What is Aramon Rupestris Ganzin?

A. The name of a heat-tolerant clone of cabernet recently developed at U.C. Davis to help cope with climate warming

B. A rootstock used in the U.S.

C. The name of one of the earliest wine journals originally written in Latin

D. The name of the first grapevine nursery in the U.S., established in upstate New York in the 1700s by French immigrant A.R. Ganzin


Aramon Rupestris Ganzin—better known as AxR—was the notorious rootstock that resultred in billions of dollars of damage in Napa and Sonoma, California, in the 1980s and 90s. The rootstock’s name is a combination of aramon, a grape that belongs to the European species Vitis vinifera, which was crossed with rupestris, a reference to the American grapevine species Vitis rupestris. Ganzin was the man who crossed the two and created the rootstock. Although it was widely recommended in California from the 1950s to the 1980s, AxR1 proved to be susceptible to phylloxera, ushering in a devastating second wave of phylloxera in the state.

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