Volume 24, Number 4, May-June 2004
Page(s) 187 - 196
Agronomie 24 (2004) 187-196
DOI: 10.1051/agro:2004018

Analyzing the determinants of spatial distribution of weed control practices in a Languedoc vineyard catchment

Anne Biarnèsa, Patrick Riob and Aurélie Hocheuxa

a  IRD, UMR LISAH, 2 place Viala, 34060 Montpellier, France
b  INRA, UMR LAMETA, 2 place Viala, 34060 Montpellier, France

(Received 10 January 2003; accepted 20 May 2003)

Abstract - Characterization of the spatial organization of agricultural practices is required for an assessment of the risks of diffuse pollution by pesticides. In the case of a vineyard catchment in Southern France, the authors hypothesized that the diversity of weed control practices is spatially organized at different levels. The practices were characterized on the basis of interviews with 27 vine-growers belonging to two different wineries. Three practices were differentiated according to the intensity of herbicide use. The results showed that field characteristics related to inter-row width play an important role in the weed control choices but fully make sense in the context of the holding, where choices of practices are related to the size of the workforce and the structure of the vineyard. The supply basin of a co-operative winery appeared as a third level of organization of the practices as the wineries direct the structure of their members' vineyards through their incentive policy. Finally, the possibility of using the results to localize weed control practices is discussed.

Key words: vine-growing / Languedoc / weed control practices / spatial organization / risks of diffuse pollution

Corresponding author: Anne Biarnès

© INRA, EDP Sciences 2004