grape vine ties and pruning
I planted 4 grape vines this year ( all table grapes: reliance, lakemont, and two canadice). I live near Buffalo, NY. I put in a trellis which is 5' high, with two wires , one at the top and one halfway down. There are two vines spaced between posts. As I understand it, the goal this year is to develop the root system. So far, so good. They are growing nicely. Here's some questions:
1. What is best to use to tie the grape vines to the wire?
- Am I right in thinking I don't prune this first year until the growing season is over? Therefore I should tie whatever growth develops to the wires for this year? Then most will be cut off in the winter leaving a strong central stem from which I"ll hopefully have two arms on each side, one for each wire...?? Am I getting this?
3. I read something about not letting the grapes produce the first year. I have the beginnings of little clusters. Will these first be flowers, then grapes? Am I really to just cut them off? If so, when? Yikes, sounds painful.