Soil Structure

Appears in
Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

soil structure, the physical structure of soils, is an important vineyard characteristic, as governed by bonding of the mineral particles (as described in soil texture) into larger aggregates. The size, shape, and stability of these aggregates help to determine the friability of the surface soil and its ability to accept rainwater and resist erosion (see soil erosion). A soil’s structure also determines its porosity for air movement, water drainage, and root penetration, and its capacity to withstand the effects of cultivation and compaction (see soil compaction) by vineyard machinery.