Would any patch of dirt be appropriate for growing wine-producing grapes? Actually, there is a lot of science that the experts put into deciding where to plant this type of grapes.
The soil composition of vineyards is one of the most important vinicultural considerations when planting grape vines. The soil supports the root structure of the vine and influences the drainage levels and amount of minerals and nutrients that the vine is exposed to.
The ideal soil condition for a vine is a layer of thin topsoil and subsoil that sufficiently retains water but also has good drainage so that the roots do not become overly saturated. The ability of the soil to retain heat and/or reflect it back up to the vine is also an important consideration that affects the ripening of the grapes.
There are several minerals that are vital to the health of vines that all good vineyard soils have. These include calcium, which helps to neutralize the soil pH levels, iron, which is essential for photosynthesis, magnesium, which is an important component of chlorophyll, nitrogen, which is assimilated in the form of nitrates, phosphates, which encourages root development, and potassium, which improves the vine metabolisms and increases its health for next year's crop.
So, the next time you find yourself enjoying a glass of your favorite wine, stop to think a bit about all the hard work that has gone into creating such delicacy. Enjoy!