Term (French terrasse for pile-up of earth, derived from Latin terra for earth) for a common form of vineyard design on slopes and especially steep slopes, where the vineyards have to be artificially laid out. The rows of vines must be aligned at right angles to the slope; in extreme cases, only one row of vines is planted per terrace. The individual terraces are often supported by dry stone walls. This makes the laborious cultivation easier or even possible in the first place and prevents erosion. Such vineyards with steep slopes are often found in vineyards at high altitudes.
Well-known terraced vineyards can be found in the Portuguese Douro Valley, in the Italian Aosta Valley, in the Swiss cantons of Vaud and Valais, on the French Rhône, in the German wine-growing regions of the Middle Rhine, Moselle, Rheingau and Württemberg, and in the Wachau region of Lower Austria. The picture above shows the single vineyard Uhlen in the municipality of Winningen on the Moselle. Here, countless terrace walls have been built over the course of centuries. For a complete list of vineyard-relevant keywords, see Vineyard and Grapevine.