February 8, 2011
Interacting with Nature’s feedback loops
The web of life is intricately connected by dynamic feedback loops. Silent to our ears and out of sight, these are much harder for humans to discern, understand and engage with. In order for us to wisely intercede and mediate in our vineyards we need to be part of the feedback loops, dynamically receiving information from the ecosystem and being appropriately responsive to it. It is here that modern science and technologies are particularly of great use to Avondale.
- A continuous logging moisture probe system throughout the vineyards measures the moisture in the different soils at three levels and radios this information to our computer. This enables us to meet the irrigation needs of different blocks of vines timeously, and with precision and efficiency.
- We make use of a weather station for disease forecasting so that we can take preventative action through natural nutrition in the face of potential threats.
- We also make use of sophisticated plant sap reading technology that allows us to ‘hear’ our vines and better understand what is happening in their particular soil. Weekly leaf sap tests measure nutrient density, pH levels and conductivity, as well as providing us with Brix readings and other valuable information that ensures we can respond quickly and accurately to the nutritional status of our vines.
In essence, the science and technology we gives us the privilege of being part of an intimate, information-rich and satisfyingly interactive relationship with our own environment.