Using palissage to reduce disease incidence and fungicide use in winegrapes

Project Overview

Project Type: Graduate Student
Funds awarded in 2017: $14,993.00
Projected End Date: 03/31/2020
Grant Recipient: Cornell University
Region: Northeast
State: New York
Graduate Student:
Faculty Advisor:
Dr. Justine Vanden Heuvel
Cornell University


  • Fruits: grapes


  • Crop Production: Canopy management

    Proposal abstract:

    Hedging (shoot trimming) is a commonly used practice for managing winegrape canopies in cool cimates. Preliminary work suggests that when shoots are palissaged (either wrapped along the top catch wire or bent downwards into the catch wires) rather than hedged, lateral emergence, cluster compactness, and disease incidence is reduced. This proposal requests funds to conduct a multi-year, in depth evaluation of the potential of two palissage methods to improve the economic and environmental sustainability of winegrape production. Using Cabernet Franc, both the method of palissage (shoot tuck vs. shoot wrap) and the timing of the practice (early vs. late) will be evaluated to determine the impact on yield, vine growth, fruit composition, canopy spray penetration, cluster compactness, and disease incidence. The need for fungicide use will be compared among treatments. Partial budgeting will be used to determine whether palissage reduces management costs compared to hedging. Results of the study will be disseminated to the industry via two Cornell newsletters, a vineyard tailgate meeting with growers, and a presentation at the annual New York winegrape industry meeting (the Business, Enology, and Viticulture Conference).

    Project objectives from proposal:

    1. To determine whether the timing (early vs. late) and method (shoot tucking vs. shoot wrapping) of palissage compared to hedging will reduce vegetative growth (lateral emergence) and vigor, reduce cluster shading, reduce disease incidence and cluster compactness, and improve fungicide penetration in Cabernet Franc winegrapes. 

    2. To evaluate carry-over effects of palissage on the same site established in the cool and wet Northeast through 2019 as a sustainable alternative to hedging. 

    3. Develop a partial budget to determine the economic impact of palissage compared to hedging.  

    4. Educate the New York State winegrape industry about the potential of palissage through Appellation Cornell newsletters, tailgate talks with growers, and grower conferences.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.