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Phylloxera

Learning about phylloxera is central to the story of European wine. Don’t forget the timeline: phylloxera was followed by WWI, prohibition, the Spanish Civil War, and WWII. The wine economy was devastated and it showed in the abandonment of farms in regions that are so valuable today (example: Tuscany). This timeline shows why the key wine regions of Europe reacted to the emergence of the ‘new wine economy’ with such energy in the 1960s and 1970s, and helps to explain why so many started leaning on fertilizers and insecticides to counter the problems of the past.

More links for learning about Phylloxera

Wikipedia: The Great French Wine Blight

GuildSomm: The Devastator: Phylloxera Vastatrix & The Remaking of the World of Wine

Tenzing: Super cool maps of the spread of phylloxera in the 19th century

Decanter: What is Phylloxera in the Vineyard?

WineSearcher: The complete guide to phylloxera