1. What is Geology?
    2. Soil Classification
    3. Defining Soils
    4. Porosity vs. Permeability
    5. Minerality & Wine
    6. The Wine Photos


GEOLOGY- The Study of the History of the Earths Crust, Rock and Layers of Soil.

I’m Championing Soils Because Soil Can’t Promote Itself.

AGRONOMY- Study of the Soil Sciences, Understanding the Balance of a Soils Inputs and Outputs and Try to Keep Them In Balance.

  • Agronomist- An Expert In the Science of Soil Management and Crop Production.
    • Agronomist For General Agriculture and Agronomist of Viticulture.

PEDOLOGY The Study of Soils In Their Natural Environment.

EDAPHOLOGY-  The Study of Soils Influences On Plants.

PEDOGENESIS- The Science and Study of the Processes That Lead to the Formation of Soil.

Soil Forms Over Time as Consequence of Climate, Mineral, Biological and Earth Processes. Soils Are Never Random They Arrive In Certain Places Based On Their Geologic History.

SOIL The Unconsolidated (Decomposed Brocken-Down Pieces.) Cover of the Earth. Bedrock and Other Parent Material Rocks That Have Been Reduced to Smaller Fragments Over Time by Weather and Natures Forces.  Soils Has a Mineral Component and an Organic Component, But Can Also Include Water and Air.  As the Parent Material Decomposes is Breaks Down Both Physically and Chemically.

  • Soil Is- 45% Mineral Component,   5% Organic,   50% Water and Air


  • ADVANTAGE– Anchor, Drainage, Grape Ripener, Heat Retainer, Nutrient Provider, Light Refection, Roots Run Deep, Captures Co2, Filters Pollutants, Habitat For Living Organisms
  • ROCK- Mass of Mineral Matter…Metamorphic, Igneous Sedimentary.
  • PARENT ROCK/ PARENT MATERIAL- Also Known as Substratum, Refers to the Original Rock/ Bedrock From Which Soils or Other Rocks Was Formed From. As This Parent Material Breaks Down it Changes Both Physically and Chemically.
    • Residual Parent Material- The Bedrock That’s Fixed and Present On the Site is Breaking Down and Forming the Soil By the Breaking Down or Weathering of the Bedrock.
    • Transported Parent Material- Bedrock/ Parent Material That Has Been Transported or Carried to the Site by Water, Gravity, Air, Tectonic Plate Movement.
  • PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS of the SOIL (Most Important Aspects of Soil)
    • Water Availability
    • Water Permeability
    • Texture
    • Reflective Capabilities

The Type of Bedrock the Soils is Derived From Has a Massive Effect On the Wines Taste and Structure.

BED ROCK The Lithified Rock That Lies Under the Soils of the Earth Surface. Bedrock Can Be Made Up of Igneous, Sedimentary or Metamorphic Rock. Bedrock Often Serves as the Parent Material For Soils.

  • This Bedrock is the Outermost Boundary of Solid Earth.  Being On the Earth Surface the Bedrock is Constantly Under the Physical, Chemical and Biological Attack of Weathering, Which Breaks the Rock Down Into the Fragmentary Debris That Geologist Call Sediment and We In the Wine World Refer to as Soils.
  • Rock Head- The Surface of the Bedrock.
  • Outcrop- Bedrock That Has Reached the Earths Surface.
  • The Age of Bedrock Isn’t Important, But the Type, Nature and Properties of the Bedrock is What’s Important. The Process of Bedrock to Soil is an Ongoing Evolution of Forging and Transforming. Over Time Soil Evolves and Changes for Natural Reasons: Weathering, Nutrients Leaching Out of it.
  • *Generally It’s Not About How Old the Soil is or How Long Ago the Soil Was Formed, But the Means In Which the Soil Broke Down to Be Presently In the Vineyard..
  • All Soils Are Derived From Material That Was Once  Solid Earth.
  • *Generally–  Bedrock is Never the Same Over an Entire Region.
    • Regolith-
    • Lithifed-
  • Rocks vs. Stone-  On It’s Basic Level Rocks and Stones Are the Some. They Are Fragments of Bedrock.  On the Next Level Finer or Smaller Weather Pieces of Rocks Are Usually Smaller Pieces of Rock or Particle Size (Largest to Smallest) Boulder, Cobble, Pebble, Gravel, Sand, Silt, Clay, Loess. (Sometimes These Particle Sizes Are Referred to as a Type of Soil But More Correctly Are Sizes) On the Next Lever They Are Finer Ones That May Have Broken Down From the Parent Rock.
  • Depth to Bedrock- Represents the Distance Between the Soil Surface and the Top of the Restrictive Layer.
    • Tectonic (Earth Driven)
    • Volcanic (Fire Driven)
    • Glacial Sediment- (Water Driven)
    • Loess (Wind Driven)


