Finger Lakes winery puts emphasis on organic farming, an educational experience in tasting room
By Paul Vigna for pennlive.com
Silver Thread is a 40-year-old vineyard and has been farmed organically or sustainably throughout its history. The previous owner was 20 years ahead of his time. When we took over the business in 2011, we changed course from his focus on traditional organic farming and moved toward biological and regenerative management. There are a lot of newer options in the biological realm – plant extracts and active live cultures – that have become available to grape farmers in the past 5-10 years… We find that biointensive management works better than conventional farming. Instead of worrying about killing pathogens, we focus on strengthening our vines to fight off disease on their own, and encouraging a healthy microbiome in the soil and vineyard canopy to out-compete the fungal and insect pathogens. It’s not easy to farm this way, but we need to have more farmers moving in this direction.
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