One large-scale experiment and two small plot experiments have been established to evaluate the impact of in-row barley cover cropping on soil and water erosion, vine growth and productivity, weed control, and the economics of wine grape production. A 3.5-acre experimental site is evaluating three in-row management practices. The in-row treatments evaluated are:
- Standard, pre-emergent herbicide using flumioxazin (Chateau®) at 0.38 lbs a.i./acre + 2%glyphosate with follow-up post emergence applications of 2%glyphosate applied as needed in the summer to control escaped weeds.
- Standard + polyacrylamide (PAM) applied in a band under the vine row @ 3 lbs per acre prior to rain events with weed control as described above.
- In-row cover crop using barley that was allowed to develop to 12 inches and then burned back with a 2%glyphosate application.
Two small plot experiments were established, one to evaluate the influence of timing of burn-back herbicide sprays to in-row covers and the second to evaluate the use plant type for in-row cover cropping.