THE ENVIRONMENT AT MARTINS HILL VINEYARD
Martins Hill Organic Wines is a NASAA certified organic vineyard, Vignerons and owners Michael and Louise Sweeney planted the first vines in 1985, more vines were added to the vineyard in 2000. Over the past 10 years, additional Riesling, Pinot Noir and Shiraz has been planted on the slopes of the southwestern side of the vineyard. These vines have all come from our library rows.
Michael is a passionate winemaker who lives the organic lifestyle and produces organic, vegan wines with no added preservatives. 35 years of organic practices and not using chemicals, pesticides and synthetic fertilizers has resulted in the production of beautiful clean fruit.
Martins Hill is a small family vineyard all vines are hand-worked by Michael and Louise, for harvest each year 15 to 20 local pickers assist. Our hardest workers in the sustainable organic process are the sheep, the birds and the lady beetles. The sheep maintain the floor of the vineyard and nurture the earth and add nutrients to the ground. The birds eat the locust and larvae from the vine moth. There are currently thousands of birds living in the bird hides around the Martins Hill Organic Farm, owl faces, blue and scrub wrens, finches, pardalote, thrush, magpies and chuffs, the chuff is known as the farmer’s friend as they eat the larvae of locust directly from the ground. The lady beetles hibernate over winter in our little hotels and emerge as adults ready to work on insect control. This pre-empts the time taken for an adult generation to hatch from larvae laid the previous autumn. This saves us a month in our pest management. The lady beetle is a carnivorous insect and feeds upon mites and aphids. She can eat up to 600 in a week. The vineyard’s carbon footprint is neutral. This has been achieved with electricity provided by a Solar Array producing 4.2 Kw. Grid-connected.
The sum of all of these innovations would arguably be amongst the best carbon footprint for any vineyard. Over the years the maturing of native plants has given the local wildlife a home on the vineyard, reptiles, echidnas, wombats and a large number of bird species are a part of the life at Martins Hill Vineyard.
“Caring for your health…and the environment.”