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Viticulture 100 Hours Certificate Course
Learn About Viticulture
Viticulture Course Online
Learn the techniques and become a successful Vitculturalist. This course will help you develop an ability to select and cultivate appropriate varieties of grapes in different situations, and provide the knowledge to make informed decisions about the management of a vineyard.
There are ten lessons covering the history of viticulture, the current state of the industry, wine and table grapes, dried grapes, cultural practices (trellising, soils, planting, pruning, irrigation, pests & diseases); vineyard design, improving quality, harvest & post harvest procedures, wine-making, marketing and more.
Learn to grow Grapes
A serious course for vineyard workers, hobby farmers, farm managers, amateur enthusiasts, or anyone working or aspiring to work in this industry.
Lesson Structure: Viticulture BHT220
There are 10 lessons in this course:
- Nature and scope of the viticulture industry both locally and world wide
- Global viticulture
- Major winegrowing areas around the world
- The grape; genera and species
- Classification of grape varieties
- Table grapes
- Wine grapes
- Dried fruit
- Juice grapes
- Canned grapes
2 Climate and Soils
- Suitable climate and soil conditions for vineyard site establishment
- Temperature; temperature calculations; latitude-temperature index and degree days
- Soil; soil types and wine regions; understanding soils; texture; characteristics; soil structure; chemical characteristics of soils including pH and nutrient levels
- Understanding plant nutrition
- Soil water content
- Simple soil tests; naming the soil
- Problems with soil; erosion; salinity; structural decline; soil acidification; chemical residues
3 Selecting Grape Varieties
- Appropriate grape varieties for different situations.
- Grape types
- Selection considerations
- Matching the variety with the site
- Varietal characteristics
- Selecting wine grapes
- Reviewing important varieties; chenin blanc; chardonnay; semillion; muscat ottonel; muscadelle; gewurztraminer; cabernet sauvignon; carignan
- Vitis rotundifolia
- Wine grapes; raisin grapes; juice grapes
- Importance of rootstocks
- Purchasing plants
4 Vineyard Establishment
- Procedure to establish a vineyard
- Vineyard planning
- Site planning
- Vineyard layout
- Site preparation
- Planting the vines
- Vine spacing
- Shelter belts
- Crop infrastructure
5 Grapevine Culture Part A (Training & Pruning)
- Techniques used in the culture of grape vines
- Pruning and training vines
- Shoot spacing
- Bud numbers
- Vine spacing
- How much to prune
- Machine pruning
- Summer pruning
- Combination pruning
- Pruning sultana vines
- Trellis construction
- Guyot system
- Geneva double curtain system
- Head training
- Kniffen systems
- Umbrella kniffen system
- Pergola training system
6 Grapevine Culture Part B (Weeds, Pests & Diseases)
- Types of weeds
- Controlling weeds
- Safety proceedures when using agricultural chemicals
- Laws and guidelines
- Types of chemicals
- Weed management before planting
- Weed management in new vineyards
- Weed management in established vineyards
- Integrated pest management
- Pest control in vineyards
- Grape berry moth
- Grape mealy bug
- Grape leaffolder
- Grapevine rust mite
- Grape blossom midge
- Flea beetles
- Birds and arge animals
- Disease control in vineyards
- Fungal diseases; rots; mildew; eutypa dieback etc
- Bacterial diseases
- Organic culture of grapes; organic pest and disease control
- Companion plants
- Managing environmental problems including air, water, damage, frost, hail, wind and shade
- Water mangement; runoff; water saving
- Grape clones and varieties
7 Grapevine Culture Part C (Irrigation & Feeding)
- Irrigating and feeding grapes
- Excessive irrigation
- Seasonal effects of irrigation
- Drip irrigation
- Monitoring and timing
- Feasibility of irrigation
- Design considerations
- Soil and water
- Measuring water available to plants
- Calculating permanent wilting point
- Calculating field capacity of a vineyard
- Available moisture range
- Measuring air filled porosity
- Estimating water
- Rate of growth
- Drainage in vineyards; improving subsoil and surface drainage; subsurface drainage
- Soil fertility; choice of fertilizer; timing of application; fertigation
8 Improving Grape Quality
- Ways to ensure or improve grape quality.
