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Soil type

tipo de suelo (ES)
type d’terre (F)
soil type (GB)
tipo di suolo (I)
tipo de solo (PO)

Next climate and Grape variety one of the most important factors influencing wine quality. The different soil types have changed over millions of years due to physical and chemical weathering of rocks as well Humification organic substances formed. In physical weathering, natural forces such as wind, water, heat, cold and ice initially cause the rock formations to be mechanically crushed into rubble and gravel. Strong temperature opposites, friction and shear forces as well as the frost blast from frozen water in rock fissures play an important role. Chemical weathering processes such as oxidation, Solution processes and acid attacks attack the mineral lattice structure of the rocks. Easily water-soluble minerals such as carbonates and Sulfates first dissolved, the rock slowly disintegrates into grus, sand, silt or clay. Every rock, even the hardest granite or quartz, will eventually crumble to dust, even if it takes millions of years.

Bodentyp -  Sand, Geröll, Gras, Erde

Organic substances from plant residues, animal residues from worms, insects and small animals of all kinds, as well as dead ones Microorganisms such as Seaweed, bacteria and Mushrooms are in humus converted. The essential for plant growth Nitrogen compounds (Nitrate, ammonium) as well as others nutrient released. Fungi and bacteria play the main role in the decomposition of organic residues such as wood, leaves, roots or animal corpses. Insects such as floor mites are important because of their crushing feeding activities. Earthworms play a crucial role in soil loosening, mixing and the formation of stable clay-humus complexes, which are formed in the earthworm intestine and excreted as faeces. These contribute to the structural stability of the soil and can bind easily water-soluble nutrients and thus make them available to the plants for longer.

Soil horizons A, B and C

Each floor consists of floor horizons (soil layers) with special properties. They are almost always horizontal and can be seen in the soil profile (vertical section of the soil in an excavation). The sequence is the essential criterion for determining the soil type. From top to bottom, a soil is divided into an organic soil horizon or HLO horizon (peat from plant residues, litter) and a three-part mineral horizon. These are A-horizon (mineral topsoil with a lively, humus-rich layer), B-horizon (mineral subsoil with a layer of humus-poor with fine soil already chemically weathered to sand, silt or clay) and C-horizon (little changed starting rock with physical weathering). Deep mechanical tillage mixes horizons. Depending on the climate and Erosion the A or B horizon may also be missing or only marginal.

In a vineyard, the horizons through tillage ( Infiltration ) have usually already been mixed. Stone subsoil, initial soil, tillage, fertilization such as Water balance with a balance between the Water storage assets and the Water drainage shape alongside the local climate (Microclimate or layered climate) the location vineyard and give each vineyard location the typical and unmistakable character of the origin. The duration of the Vegetation cycle, the orientation of the exposition (Solar radiation) and the local climate on the slope, the existing soil conditions, the Humus- and lime content and the Water supply affect the choice of the most appropriate Grape varieties.

The term terroir

The well-known geologist and wine book author James E. Wilson aptly writes in his book "Terroir - Keys to Wine": "The soil is the soul of the vine" . However, the direct connection of rock, grape variety and character of the wine today is often more rooted due to the uniform use documents with strong mineral fertilization and the use of new wine-growing cellar methods are only marginally pronounced. In the formerly sparingly and mostly organically fertilized vineyards with their old, true to root planted and often deeply rooted vines, this relationship certainly came into its own much more.

Bodentyp als Kriterium für das Terroir

The French, in particular, recognized the importance of the interplay of climate-rock-soil-location-microclimate and grape variety very early on and in the creation of the term Terroir so to speak elevated to their philosophy. The terroir with the appropriate grape varieties is used in the classification of the wine-growing regions as Appellation d'Origine Protégée (AOP) legally defined. This is a clear difference to the philosophy in Germany and Austria, for example, where great importance (not too much) is attached to the grape variety and the grape variety and the grape variety wines obtained from it, rather than the location.

The composition of the soil

Regarding the quality of the wine, it can be of great advantage if the Vines their roots have to drill as deep as possible into the ground due to stony ground. Because of the ability of soils Ion exchanger To act, i.e. to replace nutrient salts in the soil solution with the protons (H +) and anions (OH-) released by the plant, the supply of the roots with essential Nutrients and Trace elements made possible at all. The minerals absorbed can be found in the Total extract of a wine again. The vine needs around twenty essential trace elements and the main nutrients to thrive. As a permanent crop, it is less dependent on fertile soils than annual crops. There are often locations with very poor soils on which high-quality wines grow. However, this does not mean that the less nutrients are available in the soil, the better the wine quality.

A lack of nitrogen and amino acids in the must Yeast in the fermentation hinder and Fermentation error cause. Among other things, this can be due to the wine error UTA (atypical age tone). Rather, the harmonious composition of the nutrients in the soil, the availability of water and nutrients as well as the state of aggregation and the rootability are of importance for the suitability of a soil for viticulture. Through plant or soil tests using EUF method a lack of nutrients can be recognized and possibly caused by fertilization be resolved. A comprehensive classification or determination of the soil quality for agricultural use in general or specifically for viticulture is carried out using Rating.

