally-sustainable solution solves irrigation salinity issues across a range of agriculture situations without the use of salty reject streams, or chemicals.
Over time with Hydrosmart treatment, the salt concentration of root soil lessens as the salt drains into lower ground levels. By dissolving salts and minerals Hydrosmart serves the viticulturist and increases the inherent value of their land, along with the quality of their grapes and the wine it makes.