- Plant stock
- Crop management
- Post harvest impact on quality
- Improving flower and fruit set
- Second set
- Berry thinning
9 Harvesting & Selling
- Procedure for harvest and post-harvest treatment
- Testing for ripeness
- Influence of weather
- Harvesting techniques
- Selling grapes
- Vineyard resume
- Selling grapes
- Marketing contracts
- Selling online
- Developing a marketing plan
- Market research
- Legal considerations with marketing
- Basic principles of wine making
- Overview of winemaking process
- Production principles
- Making white wine
- Making red wine
Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the Academy, marked by the Academy’s tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.
Learning Goals: Viticulture BHT220
- Choose an appropriate site for a vineyard.
- Simple Soil tests
- Measuring phalt
- Water content of soil.
- Choose appropriate grape varieties for different situations.
- Develop criteria to be considered when selecting which grape varieties to grow.
- Devise a procedure to establish a vineyard.
- Specify the techniques used in the culture of grape vines.
- Specify a procedure for harvest and post-harvest treatment of grapes.
- Formulate marketing strategies for vineyard products.
- Explain the basic principles of wine making.
Practical (Set Tasks)
ESTABLISHING A NEW VINEYARD
Care and consideration should be taken in selecting a site and establishing a new vineyard. Good planning and site establishment will make management easier and improve the chances of vineyard success.
Vineyard establishment generally involves several key aspects. These include: planning, site preparation, soil conditioning, installing cropping infrastructure such as irrigation and trellises, installation of other infrastructure such as roadways and packing sheds, and plant establishment.
GENERAL PLANNING Every vineyard needs a plan specifically tailored to the site, the locality, the scale of the enterprise and the owners’ requirements. Given that each enterprise has different priorities, and operates under a different set of circumstances, it is impossible to follow a “generic” or standard approach to planning.
You do need to plan all aspects which are important to your operation, including production, finance, land care, facility and equipment management, marketing, product processing (if relevant), and physical layout (ie. design of the property). A well-organised and experienced grower may not need to be too rigid in adhering to a procedure like this; however, many growers will find a real benefit in working through a systematic procedure “on paper”.
The surest way to succeed is to move through this procedure step-by-step; writing down everything as you go. This gives you a chance to ponder over what you have written, add new thoughts, or make alterations.
Making Decisions The grower needs to make decisions every day, but each decision varies in terms of:
a) Significance Some decisions will have a greater impact than others (eg. buying new land or changing agents). Obviously more significant decisions warrant more careful planning.
b) Timing Some decisions need to be made repeatedly and frequently (eg. managing weeds, irrigating, buying fertiliser or machinery). Good planning may involve establishing a procedure to help with such decisions (eg. re-order when the quantity in stock drops to a certain level). Some decisions need to be made straight away (eg. a regular weeding schedule, soil moisture monitoring, treatment of a serious disease), while others might not matter if they are delayed (eg. replacing a fence).
c) Permanence Some decisions are more permanent (eg. planting a new variety), while others are easier to change (eg. the amount of water applied a particular point in time).
Good planning will assist the viticulturist in developing a vineyard that maximises the effect of positive elements of the site, such as aspect or soil type, and minimises the effect of negative elements, such as frost potential.
Drawing a Vineyard Plan The first step in a property development strategy is to draw a vineyard plan. Drawn to scale and illustrating important attributes such as contours, creeks or streams, hills, cliffs, and other features, this map will aid in the appropriate exploitation of usable land. Details such as existing trees, river banks, fences, soil types, direction of summer and winter winds, will aid all future planning processes.
If you have recently purchased the property, some of this information may be available from previous farm owners, local council departments and even state or national government land departments. Some information will be found by observing conditions on the site. The inclusion in the map of existing buildings and knowledge of work patterns and access routes will allow efficient time management and will also enable optimum siting of future buildings.
If sheds and the farm residence are placed close together it will reduce time to get from work to home, aid in better husbandry of vines, improve security around the property, and reduce transportation between various components of the property. If it is a new farm location, careful placement of the buildings may even reduce costs. For instance, placing a house close to the road will reduce the connection costs of electricity, water and other services.
The siting of the house and farm buildings should take into account the agricultural value of land, the central location of the house to all useable land, flood levels, etc. Good land should not be built on – it should be reserved for agricultural use, but if the property is flood-prone, then a compromise needs to be made. Check how often the land has been flooded.
The location of farm buildings may also be determined by their use and function in the running of the farm, e.g. manure storage area should be downwind to residences. Consider the downwind land uses in neighbouring parcels of land. Always remember to allow appropriate thoroughfare for machinery. Ensure safety when driving machinery in terms of overhead powerlines, steep slopes and edges of access tracks (weak shoulders and gullies).
