As part of the BioLOGIC® approach we make use of sea solids throughout the seasons to ensure balanced nutrition for our vines. The use of mineral-rich sea solids in agriculture originated from the pioneering work of Dr Maynard Murray, who was a medical doctor researching the importance of minerals, especially trace elements, to plants and animals. From 1938 through to the 1950’s, Dr Murray experimented extensively with using sea solids – the mineral salts that remain after the evaporation of ocean water – as a nutritional supplement for a variety of vegetables, fruit and grains. He demonstrated repeatedly and conclusively that plants fertilised with sea solids grow stronger and more resistant to disease. The work of this eco-pioneer was documented in his book, “Sea Energy Agriculture”.
Today, scientists have identified 92 trace elements in sea water, but there may be many more to discover. In the Cape Winelands, our soils are among the oldest in the world. Millennia of rainfall, and the past 60 years of conventional farming has resulted in nutrients being leached out of the soils. The sea solids present in unpolluted sea water concentrate enable us to bring back a rich nutrient density which has been shown to strengthen plant life, and to holistically support the healthy vineyard eco-system.
At Avondale, we make use of sea solids in a liquid form that preserves the beneficial microbial life in the water. We apply sea solids in various ways, depending on the seasons and the moon cycles. This broad-spectrum, micro-nutrient aspect of our BioLOGIC® approach is completely opposite to conventional, chemical fertilisation which focuses only on three macro-nutrients – nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium to the detriment of the entire eco-system. While, we haven’t yet unravelled all the complex mysteries of the roles that 92 different micro-nutrients can play in the eco-system, we have ample evidence that this mineral abundance has a life-enhancing effect in our vineyards.