Growing Grapes in Tennessee

brandon7 TN_zone(7)November 28, 2011

In hopes of getting some conversation going in our forum, I'm posting some threads on what will hopefully be interesting topics to many forum browsers/lurkers, and encourage them to participate.

In this one, I'm posting links to a few interesting grape related publications from UT. They contain lots of interesting info, including which cultivars might should be avoided (like Catawaba, Concord, Niagara, and Reliance which are susceptible to Black Rot).

UT Ag. Ext. Publications Related to Grapes:

Grape Growing in Tennessee

Black Rot of Grape

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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Almost a month and no bites yet, so I'll bump this post down.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2011 at 3:12PM
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I tried St. Croix 2 years ago with pretty good results. Gave the 2-3 plants I had an area similar in size to a cucumber bed (I think like 4x8-ish) with a somewhat loose pine bark based mix. They also had a trellis to grow up. They were young plants, but still seemed to produce at least 5-8 clusters of grapes a piece their first year (most non-edible b/c of somewhat small size). Fertilized & watered just like I did with most of my veggie plants. A light bi-monthly application of a 9-3-6. It seems despite my lack of research on growing them, that they still did somewhat well. =) May very well get more going when I find a more permanent place to live.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2011 at 7:49PM
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Thank you , Brandon! I finally got to follow several links about grape disease resistance. My grapes all died of black rot. Mars grapes for me from now on, I will try them as soon as I find them.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 1:37PM
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try muscadine or scuppernog

    Bookmark   March 2, 2012 at 10:18PM
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I have great success with Catawba grapes. You can get them at Lowes.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 8:04PM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Catawba is reported (as noted above) to be highly susceptible to Black Rot, the worst grape problem for this part of the country! Do you think you have just been lucky so far, have you been spraying, or what? Personally, I wouldn't try this cultivar. I have had issues with Black Rot before, and was never able (willing) to put forth the effort to overcome the problem.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 8:52PM
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The trick is to plant them on a slope. Had a great crop last year.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 7:28PM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Hmmm, mine were on a good slope but the mummy berries were abundant. When I replant, I'm going with resistant cultivars.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 7:55PM
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Knowledge is power, as they say. Anybody can get lucky but it just makes more sense to start with the most resistant plants available. You will still have to spray for grape leaf roller or something. As with any fruit trees, paying attention is going to help a lot. Easier to stamp out a small problem with fungus/insects than cure it after it drags down the whole row.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 6:00AM
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Growing grapes in Tennessee takes constant care. Anyone who has lived here awhile knows growing fruit is a time consuming diligent job in Tennessee.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2012 at 4:01PM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

My experience says that just ain't so. Papaw used to grow tons of grapes. I don't think he every sprayed them once. They were always wonderful. Some things, like apples, may require a little more work, but if grapes take constant care it's because you're growing the wrong grapes!

    Bookmark   March 16, 2012 at 8:57PM
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I am new to grape growing, I planted grapes before researching which varieties would be best (mistake I know). So the funny thing is, my Concord, Catawba, and Niagara are all doing well, but my Mars plant has black rot, quite badly. I realized what it was this spring. I'm wondering if I should pull it out and start over, or spray? Its a 3 yr old vine, dropped all its fruit this year, I am getting rid of mummies and trying to keep it cleaned up, but I'm thinking it's too far gone. Also I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations on table grapes in TN?
thank you for any input!

    Bookmark   August 25, 2013 at 12:05AM
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We are finally growing grapes. They are muscadine Isom and Darlene. These are two varieties we know and like. They were mail ordered to us a single bare root sprigs a couple years ago. They were just sticks for the longest time and I even mowed over one but it came back! We had little hope and bought two more generic muscadines and planted at the end of the run. Well the generics of course took off but the original two are finally getting a healthy growth too them. We had a harvest of 5 grapes this summer from them! We now have to decide what to do with too many vines in a space. Hate to pull up anything. We've been told just too cut the vines when they get to the desired length but I think keeping a vine to 10' might be a lot of work. Hoping for a huge harvest next summer...maybe a bucket full of grapes! Hope we have to eat these words,

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 3:47PM
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There's an interesting wine grape which is the oldest, most successful American grape, called Norton. Just read a book about it called "The Wild Vine". Been around since Jefferson's time. Very disease free. Cross between a vinifera (European wine grape) and a wild American grape. Was grown heavily in Missouri up to prohibition and is now being grown throughout the midwest and southeast.

Here is a link that might be useful: The Wild Vine

    Bookmark   December 6, 2014 at 10:25AM
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Grand Ma had a large Sycamore, in somewhat sandy soil, behind the old home place that had a huge Concord Grape vine to the top.
Uncle cut it down once or twice because he was afraid us kids would get hurt climbing it. the tree was cut down once but came back just as large.
She said the Sycamore was kind of antiseptic tree in the woods. The tree was in a five acre or so area surrounded by woods, on the Cumberland Mtns.
Never had a disease or bug problem. The grapes were huge and were too many for Mama and Grand Ma to make into jelly and so forth. Neighbors took huge amounts of them home.
There were no Japanese Beetles back then or the new Stink bugs taking over much of America. I hope to find out if a Sycamore might be a good place to plant grapes around, here in much lower elevation with higher humidity, this next year.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2014 at 8:53PM
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