With lime-rich soils pH values over 8 makes the high difficult Calcium content in the ground the absorption of other double positively charged ions such as Nitrogen compounds, magnesium or the trace elements boron, iron, manganese or zinc so that lime chlorosis or other physiological deficiency symptoms can occur, even with normally sufficient nutrient levels in the soil. Especially at the beginning of the growth cycle, the nitrogen content (in the form of nitrate and ammonium) in the soil should be sufficient. The basic rule is that alkaline (alkaline) soils with a high pH value above 8 (e.g. lime, chalk and marl soils with mostly a high proportion of calcium and magnesium) produce wines with a higher acidity, while acidic soils with a low pH value less than 6 to 4 (for example granite, quartz sand) cause wines with lower acidity. Experiments with increased amounts of potassium have shown that vines react with an increased malic acid production. To compensate for the increased influx of positive potassium ions, the plant produces negatively charged acid anions (malic acid). However, irrespective of the age or maturity-related acid values, there are of course other causes for the acidity in the wine.

A good Weingarten soil should be lean, medium to deep, well aerated, water-permeable and not compacted, rich but not too fat, not too humus rich but rich in mineral components. The best locations are so-called Slopes, because this creates an almost vertical angle of incidence for the sun's rays in late summer, so that the maximum amount of radiation can be used. The best location on the slope is the calm, concave middle (belly, navel, kidney), where the highest Temperature sums can be reached and the soil is usually well drained. Soil color also plays an important role, because dark soils absorb the heat of the sun more quickly and comprehensively, while light soils reflect light, so that such soils do not heat up as quickly and as strongly. The suitability of an area for viticulture is called Winegrowing that can be determined using a criteria catalog.

Soil types (Albarese to volcanic rock)

Alberese: Italian name for weathered sandstone with a high proportion of calcium carbonate (limestone) in Tuscany, which predominates in the central and southern part of the Chianti area.

Alluvium / Alluvion (alluvial soil ): Alluvial sediment washed up and deposited by water (loose materials). Alluvium is also another name for the Holocene, the youngest geological age that has lasted since the end of the last ice age some 10,000 years ago. Alluvial soils are mostly fine-grained, very fertile soil types that arise in the flood and mouth area of rivers. They consist of soil particles that have been washed up and sedimented when the water soothes.

Bodentyp - Alluvium (Kalifornien und Amazonas in Brasilien)

Depending on the sinking rate of the soil particles carried in the water and the flow rate of the flood, they consist of clayey mud, silt, sand or in the immediate bank area with high flow rates and strong erosion dynamics of gravel and pebbles. Despite the predominantly rocky and sandy nature, such as in French Médoc, these soils are very suitable for viticulture. The secret of the locations there are the clay lenses deposited in various floods and covered with sand and gravel inside the alluvial gravel terraces, which can store water. Such layers of clay are literally searched for by the vine roots.

Amphibolite: Mostly black over gray to dark green rock, which is the result of the metamorphic conversion of basalt (see below) under high pressure and temperature conditions. It consists of up to 50% representatives of the amphibole group, such as hornblende (see below) or Tschermakit, and up to 40% from other minerals such as garnet and quartz, as well as ores such as magnetite and pyrite.

Aeolian: named after the Greek wind god Aeolus, phenomena caused by the wind. Aeolian transport triggers fine material such as loess, silt (silt) or clay from the source material, such as loose rock, and transports it over longer distances by the wind. Aeolian weathering refers to the removal of rock by sand grains, fine gravel, etc., which are moved by the wind, with the effect of a sandblaster. This creates an Aeolian weathering soil.

Arkose: The geological term describes a pink to reddish, coarse-grained sandstone with a high proportion of feldspar, which occurs mainly in dry, arid areas. It leads to the coarser granite rocks.

Alluvial soils: Soils created from river deposits that are periodically flooded. Such come in, for example Danube-, Moselle- and Rheinauen in front. When they are no longer flooded, they develop into brown earth and para brown earth. These soils are mostly nutrient-rich, biologically active and fertile.

Basalt: basic effusion rock (cooled magma) consisting of feldspar, hornblende, olivine and magnetite. It contains a lot of lime and soda and is rich in minerals. The hard, slowly weathering rock forms good soils and produces wines with an appealing acidity.

Pumice (pumice stone, pumice stuff): The porous, glassy volcanic rock is created by gas-rich volcanic eruptions, in which the lava is foamed by water vapor and carbon dioxide. It does not differ chemically from other lava, but is much lighter due to the trapped air. The color varies from black and with increasing air content to gray to white. The term Bimstuff refers to the grain size, at least 75% must consist of volcanic ash. Pumice soils have a good water storage capacity and are very suitable for viticulture. You can find them throughout the Greek island Santorini that arose from a volcanic explosion. The obsidian is similar to pumice, but contains much less carbon dioxide. See also under Canava and down by volcanic rock.

Blue slate : See below for slate.

Boulbènes: name used in Bordeaux for a very fine, siliceous floor. For example, it comes on the plateau of the area Entre-deux-Mers in front.

