Viticulture, Enology Research Symposium Set Dec. 3

Viticulture, Enology Research Symposium Set Dec. 3

The latest research related to Texas vineyards and wines will be highlighted at the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Viticulture and Enology Research Symposium on Dec. 3.

A dark red wine in a glass with the Texas A&M University Viticulture and Enology written on it
The inaugural Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Viticulture and Enology Research Symposium will take place Dec. 3. in College Station. (Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Laura McKenzie)

This inaugural event will be from 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. at the Hildebrand Equine Complex at Texas A&M University, 3240 F and B Road, College Station.

The cost is $50, and preregistration is required at The event includes several coffee breaks and lunch, and concludes with a wine social.

“We’ll discuss all of the major research we’ve conducted statewide to help producers find solutions to issues they face in the vineyard and winery,” said Pierre Helwi, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension regional viticulture specialist for West Texas.

Helwi said the team of specialists, faculty and graduate students in the Texas A&M College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Department of Horticultural Sciences are excited to share the results from over 18 studies, ranging from a survey of wine consumer attitudes toward Texas wine, managing acidity in the vineyard and a 2021 update on the first organic treatment for Pierce’s Disease.

Symposium content

There will be a welcome and symposium overview from Larry Stein, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension horticulturist, Uvalde, and Amit Dhingra, Ph.D., head of the Department of Horticultural Sciences, Bryan-College Station.

Specific topics and speakers for the event will be:

— Focus on Texas wines: A consumer perspective – Andreea Botezatu, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension enology specialist, Bryan-College Station.

— Economic update on projects going on at Texas A&M – Charlie Hall, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension horticulture and economics specialist and Ellison Chair in International Floriculture,Department of Horticultural Sciences, Bryan-College Station, and Cassie Marbach, doctoral student.

— Grape rootstock research in Texas – Jim Kamas, AgriLife Extension fruit specialist, Fredericksburg, and Justin Scheiner, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension viticulture specialist, Bryan-College Station.

Close up of a row of grapevine sin a vineyard with clusters of green grapes
The symposium will focus on the latest research and important topics related to Texas wines and vineyards. (Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Laura McKenzie)

— Influence of shoot thinning on Blanc du Bois clusters – Fran Pontasch, AgriLife Extension regional viticulture specialist for the Gulf Coast.

— Effect of pruning and mechanical fruit thinning on crop load and quality of Tempranillo in Texas – Helwi.

— New phage technology for control of Pierce’s disease – What we do and don’t know — Carlos Gonzalez, Ph.D., Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology professor and member of the Texas A&M AgriLife Center for Phage Technology, Bryan-College Station, and Jacy Lewis, AgriLife Extension’s Viticulture and Fruit Lab program coordinator/manager, Fredericksburg.

— Evaluation of three frost mitigation strategies in Texas vineyards — Michael Cook, AgriLife Extension viticulturist for North Texas.

— Evaluation of TopGuard Terra for the control Botryosphaeria dieback – Brianna Crowley, AgriLife Extension viticulturist for the Texas Hill County.

— Epidemiology and impact on grape quality of viruses infecting Blanc du Bois wine grapes in Texas – David Appel, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension specialist plant pathology, Bryan-College Station; Olufemi Alabi, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension specialist plant pathology and microbiology specialist, Weslaco; and Sheila McBride, Texas Plant Disease Diagnostic Lab head diagnostician, Bryan-College Station.

— Monitoring of grapevine bud cold hardiness in the Texas High Plains– Daniel Hillin, AgriLife Extension viticulturist for High Plains and West Texas.

— Managing acidity in the vineyard: Studies to identify factors that influence acidity and best vineyard management practices – Scheiner.

— Flash talks – Discussion with Texas A&M students.

Susan Himes
Susan Himes is a writer and media relations specialist for Texas A&M AgriLife. She writes news releases and features from science-based information generated by the agency. She also covers human interest stories and events across the state.