Natural biodiversity in the vineyard
What does natural biodiversity in the vineyards mean? The greater the biodiversity, which favours the presence of native species (limiting instead that of sown, cosmopolitan and alien species), the better it determines an increase in the ability of the “vineyard” ecosystem to react to changes following any event that modifies its balance.
Plant biodiversity is investigated, in the Vitenova projects, using different indicators such as the study of biological forms. The flora tells us how much and what diversity is present, it gives us information on the structure of the soil and the links that exist with the surrounding natural environments and tells us what is the story that links the vineyard with the territory in which it is located.
The index linked to biological forms, which describes plants based on their structure as following: if they have an annual cycle, if they have underground tools such as bulbs or rhizomes, if they have woody stems or if they are perennial herbaceous. By dividing the species present in these four macro-groups it is possible to understand for example some characteristics of a soil. Observing the species with underground structures (geophytes), the Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.) and the common grass lily (Ornithogalum umbellatum L.) for example are both plants with underground structures, but their presence and coverage assumes different meanings. The first, which explores the ground for a few cm below its surface, develops mainly in the most compacted and trodden soils, where others fail to grow and indicates lands where the structure has been compromised and needs to be restored. The second, which explores 10-15 cm with its bulb, indicates a structured and airy ground even in depth.
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