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The first vines of Great Southern were planted by George Egerton-Warburton in 1859 on his St Werburgh's property near Mount Barker. However, the first real commercial foundations of this diverse region were laid in the late 1930s by renowned horticulturalist Bill Jamieson. Great Southern also had a major role in the 1960s for establishing modern winemaking in Western Australia.

As the largest geographically indicated wine region of Australia, Great Southern comprises five popular subregions for wine - the Albany, Denmark, Frankland River, Mount Barker and Porongurups. The region is spread vastly and diversely, and possesses an ideal environment for producing high quality regional distinctive wines. The region's 303 mm of growing season rainfall is apt for Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Riesling and Shiraz grape varieties. The soils are either lateritic gravelly sandy loams or sandy loams, derived from granite and gneissic bedrocks.