Wine Industry Newsletter

Heritage Gingin Chardonnay mother-vines potential relocation

Vines of the Gingin clone of Chardonnay currently located at the Harvey Agriculture College represent an important part of the Western Australian wine industry history. This heritage repository is traceable through its import into WA in 1957, its subsequent planting at the Department of Agriculture Swan Research Station in 1961, to its planting as cuttings in the multiplication rows at Harvey Agriculture College in 1993/94. This planting of 15 vines was used by the Western Australian Vine Improvement Association (WAVIA) as a primary source to supply the burgeoning demand from the Western Australian industry for propagation material of this clone of Chardonnay for the following decade.

Since the early 2000’s, WAVIA’s charter and policy regarding varieties or clones with Grapevine Leaf Roll Virus (GLRv1 and GLRv3) has prevented further distribution of the Gingin clone by WAVIA due to the presence of GLRv1.

WAVIA and DPIRD would like to seek expressions of interest from suitable vineyards who would be interested in helping retain these vines for the future. The selection of a suitable vineyard location would be at the discretion of WAVIA following discussion with DPIRD, after a public advertising period of three months commencing with the publication of this article in the Wine Industry Newsletter.

The applicant vineyard should have: strong links to the heritage of Gingin Chardonnay in Western Australia, high viticultural standards, and suitable site conditions for the variety.

WAVIA and DPIRD will assist with the relocation of the vines from Harvey Agriculture College to the selected vineyard. The selected vineyard will cover the costs of replanting the vines, and all further costs. The vines will become the property of the selected vineyard on the condition that:

  1. proper records must be maintained identifying the separate location of these vines
  2. the history of the vines be recorded and displayed with them
  3. no failed vines to be replanted with cuttings or vines from other source material
  4. adequate access to the vines and records be provided to WAVIA or DPIRD for future research projects. 

Interested vineyards should submit their expression of interest in writing to:

Western Australian Vine Improvement Association
Re: Heritage Chardonnay Vines
PO Box 941
Margaret River
WA 6285