TVS BLOG

 

OCTOBER 2017

GETTING YOUR VINEYARD READY FOR SPRING!

Spring is finally here! Let TVS help you ensure your vineyard is prepared for maximum output.

FERTILISING

TVS Vineyard Fertiliser

Nutrition is key to proper vineyard management. Fertiliser directly impacts vine growth, health, yield, and most importantly, wine quality. Having the right mixture and balance of fertiliser will enhance soil composition and bio-availability.
 
Don't limit your crops potential this Spring by failing to fertilise properly. TVS can help you get the most out of your vineyard with our state of the art equipment and expertise.
 
Here at TVS we have extensive knowledge of proper fertilisation techniques. With the help of our sophisticated machinery and skills, we can provide a tailor made fertilisation solution to your specific vineyard.

FOLIAR FERTILISINGS

TVS Foliar FertilisingIf your irrigation system hasn't been set up to fertigate it doesn't mean you can't get additional nutrients to the vines. Although not quite as effective, foliar fertilisers are better than nothing.  
 
Seasol, Fertile Veg and a host of other products are all available as powders and potions that you can add to a fungicide spray that will help pick up canopies.  Even if you do have a fertigation system a foliar fertiliser is often reflected more rapidly in the vine.

VINEYARD INSTALLATIONS

Alternatives to CCA & Creosote Timber

Legitimate alternatives to CCA treated timber posts now exist and at TVS we are recommending these for new installations over CCA treated timber. EcoTrellis is a product we've been using for a number of years with great results.

Although slightly more expensive than a treated timber post the steel EcoTrellis post more than pays for itself through time savings on installation, clipping up and extended lifetime compared to CCA posts. Disposal is also far simpler compared to CCA if you ever need to dispose of a post.

For the guy on the rammer they are also a joy to handle and punch in the ground. They are lighter weight, consistently shaped, and easy to punch into even hard ground. We highly recommend looking at these if you are replacing intermediates, or installing new sections of vineyard.

TVS Spring is hereWEATHER CONDITIONS & SEASONAL OUTLOOK

We've just been though one of the driest, hottest winters on record and spring has started hot, windy, and sunny. Many are saying we're in the middle of a green drought and not many growers have had the rainfall to fill dams and water catchments.
 
For more see the BOMS long term Monthly and Seasonal Outlook click on this link to watch video 

FIXING UP HEADLANDS & WHEEL RUTS

Don't break your tractor and destroy your implements when there is a simple solution.

With the ground hardening up and drying out now is a great time to fix up any holes, ruts and wheel tracks that have opened up over the winter. With bobcats, smudge bars, discs, rippers and harrows, filling holes and flattening headlands are all things that TVS can take care of and we can also seed out the area to help prevent the problem reoccurring in the future


 

AUGUST 2017

PREPARATIONS FOR GROWING SEASON

It's all systems go at the moment as we power into the end of winter. It's been a particularly cold couple of weeks, though rain has been in short supply. Some are predicting and early budburst and frosts this season so it's even more important to be prepared with final pruning, cut grasses, herbicide applications complete and wires dropped for fungicide programs.

Having been out and about seeing a number of properties we estimate it'll be less than 3 weeks to budburst in some places.

Sweeping and Mulching

TVS Sweeping and MulchingIf you net any areas of your vineyard, cane prune or just want to accelerate the breakdown of winter pruning's into the ground it's a sensible practice to send a sweeper and mulcher through to pull canes from under vine and smash them into manageable pieces.  

With the ground being reasonably dry and foliage wires still up is a great time to get this job done

Winter Applications

Our sprayers are being serviced at the moment in preparation for the season ahead - Winter Oils and Sulphurs will be applied mid to late August and final herbicide runs are being rolled out prior to the tinge of green that signifies budburst. Capeweed is being targeted on headlands with great results - the cold, dry conditions have meant we have had more time cover the ground here and give our pasture grasses a chance.

Composting and Fertilizer application

Ground preparation and cultivation, fertilising spreading and composting, weed management and inter-row cropping, pasture establishment and maintenance all have a major impact on soil fertility, organic matter and soil moisture.  
 
With spring on the horizon and most dams still empty due to a lack of winter rains it's a great time to put down mulch and compost to help limit water loss and condition the soil. Year in year out you can't expect to pull 5-10t/hectare of fruit off an area without putting something back in to keep soils topped up and healthy. It's the perfect time of year to be targeting these additions. Weather it's cover crops, composts, pelleted fertilizers, powders or potions, TVS have a machine or an implement that can get it where it's needed in a cost effective manner, and the all-important grapevine nutritional requirements and moisture, organic matter and vegetative cover, are critical in balancing vine growth and fruit development.   
   