SOIL CLASSIFICATION- Concerns With Grouping of Soils With a Similar Range of Properties Into Units That Can Be Referenced and Mapped.

SOIL MORPHOLOGY Observable Attributes of the Soil Within Various Soil Horizons and the Description of the Properties and Arrangement of the Horizons.

  • TOP SOIL- First Layer of Soil, Provides Interface Between Grower and Plant. Top Soil Contains Majority of Humus In Soil, Algae, Worms.
    • Acts as a Binder In Soils, Keeping Soils Together, Prevents Erosion and Soil Loss, Opens Up Soil, Allowing Air to Penetrate to Lower Levels.
    • **Refer to BIO-DYNAMICS/ Organic vs. Inorganic Soils For Additional Information.
    • VITICULTURE-  BENEFITS– Absorbs Water and Allows Moisture to Be Released Over Time.
    • Humus Any Organic Matter Incorporated Into the Soil: Yeast, Moulds, Fungi, Bacteria, Mycorrhizae, Decomposing Weeds, Grasses, Mulches, Protozoa.
    • Protozoa- Microscopic Single Celled Organisms.
  • SUB-SOIL- Second Layer of Soil, Which Underlies the Main Top-Soil, Containing Majority of Roots and Soils. Sub-Soil Contains Less Humus and Soil Matter.
  • SUB-SOLUM- Third Layer of Rock, Sits Below Sub-Soil. Usually Hard Pack Clay or Solid Rock. Sub-Solum Can Provide Rooting Potential or Can be Impervious and Form a Barrier to Roots. Sub-Solum Should Let Water Through and Not Water Log Roots.
  • Texture- Refers to the Relative Proportions of Mineral Grains In Soil Based On Their Size.
  • Draining Class- Describes the Occurrence and Movement of Water In Soil.


  • Soil is a Breakdown of Parent Rock Material or an Accumulation of Other Non-Parent Rock Material as With Sedimentary Shells or Plantain
  • Vines Grow Best In Inhospitable Soil That Are Low In Nutrients. This Drives the Vines to Penetrate Deep Into the Soil Searching For Water and Nutrients. Roots Have Potential to Go Grow Deep, (to 20 Meters.) and Interact With a Complexity of Minerals In Multiple Soil Profiles. A Single Vineyard Can Have Several Soil Profiles Within Its Boundaries, the More Layers In the Soils the Roots Have to Go Through the Better. This Transfer Element of Each Soil Profile to the Fruit.
  • There’re Over 100 Different Types of Soils and Thousands More Soil Combinations. This Allows Millions of Micro-Chemical Reactions Between Root, Soils and Add to the Complexity of Wine. A Vines Needs Active Microbial’s Life In the Soil Which Brings Minerals Into the Roots of the Plants.
  • The Color, Micro-Biology, Thermal Quality, and Drainage of the Soil Are All Important.
  • Soil is Variable and In 3-Dimensional, Not Just the 2-Dimensions You Perceive On the Surface of the Vineyard.
  • The Negative Effects of Irrigation is it Doesn’t Challenge the Roots to Explore or Go Deep Into the Soil Profiles. To Get a Strong Reflection of the Soil the Roots Need to Go Deep Into the Soil. It’s a Combination of a Greater Area the Roots Cover and a Vine That’s Pruned to Produce Less Fruit or Yields. This Leads to a Greater Reflection of the Terroir of Soil In a Particular Vineyard Sight.
  • Consider Soil In Two Aspects-
    • Its Chemical Properties:
    • Its Physical Properties: Texture, Porosity, Drainage, Depth, Color
  • Grape-Vine Grown In/ On Soil of Every Age and of Soils of Every Type, But What’s Really Important is the Relationship of Soil and Climate and Getting the Grape-Vine to Reach Its Zenith With the Help of the Best Soil and Climate.
  • Soil is Controlled by Modern Weather But Also Past Climate Activity. Rocks Break Down Slowly With Weathering and Begins to Slide Down Hillside Are Eroded and Transported and Deposited as Alluvial Valley Fill.
  • On Average Soils is Made Up of 45% Mineral Matter and 5% Organic Matter With the Other 50% Composed of Water and Air Which is Transient Within the Pour Spaces In the Soil
  • There’s Rock and Then There’s Are Soils, I Like to Think of the Millions of Year Old Rock Rather Then Thousands of Year Old Soils, What Kind of Rock Did the Soil Began as?
  • Soils Can Be High In Mineral Content, Low In Organic Content, an Inversion of the Two, Or a Combination of the Two.
  • PH. In Soil Has an Inverse Effect On Acid In the Wine.
  • Geological Minerals Should Not Be Confused With Nutritional Minerals.
  • **Refer to VITICULTURE/ Sustainable Wine/ Soil Health For Additional Information.

