Vine rows are three metres wide (10 feet) whilst vine spacing for the original 1998 plantings is 1.8 metres and for the 2004 expansion it is two metres. Row orientation for blocks 1 & 2 (Shiraz) run north to south whilst the rest of the vineyard is orientated east to west. The entire vineyard is two-bud spur pruned but we may experiment with cane pruning to restrict the spread of eutypa . 
The entire vineyard is a single vine cordon. Blocks 1,2 & 3 are Shiraz and have VSP (vertical shoot positioning) whilst Blocks 4-7 have a single catch wire. Full VSP is not practised but instead, the movable wires for the west and the north faces are utilised merely as catch wires allowing the canopy to follow it's natural inclination to droop and shade the fruit. The east and south facing wires are lifted to catch at least 80% of the shoots. This opens up the canopy to indirect light and facilitates disease control through efficient ventilation and spray penetration.

Today SUSTAINABILITY  is the word on nearly everyone’s lips. What does it mean? For us sustainability is looking after the land as best we can whilst running profitably. In the late 90’s there was, I think still, an adherence to a scorched earth policy. By mid-September, if it was green and not a vine you dug it out, dug it in or nuked it with Roundup. Similarly, with spraying for disease and pest like Light Brown Apple Moth or mites, there were the obligatory minimum five sprays per season of fungicides with a cocktail of whatever was handy and guaranteed to decimate anything that breathed. Year in-year out. No questions asked.

Today we spray only when we think it is necessary. The first two fungicide sprays of the season are approved for organic viticulture. We usually incorporate organic fertilisers and growth stimulants (such as kelp extracts) in these two sprays. Then it is a case of wait and see as to whether we spray again. (In season September 2014 to February/March 2015 we only sprayed twice.) We only spray for pests as a last resort. In 18 years we have used pest control sprays only five times. 

Herbicides are limited to only two or three sprays a year for control of competition weeds in the vine row and their use is compensated for with balancing sympathetic practices. Prunings are reincorporated into the soil. Each autumn a ‘cover crop’ that will yield a high level of bulk organic matter is planted between the vines. Come September/October it is mowed and incorporated back into the vineyard through natural attrition and also mechanically in late March and April the following year. In spring 2016 we will mulch all vine rows in an attempt to reduce herbicide use.

All 1998 plantings-Shiraz (clone 1654) and Cabernet Sauvignon (clones G9V3 & LC10)-were on own roots. The 2004 expansion saw a further 3.1 hectares  of the Yalumba Shiraz clone P1919 on Paulsen 1103 rootstock and 1.6 hectares of Mataro (Mourvedre) also on Paulsen 1103. We also planted two hectares of Viognier but due to adverse market conditions we couldn’t even give the fruit away. The vines were removed in the Spring of 2011. The block has been fallow since then but will be replanted to grafted Shiraz in 2016. A further one hectare in block 3 is to be planted to a different clone of Shiraz in Spring 2016