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In 2015, Château Brown launched a study conducted by Vitinnov* and Bordeaux Sciences Agro as part of the MUSCARI* project.
The aim of the Muscari project is to encourage growers to make use of agro-ecological techniques to limit their impact on the environment.
The Muscari project proposes sowing flowerbeds next to cultivation areas so as to understand the extent to which they serve as a refuge for auxiliary fauna and pollinators.
Vitinnov has been monitoring a flowerbed on our estate. The seeds have been sown and renewed every autumn since 2015 alongside one of our vineyard plots.
Flora and fauna inventories are then performed. In particular, we have seen the appearance of auxiliary insects that are useful for cultivation, as well as natural regulation of pests (leafhoppers).
Initial results show that these flowerbeds significantly boost biodiversity when then are planted alongside a plot of producing vines, and will help us to reduce our use of insecticides on these vineyards.
It has also been demonstrated that these mixtures of flowers should be encouraged, but also tailored to local conditions. It is important to select indigenous species that encourage fauna that are already present to settle in.
* Vitinnov : an applied research and training structure specialising in winegrowing, established in 2011.
* MUSCARI project: standing for ‘Mélanges Utiles aux Systèmes de Cultures et Auxiliaires pour favoriser une Réduction des Intrants’ (useful mixtures of cultivation and auxiliary systems to help reduce inputs).
The second project set up by Vitinnov: performing an inventory of the environments on our estate.
The estate is covered with a varied mosaic of areas: a constructed heritage dating from different eras, a wooded park, and nearby forest and grassland areas with low levels of human activity that help to maintain varied biodiversity.
Vitinnov helps us to develop management measures designed to promote biodiversity and enhance the different ecosystems.