At our farm La Raia we follow the biodynamic approach, not only dispensing with fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides, but also using the soil and its vital resources in a careful and responsible way.
The traditional agriculture uses fertilizers, instead: plants are nourished with soluble food which roots absorb passively, thus vines loose their identity and the relationship with the soil therefore uniform all flavours and characteristics of their fruits. Biodynamic treatments are a way of harmonizing the farm and the universe’s creative rhythm.
At La Raia we use two spray preparations, the horn manure and the horn silica, which influence the dynamics of the vegetal growth, improving the quality of our grapes and crops. Both preparations are mixed up in water for one hour just before use.
The blending starts by spinning in one direction, creating a deep whirlpool in the barriques. The direction is then changed and blending continues until a new whirlpool is created. Mixing up small doses of material in large quantities of water is called “dynamization”.
La Raia is a biodynamic farm, Demeter certified since 2007. It is one of the 45 wine certified companies in Italy.
For over half a century the international Demeter trademark has been granting the correct implementation of the biodynamic principles to cultivations and food productions all over the world…
CARE OF VINEYARDS
- The Guyot Method
- The green manure phase
- Vintage following nature
The Guyot Method
In late winter, starting with pruning, we guide the vines to obtain a more balanced quality production. We leave an average of 6 buds per vine, following the Guyot trellis system, which is suitable to basically droughty soils. Vine has an average height of about 50 cm, while canes are tied to the sustain thread, so to grow in a horizontal position. This grants a good sun exposure for leaves and grapes.
Prevention through organic substances
In summer, depending on the weather, cave sulphur and copper are sprayed in small doses to prevent diseases. A rose, planted at the beginning of each row, protects the vine from two enemies: the grape mildew and the oidium.
The green manure phase
In spring, when the vine starts sprouting, we remove any unwanted buds so that the plant’s energies can concentrate and the leaves can breathe in the sun’s light, equally distributed on the rows, without overlapping too much. Legumes and grasses, grown in the vineyard rows in autumn, are now ready to be dug down into the soil. Grasses are left to grow among rows and a green manure – made of graminaceous, crucifer and leguminous plants – enriches deeply the soil, adding earth and humus and maintaining the soil’s peculiar feature. We use soft machines to till the land among the rows.
Vintage following nature
In early autumn the grapes are ready for picking. Regular analysis is done to choose the optimum vintage time, as exposure to the sun and the age of the vine strongly influence maturation. The best grapes are selected, handpicked, placed in basket, and immediately brought to the press, to avoid the fermentation starts.