Innovative solution against drought in vineyards


Drought threatens vineyards in Spain

Spain has the largest largest extension of vineyards cultivation in the world. However, it faces significant challenges due to variability in rainfall patterns and severe droughts that threaten wine production. Although vineyards are resistant to drought, water deficit occurs when evapotranspiration demand exceeds the plant’s ability to extract water from the soil. Soil texture and structure are crucial for water retention, and efficient irrigation is critical for vineyard survival.

The DeepDrop® System solution

The DeepDrop® Underground Irrigation System is presented as an innovative response to drought. This system allows efficient water distribution directly to the roots of the plants, improving water retention and vine health.

Success story: table grapes in Alicante

Juan Antonio, a winegrower in Monforte del Cid, Alicante, grows Regal seedless table grapes in a compact clay soil. Previously I used drip irrigation, which was ineffective. In his own words, “It was either that system or stop cultivating that hectare. In an area like this, where it hasn’t rained, this plot would have done nothing. The vineyards are doing well now as they have the moisture they need.” With the DeepDrop® subway irrigation system, it has achieved more effective irrigation, reaching the roots 10 cm below ground.


  • Cultivated area: 8 hectares (12,000 vines), with DeepDrop® on 1 hectare (650 vines).
  • Adjusted irrigation: From March to October, adapting the frequency and duration according to seasonal needs.
  • Water efficiency: Reduced water use, with only 162 liters from May to August, compared to 270 liters for surface irrigation.

Juan Antonio highlights the practicality and efficiency of the system, recommending DeepDrop® for its ability to direct water directly to the roots and reduce the use of herbicides. Motivated by these results, he has expanded the system to another area.


Juan Antonio’s Vineyard in Monforte del Cid (Alicante)

Case Study: Selected Wines in Tenerife – Bodegas Soterana

Carmelo Padrón, a winegrower on the island of El Hierro (Canary Islands), grows native varieties (Vijariego blanco, Baboso blanco and Marmujuelo) in volcanic soils with high evaporation and low water retention. These vineyards are the raw materials used by the Soterana Soterana winery D.O del Hierro. They are prized wines and are bought by restaurateurs and gourmet establishments. Implemented 250 DeepDrop® units eight months ago, observing significant improvements in irrigation efficiency.


  • Cultivated area: 6,000 square meters, 250 vines with DeepDrop®.
  • Adjust irrigation: Perform 4 irrigations per year in November, December, February and June, with an 8L/H dripper for an hour and a half.
  • Water efficiency: Reduced evaporation and better root absorption. Carmelo has observed that with DeepDrop® a pyramid is formed under the soil, where the base remains below, unlike the surface dripper that forms an inverted pyramid. It is for this reason that DeepDrop® is able to create a layer of moisture underground.

Carmelo recommends DeepDrop® for its ease of installation and significant reduction in water losses.

Case Study: Uvasdoce Fresh

With 350 hectares, 350,000 vines and 35 different varieties of apirenas, Uvasdoce is positioned as one of the largest producers of table grapes in Spain. In their line of innovation and optimization in wine production, they were looking for an irrigation system that would provide water savings while maintaining the quality of production.

  • Cultivated area: 350,000 strains, with DeepDrop® 3,000 strains in the first phase.
  • Tight irrigation: Tests carried out cautiously with two 4L/H drippers per vine, in outdoor areas of the farm.
  • Water efficiency: 20% reduction in water use while maintaining production and vine health.

After this first phase started in January 2023, they have expanded the cultivation area with DeepDrop® in 2024.

Conclusions and future of irrigation in vineyards

Drought has severely affected wine production in Spain, with a 25% reduction by 2023. Regions such as Catalonia have implemented strong restrictions on water use, underlining the need to adapt to climate change.

The DeepDrop® irrigation system offers a promising solution for efficient water management in vineyards, reducing water stress and improving production. The experience of growers such as Juan Antonio, Carmelo and Uvasdoce, demonstrates the effectiveness and versatility of this system in different soil and climate conditions.

Water management is crucial for vineyard survival and production quality. DeepDrop® is emerging as a very good tool to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change on viticulture.

riego en viñedos

Uvasdoce Fresh Vineyards (Alicante)

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