Sustainable grapegrowing: Could this experiment work in Australia?
A recent article out of Central Valley wine region of California highlights a farmer whose bold water experiment is setting an example for other flood- and drought-prone grapegrowers. Don Cameron is flooding his vineyards with floodwaters to replenish the underground aquifer.
An excerpt from the article follows:
"In 2011 Don Cameron -- who for 40 years has run Terranova Ranch in Helm near Fresno -- decided to re-route the year's overflowing bounty of rain from the King's River to his wine grape vineyard, allowing the vines to stand in more than a foot of water for five months.
His notion was that rather than allow the occasional floodwater to flow past farmlands during the crops' off-season, he could pump the water onto his vineyard to protect against flood and at the same time re-feed the diminishing water table. Predictably, the reaction from his fellow farmers wasn't enthusiasm."
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