Sunday, December 22, 2013
Muscadine and Grape Pruning
We had a little nice weather this past week, so I thought it was a good time to do a chore I had been neglecting, pruning the muscadine grapes. All grapes can stand some significant pruning, and native grapes even more so. My muscadines had really overgrown the fence and were reaching out for new territory! One day my neighbor came over- he had parked his truck for a few days next to the fence and the muscadines had twined around his roof rack!
The plants are dormant now and need to be pruned before their sap begins to run in the spring. As you can see by the photo, the background is well-pruned and the foreground remains to be done. If you wait too long to prune your grapes, they might just exude so much sap that the vine is damaged. How do grapes respond to dormant pruning? Very well: muscadines at least, respond with vigorous growth. There might be fewer grapes (I have far too many, so that would be good), but they should be larger.
One more thing: Happy Holidays from the Central VA Organic Gardener!