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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Sap-Flow Sensors
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Sap-flow sensors have been employed extensively by researchers to measure water use in many woody plants, including grapevines. Knowledge of reasonable estimates of vine water use is one component of a grower's irrigation management decisions. With the aid of John Ferguson, an agricultural engineer by training, we developed a sap-flow sensor that continuously monitors the water use of several vines in the vineyard.


Sap flow sensors (covered by aluminum foil to reduce solar heating) on the trunks of Cabernet Sauvignon in a drip-irrigated vineyard.


Dragoni, D., Lakso, A.N. , Piccioni, R.M., and Tarara, J.M. 2006. Transpiration of grapevines in the humid northeastern United States. American Journal of Enology and Viticulture. 57(4):460-467.


Tarara, J.M. and Ferguson, J.C. 2006. Two Algorithms for variable power control of heat-balance sap flow gauges under high flow rates. Agronomy Journal. 98:830-838.


Tarara, J.M. and Ferguson, J.C. 2001. Device for simulating high rates of sap flow in grapevines. American Journal of Enology and Viticulture. 52:260-265.


Pacific Northwest Grape Production

Vine Microclimate and Grapevine Biology

Yield Estimation


Scientist: Julie Tarara



Last Modified: 8/19/2016
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