On 12 June 2022, the Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk (MDR) visited us at the vineyard "Eulauer Heideberg" near Naumburg and followed our work. It is high season for wild bees and other insects, which could be observed in large numbers in the flowering vine alleys. Lea Schubert (Anhalt University of Applied Sciences) and Jens Eckner (Kloster Pforta Winery) gave a short insight into our project.
Multi-day trip of the LIFE VineAdapt partners to Hungary
In the second year of the project, the international project partners were finally able to meet on site in a partner country. The goal of the three-day trip were the project sites in Hungary.
During the first tour, the two demonstration areas Hétszölö and Disznókö in Tokaj were visited. Afterwards, during a meeting at the Gróf Degenfeld Hotel, the upcoming tasks, deadlines and milestones as well as further financial planning were discussed. The day was rounded off with a guided tour of the wine cellar and a tasting of the sweet wine specialties of the von Degenfeld family, who runs a completely organic viticulture on their vineyard in Tarcal.
The following day gave the opportunity to visit the Eszterházy and Bence Soóváry demonstration plots in Eger.
All participants took advantage of the opportunity and had a lively exchange about current research results and project-relevant news during the trip, or got into conversation with the local winemakers and scientists.
LIFE VinEcos wins LIFE Award 2022
The LIFE VinEcos project was named best project in the "Climate Protection" category of this year's LIFE Awards.
According to the jury, the project made an outstanding contribution to environmental, economic and social progress. It was also outstanding in terms of impact, replicability, policy relevance, cross-border cooperation and cost-effectiveness.
Prof. Anita Kirmer (Anhalt University of Applied Sciences) and Lydia Hohlstein (Landgesellschaft Sachsen-Anhalt mbH) accepted the award and once again highlighted the relevance of biodiversity for the viticulture ecosystem.
The winner of the category "Nature" was the project LIFE-Kedros from Cyprus, in the category "Environment" the Italian project Clean Sea LIFE won. Furthermore, a LIFE Citizens' Prize as well as a LIFE and Natura 2000 award were given.
The LIFE VinEcoS project is nominated as a finalist at the 30th LIFE Awards 2022!
The LIFE VinEcos project (2016-2020) has done valuable preparatory work for the current LIFE VineAdapt project and is now once again in the spotlight, as it has been nominated as one of the 12 finalists for the LIFE AWARDS 2022 and is also the only project in Germany to have made it to the finalists! The LIFE Award is a very special award for outstanding projects within the EU-wide LIFE funding programme. You can find more information at www.lifeawards.eu
What was the LIFE project VinEcoS about?
Extreme weather events such as heavy rainfall and long periods of drought are becoming increasingly common as a result of climate change and are also affecting viticulture. With the LIFE VinEcoS project, the Landgesellschaft Sachsen-Anhalt, the Landesweingut Kloster Pforta, the JENA-GEOS® engineering office and the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences set themselves the goal of significantly increasing biodiversity in vineyards in the Saale-Unstrut wine region by planting drought-resistant wild plant species in vineyard alleys and thus significantly strengthening the resilience of this ecosystem. Compared to conventional grass seeding, the diverse vegetation ensures more effective erosion control and represents less water competition to the vines. The flower-rich vegetation provides nectar and pollen sources for wild bees and other beneficial insects and delights vintners and recreationists with its colourful flowering aspect.
Excursion in the Framework of the Project LIFE VineAdapt
Recently, project managers of the Landgesellschaft Sachsen-Anhalt, the Landesweingut and the Hochscule Anhat met with Gert Zender, State Secretary in the Ministry of Economy, Tourism, Agriculture and Forestry Saxony-Anhalt, winegrowers and representatives from politics and administration to inform about the current status of the project LIFE VineAdapt in the Eulau vineyard of the Landesweingut Kloster Pforta.
The State Secretary, coming from the Moselle, emphasized in his greeting the importance of the wine project for the Saale-Unstrut region. "The project, financially supported by the state of Saxony-Anhalt, is dedicated to current issues of the day. Adaptation to climate change and the preservation of biodiversity are playing an increasingly important role in the state's viticulture as well" emphasized Zender. He praised the international cooperation in the EU project and expressed his pleasure about the active participation of 20 regional winegrowers in the project.
Subsequently, the state winery Kloster Pforta and the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences informed about first promising results. For example, the number of plant species within the biodiversity vineyards has more than doubled and the number of selected species is also significantly higher in the biodiversity vineyards than in the conventionally planted control vineyards.
In addition to interesting technical presentations, there was also time for a walk-through of the demonstration plots and for various discussions on the sidelines.
Exchange of experience among colleagues - the region becomes more colorful
The LIFE project "Sustainable Viticulture for Adaptation to Climate Change" (LIFE VineAdapt) has now been able to convince 14 winegrowers from the Saale-Unstrut wine region to sow species-rich and regional wild plant seed mixtures in their vineyards and thus contribute to more biodiversity and climate protection.
After one year of the project, the Landgesellschaft Sachsen-Anhalt, the Landesweingut Kloster Pforta and the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences invited the winegrowing colleagues of the Saale-Unstrut wine region to an exchange of experiences. Also present was the viticulture consultant of the Ministry of Environment and Agriculture, Mr. Lolies. The meeting on 7.09.2021 took place on very historical ground: the EULAU Heideberg was first mentioned in 890 in the Hersfeld tithe register.
The meeting served to exchange experiences so far in the project on viticulture methods adapted to climate change, to present initial results and to jointly discuss the way forward.
In addition to the technical discussions on wild bees, flowering mixtures, care dates and yields this year, the result of a survey conducted with all participating winegrowers on a joint marketing strategy in the project was presented.
The project is co-financed with funds from the European environmental program LIFE and the Ministry of Environment, Agriculture and Energy.
1 year LIFE VineAdapt: a short interim report
Time is flying by. The first 12 months of LIFE VineAdapt are already behind us. While the first weeks were mainly characterized by preparatory measures, we were able to really get started with the field trials at the beginning of the current vegetation period.
In the meantime, site-adapted wild plant mixtures have been sown in the trial vineyards in Germany, Austria and Hungary, and France will soon follow. The first rounds of the necessary vegetation and faunistic studies have largely been completed.
With a view to developing biodiversity-friendly understory management, Austrian colleagues have begun testing different forms of treatment: mechanical brushing, spraying of acetic and pelargonic acid. Germany will follow next year.
To use resource-efficient fertilization methods, the block trial was set up in Germany. Fertilization has now been carried out in 4 variants.
Trials on resource-efficient irrigation have also started successfully. The block trial has been installed in Germany; experimental vineyards have been selected in both Germany and France. The first analyses on vegetation, fauna and soil are available.
Welcome to the website of LIFE VineAdapt!
Here you can follow how our project develops in the coming years and what results we achieve! Feel free to check back regularly and contact us.