Mountain Lake Polyfytos
The area of Velvendo is a hilly and mountainous, viticulturist area at 400m altitude, between the western mountains of Pieria and the artificial Lake “Polyphytos”, just 33 km southwest of Kozani. Kozani is the capital and largest city of West Macedonia region and the homonymous regional unity. It is built among the mountain ranges of Vermio, Bourinos and Pieria.
In this blessed place, at the entrance of Velvendo, Estates Voyatzi, Camkouti and Zande, continue their families’ tradition producing wines of high quality. The mountainous area of Pieria, the breeze of Polyphytos Lake and the clay soils provide favorable conditions for the cultivation of the vineyards. Even though the climate in Velvendo is continental it is significantly affected by the proximity to Polyphytos Lake and the constant presence of lacustrine winds.
Polyphytos Lake is an artificial lake of Aliakmonas River in Kozani. It was founded in 1973, after the construction of the dam and it covers an area of 74 square kilometers. The lake belongs to the Hellenic Public Power Corporation. It is crossed by the High Bridge of Servia and the Small Bridge of Rymnio. It is one of the biggest artificial lakes in Greece, where recently a modern floating dock was constructed. The program was promoted by the District Unit of Kozani, aiming to create the conditions for the development of ecotouristic and nautathletic and activities in the area.
The rapid renewal of the water allows the quick removal of polluting loads so the lake maintains its “mesotrophic» condition. Therefore it is ideal for a range of activities such as fishing and aquaculture, sports (rowing) etc. It also covers the irrigation needs of the farmlands of the region. Seventeen species of freshwater fish live in the lake while the area around the dam is an important habitat for birds of prey as it provides them with food, shelter and nesting. The area is also used by migratory species as a winter refuge. Furthermore, several species of reptiles live there while 10 different species of mammals are included in the mammalian fauna of the area. It is a gifted locus with unique soil and geological features (light sandy soils, poor in organic matter with excellent drainage capacity, located on top of a calcareous alluvial substrate created by the earlier lacustrine deposits into which root systems with dense branching and dense capillary roots are formatted). It enjoys exceptional balanced climate conditions (which are determined by the altitude of the plateau), especially during the crucial months of maturation, fully responsive to the high demands for a ‘’balanced’’ viticulture.
The diversity of soil types allowed to choose the best location for each grape variety and its rootstock in order to produce wines of high quality, with personality and character. Since the beginning of the vineyards, certain principles of organic agriculture are applied. The cultivation management not only is aiming to produce the highest quality of grapes, but also to protect and preserve the vineyard’s ecosystem.