Having a natural source of water on the land is every farmer’s dream. Considering it is actually a resource, many districts require registration for tapping that resource. Extra care is needed when looking at the potential of farm pollution into the waterways by others upstream of your property. Water problems can relate to underground water movement as well as more obvious surface water. Both types of water can bring pollutants from outside of the property.
Note that a licence is usually required to sink a bore or to install a pump from a surface water supply (eg. river or lake), with the volume controlled by the licence requirements. Water quality is important for crops, animals and humans, and a water purity and quality assessment is therefore recommended. In remote districts, it is crucial to employ water conservation techniques such as water harvesting, selection of dry land species, etc.
Fencing should be placed to optimise land use, assist ease of access through the property, mark off damaged areas (eg. unstable ground, erosion-prone soil) and to restrict animal access to vines.
Efficient farming depends a great deal on getting your priorities right, identifying those tasks on the farm which need to be done before other jobs are undertaken. For example, this may mean finishing the vineyard fencing before the shed extension is started, so that animals will not stray and damage the vines.
Money is one of the biggest burdens for the commercial viticulturist and anybody considering a new operation or expanding an existing vineyard must identify their present financial limitation so they can plan the enterprise fully aware of financial constraints. These constraints may slow down the full operation, but it is a safe management strategy to follow. Take one step at a time; do not jump in head first…..
Assessment is based on a combination of completing all assignments and sitting for a final short one and a half hour exam, in your own location.
If you don’t cope well with exams then you may elect to undertake a project instead. This is a popular option.
In addition, most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson placed before the assignment. This is an opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge and skills and practical experience. This ADL feature is an added bonus not found at most online schools. Set Tasks are not required for assessment.
Some courses also have optional Self-Tests which are available on our online learning platform. These are not available by correspondence or by USB, and do not form part of your overall grade.
How our courses work
- Choose Your Learning Method
You choose how you would like to receive your course material, i.e., Online, USB or Correspondence. The choice is yours. You may also work on online or offline.
- Tutor Allocation
Every student is assigned their own dedicated tutor who is an expert in their subject area. They provide as much or as little individual contact as you require. You can contact your tutor whenever you need – your hours are not limited.
- Feedback and Assignments
Tutor Feedback is an essential component in helping you understand the subject matter. Tutor feedback is given in the form of notes written on the assignment. We encourage you to contact your Tutor where help with clarification and understanding of course material may be required.
Your assignments are located at the end of each lesson. You submit them for marking whenever you are ready. There is no time limit.
- Set Tasks and Self-Tests
Most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson before for the assignment. This is where you get the opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge, skills and practical experience. Many modules also have short Self-Tests.
Once all assignments have been completed you may then elect to sit for a one and half hour exam in your own location. If you prefer not to take the exam you do have the option to undertake a project instead.
Once the exam or project part of the course is completed, your Certificate is then processed. Please allow approximately 4 weeks for this.
- Design Your Own Qualification
ADL offers students the flexibility to self-design their own qualification – bundling together a combination of 100-hour modules into a qualification higher than a certificate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Here is a list of the most often asked FAQ’s.
Q. Why should I enrol with the Academy for Distance Learning?
A. Here at ADL, our students are our priority – we treat everyone as a unique individual.
Q. Do I need to buy text books?
A. No, as each module has been written by highly qualified industry professionals. The content of the material is presented in such a way that text books are not required. However, if you require additional reading your tutor will be able to supply a list.
Q. What happens if I have to stop studying for a while? (eg. become sick, go on holidays, have a baby, move house, etc)
A. It’s OK to take a break and start up your study at a later point in time. Just let us know.
Q. Is there an age limit?
A. There is no maximum age limit. We do however, have a minimum age limit of 18 years. Below that age parental consent would be required.
Q. Are your courses up-to date?
A. Our courses are revised and updated on a rotation system.
Q. Do you have a Cancellation policy?
A. Yes. We have a cancellation policy that is fair and equitable. For further details please click here.
Q. Will I have any opportunity to engage with other students?
A. We have a Student Community group based on facebook! If you don’t have a facebook account already, you could make one just for talking with fellow students on the group.
Q. When can I enrol/start?
A. You may enrol and start at any time of the year – it’s all self- paced.
Q. Can I study from anywhere in the world?
A. Our courses are available to anyone, anywhere in the world from the comfort of your own home. The course content is relevant to any country, culture or economy.