When Vines Have to Work Harder to Survive In Poor Soils and Growing Conditions, Grape Develop More Complexity and Refined Flavors.


SOIL MICROBIOLOGY The Study of Organismas In Soil, Their Functions, and How They Effect Soil Properties.

  • Distinct Kingdom of Organisms/ Microorganism Especially a Bacterium Causing Disease or Fermentation.
  • Microbes In Soils Are Found In Greater Number/ Species In Soils That Are Farmed Organically. These Microbes are Markers of Sustainability and Diversity In a Vineyard.
  • Vineyard That Are Farmed Organically/ Sustainability Are Said to Possess 1,000-1,200 Microorganisms, Where as a Conventional Farmed Vineyard Are Said to Possess 500-700 Microorganisms. The Majority of Which Are Bacteria Which Promotes Checks and Balances In Vineyard Where Beneficial Microbes Suppress Harmful Organisms and Help Prevent Disease, and Helps Breakdown Organic Matter Into Absorbable Nutrients.
  • Soil Microorganism Exist In Large Numbers In Soil as Long as There is a Carbon Source For Energy.


SOIL The Upper Layer of Earth In Which Plants Grow.  Soils is Usually a Black or Dark Brown Material Typically Consisting of A Mixture of Organic Remains, Clay and Rock Particles.

  • Soil is One of the Three Major Natural Resources. (Along With Air and Water) Soil is Made up of Three Main Components…
    • Minerals That Come From Rocks Below the Surface or Nearby.
    • Organic Matter Which is the Remains of Plants and Animals That Use the Soil and the Living Organisms That Live In the Soils.
  • Organic Matter Are Living and Dead Plants and Organisms Matter Found In Soil. It Makes Up 3%-5% of the Weight of Soil and is Essential For Healthy Soil.
  • Soil is Alive and Should Be Respected as So.
  • Soil Stores and Filters Water, and Recycles Nutrients.
  • Soils is a Habitat For Animals.
  • There is a Physical, Chemical and Biological Component to Soil.
  • Each Dice Size Amount of Soil Contains Millions of Organisms and All Have a Job to Do.
  • BACTERIA…Are Soil Decomposers…Convert Chemical Compounds From One Form to Another.
  • FUNGI…Are Soil Explorers…
  • PROTAZOA & MENATONES…Are Soil Hunters…
  • EARTH WORMS…Are Soil Engineers…They Work the Soils and Break Down Organic Matter, Make the Soil More Fertile/ Stronger.

It’s Nearly Impossible to Draw Precise Lines Regarding a Vineyards Soils Variation Considering the Complexity of an Areas Geography and Topography.

SOIL HEALTH Refers to the Capacity a Soil Can Function Properly.

