Monday, May 2, 2011

Pruning the Grape Vines

Last week I picked up one of the free publications while I was in a local garden shop.  It was the April 2011 issue of Colorado Gardener, A Thinking Gardener's Companion.  They have articles and ads about garden related issues.  Interesting to me, was an article titled For Perfect Grapes, Get Pruning, by Carol O'Meara.  I usually take a class every spring to remind myself what I need to do in regards to my vining plants.  But this year I didn't take the class, however, I was able to get my refresher course from this local publication.  It was a full page article, but to highlight, the author said to cut back all canes growing from the "cordons"  ( the woody arms growing from the trunk) to short two-bud 'spurs', spaced every four inches.  Every bud will produce vigorous shoots, each bearing two or more bunches of grapes.  When leaving more than two buds, the plant divides it's energy over a larger mass at the expense of the fruit.   Lastly, the article read "don't be afraid, grapes are very forgiving".  We can train them in a lot of different ways. 
Anyway, I did cut back my grape on the arbor today, and I am feeling really good about it.  Check... another item off my list.  Getting closer to being ready for outdoor summer living.  THAT, really makes me happy.

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