Henry of Pelham is an estate winery, owned and operated by the Speck family since 1982 (6th generation on the land). We are strong believers in the importance of sustainability from soil to shelf. Henry of Pelham is proud to be one of the first wineries in Ontario to have had both our winery and vineyards certified by Sustainable Winemaking Ontario
Wetland restoration and bio-filters
The bulk of the land at the winery is the catchment area for a much larger watershed. To help with excess water and prevent soil erosion, the entire vineyard is under-drained. This provides a unique opportunity to improve the quality of ground water that both enters and leaves the property. By adding bio-filters to the ponds, the water that leaves the property is cleaner than when it came in.
Part of the land has reforested over time. By leaving these stands of trees we have preserved more than 11% of our total acreage as forest. Combined with the many acres of wetlands on the property, we have been able to create very well-travelled wildlife corridors that run between our forests and the Short Hills Provincial Park. We also make it a practice to leave dead trees standing for raptors to perch, a side benefit being that the hawks scare off grape eating birds which are a pest at harvest.
From wetland restoration and biofiltration to reforestation and water conservation, our efforts will ensure that plants, helpful insects, animals and people—including wine makers—continue to thrive on this land another six generations from now!
Wetland restoration and Bio-filters
START TO END DATE –
2006 – 2023 (next phase)
Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority
To ultimately help with excess water and prevent soil erosion. Bio-filters are easy to install, as the winery already has the underdrainage to catch the water.
The natural preservation of the woodland initiative was a smart, easy and efficient way to help reduce the amount of pests affecting a successful harvest season.
Wetland restoration and bio-filters Initiative
While this initiative required a bit of work on the headlands, the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authorities helped with the overall implementation strategy.
The woodland preservation initiative works in concert with the wetland restoration initiative, thus creating wildlife corridors, raptor perches/minimizing wildlife in opposition and ultimately producing healthier crops.
Water leaves the property cleaner than it enters the property.
Through natural woodland preservation, there is less animal/bird pressure on the crops.
It is negligibly more expensive to invest in these projects than not to do them, yet these initiatives have a huge impact on reducing our water and carbon footprint.
To look at ways at evolving these current initiatives based on best practices learned to date and investing in similar initiatives that will benefit the winery, vineyards and the environment. Also encouraging our neighbours/growers to adopt similar practices.
Depends on the property and location as each locale needs a tailored approach.
In general, viticulture in Niagara/Ontario lends itself to these practices.