    • Keep Soils Covered
      • Controls Temperature
      • Reduces Evaporation
    • Don’t Disturb Soils
    • Maximize Diversity
      • Different Crops For Different Seasons.(Not Referring to Vines)
    • Integrate, Manage Livestock

Are You Drawing Down or Depositing Into Your Vineyards Soils “Bank Account”.


  • Metamorphic Soils   |   Igneous Soils   |   Sedimentary Soils
  • **Refer to TERROIR/ Metamorphic/ Igneous/ Sedimentary Soils For Additional Information.
            • or
  • Sand Based Soils   |   Clay Based Soils   |   Silt Based Soils   |   Loam Based Soils


  • GENERALLY…Sand Can Be/ Comes From Any Type of Rock That Breaks Down Into That Grain Size.
    • Qualities
    • Well Drained and Retain Heat, (Lighter Than Clay/ Heavier Than Silt)
    • Produce Softer Wines With Less Color, Lighter In Acidity and Tannin.
    • Creates Hydric Stress Within Plant Material.
    • *General Effects On Wine– Light Fresh Style Wines
  • The Best Sand Wine Regions/ Vineyards Are Found Near Large Bodies of Water.
  • Sand Isn’t Actually Considered a Soil Type. It’s Technically Considered a Soil Texture.  Sand In Vineyards Can Be Derived From Any Type of Rock. (Granite, Limestone, or Volcanic)
    • Barossa Valley       @South Australia, Australia
    • Colares     @Lisbon/ Portugal
    • Corsica     @France
    • Pantelleria     @Sicily/ Italy
    • Sulcis         @Sardinia, Italy
    • Sablet      @Rhone Valley, France
    • Contra Costa County      @California, USA.


  • GENERALLY…Silt Can Be/ Comes From Any Type of Rock That Breaks Down Into That Grain Size.
    • Qualities…Retain Water and Heat(Lighter Than Sand)
    • Intermediate Grain Size Between Sand and Clay.


  • GENERALLY…Clay Can Be/ Comes From Any Type of Rock That Breaks Down Into That Grain Size.
    • Qualities…Stay Cooler and Retain Heat(Heavier Than Sand)
    • Produce Bolder Wines
    • Clays Are Porous and Get Water Logged. As Clays Compact it Turns to Shale.
    • Different Families of Clay…Swelling Clay, Non-Swelling Clay.
    • *General Effects On Wine– Richer Style Wine, Rounder, Plump
    • St. Emilion



    • Qualities…Part Silt, Clay, Sand and Humus
    • Too Fertile and Lead to Too Much Vigor


  • GENERALLY…Mixture of Clay and Limestone
    • Qualities

SOIL TESTING Analysis by Lab Techniques to Determine Soil Nutrient.
SOIL STRUCTURE Determined by Size and Stability of Soils Elements.
SOIL NUTRIENTS Elements Taken Up by Plant Root System, Essential For Plants.

It Seems That Each Soil Type Gives a Specific Energy to The Vine.

  • There Are 14 Elements That a Vine Needs to Grow and Thrive.  Most of These Elements Are Metal and Are Locked Inside the Geological Mineral That Make Up Rocks and Stones That Make Up the Physical Framework of Soil.  Most of These Elements Have to Be In Solution In Order For the Vine to Absorb Them. (The Vine Roots Simply Cannot Absorbs Solids.)  Through the Weathering Process That Rocks Endure Over Time Rocks Break Down and Can Release These Elements From the Parent Rock and Are Enable Them to Get Dissolved In the Soil With Water That Brings Them to the Roots to Be Absorbed.
  • When Elements Come Together to Form Minerals a Bonding Between Them Involving the Electron They Contain.  Geologists Classify Minerals On the Basis of What Elements That Contain.
    • Nitrogen For Vine Growth   |   Calcium Neutralizes PH.
    • Phosphorous For Root Development   |   Potassium For Vine Metabolisms
    • Magnesium For Chlorophyl   |   Sulfur
    • Iron   |    Manganese
    • Copper   |    Zinc
    • Boron   |    Molybdenum
    • Carbon

SOIL MINERALS Minerals by Definition Have to Be Solid/ Inorganic/ Have a Definitive Chemical Composition/ and a Known Crystal Structure.

