First planted in 1999, the vines at Harris Organic Wines’ 5 acre vineyard are created by hand - from the first budburst of Spring to the final pruning in grey winter, the organic vineyard (where beautiful wine begins) is carefully tended by Duncan.
Because the Harris Organic vineyard is managed using organic principles of viticulture, no pesticides or herbicidal chemicals are used on or around the vines.
The vines are weeded using a strip digger in spring to turn the nitrogen-rich winter grown into green manure. This process returns nutrients to the soil and encourages earthworm and microbial activity.
Everything is done by hand at Harris Organic Wines; from pruning to most importantly, the picking of the fruit later in summer; this means there are no machine battered vines or wines at Harris Organic wines – you could say that we are happy producers of “free range" wines.
These soils are rich duplex soils and because the vines are not irrigated, they must fend for themselves. The roots dig deep into the clay subsoil layers to extract what little water is available during the summer months. Because our wines are not spoiled by irrigation, they develop a unique character that many irrigated vines simply cannot.
Our vines are trained on VSP trellis, a 5 wire system to maintain that the vine shoots are growing in a vertical position. VSP is a modern system where the canopy is kept thin to let in light and maintain air flow. Leaf and soil analysis reports to us any elements that we need to amend so as to maintain optimal growing conditions.
The vines maintain a healthy canopy because of the above system, making it easy to prune in summer and drive the tractor along the three metre wide rows.