Q. How long do I have to complete the course?
A. You complete the course at any time that is convenient for you.
Q. Completing a 100 hour module – how long will it take?
A. For some students a 100 hour module will take approximately to 3- 6 months to complete. Others take less time and some even longer.
Q. Assessment – how does it work?
A. For each 100 hour module you are assessed by assignments (at the end of each lesson) and a final one and a half hour exam (or you may elect to complete a Project, instead of sitting the exam) – the choice is yours – you sit for the exam in your own location.
Q. I don’t cope well with exams – what can I do?
A. You may elect to undertake a Project (set by your tutor) instead of sitting the exam. Projects are completed from your home and can usually take a couple of weeks to complete.
Q. If my assignment is not up to standard is there an opportunity to resubmit my work?
A. Yes –
Q. How many assignments do I need to complete for each module?
A. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment – so if a course has say, 10 lessons, there would be 10 assignments.
Q. I am having difficulty attending workshops/industry meetings, what can be done?
A. If your course requires attendance at workshops, conferences, or industry meetings; alternative arrangements can be made in your country.
Q. What qualification will I receive?
A. For individual modules, you would be awarded a Certificate endorsed by TQUK (Training Qualifications, UK), providing you complete all assignments and the exam. If you just want to complete only the assignments and not sit for the exam or finish a Project, then a Letter of Achievement would be awarded. For more details on qualifications available please click here.
Q. Can I customize my diploma/higher qualification?
A. Not all educational institution’s certificates /diplomas meet everyone’s needs. The opportunity to Design Your Own Diploma at the Academy (subject to our approval) is an added bonus, not found at other colleges. You choose modules that you think will help you in achieving your goal.
Q. What do I get when I complete the course? Will I receive a transcript?
A. At the completion of all courses and providing all assignments and exam requirements have been met, you will receive your Award and a Transcript.
Q. Our tutors – who are they?
A. We appoint Tutors and require that they must be currently active in their industry, with at least 5 years’ experience in their chosen profession.
Q. Can I contact my tutor at any time?
A. Yes – you have unlimited access to your tutor via email through our Online Classroom. You can always leave a message with ADL requesting your tutor to contact you. You decide on how much or how little contact you wish to have.
Q. Practical work – How is this done?
A. To find out more about this part of the course please visit the section on How Our Courses Work here.
What your tuition fees include
There are no hidden extras
FAQ - RHS Theory Qualifications
If you require further details about any of the RHS industry recognised qualifications please, call one of our friendly RHS Course Advisors on +44 (0)1227 789 649 or email: [email protected]
Q: When can I Enrol/Start My RHS Course With ADL?
A: Anytime, Anywhere. There are no enrolment deadlines.
Q: I live Overseas. Can I Study From Overseas?
A: You can study any of the RHS theory qualifications overseas. All courses are offered in English. You will need to email RHS Qualifications direct to arrange sitting for your examination overseas.
Q: Is There a Time Limit for Completing an RHS Qualification?
A: At present there are no time limits. However, RHS is contemplating in the future, the introduction of course time-lines.
Q: Are There Any Entry Requirements (Pre-Requisites)?
A: The RHS Theory courses do not require prerequisites, previous experience or any knowledge of horticulture. You just need passion for all things horticulture.
Q: What Course Should I Start With First? I Am New To RHS Qualifications.
A: We highly recommend that you start with Level 2 – Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance.
Q: What Does ADL Course Material Include?
A: Includes Power Point Presentations, Videos and written course lessons.
Q: When Do Exams Take Place?
A: Exams are held on fixed dates in February and June of each year. You should register as a candidate at least 3 months before these dates, so please do not leave exam registration to the last minute
Q: Where Do I Take My Exams?
A: UK: You take the exams at the RHS Wisley Centre, located between Cobham and Ripley in Surrey or at other authorised RHS centres around the UK.
Overseas: please email RHS qualifications direct for centre information.
Q: Exam Pass Marks?
A: Module – pass 50%. Commendation 70%.
Qualification: 50% pass for all modules.
Commendation awarded for all modules.
Each question carries a value of 10 marks.
Q: I’m Not Happy With My Exam Results?
A: You have the opportunity to re-sit your exam at the next opportunity.
There are no restrictions on the number of re-sits you can take. The highest mark you achieve will remain.,