The implementation of Integrated Pest Management requested by the European Directive on the sustainable use of pesticide (2009/128/CE) requires complex decision- making to growers, who need real time information about the vineyard environment and the disease risk, as well as increased knowledge on plant protection options, limitations and fulfilments. A web-based Decision Support System (DSS) was developed for helping viticulturists in decision-making about tactical management of the vineyard. The DSS, named Vite.net , is provided by Horta srl (www.horta-srl.com), is available for registered users via the internet and is composed by: i) a network of weather sensors; ii) a server repository that stores weather data and forecasts; iii) an user-friendly interface that makes it possible to insert vineyard-specific information (e.g., cultivar, trellis system) and monitoring data (e.g., date of disease onset) and show up-to-date graphical supports for informed decision-making; iv) mathematical models that use weather data, vineyard-specific information and monitoring data to predict the development of the main grapevine pests and diseases, the plant growth and development, and the risk of abiotic stresses, such as low temperature and drought. The DSS was developed within the MoDeM-IVM project, funded by the European Union's FP7 (grant-agreement n°262059), and was validated in commercial vineyards in Italy, Spain and Portugal. In these vine yards, plots managed according to the DSS were compared with the grower's practice and an untreated control. Results confirmed the advantages rising from the use of the DSS, with a 40-50% reduction of the number of fungicide treatments. In organic vine yards, the DSS made it possible a 37% reduction of the copper used to control downy mildew.
- Decision Support System
- Integrated Pest management