Biomimicry in action: Sour Grapes and the wine industry

How does a winery use Biomimicry to great effect to continuously keep soil quality, and thus wine quality, high? It lets weeds run rampant!

I was watching Uncorked, the Stuart MacGill show on Lifestyle, the other day (yes, hold your laughter) and was happily shocked by how much the wine industry has begun adopting biomimicry techniques in an effort to create full bodied, great tasting wines.

The winery Battle of Bosworth, deliberately lets the weed, Sour Sob (oxalis pes caprae), grow between it’s wine rows to ‘out-compete’ other weeds and then turn into a nutritious, organic mulch in the summer. The plant grows in reverse season to the grape vines, which means that when the Sour Sob is growing, the grapes are in the off-season, lying dormant. When the grapes begin maturing, and enter into the growth season, the weed naturally dies off, providing the excess nutrients the vines required to produce the grapes which eventually go into one of the better wines in the region. The owner loves the weed so much, he has adorned his bottles with it’s image.

Battle of Bosworth

Fantastic! No chemicals. Less water use. Better product. Using something that…shock horror…grows naturally WITHOUT COST. I’ll be buying a bottle or two – call it research. 😛