Grape vine pruning help please.

purovargas(8)March 17, 2012

Hello, my name is John Henry Vargas and I am from San Antonio, TX and I have an older vine that my sister gave us 10 years ago with no name and after 10 years it is finally producing grapes all along the vine. It over the past years maybe gave one or two clusters but this year I pruned the vine down to one cane that came from the very beginning of the arm that goes from about the thickness of a marker and at the very end of the vine it is about the thickness of a pencil. And I left the older cordon that has been there for years, the older one has produced canes and they are just leaves no grape clusters but the younger thinner cane has canes growing out with a lot of grape clusters. I need to know if this means that I should cane prune this vine and cut off the older cordon that isn't producing any grape clusters just leafy canes? So when it goes dormant should I keep one cane from the beginning of the head and cut off everything even the young cane that is giving grapes this year or keep the one giving grapes and leave two buds per node? I have no idea on how to grow grapes or the terminology so forgive me if it's all wrong.

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Okay I just looked at the vine and here it goes. There is one cane or arm I think it is and it goes from older wood to younger thinner wood it is in the pic of where it splits into a Y shape and the top one is the younger one that is producing grape clusters all along the cane. Now the older and thicker wood has a young cane growing out of it that is about five or six feet long and it has some grape clusters and down along the older vine I left two buds per node and they have a few clusters of grapes.

Older with young cane coming out

Older with Grape cluster

Young cane with grape clusters

Top one is the younger cane, the bottom one is the older cordon.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2012 at 1:58PM
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Nice pic's.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2012 at 3:41PM
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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

I thought I could help you thinking it was going to Muschadine vines since you are in 8b. Maybe some of the other folks can help.

I leave two-four noaded per each side branch but that is muschadines.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2012 at 4:15PM
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backyardener(z6 Idaho)

The key concept you need to keep in mind is that grapes only produce fruitful buds on 1 year old wood (canes that grew the previous summer). You need to be pruning in such a way that leaves some 1 year old wood. That can be both cane or spur pruning, if done correctly.

I have linked a good article about growing / pruning grapes. Your vines and trellis (support) do not need to look exactly like the pictures, but it gives you a good idea of the concept.

Here is a link that might be useful: Growing Grapes

    Bookmark   March 19, 2012 at 11:38AM
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Yup, Backyardener nailed it. Grape bunches will only grow on last year's wood.

Thick old wood will never grow grapes, and this year's fresh growth won't grow them either. You have to balance your pruning from year to year to keep your main core, some of last year's growth, but still have enough room to grow new material as well.

A vine left to grow on it's own quickly gets to the point it practically stops producing grapes because it just doesn't have the correct type of growth on it anymore.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2012 at 4:32PM
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Just an update on the growth of the grapes that came out finally, it sucks that it has developed Black Rot and I keep having to cut off the infected grapes.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2012 at 11:13PM
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