What is the guyot pruning system?

If in previous posts we described some of the characteristics of the Royat vessel and trellis conduction systems, in this post we will focus on the Guyot conduction system , also known in Spain as the dagger and sword or thumb and rod system . Like the Royat system, it is a system that requires an artificial structure (trellis) that has a production cable on which the rod (or rods) that acts as a charger is held annually (Figure 1).

Purpose of guyot pruning.

Guyot pruning seeks to improve the performance of vines that produce few clusters per bud, or produce very small clusters. Therefore, it is a good alternative to other traditional systems for cases of varieties with reduced fertility (as in the case of the Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot varieties) (Pérez-Recio, 2009). This pruning system is one of the most common in the world, being characteristic of the vineyards of the French wine-growing regions of Burgundy and Saint-Emilion .

What is the Guyot driving system?

Guyot pruning is a mixed head pruning system where short renewal elements (thumbs) and other long elements aimed at increasing fertility and plant production (rods) are arranged centrally, or in arms of short length. In this sense, and in a usual way, both the renewal thumb and the production rod come from a thumb from the previous year (Pérez-Recio, 2009). This system can be made up of a single or double cord (Figure 2), with other more complex modalities, such as the double Guyot system with arc loaders and the triple and quadruple systems (Lavin et al., 2003).

Among the advantages and disadvantages of this driving system compared to others, it is worth highlighting:

Pruning Guyot Advantages:

  • Easy pruning done by people with little pruning experience.
  • It allows the mechanization of different tasks (leaf removal, harvest).
  • Improves performance in cases of low production.
  • In case of not obtaining the expected results, it allows an easy conversion in other conduction systems.

Disadvantages Pruning Guyot:

  • It requires conducting and fixing the rods around the wire every year.
  • It can generate certain heterogeneity in the distribution and maturation of the bunches, as well as an unbalanced vegetation (especially in the case of the simple cordon).
  • The most important cuts and wounds are made on the trunk, which favors the appearance of fungal diseases of the wood, such as tinder or eutipa.

How do you form a vine to prune at Poda Guyot?

After having formed the main trunk of the vine to the desired height, the formation pruning consists of pruning the branches located below the anchor point as follows (Reynier, 2012):

  • the upper branch destined to be conducted on the wire is conserved as a fruitful branch (or of production), and it is pruned leaving five to eight buds, according to its vigor.
  • The vine located below is thumb pruned with two buds.

Later, in the annual pruning, the industry is eliminated. In the old thumb, the lower wood is pruned to two buds, giving rise to the new thumb. The other is pruned to a certain length depending on the load you want to leave (generally leaving 7 to 8 buds, depending on the vigor of the plant, its fertility, planting density, etc.). This rod will be palisade horizontally over the trellis wire.

Vine maintenance pruning: Guyot and Royat


Other articles related to pruning the vine are:

Dr. Sofia Seccombe

My name is Dr. Sofia Seccombe, and in this small section, I want to tell you who I am and why I started this project. I don't want to bore you, but I consider that it is an important part of godlywine. It serves as an exercise in transparency so that the person who reads the articles can be sure that the information is reliable.

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