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A contribution to the maintenance of grapevine diversity: The rescue of Tinta Castañal (Vitis vinifera L.), a variety on the edge of extinction

AuthorsSantiago Blanco, José Luis ; Boso Alonso, Susana ; Gago Montaña, Pilar ; Alonso-Villaverde Iglesias, Virginia ; Martínez Rodríguez, María del Carmen
KeywordsAgronomic traits
Molecular markers
Phenological stages
Vitis vinifera
Issue Date2008
CitationScientia Horticulturae 116: 199- 204 (2008)
AbstractThe arrival of powdery mildew, phylloxera, and then downy mildew from America in the late 19th/early 20th century, was one of the most important causes of the loss of grapevine diversity in Europe. Many varieties traditionally grown in small winemaking areas of Europe were substituted by direct producing hybrids or by a small number of varieties from other vine-growing areas. For geographic, economic, sociological, and cultural reasons, the north and northwest of Spain acts as a kind of refuge area where grapevine diversity is still high. At the Misión Biológica de Galicia (CSIC) research station a collection of living vines with a number of dispersed individuals belonging to old varieties was established in 1992. Many of these varieties had practically disappeared from vineyards and the majority existed only as centuries-old individuals. Tinta Castañal, was known until the early 20th century as one of the most highly regarded by viticulturalists and one of the most widely cultivated varieties on the Spanish side of the River Miño (which forms part of the Spanish-Portuguese border). Officially, this variety does not exist, it is not included in the Spanish List of Commercial Vine Varieties and therefore, it can neither be cultivated nor its wine marketed. The present work describes for the first time Tinta Castañal with morphological, agronomic and phenological descriptors over three consecutive years. Molecular analysis of six loci microsatellite commonly used in grapevine characterisation is also presented. The results obtained allow this variety to be compared with those of neighbouring areas (Portuguese regions) and with others further afield and demonstrate this variety to be different from any other previously described. The present description provides the data for pursuing the necessary steps to legalise this variety and contribute to the maintenance of vine biodiversity. © 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/j.scienta.2007.12.005
issn: 0304-4238
Appears in Collections:(MBG) Artículos
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