Brown earth: These ABC soils develop primarily over low-lime but base-rich rocks such as granite, gneiss, greywacke, clay slate and clayey sandstone. It was formed under humid climatic conditions from humus-rich topsoils on low-limestone silicate rock (Ranker - see further below) with foliage and mixed forest stocking. The brown color in the B horizon is caused by iron oxides, which are formed during the chemical weathering of iron-containing silicates. The acids released by the tree roots contributed greatly to the deep weathering of the B horizon. The lime content, stone content and water balance of brown earth can differ greatly. Depending on the nature, this can be an excellent soil for viticulture.

Bodentyp - Braunerde typisches Profil, Sandbraunerde, Humusbraunerde

Para brown earth differs from brown earth in that clay particles have been moved from the upper to the lower layers. This is a process that occurs when soil is acidified. Lime solution removes cemented lime structures so that the released clay particles are washed away with the leachate into deeper layers of the soil. Para brown earths mostly originated from Pararendzinen. Para brown and brown soils are the most common soils in humid Europe. Clay and loess parabra brown earths are among the most fertile soils.

Breccia : conglomerate with angular components (see below).

Buntsandstein : Brightly colored, mostly red sandstone with partly clayey flooding. The Buntsandstein was created from the rubble from the mountains of ancient times. It was deposited in a dry semi-desert climate in a large basin (Germanic basin) in the middle of today's Europe and later overlaid by sedimentary rocks such as the Jurassic limestone or floss.

Crasse de fer: Name for a sand-gravel floor with intermediate layers of clay and a lower layer of iron-containing iron locate in the area Pomerol; see also under Terra Rossa.

Iron: See below Terra Rossa and further down at Rotliegendes.

Feldspar: Complex silicate compounds of white and reddish minerals, which make up about 60% of the composition of the earth's crust. These contain iron, potassium, calcium and sodium. There are three main groups: potassium feldspar (Adular, Sanidin), soda lime feldspar (Albit, Periklin, Anorthit) and Mikrolin. Weathering creates base-rich clay minerals that can release mineral-bound ions as nutrients to the vine. Feldspar is one of the three main components of granite and gneiss - see below.

Bodentyp - Feldspat

Flint: The gray to black colored rock (flint, silex) of the finely crystalline quartz type chalcedony with splintery-shell-shaped break has a white, porous surface structure. It comes from siliceous marine life (diatoms, radiolaria = sea plankton - see also under Diatomaceous earth ). This soil gives typical wines with a taste of Flint like the French one Pouilly-Fumé.

fluviatil: Removed or deposited by running water - the result is an Alluvion or Alluvium soil (alluvial soil); see above.

Flysch: Low-fossil sandstones as well as marl and clay slate, which arose from the rubble on the edge of a mountain. In the narrower sense, these are the rocks from the time when the Alps came into being, which can be found in the northern Alps from the Austrian Vienna Woods to Western Switzerland. The slippery rock creates a landscape characterized by gentle, round hills. The area is a typical example Collio Goriziano, the typical soil there is called "Flysch di Cormòns" after the place. Flysch rock with predominant quartz sandstone also comes on Bisamberg near Wien (Austria).

Galestro: Famous blue-gray limestone slate soil from the best growing areas of the Tuscany. He often comes in the area Chianti Classico before, especially in the municipal area of San Casciano Val di Pesa there are mostly Galestro soils. A white wine was also named after the floor.

Garrigue : Mediterranean shrub heath formation on shallow soils, especially in France (e.g. Châteauneuf-du-Pape ), Italy (Sardinia) and North Africa is common.

Loam or Berglehm: This occurs in mountainous and hilly areas. It represents the loamy weathering bark of the upcoming rock. Such loams are interspersed with rock fragments. See also below for clay.

Gypsum: Frequently occurring mineral in the class of water-containing sulfates (calcium sulfate). As a rule, it is colorless or white, but can have a yellowish, reddish, gray or brown color due to various additives. A common crystalline species is alabaster. Geologically, gypsum was created by crystallization from calcium sulfate-oversaturated sea water. It is often found in clays and marl.

Gleye: Soil type above a groundwater layer approximately 1.3 meters below ground. Gley soils can often be found in floodplain forests, in depressions and on rivers. They are characterized by a rust-red oxidation horizon and the underlying gray-pale reduction horizon. The reductive processes in the low-oxygen groundwater horizon lead to the dissolution of iron and manganese, which rises with the groundwater and is oxidized rust-red in the oxidation horizon. Root growth is generally strongly inhibited in constantly wet, low-oxygen soil horizons, so that such soils are not suitable for viticulture. Pseudogleye arise when soil compaction due to a bad Water drainage the rainwater cannot seep away in the subsoil and a waterlogged rainwater horizon forms, in which the roots rot. Such soils are called waterlogged soils.

Bodentyp - Gleye

Gneiss: Medium to coarse-grained metamorphites, which are created under high pressure and temperature effects from transformation from other rocks, as well as crystalline slates in gray, green-gray, red-gray and red-brown. The name derives from the old German "gene" (deaf solid rock between the veins). The main components are feldspar (orthoclase, mostly over 20%), quartz and mica (biotite, muscovite, fuchsite). It can also contain cordierite, epidote, garnet, hornblende, sillimanite and others. A distinction is made between ortho-gneiss from converted solidification rock (magma) and para-gneiss from converted sediment rock.

