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Seeking suggestions for kiwi and grapes

Posted by pjames 8/LA (My Page) on
Sun, Mar 27, 05 at 20:53

I live in the Shreveport area and was wondering if anybody has any success with kiwi? If so, what hints can you give on varieties, planting requirements etc?

I am considering digging up my grape vines. I planted what was supposed to be green seedless vines about 3 years ago. Last year they bore a pretty good crop of red grapes with seeds- needless to say I was disapointed. I have seen Thompson vines at Home Depot and wondered if anybody has been successful with them. thanks.

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I'll tell you my limited experiance (In New Orleans, Zone 9)

I bought some hardy kiwi online and planted it at my mother's house in Metarie. It died because a local cat kept digging it up and playing with it (cats go nuts for it, worse than catnip. So whatever you do shield it from stoner cats in the area.)
Then I bought some Ken's Red and a pollinator and planted them in an old washtub. They were happy there but I decided to put them in the ground-death.
It seems New Orleans soil is bad for them. Since there is no way I can have a container big enough for them I've given up.
As far as grapes, I have muscadine. They grow well here. I have not tried any others.

RE: Seeking suggestions for kiwi and grapes

I've known a few people around here who planted kiwi fruit, but I don't know any that did very well. Think they don't much like the humidity, but I'm not sure about that. As for grapes, wish I knew a tenth of what my husband did before he got so sick. And a zone or two can make a lot of difference. There is a disease of grapes down here, and maybe there, called Pierce's Disease. They tend to grow well and fruit earlier than in places like California, and then die when they're about three or four years old. He spent a lot of years and effort trying to hybridize grapes that would stay alive and make good grapes. There is a nearly seedless red grape called Flame that is quite tasty and probably would do better for you than it did here--sure liked it while it lasted. Thompson's Seedless isn't nearly as flavorful. (I grew up with one. And several other grapes too, but that was on the west coast.) There are lots of muscadines of very different sizes, colors, and flavors too. Don't think much of them for wine, but they sure taste good (if you can save some from the birds!) and they're much better adapted to growing here. Not sure about there.

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