Bruce and Jenni’s original vine propagation business, Chalmers Nurseries was responsible for importing around 70 mostly Italian grapevine clones and varieties through associations with VCR and Matura in Italy for whom Chalmers are the Australian agents. These selections were introduced to Australia in 2000 and have been a major factor in the diversification and improvements in sustainability and quality seen in the Australian wine industry in the last 15 years.
In 2009 and 2010 Chalmers established source blocks in both Heathcote and Merbein of these varieties and clones. In 2011 they initiated a second round of imports, this time focused mainly on Italian white varieties, which were released from quarantine in 2015 and added to the Merbein source block.
From 2017 Chalmers will be operating a boutique nursery service at their Merbein property once again supplying grafted vines, rootlings and cuttings (in some cases) of their imported selections. They will be working exclusively with their own imported varieties and production will be limited. The focus will be on super high quality, superior clonal selections, precise rootstock matching and vine DNA/health integrity.