Virginia Tech® home

HORT 4654: Viticulture

Concentration: Plant Science and Pest Management
Credits: 3 graduate credit(s)


Overview of Virginia wine grape industry, grapevine growth and development, and factors affecting crop yield and wine quality potential. Vineyard financial considerations, site evaluation, varietal characteristics as well as cultural practices of pruning, training, canopy management, fertilization and pest management are discussed. The course is designed as an advanced capstone for students interested in the wine grape industry. It builds on concepts and skills in the prerequisite courses in plant multiplication and establishment and environmental impacts on crop production into more advanced topics of whole-plant physiology, environmental stress physiology, factors affecting fruit production and fruit quality, and fundamental pest management. 

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of the course, students will be able to:

    • Explain how grape and wine production contribute to Virginia’s agricultural economy.
    • Describe the significant and minor considerations in evaluating land for vineyard suitability.
    • Name and describe the characteristics of wine grape varieties that are generally well-suited for Virginia
    • Describe environmental impacts on grapevine growth and development and relate basic anatomy and physiology to applied vine management goals.
    • Explain the goals and methods of dormant pruning, summer canopy management, nutrient management, crop estimation, and crop management.
    • List 10 or more significant biological threats to grape production and explain best management practices to reduce the impact of those threats.
    • Explain the principal factors that govern grape maturity and determine when grapes are harvested.

Prerequisites and Co-requisites

Graduate Standing


Dana Acimovic