  • Vines Like Less Fertile Soil With Proper Nutrients.
  • Rich Soil Lead to Excessive Vigor/ Leaf Growth/ Medi Development.

SOIL ACIDITY Soil Alkalinity- Is Alkaline When PH. is Over 8.0.

  • Physical Attributes-           Chemical Attributes-

SOIL ELEMENT- The Building Block of Minerals.

  • The Earth is Composed of Chemical Elements.  There Are 100 Different Elements But the Majority of Earth is Made of 8 Elements: Oxygen, Silicon, Aluminum, Iron, Magnesium, Calcium, Potassium, Sodium…In the That Order.  Elements Are a Combination of Each Other That Form a Rigid Amalgamation That We Refer to as Mineral Compounds.

SOIL FERTILITY Physical and Chemical of Soil Ability of Plant Growth.

SOIL COLOR Effect Soil Temperature, Darker Soils Hold/ Retain Heat.

SOIL DEPTH Boundary Between Top-Soil and Sub-Solum.

SOIL EROSION Removal of Soil by Wind or Running Water, Eroded Soil Accumulated at Base of Hill and Often Redisperse Through Out the Vineyard.

SOIL DRAINAGE- Soils Natural Ability to Let Water Pass Through it. Dense Soil Holds Water, While Loose Soil Allows Water to Pass Through Easily.

  • Pores/ Space- Between Soils Particles Provides For the Passage and/ or Retention of Gases and Moisture Within the Soil Profile.

SOIL WATER RETENTION- The Amount and the Ability of the Soil to Retain Moisture.

  • Properties of Soil and Grape Vine All Interact In a Complicated Way. A Soils Color, Micro-Biology, Thermal Heat Retention, Soil Drainage and Water Retention All Have a Dynamic Influence On the Overall Heath and Quality Outcome of Grape.
  • Water Has Increased Thermostatic Capacity, Wet Soils Have Higher Heat Retention.

SOIL HYDROLOGY- Study of the Relationship of Water and Soil.

COLLUVIAL DEPOSITS Soils and Sediment Transported by Gravity…Rock Slide.

ALLUVIAL DEPOSITS Soils and Sediment Transported by Water…Alluvial Fan.

SOIL MANAGEMENT Program Cover Crops, Mulches, Fertilizers, Irrigation, Herbicides to Sustain and Improve Soils Physical Condition and Structure.

SOIL IRRIGATION LAYOUT Decisions and Design For Irrigation Through-Out Vineyard.

SOIL PREPARATION Treatment of Soil Before Planting.

SOIL AMELIORATION Adding “Amendments”, Fertilizers, Lime, Gypsum, Organic Matter/ Compost/ Mulches, Cover Crops to Soil to Improve its Physical Properties, Such as Water Retention, Permeability, Drainage, Aeration and Structure. Main Goal is to Provide a Better Environment for Roots/ Hospital Environment for Soil Fauna.

CULTIVATION- Disturbing Soil by Ploughing to Control Weeds, “Open Ups” Soil.

  • By Hand-Held Hoe, Animal Pulled Plough or by Tractor.

SOIL SURVEY Assessing Vineyard Soil For Depth and Diversity. Deep Cylinder Holes Are Drilled Into a Vineyard That Has Been Predetermined by Grid Plotting On a Map. After Soil Surveys Give a Better Understanding of the Make-Up of Your Vineyard and Can Make Better Choices of What Varietals to Plant Where.

SOIL MAPPING- 3-D Geographical Representation Showing Vineyard or Landscape Soil Qualities Including Soils Types, Organic Mater, Depth of Vineyard, Location, Potential Use.

  • Soil Pit- Carving Trenches Into the Vineyards Four Feet Across and Up to +20 Feet Deep For Precision Soil and Vineyard Mapping AKA=Calicatas(Chile)


  • Petrophysical Properties- Relationship Between Porosity and Permeability.

POROSITY Refers to Storage Capacity of Water In Soils, and is Measured as a %.

  • Water Moisture %= % of Water Currently In a Particular Soil.
  • Organic Soils Hold More Water/ Have Greater Porosity Than Non-Organic Soils.

