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Climate change resilient soil management techniques in Oltrepò Pavese vineyards - Northern Italy

Results of the Virecli project

Management practices influence the cultivation of vineyards on slopes by acting on soil water availability. Scarcity of soil water during prolonged dry periods causes water stress while excess soil water and the possible development of saturated zones can cause slope instability. Understanding the impact of management practices on soil water content trends over time and susceptibility to the initiation of surface instability is necessary.

Differences in soil hydrologic behavior, of the propensity for instability (landslides and erosion), in relation to different soil management techniques were evaluated. Permeability and root density are higher in vineyards under alternate management. Such management is less affected by moisture loss at depth also decreasing water stress. In dry months, soils under alternate row management have higher water content than soils under grassed management while the opposite is observed in wet months. For alternate management, water content varies only superficially from tilled to grassed rows. The disturbance of a dry period such as 2022 affects the top 2 m depth, down to even 3-4 m, well below the root systems. Models also show that tilled management increases susceptibility to erosion and instability, which is reduced in alternate and grassed management.

Initiative carried out under the VIRECLI Operational Group, co-financed by FEASR Operation 16.1.01 "PEI Operational Groups" of the Rural Development Program 2014 - 2020 of the Lombardy Region (Italy).
Lead partner of the partnership: University of Milan
Managing Authority of the Program: Lombardy Region

Programma di Sviluppo Rurale 2014-2020




Published on 02/27/2023
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