Granite: The most common solidification rock (pluton). The slightly acidic weathering rock was created by cooling or slowly crystallizing silicon dioxide-rich magma at very great depths. The main components are quartz, feldspar and mica and often also hornblende. The soil results in mineral and rather less acidic wines. The northern part of the French Beaujolais or the Ortenau in the German growing region to bathe consists of such granite weathering soils.

Grauwacke: Rubble sediments made of dark gray to gray-green very hard sandstone with changing contents of quartz, feldspar, mica, chlorite and other minerals, as well as rock fragments of clay and pebble slate. Grauwacke is often used for the production of paving stones. This soil is ideal for viticulture. It comes from the German growing regions Ahr, Moselle, Middle Rhine and Rheingau in front. The famous 132 meter high Loreley rock near St. Goarshausen on the Middle Rhine consists of Grauwacke.

Grus (creepy): Small angular-edged and brittle pieces of rock with a grain size of 2 to 6 mm, which were caused by weathering. In the case of the so-called scouring or scarring, rock (granite, slate, etc.) disintegrates particularly due to temperature weathering.

Hornblende (Amphibol): Name for a silicate mineral group, which contains aluminum, iron, magnesium and calcium. It forms the main mineral of many crystalline rocks such as basalt, granite and gneiss.

Humus soil (earth, soil): layers of earth formed from organic components with plant or animal origin. See in detail under humus.

Lime (limestone): Diverse rocks with mostly dominant calcium carbonate (carbonate lime) and, to a lesser extent, magnesium carbonate. The limestone, which is comparatively hard compared to chalk, is widespread as a light gray or yellowish, rarely white mineral and sedimentary rock and is commonly referred to as lime in common usage. Limestone was formed as sedimentary rock in the sea through the deposition of lime shells and lime-rich skeletons of small marine animals such as corals, mussels or snails (mussel limestone) and as sea deposits (freshwater lime). Today, new lime is still formed as a source excretion of water courses in limestone mountains or in limestone caves with a high proportion of dissolved lime (calcium hydrogen carbonate) in the water. Under atmospheric conditions at the source outlet, carbon dioxide escapes from the water, the solution equilibrium shifts and excess calcium is precipitated as crystalline lime (sinter).

Bodentyp - Kalkstein aus dem Devon und frostverwitterter Kalkstein

The action of spring moss creates a porous limestone with cavities (travertine). A soft form of limestone is chalk (see below). Limestone recrystallized under high pressure is the much harder marble. In lime-rich soils iron poorly available to plants, so that chlorotic symptoms due to a lack of iron are common. Especially old vines with well-developed roots can deliver special qualities. Limestone soils generally produce wines with good acidity.

In contrast to overseas like America in particular, limestones are particularly common in European vineyard soils Slopes more often. Especially in cooler wine-growing areas, the skeleton-rich, quickly heatable and well-ventilated limestone soils are valued, but require limescale-tolerant ones documents. Known limestone areas are the Spanish ones Jerez where on the famous Albariza floor the grapes for the sherry grow, as well as in France Burgundy and Champagne. See also under “Lime as a nutrient” calcium.

Karst: A rock and landscape formation made of water-soluble rocks such as limestone or gypsum that has been used for thousands of years erosion and has formed corrosion. The carbon dioxide dissolved in the rainwater Carbon dioxide The air and the plant acids emitted by lichen and roots corrode the surfaces, lime dissolves in the draining water, the surface is washed out and slowly removed. The characteristic karst phenomena appear on the surface with typical furrows and troughs (carts) in which the water runs off. The water seeps into the porous layers of rock and, over time, eats larger cavities, so that extensive underground caves and deep collapse shafts (sinkholes) are formed. These are expanding more and more so that eventually the above ground Precipitation completely seeped away and collected in the underground cavities, where underground river systems are formed.

Bodentyp - Karstgebiete in Andalusien und Montenegro

Over thousands of years, lime rendzines (rendzina = shallow soil) and terra rossa soils have formed, which consist of a humus-rich, fertile A horizon and a fossil, iron-containing B horizon over skeleton-rich limestone. This special type of soil is very common worldwide. The Swabian-Franconian Jura, large areas in the south of France, Anatolia-Turkey and the northern part of the Yugoslav Karst near Trieste, which stretches along the Dalmatian coast from Istria to Albania, are of particular importance for viticulture. See also under the wine regions Carso (Friuli-Venezia Giulia) and Teran (Kras-Slovenia) with the ferrous soil type Terra Rossa.

Keuper: The name goes back to a sandstone found near Coburg in Upper Franconia (Bavaria). This rock, which occurs mainly in Central Europe, is divided into three geological temporal areas. In contrast to the two other species, the upper Keuper (Rhät) contains many fossil fossils. The middle keuper (gypsum keuper) consists of sandstone, gypsum deposits, clayey silt and colored marl. In the lower Keuper (Lettenkeuper) the rocks are often covered by mighty loess and loess loam. Keuper soils usually have a high water storage capacity. The term is used mainly in Germany, where Keuper in to bathe, Franconia, Moselle, Palatinate and Württemberg occurs.

