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Crop cultivation: Viticulture

    Why study viticulture?

    Vineyards for producing wine consist of approximately 95 000 ha, while those used to produce export table grapes as well as dried grapes make up a further 20 000 ha, approximately. These industries provide work for almost 500 000 people. The success of these industries is based on the successful cultivation of vines, ensuring the best possible yields of quality grapes to give South Africa a competitive edge in international markets.

    Successful cultivation of grapes is a direct result of how well the behaviour and reaction of the vine is understood. In this regard, the diversity of the natural environments in which viticulture is practiced plays a determining role. Viticulture is a living and changing science, designed to meet existing and future challenges to ensure the long term viability of total grape production in the South African agricultural industry.

    How will you benefit from studying this short learning programme?

    Students will meet the huge natural diversity in which viticulture is practiced. They will study the basic morphology and physiological functioning of the different vine organs and of the plant as a whole, and learn how to use this knowledge in applying different cultural practices successfully. These include site selection, soil amelioration, planting and vine spacing, trellising systems, vine training, pruning and canopy management.

    After completion of this short learning programme you will be able to:

    • Have a much improved understanding of vine functioning below and aboveground
    • Be able to make practice decisions on a higher level
    • Have the ability to make important cultural changes in the production plan
    • Be able to operate as a team leader on a high level
    • Be able to adapt existing practices to best practice procedures in different environments
    • Be able to contribute to the viability of the enterprise

       
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      Duration

      8 days

      • Leg 1: 28 + 29 June 2018 (coinciding with winter practices)
      • Leg 2: 13 + 14 September 2018 (coinciding with spring practices)
      • Leg 3: 8 + 9 November 2018 (coinciding with summer practices)
      • Leg 4: 7 + 8 March 2019 (coinciding with harvesting and cellar practices)
      Certification

      MSA Competency based short learning programme

      Who should attend

      Any person managing and/or working with the vine in all sectors of the grape industry will benefit. The programme will improve their knowledge and sharpen their skills, thereby increasing their chances for further advances in their careers.

      Entry requirements
      • Fluency in reading, writing, speaking and understanding English and Afrikaans
      • A background in agriculture at farm level would be beneficial
      • Senior Certificate or equivalent NQF level 4 qualification with appropriate experience
      Assessment to determine competence:
      • Two formal tests are written, one at the beginning of Leg 2 and one at the beginning of Leg 3
      • Two practical assessments are done for pruning and for canopy management
      • A formal examination is written on the last day of Leg 4
      • The year mark is calculated as average test mark x 0.7 + practical mark x 0.3
      • Final mark is calculated as year mark x 0.2 + examination mark x 0.8
      About the course facilitator

      Prof Eben Archer holds a PhD (Agriculture) in Viticulture and has 48 years of experience in research (ARC Viticulture and Oenology Research Institute, Nietvoorbij, teaching Department of Viticulture, Stellenbosch University) and production viticulturist (Lusan Premium Wines). After widely consulting internationally, he currently consults in viticulture nationally.

      Contact us

      011 950 4009 inquiries@monash.ac.za
      From outside South Africa
      +27 11 950 4009

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