Vines may love Vivaldi

musicItalian scientists have discovered music helps grow healthier plants. The classical music of Mozart, Haydn, Vivaldi and Mahler relayed from an iPod to vines through 15 speakers was found to have a positive effect on shoot growth. Sangiovese grapes growing near the speakers had a greater number of leaves per vine than those growing in a silent area of the Tuscan vineyard Il Paradiso di Frassina.

Vineyard owner Carlo Cignozzi, a music lover who once serenaded grape pickers on his accordion, first noticed his vines seemed to mature faster under the influence of music in 2001. grapesScientists from the University of Florence turned this observation into a scientific experiment in 2006 by setting up speakers in front of young plants in wooden tubs and older plants in an isolated area of the estate. Shoots and tendrils were tested once a week for levels of chlorophyll, nitrate and photosynthetic and transpiration rates. Head researcher Stefano Mancuso said "The results aren't conclusive yet, but the silent control pot-grown vines showed delayed development."

If you want to get a taste of the theory then visit the London restaurant Locanda Ottoemezzo. Il Paradiso di Frassina Gea di Montalcino 2003 is available at £9.00 per glass.

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