Gravel: The term is derived from Middle High German kis (coarse-grained, stony sand) and refers to a collection of small stones, the pebbles, which are ground in flowing water. Gravel is also often described with the terms "stone" or "stony" or "stony soil". The fraction of the gravel has a defined grain size of 2-63 mm in the sub-fractions fine gravel, medium gravel and coarse gravel. The water-cut pebbles often consist only of the hard silicon dioxide (quartz), but also other hard rocks. The water storage capacity of gravel soils is minimal, so the plant roots must be deeply rooted in order to get water and nutrients. Such soils in connection with alluvium are, for example, in the French area Médoc (Bordeaux) predominant.

Kimmeridge: Gray-colored clay mixed with lime. The name derives from the small town of the same name on the Isle of Purbeck in the county of Dorset on the English south coast, where this earth was discovered. The chablis from Burgundy in France grows on such clay-mixed soil.

Conglomerate : term (also called pudding stone) for accumulation, agglomeration, batch or mixture. In the geology is understood as the clastic (from the rubble of other rocks) sedimentary rock, which consists of more than 50% of rounded mineral or rock pieces of more than two millimeters and which are firmly cemented by a chalky, pebble or clayey binder (putty). In the case of angular components, the sediment is called "breccia". See also sediment below.

Bodentyp - Konglomerate

Chalk: White, fine-grained, soft limestone (see above) that crumbles into a white powder and often contains flint. Due to the large porosity is a good one Water drainage chalk is very valued as an underbody in the vineyard. The roots of the vine can easily penetrate such a soil and thus reach the water reservoirs below. In pure form, a chalk floor is rather rare. The most famous wine region with this type of soil is the Champagne where on the with Craie à bélemnites designated floor of the champagne grows.

Lay: Common name on the Moselle (Germany) (also Ley) for slate or slate rock (see also under Lay ). There is also a single layer on the Moselle called Lay.

Loam: This is defined as a mixture of sand (63 µm - 2mm), silt (2 - 63 µm) and clay (<2 µm). Depending on the mixing ratio, a distinction is made between sandy, silty or clayey loam. Loam is a weathering product from solid or loose rock (loess) and was frequently shifted and mixed by wind and water erosion. Depending on the origin, a distinction is made between meadow clay, mountain clay or hanging clay, bed clay (glacier), loess clay, alluvial clay and silt clay. The clay, colored yellow-brown by iron compounds, is usually already decalcified, but may still contain lime if weathering is not very advanced. Such soils result in full-bodied, powerful wines. See also below for sound.

Lignite: brown coal with a clearly visible wood structure; it lies between coal and peat. The very fertile material is in the Champagne degraded as natural fertilizer.

Llicorella: Common name in Spain for small-leaved slate, such as that used in the sector Priorato occurs (see also below for slate).

Loess: A dust sediment that consists of 50% quartz and, depending on its origin, contains up to 35% calcium carbonate and dolomite. In addition there are small amounts of feldspars, mica and clay minerals. As sediment transported by the wind, the silt fraction dominates in loess with 70-80%, in smaller proportions fine sand and clay are added. The proportion of sand in the mixture can be up to 20% (sandy loess), while the floating loess that has already been rearranged by water increases the clay fraction to almost 30% (clayey loess), while the sand proportion largely fell by the wayside during transport. The dust-fine loess particles originate from the rock abrasion of the glacial glaciers in Europe and during the last ice ages were blown out of the low vegetation glacier foreland by the wind and blown away.

Bodentyp - Löss  (Dirmstein Pfalz und Großebersdorf NÖ)

The particles were deposited again in the treeless ice age tundra landscape in calm valleys and in the slipstream of peaks. This explains the uniform sorting and the still predominantly angular shape of the rock particles. The loess grains, which initially lay loosely on top of one another, were subsequently cemented with calcium carbonate dissolved in water and precipitated again, so that the particles are encrusted with a stabilizing limestone skeleton that maintains the fine-porous structure of the loess rock. This results in the high stability of the vertical loess walls made of primary loess on wine terraces and in ravines. This fertile, water-storing and deeply rooted soil type results in full-bodied, storable, but rather low-acid wines. Loess soils are quite common in Germany and Austria.

Melaphyr: Fine-grained, sometimes porphyrically formed effusion rock. The name derives from the Greek "mélas" (dark, black), whereby the color can be black, violet or reddish brown. Many melaphyre (the so-called melaphyr almond stones) are rich in bladder cavities that are filled with secondary mineral formations such as calcite, delessite (greenish-colored mineral similar to chlorite), quartz and agate. These rocks come, for example, in soils on the Saar (cultivation area Moselle ) and the Near in front.

Marl: gray or yellowish sedimentary rock, each consisting of roughly half of clay and lime. It originated where clay particles were deposited on the fossil seabed with simultaneous lime precipitation. Marl soils are fertile, heavy soils with high PH value. These soils produce wines with good acidity. They come in French law and at the Rhône as well as in the German growing region Rheinhessen in front.

