Establishing a Vineyard

Considerations and Resources for Vineyard Establishment in the Inland Pacific Northwest - Cover the planning and consideration needed for establishing a vineyard in the Pacific Northwest.

Establishing a Vineyard in Oregon: A Quick-Start Resource GuideA step-by-step format guides readers to the basic information they would need to consider before developing a vineyard, including how to develop a business plan, determine site suitability, investigate cultivars, and order plants.

Vineyard Economics: Establishing and Producing Pinot Noir Wine Grapes in Western Oregon – This guide provides the costs of establishing and producing wine grapes in Oregon. While based on a small vineyard of Pinot Noir, the details provide a framework for understanding production costs for other varieties in the region.


Water and Land Use

Oregon Water Resources Department - Information about water rights and availability; water management.

Oregon Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Division - Information about land use and agricultural water management.

Legacy Pesticides on Former Orchards - OSU Extension publication on awareness of residual pesticides in soils of previous orchards.



Harvest and Winery Reports from the Oregon Wine Board- In conjunction with the US Department of Agriculture, the Oregon Wine Board produces an annual vineyard and winery study. Until 2011, the USDA produced these reports. In 2011, the USDA produced only the vineyard report. OWB produced a separate wineries report. These reports are published annually in the summer.

Winery Cost of Production Calculator
 - Online resource for Washington, Oregon and Idaho current and prospective winery owners that can help calculate initial investment and annual operating costs of small wineries.

National Agriculture Statistics Survey – Yearly reports of Oregon grape production, crush, inventory, and sales, updated and reported annually until 2011.

Vineyard Economics: Establishing and Producing Pinot Noir Wine Grapes in Western Oregon – This guide provides the costs of establishing and producing wine grapes in Oregon. While based on a small vineyard of Pinot Noir, the details provide a framework for understanding production costs for other varieties in the region.


Soils Information

Assessing the proper soil type for a new vineyard planting and finding out what nutrients are available in the soil are important management practices in vineyards both old and new. It is difficult to determine what nutrients your soil needs without proper testing, and almost impossible to determine what a soil needs to be productive without a soil analysis. Below are several resources to guide growers through determining what types of soil are present at your site, and what types of soil analyses are available. 

Web Soil Survey - Provides an online tool for obtaining soil maps and information based on address or location.

Natural Resources Conservation Service - Provides tools for understanding soils, including the Web Soil Survey.

Collecting Soil Samples for Farms and Gardens - This is a simple guide on how to take a soil sample. Make sure to collect a representative sample of the complete area to be tested.  

A List of Analytical Labs Serving Oregon - Although this list is only updated every few years, it provides a starting point for growers seeking testing services.

Soil Test Interpretation Guide - This guide assists in understanding the results of your soil test. 

Grape Plant Materials

Finding sources for plant materials can be a challenge to growers. Unless individual vines are tested for known viruses, it is not advised to propagate from vines already planted in your vineyard. Growers may purchase plant material from nursery plants certified by the California Grapevine Registration and Certification Program. Purchasing certified grapevines (both rootstock and scion wood selections) will help ensure healthy grapevines that are disease resistant and virus-free. When purchasing plants, learn the background of both the nursery selling the plant material and the plant material itself. When selecting budwood for grafting, always test with a laboratory before using. For more information on 'Certified' vs. 'Foundation' grapevines, please read this article by Dr. Michelle Moyer, assistant professor, Washington State University. 

Ordering Grapevine Cuttings - Guidelines and considerations about buying grape plant materials.

Quality Guidelines for Grapevine Nursery Stock- This document provides growers with some benchmarks when purchasing materials. 

Foundation Plant Services - National Grapevine Importation Program providing the importation and virus removal of grapevines from around the world (UC Davis), providing virus-free plants for nurseries.

The Clean Plant Center-Northwest Grapes  - Provides testing and certification of disease-free grapevine stock for nurseries.

Oregon Department of Agriculture grape quarantine information - A list of the rules and regulations that govern shipment of plant materials to Oregon from outside the state.

The National Grape Registry - Lists plant materials that have been registered in U.S. as well as information on where specific cultivars can be purchased.

Wine Industry Organizations in Oregon and the U.S.

Oregon Wine Board - A state agency that manages marketing, research and educational initiatives for the winegrape industry in Oregon.

Oregon Winegrowers Association - A membership-based organization providing legislative and regulatory advocacy as well as lobbying for the Oregon winegrape industry.

American Society for Enology and Viticulture - A professional society for viticulturists, enologists, and others in the industry of wine and grape, including researchers.

American Wine Society - The American Wine Society is a non-profit, educational, consumer-oriented organization for people interested in learning more about all aspects of wine. 

NWGI- NGWI is a nationwide coalition representing all segments of the grape industry including: raisin, juice, fresh grape and wine. NGWI membership includes grape growers, processors, wineries and representatives of academic institutions and cooperative extension organizations committed to improving our industry.

Farming Certification

As a grower/winemaker, there are many different ways to manage your vineyard/winery and several farming certification programs locally, regionally and nationally. Below are links to some of the organizations providing farming certification programs. 

LIVE - Low Input Viticulture and Enology (LIVE) Inc. - Certification program for grape producers using sustainable practices.

Oregon Tilth - Research, education, and certification information for organic growers.

Demeter USA - Certification program and resources for biodynamic growers.

Food Alliance - Certification program for sustainable agricultural and facility management practices.

Salmon Safe - Certification of fish friendly farms and vineyards.

Oregon Organic Program- An organic certification program through the United States Department of Agriculture.