About Novavine

For almost two decades, Novavine has worked to provide quality grapevines for premium winemakers. This family business is headquartered in Santa Rosa, California, and now produces more than 6 million grapevines annually.

Big enough to meet your needs, but small enough to provide the kind of individualized service you want. 

Our History

Novavine can trace its beginnings to a Lake County Zinfandel vineyard replanting project in the mid-1980s. Ellen and Milton Heath saw the need for a nursery dedicated to quality in products and services so they started Novavine in 1996 at their home in Sebastopol, CA. In 1998, Novavine purchased 27 acres of the old Skylark Nursery in the Sonoma Valley just east of Santa Rosa and moved to its current location. That year also saw the beginning of Novavine’s  partnership with Vivai Cooperativi Rauscedo (VCR)—the world’s largest grapevine nursery, located in northern Italy. 

jay and ellen

In 2004, their son Jay Jensen took over the management of the nursery. Over the next few years, Novavine would develop its own unique propagation techniques, innovating in traceability systems and sustainable practices while upholding the company tradition of quality products and services. In 1998, Novavine grafted its first grapevines, producing 30,000 vines. Today, the team at Novavine is grafting more than 6 million vines per year.

Novavine planted its first increase block of seven acres in Woodland, CA in 1998. Now Novavine is farming 325 acres of prime Sacramento Valley land for its field nursery and increase blocks. In 2012, Novavine established its Protocol 2010 block, which has been planted with material that conforms to the highest clean plant standards.

Since 2004, Novavine has been a leader in sustainable and non-chemical nursery practices. Production practices emphasize the use of probiotics, compost teas, and physical and cultural practices to enhance plant growth and health in the propagation cycle with minimal use of chemicals.


Novavine CEO Jay Jensen is currently a member of the California Grape Rootstock Improvement Commission and serves on the Foundation Plant Services Grape Advisory Committee. Novavine supports research through ongoing cooperation with the scientific community in California and beyond. Educational tours for various universities and junior colleges provide an opportunity to share the nursery’s practical knowledge.

Novavine’s dedication to innovation, quality and service was recognized by Vineyard and Winery Management magazine with Best Nursery awards in 2013 and 2014, but the most valuable endorsements come from repeat customers and word-of-mouth referrals. At Novavine, constant improvement is part of the culture, continually striving to provide better products and more comprehensive service. Resources such as microvinification clonal tastings help clients to make  more informed decisions. The sales team can provide examples of uniform, traditionally vinted wines made in Italy and California from different clones, allowing winemakers to compare enological characteristics so they can select the best clone to fit their needs. 

A family company with strong ties to the community and the local wine industry, Novavine works hard to offer the products and service you expect from the industry leader.