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Vineyard cutting equipment
Vineyard cutting equipment can be of two types, depending on whether manual pruning or mechanical pruning is performed. In the first case, the tools are simple shears, which must be carefully disinfected before making the cuts; moreover, even before switching to a second plant, the shears must be well cleaned, in order to avoid the passage of possible diseases from one vine to another. If, on the other hand, mechanical pruning is carried out, the tools are very varied, even if only recently used. In fact, the progress of the mechanization of cultivation operations has only recently overcome the obstacle of production pruning. The first positive results were achieved on the alberello, where the simplicity of the work and the absence of supports allowed the achievement of some advantages, both for containing the summer vegetation and as a real pre-dry pruning, which was finished , but quickly, by hand.
Tools for mechanical pruning
Today, mechanical pruning can be carried out on some forms of farming by using tools to cut the vineyard, the purpose of which is to cut all the branches to a certain distance from the stump or permanent cord. Such an operation cannot of course disregard a manual refinement. In this sense it is more correct to talk about pre-pruning machines. In France, particularly suitable tools have been developed for operating on low spurred cordon. The most advanced of these tools is the one based on two series of overlapping discs mounted in an inverted U-shaped frame and each operating on one side of the row. These rotary discs are equipped with internal counter-rotating knives capable of cutting the vines without affecting the metal wires of the row reinforcement. Moreover, thanks to an oleopneumatic system, the discs bypass poles and logs coming back after having passed them.
Other vineyard cutting equipment
In Italy, vice versa, equipment suitable for the double curtain has been developed and based on cutting bars capable of cutting the branches above and below the cordon, inside and outside; the bar for the internal work is equipped with devices to avoid the supports of the two metal wires either automatically or at the operator's command. Also in this case, pruning is not selective, but requires manual finishing, which can be carried out simultaneously by operators armed with pneumatic shears on a special carriage pulled by the tractor (on which the pruning machine is also installed). The Institute for Agricultural Mechanization of Turin has also proposed an experimental machine suitable for low spurred cordon, operating on only one side of the row and which presents a series of circular saws with a vertical axis placed internally, in idle fissured cages. These have the task of making the saws act only on the branches, moving away from poles and stumps. A saw without neutral overlap is arranged on an axis parallel to the ground so as to smooth the cord laterally.
Vineyard cutting equipment: Winter pruning and automatic scissors
The winter pruning of the vine can be facilitated by the use of automatic scissors. The most widespread are those with pneumatic drive. These vineyard cutting equipment can cut branches up to 40 mm in diameter, thus saving time and reducing physical effort. The scissors are fed by compressor units driven by tractors or rotary cultivators by means of tubes that can be unwound along the row and subsequently recovered using the special winders. It is important that the work site is well organized in order to avoid wasting time due to the lack of synchronization between the pruners served. It is also possible to combine the pneumatic shears with a nebulizer capable of spraying a small quantity of disinfectant liquid on the blades at each cutting, in order to prevent eutipiosis and malaria of the bait. Hydraulic and oil-pneumatic scissors are also available on the market. They are conceptually and constructively similar to the pneumatic ones, but the working fluid varies from pressurized air to pressurized oil.