MWI Member Newsletter, Jan 2024

Growers’ Round Table, Jan 10
Mendocino Winegrowers Inc. will hold a vital Growers’ Round Table at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 10 at Club Calpella. This event, open to all local grape growers, focuses on Healthy Soils and available grants. Experts from Resource Conservation District (RCD), including Seth Myrick and Meagan Hynes, will share insights on State and Federal funding for Climate-Beneficial Ag practices, specifically highlighting CDFA Healthy Soils and SWEEP programs. Register by calling (707) 901-7629.
Dr. Greg Jones, climatologist, will speak on Jan. 17 in Santa Rosa.
Agriculture and Climate Conference, Jan. 17
Join us at the Agriculture and Climate Conference on Wednesday, Jan. 17, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Saralee and Richard’s Barn, Sonoma County Fairgrounds. The conference, which requires advance registration at, will address climate adaptation strategies for the north coast wine industry.2023 marked the hottest year on record, challenging the wine industry with droughts, wildfires, and smoke taint. Experts and winegrowers will discuss climate predictions and necessary industry adaptations. Key panels include:HEAT: Exploring heat-tolerant grape varieties with Alder Yarrow of Vinography and climatologist Dr. Greg Jones, followed by a Sonoma Iberian style wine tasting.DROUGHT/WATER SUPPLY: Discussions on water supply changes in the Russian River and Napa County groundwater concerns, led by Paula Whealen, Janet Pauli, Jay Jasperse, and Dave Graves.WILDFIRE: Insights into fire recovery science, tree regrowth, and prescribed burning techniques.Supported by a Specialty Crop Grant from the California Department of Food and Agriculture, the conference is also sponsored by Sonoma County Winegrowers and Sonoma County Vintners.
Chase Vineyard Soil, Mendocino County. MWI photo.
CDFA Healthy Soils Program 2024: Free Technical Assistance
Mendocino County Resource Conservation District (MCRCD) offers free assistance for applications to the CDFA Healthy Soils Program (HSP). This program provides financial aid to farmers and ranchers for implementing soil management practices that sequester carbon, reduce greenhouse gases, and improve soil health.The application period runs from January 22 to February 9, 2024, with a maximum award of $100,000. For details, visit personalized assistance, contact Seth Myrick at or Meagan Hynes at Don’t miss this opportunity to apply for HSP technical assistance and other funding options.California Ramps Up Defenses Against Spotted LanternflyCalifornia is bolstering its defenses against the spotted lanternfly (SLF), an invasive pest threatening vineyards. Despite no SLF populations detected in the state’s 2023 survey, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) remains vigilant. Their efforts include annual surveys in high-risk areas, a statewide quarantine, public outreach, and a comprehensive action plan.

SLF, predominantly found in 14 eastern U.S. states, poses serious risks to grapevines and various host plants. It can severely damage plants and impact vineyards economically through reduced yields, higher pesticide usage, and affected tourism.

California’s preventive measures include inspecting over 2,000 sites like ports and fairgrounds. The CDFA’s action plan ( outlines procedures for detection, treatment, and quarantine if SLF is found. The public is also encouraged to report any sightings of SLF at

The USDA has released a five-year strategy ( focusing on limiting SLF spread, supporting research, and enhancing outreach and communication. Key research findings indicate SLF’s vulnerability to natural predators and insecticides, including eco-friendlier options like insecticidal soap.

For further information or to report SLF sightings, visit or contact the CDFA Pest Hotline at 1-800-491-1899.

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