Molasse: Name for the material used to remove a mountain in the late phase of its formation. The term is derived from the French word for "very soft" and was then applied to fine-grained soft sandstones. Today it is used worldwide for sediments in the foothills of a mountain range that is part of the mountain formation. In contrast, Flysch is only deposited during mountain formation.

Moraine: Description (French: moraine = rubble) for a rock rubble that the spreading glaciers pushed during the last ice ages. After their withdrawal, the rubble remained in the landscape as slowly weathered rock ridges. These soils were mostly created using gravel, which is interspersed with larger and smaller stones. A distinction is made between moraine migrations (carried by glaciers) and moraine piles (deposited after the ice melts).

Bodentyp - Möränen oberhalb des Lake Louise, Kanada

Shell limestone: See above under limestone.

Nagelfluh: A young conglomerate rock made of lime, feldspar and quartz, the gravel and pebbles of which are cemented together by grains of sand. The name is derived from the nail heads that look out of the "Fluh" (rock face). This type of rock occurs in the northern (Swiss and southern German) Alpine foothills, for example in the Upper Allgäu and in the famous location Dezaley in the canton of Vaud.

Ooid / oolite: Description for almost perfectly round, chalky to pea-sized particles that are formed by lime deposits in moving water. Larger particles of the same type are called pisoids. Ooids can consist of various minerals, the most common being kalkooids. A rock formed by cementing ooids is called oolite (e.g. pea stone, iron oolite, kieseloolite, roe stone).

Opok (Opak, Opock, Opouk, Oupok): In the Styria and Slovenia (Opoka) Common name (also Aubock, Onpock, Opak, Opock, Oupok) for solidified, tegel-like sediment (dust clay). Mostly it is marl, clay and silt (see also under clay). In Styrian viticulture, the term is mainly used in Deutschlandsberg and Leibnitz in the west and Southern Styria used primarily for marl soils in vineyards, but also for the wines grown there.

Ortstein / Orterde: A solidified, cement-hard and water-stagnant layer of soil in the subsoil of the B-horizon of acidic Podsol soils (see below), which is washed out by iron and aluminum compounds as well as humic substances (organic substances) from the top soil and their crust-like Re-precipitation has occurred in depth. This layer is less solidified and is called a subterranean soil.

Palus: The common name in Bordeaux (from the Latin swamp) for the deep alluvial soil made of clay with a high water table, as it is near the rivers Dordogne, Garonne and the mouth funnel Gironde occurs. These wines are of rather mediocre quality and the areas are mostly not declared as AC.

Pelosol: clay-rich loose rock that is created from various clay rocks. An old name is colorful clay and marl flooring or Latvian flooring. A high proportion of the clay are special swellable clay minerals that store free water and expand in the process. The soil can therefore store a lot of water, in damp climates waterlogging is favored. However, a large part of it is too tightly bound to be available to the plants. These soils are only of limited suitability for viticulture.

Perlite: A chemically and physically converted volcanic glass (obsidian). In the course of the transformation, small cracks break it down into pea-sized glass spheres or fragments of glass and then show the typical pearlitic structure. In viticulture, perlite is used as a layer filter in the Filtration used by wine.

Phyllite: The rock, also known as phyllite slate, mica clay or Urton slate, is a crystalline slate with a greenish-gray color and silky sheen. It mainly consists of serizite (light mica, fine-grained muscovite) and quartz, as well as mica, feldspar, chlorite, tourmalines and iron oxides. It results from metamorphosis from clay slate and is finally converted to mica slate.

Plastosol: Plastic clay (also Tegel), see below under clay.

Podsol: This rock is formed in areas with high rainfall and relatively low temperatures. The name means "ash floor", an old name is "bleaching earth". The starting rocks are often low in calcium and magnesium and, like sands or weathered sandstones, are slightly permeable. Podsoles often arise under vegetation that forms nutrient-poor residues and thus promotes a raw humus cover. Pod insulation means acidification of the soil. At the same time, chemical reactions release aluminum and iron and move them into the sub-floor through leachate.

Porphyry: collective term (grch. Purple) for various volcanic effusion stones made of magma with large crystals in a fine-grained, glassy base. However, the term only applies to the microstructure and not to a specific rock. Such rocks have a high proportion of silica, a low one PH value and the characteristic porphyry structure. Porphyrite, on the other hand, is basic (very low-silica) rock that belongs to the andesite / basalt family. Such soils tend to produce low-acid wines. For example, they are in South-Tirol around Bolzano and in the German growing region Near to be found. Porphyry granite is a transition form between granite and porphyry. In the picture a quartz porphyry.

Bodentyp - Porphyr

Pudding stone: Description (which is also used synonymously for conglomerates) for large aggregations of pebbles, flint and quartz, which are connected, for example, by quartz mass. Such a soil type heats up very quickly and has excellent drainage.

Quartz: The second most common mineral in the earth's crust after the feldspar. It often forms crystals of a wide variety of shapes and colors. Pure quartz consists exclusively of silicon dioxide, which is used for glass production. As a mineral, it is very resistant to erosion and weathering and can be found in many types of rock as the most weather-resistant component (e.g. white greens in gneiss, granite and quartz sand). It contains no plant nutrients and only plays a role in the soil structure. Quartz floors are generally sterile, but have a heat-storing effect. Due to the relatively high PH value low acid wines grow on it.