TVS will ensure groundwork is performed to the highest standard, and irrigation systems and post and trellis infrastructure are maintained in perfect order to achieve optimal vine growth and yield.

Better Mulch and Composting Results

TVS Better Mulch and Composting ResultsTVS has in its fleet a hay bale shredder by Teagle. It takes a large round bale, shreds it up and spews it out undervine providing a fantastic mulch layer helping to trap moisture, encourage worm activity and provide a carbon and nutrient source to your vines. Application rates can be as thick or thin as you want as it's entirely dependent on ground speed
 
A heavy layer of straw will last 2-3 years on the ground and once applied will allow a vineyard to get through with a single herbicide pass. We also have a Seymour Spreader for organic composts and mulches. Pick and choose how thick you want your product and we'll get it on the ground for you.
 
Winter is the perfect time for this application as it'll have plenty of time to trap in water and really knit into the ground coming into summer. Straw and composts are the perfect addition to your vineyard if you ever struggle for water in the hotter months of the growing season.
 
As some of you are aware, TVS are now offering mulch spreading facilities thanks to the team at Enviromix. They've chosen TVS as their preferred partner in the valley to bring their product to you. Similar to the straw the Enviromix composted mulch will greatly improve water retention, and soil health. It will minimize vine stress during weather extremes and will provide vital nutrients and organic matter necessary to facilitate healthy soils and healthy vines.


 

JULY 2017

VINE PULL

TVS Vine PullOngoing assessment of varietal mix and production levels is an essential part of proactive vineyard management. The ability to supply preferred grape variety and quantities in line with changing winery requirements and market demand are critical to remaining viable and profitable. Hence the need to remove particular vines and prepare the ground for a new installation.
 
Sometimes an infestation of phylloxera, Eutypa and other diseases can take hold of aging vineyards, forcing the decision to pull an entire vineyard or a section thereof.
 
TVS has a service that can provide efficient and effect vine removal, our specially fitted out bobcat has the ability to pull vines and posts with minimum disruption to the field, allowing you to readily undertake replanting.

UNDER VINE HERBICIDE APPLICATION

Competition from weeds or cover crop growth will have a substantial effect on vine growth, fruit yield and quality.
 
Minimizing weed competition under vines is particularly critical on newly planted vines and cropping vines. TVS provides a highly effective and efficient weed management program to ensure that your crop is protected.
 
Chemical application is one of the best tools available to control weeds as part of your integrated vineyard management program, with winter time (when the vines are dormant), being one of the best times to do systemic herbicides.

TRELLIS YOU CAN DEPEND ON

TVS Trellis you can depend onAdvancements in vineyard design, trellis and training systems, and canopy management practices have dramatically improved wine grape productivity and fruit quality. A trellis must support the foliage and fruit as vines are not self-supporting, also the trellis spreads the grape canopy ensuring sunlight penetrates all parts of the vine in addition to promoting good air circulation which is essential for keeping down the incidence of disease. Maintaining this essential infrastructure in good repair is an ongoing task to ensure vines are well supported for growth.
 
To ensure your posts and trellis are strong enough to sustain their crop load TVS offers:

  • Post and trellis installation and repair
  • Wire installation and maintenance

The TVS team are currently focussed on repairing and replacing worn and tired vineyard trellis before bud burst. Most days you'll be able to find a couple of the TVS staff working their way through a block, tracking down broken and cracked posts, re-wiring end assemblies and replacing vineyard clips. It truly is one of winter's satisfying jobs.
 
Skilled, trained, and supervised labour crews are available for all groundworks, hand pruning and hand harvesting. If you are short of 'hands' to get the job done we can help you out to ensure a top quality job done on time, every time.


 

JUNE 2017

WINTER PREPARATIONS IN THE VINEYARD

Vintage 2017 is now finished and the TVS team are proud to have been a part of such a fantastic season.The weather was mostly favourable although vintage did run longer than last year. The efficiencies of the new Pellenc XLE Selective harvester was well suited to larger properties.
 
We were fortunate to have a great team working in all areas of the business with our permanent staff supported by our seasonal team who came for all areas of Australia and across the world. With their support we were able to provide a flexible workforce working all hours, quickly, efficiently and meeting client requirements 99.9% of the time. We were all impressed with the tonnages picked and transported over the season. Congratulations to all involved and a big thank-you to our supportive customers.

The harvesters have now been dismantled, cleaned and serviced and are we are now ready to assist with groundworks. The machines are set up for pre-pruning and spreading of fertiliser as well as other winter activities of trellis maintenance and herbicide applications. Bookings are now coming in for these processes and we are also taking bookings for discing, re-seeding and pulling out vines.

