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Grape Vine Care

Grape Vine Care

To ensure a bountiful harvest of good quality grapes, you must follow a rigorous plant care routine. Read this article to understand the important aspects of grape vine care.
Gardenerdy Staff
Grape is one such fruit which most of us love. Which makes it all the more exciting when you grow grapes in your own garden! Grapes happen to be one of the oldest cultivated plants which people started growing in their house gardens. There are several varieties of grapes that require different climatic conditions for growth and survival. However, the basic procedure of caring for all varieties is more or less the same.

How to Care for a Grapevine

While growing grapes at home, the most important thing which needs to be taken into account is the weather. Most species of grape grow well in warm temperatures as this facilitates growth and ripening of the fruit. However, this plant cannot tolerate extreme heat or cold. The right time for plantation of grapes is early part of spring. It should be planted in well-drained soil in a location where it receives a lot of sunlight. As it is a climbing plant, you have to provide it with adequate support structure or trellis and train the vines to confine their growth on the given structure. Ensure that you do not let any stray plants or weeds grow in the surrounding area.

Watering
In the first year, the newly planted vines should be watered more frequently to ensure the growth of healthy and strong roots. Grape vines should not be watered in the fall. This is because if you stop watering the plant then it can use up the excess water and prepare itself for the winter. During this time, it produces an antifreeze substance to protect itself from the damaging effects of frost. If you continue to water the plant, then it will not be able to get rid of the extra water and is at a greater risk of frost damage.

Fertilizer
At the time of planting, you have to prepare the soil by adding compost to it. If you have done that, then it does not require additional supply of nutrients in the first year. Later on, nitrogen fertilizer is most suitable for grape vines in their growing season. However, avoid using too much of nitrogen fertilizer. This is because it tends to increase leaf growth. Excessive leaf on grapevine may adversely affect production of fruit.

Pruning
One of the most vital part of the care routine is pruning, and it has to be carried out with extra caution. The right time for pruning grape vines is late winter, when it is still in a dormant state. Buds that are badly damaged by frost should be eliminated. You will find some new shoots growing along the main stem. These shoots are useless, and cannot bear fruit. It can affect vine growth. You have to cut out all these parts keeping the main stem intact.

Protection
Grapevine is often attacked by pests, insects, birds and animals. A pest attack can be identified with signs like discoloration of leaves and rot in fruit. You have to use pesticides to control them. However, do not use any pesticides which are generally used for lawn care, as they are not suitable for grapes. For protection from insects, birds, and animals, cover it up with a net.

After investing considerable amount of time and efforts, you can finally reap a rich harvest of these delicious grapes in your garden. Now, it is time to relish these juicy fruits. You can eat them fresh, or process them to obtain jams, jellies, or wine and enjoy them!