Helping Grape Growers Trial Mycorrhizal Inoculants

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) inoculation of grapevines may be an alternative to conventional fertilization practices in NY vineyards. A replicated trial of AMF inoculation will be initiated by Alice Wise as part of a federal funds capacity project next year, but grape growers are interested in conducting side-by-side comparisons. With guidance from mentors, the intern will work with three North Fork growers to help them trial and evaluate the impact of the AMF inoculation on a small portion of their vines via nonreplicated comparisons. The intern will design the trial and data collection plan, and will communicate results directly with the growers. The goal is for the intern to gain a broader understanding of and experience with extension programming.

Roles and responsibilities 

The intern will help growers trial and evaluate the impact of AMF inoculation in their vineyards. With guidance the intern will take primary responsibility for establishment, data collection, data analysis, and communication of results of side-by-side comparisons at three grower farms. The intern will co-write a paragraph in the Cornell "Veraison to Harvest" newsletter reporting on the trials. The intern will also participate in day to day applied research and extension activities in the viticulture program at LIHREC.

Qualifications and previous coursework

This opportunity is available to non-graduating students in Cornell University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Any Viticulture & Enology, Plant Science, Ag Science, or E&S student who has competed VIEN 1104 (Wines & Vines) will be eligible for this internship.

Learning outcomes 

Following this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Discuss the impacts of AMF inoculation on grapevines
  • Articulate the potential environmental benefits of AMF inoculation on the ecosystem
  • Demonstrate a broad understanding of the day-to-day tasks of an extension specialist and their impact on local agricultural industries.