Don’t Worry About Whether  Think About if a Soil is Igneous, Metamorphic or Sedimentary, Focus Your Attention to the Soils Porosity and Permeability, and the Vineyards Terroir.

PERMEABILITY Refers to the Soils Ability to Pass Water.

  • Limestone Are Hard, Brittle and Fracture Allowing Roots That Can Penetrate Easily.
  • Aeration- Perforation the Soil With Small Holes to Allow Air/ Oxygen, Water and Nutrients to Penetrate the Root/ Sub-Soils. Can Be Done by:
    • Hand- Spike Aerator, Pokes Hole Into Soils
    • Machine- Aerator Which Pokes Hole and Removes Plugs
    • Soil Life/ Fauna, Edaphon- Organisms Which Live In Soil
    • Arthropods- (Mites, Centipedes), Ants, Beetles, Termites, Spiders
    • Earthworms- Dig Tunnel Network Through Soil
  • WINE & PHILOSOPHY?  Can a Vine Uptake Minerality of the Soil and Display Them Through the Wine?”
    • I Believe So, If the Vines Roots Are In the Soil and Its Essence Comes Though In Its Wine. Although Subtle the Educated Wine Person Picks Up On Minerality.

Soil Has a Impact On The Quantity and Quality of Acid and Tannins.

SOIL TEXTURE Characteristics Related to Grain Size. The Texture of Rocks, Igneous Rocks In Particular Can Be Analyzed to Understand the Origins of the Rock.

PARTICLE SIZE (Largest to Smallest) Boulder, Cobble, Pebble, Gravel, Sand, Silt, Clay, Loess.

  • Porphyritic Texture Indicates That the Magma Cooled Below the Earths Surface, This Gives Time For Large Crystals to Grow Before Erupting Onto the Surface.
  • Vesicular Texture Indicates a Rock Pitted With Many Cavities(Vesicles).
  • Phaneritic Texture Mineral Grains That Can Be Recognized by the Naked Eye.
  • Amphanitic Texture Indicates Magmas That Cooled Rapidly at or Near the Earths Surface, and I Fine Grained.
  • Vitreous/ Glassy Texture Indicates Magma Cool Rapidly On the Earth Surface, Resulting In No Crystallization Occurring.
  • Pyroclastic Texture Indicates a Mixture of Rock Fragments, Pumice and Volcanic Ash, All of Which Are Generally Distinguishable.
  • Pegmatitic Texture Indicates and Intrusive Rock Formed In an Environment Rich is Dissolved Water.
  • Friable Soil Crumbly Texture of Soil, a Handful of Friable Soil When Pressed Together Should Form A Lump and Be Easily Broken Apart With Little Force.

  • Origins of Soils In Locations Sections On the Most Basic Basis Defined as…
    • Metamorphic
    • Volcanic/ Igneous
    • Sedimentary

    • ~Parra, Pedro Chilean Terroir Consultant.
    • ~Ingham, Elaine~ Microbiologist and Soil Biology, Researcher.
    • ~Quigley, Brenna~ Masters In Geology, Work as Consultant In Wine Industry.
    • ~Wilson, Osbourne~ American Soil Biological, Researcher.
    • ~Maltman, Alex~ Author, Vineyards, Rocks, & Soil.


Although Subjective and Contentious, Minerality In Wine is Universally Understood to Be Good and a Positive Thing. Minerality is More of a Sensation Than a Taste, Although Some Would Argue You Can’t Actually Smell or  Taste Minerality. Sensations of Minerality Are Delicate and More Nuanced and Will Make You Salivate. Minerality Can Be Diminished by Over Oaking or Extremely Fruit Extracted Wines. Minerality Show Better With a High Acid Wine

  • When Talking About Minerality Try to Qualify a Wine With a Second Descriptive Word or In the Context of Something Else…Chalky-Minerality, Salty Minerality Sense of Minerality.
  • Minerality Descriptors Wet Stone, Chalk, Concrete, Crushed Rock, Flinty Gravel, Limestone, Salinity, Slate, Petrichor.
    • Chablis   |   Mosel   |   Sicily
    • Rias Baixas   |   Txakolina   |   Canary Islands
    • The Use of the Term Minerality is More of a Metaphor Than a Suggestion That There Are Actually Minerals In the Wine.
    • The Vine and the Grapes Are Not Made From Matter Derived From the Ground and Soil.  They Are Almost Entirely Carbon, Oxygen and Hydrogen Derived From Water, Air and Sunlight.
    • Minerality Can Be a Sign of Volatile Sulphur Compounds or Reduction.
    • **Refer to TERROIR/ Geology & Soil  For Additional Information.


