A complicated relationship.
In the 16th century, Europeans brought the vine (vitis vitifera) to America.
Three hundred years later, the plant had acclimated to the new continent, varying its characteristics slightly so that it had become resistant to powdery mildew (a fungus popularly called "ashy"), as well as being insensitive to a American insect, non-existent in Europe: thedaktulosphaira vitifoliae(phylloxera)
Since then there have been many serious complications for the vineyard in Europe.
It all started when American strains were imported in 1863.They did it because they knew they would not catch the ashes.They did not know that with the vines they were carrying an insect of insignificant size (approx. 1 mm) that was to destroy the entire European vineyard.They had imported the "Pandora's box": the terrible onephylloxerawhich destroyed absolutely the entire vineyard of the old continent.Phylloxera affects the roots of European strains, while in American strains the roots are not harmed.
The new inhabitant spread all over Europe, leaving no productive vine.For years, French winegrowers bought grapes in the still uncontaminated areas, which were soon attacked as well.Some Bordalesos bought or leased land in La Rioja, when the insect had not yet arrived.Since then the region has adopted the style of making red wines from the French.
To cure the disaster, the logical step was to replant the entire European vineyard with American vines.This is done by taking a "foot" (the lower part of the vine and the roots) and grafting a "toria" of the local varieties (xarel·lo, raisin, chardonnay, tempranillo, grenache, etc.).
The phylloxera problem was solved and Europe once again had productive vineyards.Today, the vineyards are still being planted with American "feet".
The remedy, however, was another problem, and with the American strains came another sting: the fungus.plasma for viticulture(mildew) against which European strains also had no defense.
For the second time from America came deadly enemies through the vineyard.Since then winegrowers have defended themselves as best they can from mildew, spraying the vines with copper sulphate.