The stable Autumn weather was a special time in the vineyards with the leaves continuing to change colour as they move through leaf senescence, the final stage of leaf development. This stage involves both leaf decay and a removal of the nutrients that are stored in the leaves to other parts of the vine. At this time the storage of carbohydrates is pivotal to vine health in the next growing season.


 

APRIL 2017

MAXIMISE YOUR VINEYARDS POTENTIAL

Autumn and Winter is the time when you should be doing undertaking the following in your vineyard;

  • Groundwork
  • Fertilising and Composting 
  • Pre-pruning
GROUNDWORK
Managing soil structure and composition, and the all-important grapevine nutrition and moisture, organic matter and vegetative cover, are critical in balancing vine growth and fruit development. Ground preparation and cultivation, weed management and inter-row cropping, have a major impact on soil fertility, organic matter and soil structure. Now is the perfect time to implement your inter row management strategies.
 
FERTILISING & COMPOSTING 
Now is the time to nourish and nurture your vines for best results. Apply the right mix and balance of fertiliser to improve soil composition and bio-availability of nutrients for enhanced vine health and growth. Grapevine nutrition is a key driver for yield management with Post Harvest and Spring applications of fertilisers paramount for the vines' most critical phenological stages, flowering and fruit set. 
 
PRE-PRUNING
This year our pre-pruning service will be available from mid-May. Accurate pre-pruning means you can set up your vines for maximum yield potential in the coming season. TVS has available several machines with various options to facilitate spur and cane pruning set up to enable completion before budburst each season. TVS operate Pellenc Barrel Pruners including their Visio tracking system. The Pellenc Visio pruner has automatic cordon tracking and post detection and provides greater accuracy and less row to row variation and minimises damage to infrastructure at a faster rate than other pre-pruning machinery. Call Cameron for your bookings in May and June, 2017.


FEBRUARY 2017

HARVEST SEASON HAS ARRIVED
At this time of the year we are busy putting the final finishes on our harvest program. Buckets are being cleaned and harvesters are being serviced and we are arranging for a small team of specialist Pellenc operators to come in from Europe to provide more hands on deck and the greatest flexibility with fleet of harvesters

We expect to hit the ground running mid February ready to ensure the fruit is picked and delivered to the winery on time and in optimal condition ready for processing.

Total Viticulture Solutions offers the most technologically advanced harvesting service available, together with modes of transport, and expert, quality hand picking crews to meet the requirements of each client. Selective process harvesting is now available to high capacity, high tonnage vineyards thanks to the recently arrived Pellenc XLE with conveyor. We are ready and able to harvest day and night in response to the weather conditions at the time of harvest.
 
 

JANUARY 2017

ENVIROMIX MULCH
TVS have partnered with Enviromix and have made composted mulch readily available to our clients. With our purpose built spreader TVS can put organic mulch and compost under vine where it's needed to increase organic matter, water holding capacity and the populations that benefits in the soil. If budgets allow it can also be spread thick enough to provide weed suppression allowing you to reduce the number of herbicide applications required throughout the year.

STRAW
As an alternative product with our hay shredder we can effectively chop and spread hay and straw bales under vine. Applying Straw undervine will assist in retaining better soil moisture and provide a boost to organic matter. A large round bale covers between 70 and 150 meters and should last 3-4 seasons before being completely broken down and integrated into the soil. With herbicide runs completed and spring rains still forecast it's a perfect time to apply as it'll nit down into a nice matt going into summer and lock in moisture to help beat the heat.

FERTILISER
Finally on the improve soils front - we can band or broadcast manures, pelleted fertiliser and powdered products such as lime and gypsum through orchards, vineyards and on pasture to give things a boost. Spreading blended chicken manure is a very cost effective way to give things a boost and help put back in what you take out each year.



 
DECEMBER 2016

PREPARING FOR THE LONG HOT SUMMER
With our purpose built spreader TVS can put organic mulch and compost under vine where it's needed to increase organic matter, water holding capacity and the populations of beneficials in the soil. If budgets allow it can also be spread thick enough to provide weed suppression allowing you to reduce the number of herbicide applications required throughout the year. For more information please come to the "Yarra Valley AG - Composting field day" or give Cameron a call. STRAW

As an alternative product with our hay shredder we can effectively chop and spread hay and straw bales under vine. Applying Straw undervine will assist in retaining better soil moisture and provide a boost to organic matter. A large round bale covers between 70 and 150 meters and should last 3-4 seasons before being completely broken down and integrated into the soil. With herbicide runs completed and spring rains still forecast it' s a perfect time to apply as it'll nit down into a nice matt going into summer and lock in moisture to help beat the heat.