Ranker: Name (Austrian for steep slope) for a shallow, dry AC soil, which is formed from low-lime to lime-free silicate rocks such as sandstone, granite or quartz. Because of the low Water storage assets it may tend to dry out, but warms up slightly. Rankers are typical in Central Europe for the slopes of the low mountain ranges. In a temperate climate with sufficient rainfall, this can be an excellent soil for certain grape varieties such as Riesling.

Rendzina: Shallow, often rocky AC soil with a partly thick humus layer above the still largely un weathered, but skeletal, calcareous rock. The Polish term (Rędzina) is based on the scratching sound that a plow makes when it hits rock. The dry soils are easy to heat, well-ventilated, strongly invigorated and fertile. With sufficient Humus pad, sufficient rainfall and not too extreme limescale are excellent grounds for heat-loving grape varieties. These soils occur mainly over chalk, shell limestone, Dogger and dolomite, e.g. B. in Baden, Franconia, Rheinhessen and Württemberg. As a pararendzina, AC soils are laid over limestone-rich loose rocks such as B. Loess called. These have a higher one Water storage assets. It is believed that rendzines become iron-containing in the long term Terra Rossa floors develop.

Bodentyp - Rendzina (Kreide, Kalkstein. Dolomit)

Rigosol: Name (from the French “rigole” = gutter) for an artificial floor that is created by deeply layering the soil material. This as Infiltration designated work is done to improve the properties of the topsoil for agricultural use. In viticulture, this is the vineyard soil created by humans over longer periods of time. When the material is thoroughly mixed, this soil is largely homogeneous. The originally layered soil horizons are dug up or plowed up to a meter deep and mixed together. The aim is to improve the physico-chemical properties. Through this repeated and profound rigging work, the natural horizon sequence of the vineyard soils is destroyed and mixed together, the result is referred to as the R horizon (R of trenches).

Unprocessed soil (Syrosem): Name for a relatively young, still little weathered and mostly mechanically crushed, pure rock soil . It has only marginally trained A or B horizons. Due to the physical and chemical weathering of the raw material, the stage of the raw soil is often quickly exceeded and more differentiated soil types are formed. If there is enough water or Water storage assets in the underbody, many grape varieties thrive well to excellent.

Red Earth: See below Terra Rossa.

Rotliegend (es): Striking red colored rock layers, which differ from the geological period of the Rotliegend in which they were formed. The red color is caused by finely divided hematite flakes (red iron stone) and indicates the deposit in the hot climate. Rotliegendes is an old miner's expression. The floor is made of lime-rich clay, silt and sandstones. It has a limited water storage capacity, but has good ventilation. It is difficult to root the deeper rock. The term is particularly common in the German growing areas Near, Palatinate and Rheinhessen common for the vineyard soils found there. These come in the form of red slate, especially in the "red slope" within the als Rhine front designated area.

Bodentyp - Rotliegend und Hämatit

Sand: Weathering product of hard rocks as a defined grain size fraction between 63 µm and 2 millimeters. Most grains of sand have a high proportion of quartz and feldspar (see both above). In pure sand there can be a lack of trace elements zinc come. The permeable, dry and often infertile soil results in fragrant, but low-acid wines. One advantage of sandy soils is that the Phylloxera can't stay here. That is why such vineyards were largely spared during the phylloxera disaster in the 19th century. One example is the Portuguese area Colares. See also under Sand wine.

Slate: Pressed sedimentary rock, which was created under the influence of high pressure from clay and mud deposits in the deep sea and was formed from more or less horizontally stacked sediment layers. That is why slate can easily be broken into slabs. Geologically, it is a group of metamorphic rocks such as amphibolite slate, glaucoma slate (blue slate), garnet slate and clay slate. As dark rock, slate has an excellent heat storage capacity and is therefore particularly suitable for viticulture in cooler climates. Weathering occurs with various clay minerals. This mineral-rich soil type occurs in many German cultivation areas, such as pronounced on the Moselle (Picture below) and is ideal for the Riesling suitable. The slate floor results in light, elegant and classy wines. See also above for phyllite.

Bodentyp - Schiefer an der Mosel

Silt : See below at Silt.

Gravel: debris deposits in the form of stones of different sizes, which are mostly formed by weathering from rocks. Some of these deposits were also transported through glaciers, rivers and landslides and gradually rounded off. Round gravel is called gravel, smaller angular stones as chippings and larger angular stones as rubble.

Black earth: See below at Chernosem.

Alluvial: See above in alluvium.

Sediment : Various organic and / or mineral (inorganic) loose materials that have been removed by sedimentation elsewhere and then solidified. Sedimentary rocks, sedimentary rocks or stratified rocks are more or less solid rocks that have arisen from such sediments in the course of geological time periods through diagenesis (solidification). A distinction is made between clastic (due to destruction), organogenic (caused by chemical processes) and biogenic (caused by the activity of living beings) sedimentary rocks. The stratification is typical of sediments.

