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Viticulture is the science and production of everything involving grapes and vines. Whilst technically a branch of horticulture, the range of events that occur in the vineyard from planting to production makes viticulture a specific agricultural sector. Grapes are grown in almost every growing region and territory across the globe.

Viticulture demands that the specialist grower monitors every aspect of its development, including fertilising, irrigation, canopy management, control of pests and diseases, monitoring the development of its fruit, understanding the potential wine-making characteristics and pruning.

Wine-making industries are flourishing worldwide, with the consequence that viticulture has become a highly technical and scientific agricultural process.

RLF has Specialty Liquid Fertiliser products for every aspect of viticulture. RLF Specialty Liquid Fertiliser products are scientifically formulated, deliver a complete and balanced nutrient package for plants. Nutrient chargers are highly-specialised products for viticulture, as with crop-specific, single element nutrient foliars that address crop and soil deficiencies and fertigation products. A specialised range perfect for viticulture and available from very small to much larger quantities.

Fast Facts

  • The world’s top 10 wine growing countries are responsible for 80% of world production. In 2016 these countries were Italy, France, Spain, USA, China, Chile, Australia, Argentina, South Africa and Germany.
  • It is estimated that land size equivalent to 75,000 sq km is dedicated to grape-growing throughout the world, with 70% of the produce used for wine, 27% for fresh fruit and the remainder as dried fruit. The land area planted with vines increases with every year.
  • The cultivation of the domesticated grape began 6,000 – 8,000 years ago in the Near East, believed to be Georgia.
  • Most grapes grown in the world today come from cultivars of Vitis vinifera, although there are other species specific to different cultures such as V. amurensis, the most important Asian species.
  • The most widely planted variety of grape is Sultana (Thompson Seedless) with popular wine-making grapes being Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Grenache, Tempranillo, Riesling and Chardonnay.
  • Australia’s principal grape species are Shiraz and Chardonnay.
  • Commercially cultivated grapes can usually be classified as either table or wine grapes. Whilst almost all belong to the same species, selective breeding techniques have brought about the differences between them. Table grapes tend to have large, seedless fruit with a relatively thin skin.
  • Grapes bring with them religious significance, as in the Bible grapes are first mentioned when Noah grew them on his farm (see Genesis 9:20-21) and several Old Testament books give instructions concerning the use of wine during Jewish feasts.
  • Grapes featured as an important influence to both the ancient Greeks and the Romans with their god of agriculture Dionysus (St Denis in Christian traditions) wearing grape-leaves on his head.

Top Wine-Growing Countries

RLF Products for Viticulture

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