  • WINE & PHILOSOPHY?CONTENTIOUS WINE ISSUE! You Can’t Smell or Taste Minerality In a Wine!
    • YESA Wine Soaks Up the Minerals and Passes it On to the Wine. The Vines Roots Are Into the Soil and Absorbing Minerals Over the Entire Growing Cycle. Just as We Can Perceive Minerals In Mineral Water the Same Be True For Wine.
    • NOGrapes Don’t Take In the Minerals For the Soils and You Can’t Detect it In the Wine.


  • SANDY SOILS- *General Effects On a Wine– Light Fresh Style Wines
  • LIMESTONE SOILS- *General Effects On a Wine– Pronounced Acid Style Wines
  • STONY SOILS- *General Effects On a Wine– Heavier Style Wines
  • CLAY SOILS- *General Effects On a Wine– Richer Style Wine, Rounder, Plump
  • LOESS SOILS- *General Effects On a Wine– Lighter, Elegant
  • GRANITE SOILS- *General Effects On a Wine– Linear, Angular, Mineral

The Suggestion of Minerality is More of a Metaphor and Less of a Statement That There Are Minerals In the Wine.


  • High PH. Soils Result In Low PH. Wines, and Low PH. Soils Result In High PH. Wines.
  • Soil Change the PH. In a Wine, and Different PH. Levels Are Detectable In Wine In Weight and Texture.
  • **Refer to WINE EVALUATION/ Tasting Minerality For Detailed  Information.


  • Soils With Time Get Red and Redder In Time With the Leaching Out of Iron. This Happens Faster In Wetter Climate.
  • Sandstone & Shale Are Formed In Cold Waters, Limestone is Produced In Warm Seas.
  • Weathering of Soils Vary With Climate, Slope and Vegetation.


  • The First Soil Moisture Measurement Device Was Invented In the 1920’s. It Helps You Know How Much Water is In Your Soil, and When to Irrigate.  Helps You Reach Optimum Yields With Less Water Usage.

Grape Grower Should Be Obsessed With the Organic Matter Percentage In Thier Soil.





I Claim to Have the “Most Diverse Vineyard-Soil Collections In the World”.  The Question Sometimes is Asked, “How Did You Get These Soils?”  The 83 Soil Samples I Have Are Souvenirs From My Visits to Wineries In Predominate Wine Regions of the World.  It’s Just a Matter of Asking the Winery, “I Collect Soil, May I Have a Sample?”  The Other Soils I Have Taken/ Stolen From Vineyards.  When Sitting On the Wall at Romannée-Conti In Burgundy There’s No One to Ask, So I Just Took a Little Limestone. Lets Be Straight, It’s Illegal to Bring Soils Into the America. Somehow In the Back of My Mind I Think I’m a Pioneer, Just Like the Ones Who Brought “Suitcase Clones” Into America In the 1970’s.




The Best Soil Collection In the World.




Soil Collection at AVA. Project, Santa Barbara


Soil Collection at Paragon Vineyard, Etna Valley


Soil Collection at Ancient Peaks, Paso Robes


Soil Collection at Gary Ferrel, Russian River


soil Collections

Soil Collection at Gary Ferrel, Russian River


Soil Collection, Santa Ynez Valley


Wine Soil Collection

Soil Collection at Daou Estate, Paso Robles

    • Metamorphic Soils
    • Igneous Soils
    • Sedimentary Soils
    • Soil Series
    • Geologic Timescale
  • **Refer to These Proceeding Sub-Chapters For Detailed Information.

**Refer to BIBLIOGRAPHY/ Sources For Details On Scholarly Works Referenced.