Management of water status in vineyards: meta-analysis of its effects on yield and grape composition
Context and purpose of the study: Mediterranean vineyards have been traditionally grown under rainfed conditions, but in recent decades the irrigated area has increased significantly, seeking to minimize the adverse effects of severe water stress on grape quality and yield. Given the large area occupied by vineyards, and the increasing scarcity of water resources, it is necessary to develop strategies for the optimization and efficient use of water to reduce the risk of its overexploitation. The present study aims at valorizing previous knowledge generated in different research projects by means of a meta-analysis of the effects of water status management on vineyard performance.
Material and methods: A database compiling around 1,400 replicates belonging to 41 water management trials conducted in Spain between 1996 and 2020, covering a wide range of soil and climatic conditions, was used. Each replicate was classified by its level of water stress as No Stress (>-0.411 MPa), Mild (-0.674 to -0.411 MPa), Moderate (-0.936 to -0.674 MPa), High (-1.2 to -0.936 MPa), and Severe (<-1.2 MPa), using their stem water potential values averaged over the season. The mean response ratios and the proportion of change produced by the increase in water stress on vegetative development, yield and grape composition were evaluated.
Results: Changes in plant water status caused significant differences in the parameters analyzed, regardless of the starting stress level, although these patterns varied depending on the specific parameter being analyzed. Thus, the change in pruning wood weight and yield with increasing stress ranged from -5% to -26%, with the greatest changes occurring from moderate to high stress. The changes in soluble solids content of berries ranged from +0.4% to +1.5% with increasing stress, except when increasing from moderate to high stress (-0.74%). In the case of titratable acidity, the change from increasing from a high level of stress to a severe one was +1.4%, while in all other cases it decreased (between -2.6% and -5.2%). The results showed the overall impact of plant water status management in the vineyard performance and constitute a valuable tool for the management of this resource.
Issue: GiESCO 2023
1CICYTEX, Agricultural Research Institute “Finca La Orden-Valdesequera”, Guadajira, Spain
2Agrifood Research and Technology Centre of Aragón – CITA, Zaragoza, Spain
3Agro-Environmental and Water Economics Institute. University of Balearic Islands (INAGEA-UIB) Palma, Spain
4Higher Polytechnic School of Engineering. University of Santiago de Compostela. RG-1716 Projects and Planning, Lugo, Spain
5Regional Institute for Agri-Food and Forestry Research and Development of Castilla-La Mancha (IRIAF), Tomelloso, Spain
6 Desertification Research Centre-CIDE (CSIC, UVEG, GVA), Moncada, Spain
7Departament of Biochemistry and Biotechnology. Viticulture Group. Universitat Rovira I Virgili (URV), Tarragona, Spain
8Agronomic Technical Institute (ITAP). Irrigation Advisory Service. Albacete, Spain
9Institute or Grapevine and Wine Sciences (ICVV), Finca La Grajera, Logroño, Spain
10Agrarian Technological Institute of Castilla and Leon (ITACYL), Valladolid, Spain
11Universidad Pública de Navarra (UPNA), Pamplona, Spain
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viticulture, climate change, water use efficiency, water stress