Question about Delaware grapes

neptune24March 26, 2012

About 2 weeks ago, I received a couple of Delaware grapevines in the mail, along with a raspberry cane and an American cranberry bush. I planted them all within a day or so. The American cranberry bush is leafing out nicely now, and the raspberry cane has a leaf growing out of it too. But the grapes still look dormant. I scratched the vines, and I believe they are still alive (as best I can tell), but I'm not absolutely certain.

Anyway, I was wondering--are grapes a bit slow to show buds in the spring? (I have some Concord grapevines that I planted last year that only started to show red buds about a week ago.) Should I be concerned about the Delaware grapevines at this point, or just chill and wait a couple weeks and see what happens? Thanks for any info.

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backyardener(z6 Idaho)

Grapes are pretty much the last thing to show life for me... which is a good thing because they do not tolerate frost. The vine you received was probably refrigerated and therefore it may not bud out until well after your in-ground concord (which has probably been getting some heat). I wouldn't be concerned yet.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 5:17PM
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Thanks, backyardener.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 5:56PM
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Some good news--one of the Delaware grapevines is clearly starting to bud, so it must be healthy. The other one still looks dormant, if it's alive at all. Since they both came from the same nursery and were planted on the same day, if the second grapevine is still alive, should it start to bud within, say, a week of the other one? Or should I give it longer before I ask the company to send me a replacement?

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 9:29PM
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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX

Scrape the canes. If they are still green it is alive. If everything is brown when you scrape, then it is dead. Start out at the ends of the canes and work back. Take a knife and scrape or slice off the surface of the cane. You'll either see green or brown.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 10:21PM
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Thanks, fruitnut. I'll plan to do that.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 12:28AM
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I checked the grapevine in question, and it seems to be dead--or is at least on its way. It's scratchable in certain spots, but there is no obvious green--more like yellow.

Anyway, I contacted Miller Nurseries in NY, who had sent the plant. They have the following policy:

Even though the hardiest stock may be lost due to incorrect planting or improper care, we will replace, credit, or refund (at our discretion) the purchase price of planting stock on the following terms: Return your Order Acknowledgement, Packing List or other proof of purchase within one year accompanied by $3.25 to assist with packing/handling of the replacement order

I talked with one of their agents, and told her that I don't believe my grapevine was "hardy" to begin with, After all, I treated the other one the same way, and it seems to be fine now. She surprised me and said they would send out another one--so I didn't have to pay the $3.25 fee after all. Seems only fair, though. If I felt like I had messed up a perfectly good plant, I wouldn't have a problem paying the fee, but if the plant never shows signs of life, that's hardly the customer's fault.

Just goes to show that sometimes it pays to haggle. :)

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 1:48AM
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in 2006 I planted 30 trees from acn. one peach failed to bud. I called them and said that returning the tree and getting a replacement shipping would exceed cost, so could you credit it to my next order. they said yes. I cut the tree off about 3" above the graft and later that summer found about a 20" whip growing. The next Year I ordered 100+ trees and told them the tree came back so skip the credit. This year I only had enough land cleared to add 30 trees, but my bill showed 100 tree priceing. I think that the 15.00 savings to them might have saved me 150.00 this year. They have my business for life

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 10:51AM
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I planted three or four grape vines of different varieties from St. Lawrence Nursery. One did not grow, so I assumed it was dead. Then, toward the middle of the summer, that last one finally leafed out and grew just fine. Just have patience. Northwoodswis

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 6:15PM
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ravenh2001, thanks for your post. In all honesty, however, I don't quite understand exactly what you're saying in it.

northwoodswis4, thanks for your post too. You make a good point. The only thing is, I'm concerned about the weather getting too hot. So, I wanted a replacement to plant while it's still fairly cool. In another month, it would probably be too late. Also, I snapped off parts of my grapevine, and it does seem dead. Surely if it were still alive there would be some green there.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 3:03AM
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