En Agro-Synergie, Peut-on créer ou doit-on seulement préserver un paysage ?

In Agro-Synergy, can we create or should we only preserve a landscape?

In the world of wine, the “suitcase” Terroir is always brandished as the essential explanation of the quality of wine; that's probably right. But we must keep in mind that, if the essence of the Terroir is above all linked to the qualities of the natural environment, nature does not intervene alone in its definition. Human work is still essential here. To paraphrase R. DION 1, our contemporaries no longer imagine what work and ingenuity it took to force Nature to give what she would never have offered to Man on her own. . This work has created new landscapes which have become iconic for some and are now subject to protection by UNESCO. 2 Some production areas that correspond to particular characteristics have inserted precise geological limitations, but not all situations lend themselves to being so strict. Apart from pedological configurations that are actually notably unsuitable for the production of quality grapes, human genius has demonstrated that it is possible to produce great wines on a very wide diversity of soils and configurations. H. ENJALBERT 3 and G. SEGUIN 4 were the first to demonstrate that the only determining element to guarantee access to the production of “great wines” (vs. good wines) is a fine regulation of the water regime of the vine at the of veraison and during the ripening of the grapes. This regulation is linked firstly to the characteristics of the soil and climate of course, but we should not underestimate the work of humans to also control this key parameter. This is how for millennia, depending on the pedoclimatic conditions, the winegrower has managed the slope, built low walls, established terraces, dug ditches, laid underground drains, built mills to drain marshes, planted hedges, fought against erosion, irrigates, builds cellars and castles: it creates landscapes and terroirs. From now on, human resources have become more powerful and viticulture, often but not everywhere, a monoculture; the landscape may have become impoverished in certain places. The seas of undulating vines represent a wine-growing landscape, but their biodiversity and resilience have obviously suffered greatly from this invasion. Today, the new generation has understood the limits of this past craze. The concern for the preservation and recreation of a landscape, certainly still viticultural but better integrated into its environment, therefore becomes a rule in Agro-Synergy. Today we see everyone planting hedges, sowing flowers, raising low walls, to respond to the flow of time, but without always much logic and ambition other than that of appearing or winning points. qualifying to obtain certification and that’s a shame. Creating a landscape must respond to a double logic, that of the geography and topography of the place and that also (and above all) of the usefulness for the vine! We thus see new winegrowers planting hedges everywhere which block the circulation of air in spring and which cause their plots to freeze by preventing the evacuation of cold air; we plant flowering fallows with exogenous flowers without honey-producing power and therefore useless, we forget to dig the ditch where we planted the hedge; we create ponds which dry up in summer... All this is very pretty but often futile, and sometimes even dangerous. The principles of permaculture, which should govern this construction, obey common sense rules that must be respected while integrating a dose of diplomacy to manage the often complicated neighborhood in viticulture. 1 Dion Roger. Quarrel between ancients and moderns over the factors of wine quality. In: Annals of Geography, t. 61, n°328, 1952. pp. 417-431. DOI: https://doi.org/10.3406/geo.1952.13718 2 UNESCO 3 ENJALBERT H. (1975), The history of vines and wine: the advent of quality, ed. Bordas, 207 p. 4 SEGUIN G. (1983), Influences of wine-growing terroirs on the constitution and quality of the harvest. Bulletin of the International Organization of Vine and Wine, 56, n° 623, 3-18

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