When it comes to clearing the vineyard rows of prunings, pulverising or flail mowing in situ is the easiest, most environmentally friendly, and sustainable approach.
Burning the debris pollutes the air and upsets neighbours while removing the canes from the row is time-consuming and an unnecessary use of the labour force.
With the right machinery, pulverising, mulching and shredding prunings can be quick and effective, and is a great way to add humus to the soil.
Designed to deal with heavier working conditions, the Perfect Van Wamel KK mower series will chop prunings up to 10cm in diameter, as well as grass and other vegetation such as weeds and cover crops.
When fitted with the side chutes, the KK mower can then be used to distribute organic matter at the base of the trunks to provide nutrients and act as a blanket barrier to discourage further weed growth.
Those looking for an all-year-round mower which can deal with weeds as well as prunings, should opt for the variable-width Braun Alpha.
This has been designed for mulching prunings, cutting grass, and can also be fitted with Braun’s vine trunk cleaner heads which effectively bud rub and control weeds in the under-vine area, like a strimmer would, without interfering with the soil structure.
Finally, the Variochop shredder from Perfect van Wamel can be front-mounted or rear-mounted and gives growers the additional option to adjust the pto speed.
Operators can select between 540rpm, 750rpm or 1,000rpm depending on the positioning of the pulveriser and the capabilities of the tractor. In particular, the 750rpm option will allow operators with larger tractors to drive the machine with a reduced engine speed to limit fuel consumption and improve efficiency.