Bodentyp - Sedimente (Schichten von Tonstein und Sandstein)

Silt: Description (also silt) for loose rock or sediment from the rubble of other rocks, which lies with a share of more than 50% in size between clay and sand (grain size range from 0.002 mm to 0.063 millimeter). This type of soil often occurs in loess or alluvium, for example in the California area Napa Valley. See also above for conglomerate.

Stone / stony: See above for gravel.

Tegel: Also known as plastosol, plastic clay; see below for sound.

Terra Rossa : Iron-rich soil type of bright red or brown-red color that occurs mainly in the Mediterranean region (Southern Europe, North Africa, Middle East).

Clay: Earthy, soft and easily deformable mass, which consists of flat, platelike clay minerals. They are microscopic crystal flakes (about a thousandth of a millimeter in size), the electrostatic charge of which makes up the adhesive force of the material. The tiles lie close together like a pile of cards. If water is added, wafer-thin water films form between them (slippery, with a small amount plastic = Tegel or plastosol). The most important clay minerals are beidellite, illite, kaolinite (the basis for porcelain manufacture), montmorillonite (also source clay, the most important component of Bentonite, Weathering product from volcanic ash), pyrophylite and vermiculite. Clay materials are created when granite feldspar weathered. At the same time, the two other components (quartz and mica) become free and mix with the clay minerals.

Bodentyp - Ton und Mergel

These weathering products have often been transported far by water, wind and ice. The clay has different compositions depending on the final deposit. The more sand the filler contains in the clay, the "leaner". About two thirds of a “fat” clay consists of clay minerals. At 50% clay part one speaks of loamy clay; clayey clay only contains a third, clay around 20% and sandy clay 10% clay minerals. Clay soils have a high water storage capacity, but this is not always an advantage. They often have high content potassium on. Such soils result in full-bodied, strong wines with good acidity.

Clay mica slate: See above under phyllite.

Travertine: Yellowish lime sinter or lime tuff created by source excretion of rivers or springs; see above under lime and below under tuff.

Chernosem: The name is derived from Russian and means black earth. With this type of soil, a strong, sometimes meter-thick humus layer lies directly above the starting material (e.g. loess, sand, tegel - see above) and is the basis for great fertility. Mostly this soil has an optimal water balance and is excellently suited for viticulture and agriculture (but can be misused for mass production). Lime-free soils are called Paratschernoseme.

Tuff: Lime tuff (also travertine or spring tuff) means the deposition of lime with air pockets, which makes it different from sinter. The porous structure is caused by swell mosses, on the plant body of which lime precipitates until the mosses are completely limed and die while new mosses are already growing over them. Lime tuff should not be confused with tuff of volcanic origin, which consists of cooled and solidified volcanic fly ash. Volcanic tuff comes in for example in some Italian areas Pompeii in the vicinity of Vesuvius and is particularly at the Loire widespread (many castles are built from it), where it is the base in the best locations such as the appellation Quinone (Loire) forms. The red wine variety thrives particularly well on this soil Cabernet Franc.

Primitive rock (Urgebirge): colloquial but now outdated term for deep rocks such as granite or massive metamorphites such as gneiss or granulite, but also others in the geology rock formations of the Variscan Mountains summarized under the term crystalline. This was formed around 300 million years ago at the end of the carbon in the transition to the Permian earth age, long before the formation of the Alps. Remnants of the Variscan mountains are the Black Forest, the Vosges, the Harz and the Ore Mountains and also the crystal base of the Alps is formed from the "bedrock" of the Variscan mountains.

Bodentyp - Urgestein

The main rocks of the primary rock are deep rocks such as granite, which has arisen as a result of the cooling and solidification of the earth's crust, or gneiss, which is a metamorphosed granite in the primary rock. Effusion stones such as basalt, dolerite, porphyry formed after the end of volcanic activity during the cooling of the magma inside volcanic vents near the surface of the earth). Primary rock soils, especially those made of gneiss, are often rich in potassium and produce fruity, spicy wines. In Austria this is the case Green Veltliner and at Riesling a gladly used indication on the label.

Volcanic rock: This arises during a volcanic eruption, in which glowing, liquid porridge emerges from the interior of the earth (magma) as lava to the earth's surface. It forms from the then cooled lava. Fiery wines with a rich bouquet thrive on this rather rare type of soil. Examples are the wines from the Italian region Campania, especially the DOC Vesuvio on the slopes of the volcano. There are further occurrences in the German growing regions to bathe (Kaiserstuhl, Hohentwiel), Near and Palatinate, in the Austrian wine region Vulkanland Steiermark with many volcanic cones, partly in Tokaj-Hegyalja, the area of the Hungarian Tokaji, as well as in the Finger Lake area in the state new York.

further information and image sources

See below for structure of the earth's crust geology. All tools, work and measures in the vineyard during the Vegetation cycle can be found at Vineyard maintenance. Complete lists of the numerous cellar techniques, as well as a list of wine, sparkling wine and distillate types regulated by wine law are under the keyword Winemaking contain. Comprehensive wine law information is available at Wine Law. Further information on the topic can be found under the WIKIPEDIA links below:

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