This study aimed to assess the effects of early leaf removal (ELR) and cluster thinning (CT) on vegetative growth, yield components, and berry composition of Teran (Vitis vinifera L.) grown in the Istria region of Croatia. Both treatments were compared with an untreated control (UC) during the 2012 and 2013 growing seasons. ELR involved the removal of six basal leaves at the preflowering stage, while in CT, 35% of clusters were removed at the onset of veraison. Both ELR and CT resulted in lower yield per vine compared to UC (22 and 37% less, respectively), and in greater Brix at harvest (+1.3 and +1.0, respectively). The concentration of total phenolics in grapes increased by 19% in ELR and by 6% in CT compared to UC, while total anthocyanin concentrations increased only in ELR (+20% versus UC). Despite greater yield and a lower leaf area-to-yield ratio compared to CT, ELR achieved higher total anthocyanin and phenolic concentration, suggesting that ELR is more suitable than CT for the production of high-quality Teran grapes.
- ©2017 by the American Society for Enology and Viticulture