Department Resources

Colossal Cabernet trial under the California sun

May 08, 2020
A huge Cabernet trial is underway in California, encompassing 100 clone/rootstock combinations and covering 3.5 acres. Researchers designed it to help identify genetic variations that impart a greater resilience to climate change — notably, improved drought tolerance that will enable more effective and sustainable water-use practices while also producing high-quality fruit and wine. 

Safe Transfer of High-Proof Ethanol Using Pumps

March 27, 2020

High-proof (e.g. 70%) ethanol can be an effective sanitizing agent against the coronavirus causing COVID-19.  Spraying of small winery surfaces or equipment for sanitization with this solution is not problematic, especially in a well-ventilated area.  However, pumping high proof ethanol (for the purpose of creating sanitizing solution or sanitizing large pieces of equipment) using a normal winery pump could be hugely dangerous (explosion hazard) and should be avoided

New System More Accurately Estimates Vineyard Crop Yields

August 06, 2019
A company is developing a computer vision system to estimate vineyard crop yield with the collaboration of UC Davis scientists. On Friday, Nathan Strong, president and chief executive officer at Terroir AI in Menlo Park, demonstrated the system at UC Davis’ Oakville Station. Strong installed a box containing four sensor cameras in the back of the station’s ATV, the cameras adjusted for the high-wire trellis system of the experimental block.
Mechanical Vineyard Pruning Possible Without Replanting Ahmad Hakim April 24, 2019
One of the major concerns regarding mechanical vineyard pruning is the time and cost associated with replanting a vineyard in a manner that would accommodate the process. However, a report from University of California Cooperative Extension researchers that was published in HortTechnology demonstrates that replanting is not necessary. Research conducted in Madera County found that growers can mechanize their operations by retraining vines without suffering any fruit loss or decline in quality.