Woodhall III Vineyard
Oregon State University has been conducting vineyard research projects at Woodhall III Vineyard (WHV) since the late 1980’s. Dr. Frank Baynes and his wife, Betty purchased the property and planted the first vines in 1976. In 1986, they donated the property to Oregon State for use as a research vineyard. Woodhall is a 26-acre property located in the northern part of Lower Long Tom American Viticultural Area (AVA), in the coastal mountain range west of Alpine, Oregon. The property is primarily on a south-facing slope, 450 to 700 feet in elevation, with approximately 9 acres suitable for wine grape production.
Renovations of the property and facilities occurred since 2015, and more recent equipment upgrades continue to occur for site operation and safety. Each renovation and upgrade improves the land and continues to make it a more modern and suitable research site. Many of these changes have been due to long-term dedication of OSU Farm Manager, Scott Robbins, whose tireless dedication to this vineyard has been instrumental in its success. Another significant development was the hire of a full-time farm manager since 2022, Justin Litwin, who has been a vital part of all the changes going on at Woodhall.
The research facility also is home to an AgriMet Cooperative Agricultural Weather Network weather station that is providing public-access weather data to producers and the public in the south Willamette Valley. The weather station was funded by the OWRI and installed in October 2020. The weather station annual maintenance is funded by the OWRI.
Woodhall continues to perform advanced "vine to wine" research to meet the core mission of OWRI. Current projects include research on rootstocks, canopy management, crop load, herbicide efficacy and tolerance, grapevine trunk disease prevention, and wildfire smoke exposure impacts, among others. Also, the location provides the OSU teaching and outreach programs in viticulture and enology an important opportunity to train on basic skills, learn new insights from research, and visually see the impacts of long-term research that is not available in commercial vineyards in the region.
The Oregon State University Research Winery is a key component of the Oregon Wine Research Institute "vine to wine" approach to research. It is a functional, OLCC-licensed winery, located on the northwest side of OSU's campus in Corvallis. The winery plays a key role in supporting viticulture and enology research and education, serving as a critical component in the training of future Oregon winemakers through classes, training, and research.
Exciting things are happening at the Oregon State University Research and Teaching Winery. The winery is undergoing a complete renovation as part of a larger project renovating Withycombe Hall. This renovation will increase the winery size from approximately 900 sq feet to over 2,500 sq feet. The newly renovated winery will be equipped with a large number of small capacity research fermenters and appropriately scaled processing equipment. There will also be a new winery laboratory fully equipped to conduct essential grape and wine analysis. Investment in the new winemaking facility will provide the OWRI with a state-of-the-art winery with outstanding capabilities for conducting research trials. In addition, larger-scale equipment for teaching purposes will strengthen training of students along with providing improved work force training through extension courses. Fundraising is continuing for the renovation and equipping of the OSU Research and Teaching Winery. To date, we have raised over $750,000 and we are continuing to seek donations from industry to support this project. One of our ongoing fundraising initiatives is the “Name that Tank” initiative. For a $10,000 donation a company or individual can have their name on an engraved plate on the side of one of the research fermentors. If you are interested in finding out more about the winery renovation and how you can support the OSU Viticulture and Enology program please contact James Osborne firstname.lastname@example.org
Southern Oregon Research & Extension Center (SOREC)
Aging infrastructure is a nationwide problem that impacts our daily lives and drags down our economic productivity. From an agricultural research perspective, aging infrastructure hinders our ability to conduct high-level, innovative, and impactful studies that aim to solve complex problems related to agricultural sustainability and natural resource conservation. As the founding college of OSU, the College of Agricultural Sciences (CAS) recognizes this fact and that many of its facilities are long overdue for renovation and/or renewal. CAS strategically invests its resources across all its units to improve capital infrastructure that will allow it to continue conducting its three key missions of research, teaching, and extension.
In the previous biennium, SOREC was generously awarded CIR funding for two projects: a complete upgrade of our farm irrigation system (including mainlines), and new walk-in coolers for long-term cold storage. With a $72,000 match from SOREC, CAS invested $376,000 to fund these two projects critical to our operation and collective mission. These upgrades promise to further catalyze the viticulture research program from vine to wine.
Designed and installed by Hydro-Flow, our new irrigation system consists of a new pumping station and all new mainlines that conserve energy and labor. Two 20-hp pumps connected in series to a variable frequency drive (VFD) deliver on-demand irrigation water up to 700 gallons per minute through a new network of gasketed PVC. The pumps are self-priming, so once the system is charged in the spring, irrigating any part of the farm requires simply opening the valve at the block level (either manually or by remote control). A new self-cleaning filtration system was included as well, with filtration down to 100 microns.
Walk-in-coolers designed and installed by Northwest Mechanical Group, LLC, our three new walk-in coolers feature improved insulation together with remote temperature control, monitoring, and diagnostics. The cooler configuration consists of one larger room (15’ x 13’ 10”) and two smaller rooms (15’ x 10’ 9”). Entryways are wide enough to fit a standard pallet which bolsters workflow efficiency. With improved temperature control, these three rooms expand our ability to consistently produce and store wines from our various field experiments, from primary fermentation to bottling.