Drought and water management in Mediterranean vineyards

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


A large proportion of vineyards are located in regions with seasonal drought (e.g. Mediterranean type climates) where soil and atmospheric water deficits, together with high air temperatures, cause large constraints on yield and quality. The increasing demand for vineyard irrigation requires an improvement in the efficiency of water use. Deficit irrigation emerged as a potential strategy to allow crops to withstand mild water stress with little or no decrease in yield and a potential positive impact on berry quality. This, however, can vary with the variety. Understanding the physiological and molecular bases of grapevine responses to mild to moderate water deficits is fundamental to optimize the management of deficit irrigation and identify the most suitable varieties to those conditions. Deficit irrigation can also be managed to influence the concentration of berry secondary metabolites and profiles. The timing and intensity of irrigation influence berry metabolism, essentially secondary metabolites, and as a consequence wine sensory characteristics. This chapter discusses recent data related to metabolic changes and hormonal control of grape berry ripening under deficit irrigation and identify limitations in the interpretation of results.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGrapevine in a Changing Environment
Subtitle of host publicationA Molecular and Ecophysiological Perspective
Number of pages30
ISBN (Electronic)9781118735985
ISBN (Print)9781118736050
Publication statusPublished - 25 Mar 2016


  • Berry composition
  • Deficit irrigation
  • Floor management
  • Leaf gas exchange
  • Leaf temperature
  • Mild water stress
  • Phenotyping
  • Secondary metabolites
  • Varieties
  • Veraison


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