The Simplest Ways to Make the Best of Grape Vines

Vitis Vinifera   

It’s fun to start growing grapes in your home for its tasteful fruits used in jams, jellies, ice-creams, smoothies, fruit salads and wines. Grape fruit is botanically a berry with woody vines in the genus of Vitis. A vine in the narrowest sense is the grapevine. It generally preferred as growing habitat of trailing stems or runners.

You may be surprised to know the fact that 72 million tons of grapes are grown worldwide to produce 7.2 trillion gallons of wine per year….

Plant Structure: Grape vine species are predominantly seen in Northern Hemisphere region. Most grape varieties are wind pollinated and the flowers contain both male & female reproductive structures called inflorescence and each successful pollinated flower becomes a berry and turns into a cluster of grapes. Flowers are usually small and berries are big, bright color with sweet flavor that attracts birds to disperse seeds. Leaves of grape vine are edible and used in the production of dolmades. Plant grows to a height of 4-10 feet and produces tasteful berries for commercial applications.

Grape Varieties: You will be surprised to know the grape varieties as there are more than 10,000 species cultivated worldwide. All these varieties have been developed through grafting and other methods to produce hybrid varieties. Here is the list of popular grape varieties with its specifications…..

S. No Grape Variety Country Specification
1 Pinot Noir France & Germany Black color fruit, Ripe slowly
2 Sauvignon Blanc France Greenish yellow grapes, tastes vary
3 Semillon France Gold-skinned grape, Produces sweet wines
4 Viognier America Harvest late, sweet wine, low acidity
5 Shiraz South Western Iran Dark skinned grape
6 Riesling Germany Aromatic grape with high acidity

Companion Plants

Companion Planting is the method of planting different variety plants together to ensure better growth or high yielding crop plants. The table illustrates the companion plants of grapes i.e. love to growth with and avoid them…

Fruit Liked By Avoid
Grapes Basil, beans, chives, mustard, peas, oregano, blackberries, clovers Cabbage, garlic, radishes

Grapes Nutrition: Making grapes in your diet is a great source of adding energy to your body by supplying enough nutrients. One cup of green grapes contains 104 calories, 2 grams of proteins, 1.5 grams of fiber, 0.25 grams of fats and antioxidants. It is also a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, calcium, magnesium, iron that supports bone health.

How to grow grape vines?

Choose a grape variety: Certain varieties grow better in different areas with different flavors and appearances. To choose a grape variety, select the plants that looks healthy (i.e. virus free) and strong.

Pot & soil: Select a pot or container that holds 15-20 gallons of potting mix soil. Grape vine growth is based on the size of root system. Bigger the pot bigger the root it extends. Consider an optimum soil ph of 5.5 to 6.5 that balances nutrients for plant growth. Also prefer moist silt loam or well drain fertile soil to grow. Add a layer of mulch to the soil to retain moisture levels in soil.

Water & Sunlight: Grape vine does not prefer heavy water or rain so water the plants for a minimum of twice a week depending upon the climatic conditions. Avoid over-watering as it may result in damaging the plant to root rot. You can also add mulch to the soil to prevent soil erosion.

Grape vines thrive in moderate temperate zones. When the vines are long, at the time of flowering maintain an optimum temperature of 60-100 F to grow grapes faster.

Nutrient deficiency

Element Deficiency symptoms  
Nitrogen Reduction of overall growth, small berries, leaves become yellow
Potassium Necrotic leaf margins, develops interveinal chlorosis
Phosphorus Stunned roots, red dots on leaves
Iron Young leaves show interveinal chlorosis, loose cluster shoot berries
Manganese Reddening of adult leaves, small green veins

 Pests & diseases

Pests Diseases
Grape flea bettle Angular leaf spot
Grape berry moth Anthracnose
Mealy bugs Chlorosis
Birds Stem necrosis
Mites Grape vine yellows
Thrips Black rot
Leaf eating caterpillar Powdery mildew

Fertilizers: Fertilizers are mainly used to overcome pests & diseases and nutrient deficiency problems. These are mainly due to the lack of water, sunlight, nutrients supplied to the grape plants. So to overcome this problem, use insecticides or homemade organic sprays to deter pests and diseases. You can also use N-P-K fertilizers in the ratio of 10-10-10 only when the plant matures.

Harvesting:  Grapes are ready to harvest when they are ripe, rich in color and flavored. They are generally harvested throughout the autumn season. They can be stored about 6 weeks in normal temperate zone but can odors of other fruits and vegetables. Use cardboard boxes to place them separately and often from spoilage.

How to Propagate Grapes from Cuttings?

It’s easy to propagate grapes from stem cuttings.  For this take 4-6 inches of the cane stems of grapes and placed it in a glass of water about 2 inches deep. Now place the cuttings in sunlight to thrive faster. Leave it for few more weeks. Within 6 weeks root develops and is ready to transplant to outdoors. Use peat moss or sandy soil to grow grapes in pots or through landscape method. Provide nutrients to the plants to encourage growth and also to produce sweet berries.

Plant care

When you start growing grapes from seeds proper plant care must be taken…

  • Keep the soil moist but not wet.
  • Prune the top of leaf buds at planting time.
  • Water at the time of planting and prefer full sun.
  • Within few weeks the seed germinates and is ready to transplant outdoors.
  • So before planting soak the grape seeds in water for a minimum of 2-3 hours.
  • Make sure the container has holes at the bottom for proper drainage.
  • Wear gardening tools such as gloves, goggles and shoes when you cultivate plants.
  • Keep children and pets away from plants when you use fertilizers for better plant growth.
  • Do not fertilize the plant if the soil is weak (i.e. affected by pathogens). Fertilize during 2nd year of growth.

Health Benefits: 

Grapes contains powerful antioxidants like polyphenols, beta-carotene and resveratrol helps to prevent many diseases and reduces the risk of obesity & mortality…

Diabetes: Studies shows that consuming grape juice may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by 7% in adults. The pterostilbene compound in grapes also helps to lower sugar levels in blood.

Pregnant Women: Eating grapes is not only good for mother but also for babies because it contains magnesium that helps to reduce cramps and resveratrol controls cholesterol during pregnancy. They should be given a glass of fruit juice when they get hypertension.

Weight Loss: To lose weight you must have grapes in your diet that are low in calories and fats. It helps you to feel full with few calories. The flavonoid compounds in grapes helps to maintain healthy weight and live strong.

Skin & Hair: Grape seed facilitates hair volume, prevents scalp itchiness, stubborn dandruff and shine your hair.  Applying grape extract will soften your skin by removing dead cells. You can massage with this oil to nourish on skin and for the growth of cells.

Cancer: The polyphenols in grapes may prevent many types of cancer including lung, throat, pancreatic, prostate, breast and colon.  It also inhibits the growth of tumor cells in humans.

Heart Health: Polyphenol compounds in grapes supports heart health by promoting relaxation of blood vessels, maintain healthy blood flow and function. It increases the nitric oxide levels in blood that prevents blood clot and stimulates bad LDL cholesterol on arteries.

Side Effects: Grape is possibly safe when taken by mouth in small amounts.  Consuming grapes or its supplements in large quantities may cause…

  • Diarrhea
  • Blood clotting
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Put on weight

The Simplest Ways to Make the Best of Grape Vines

Start growing grapes in a pot or large container that produces tasty fruits and monitors your health. If you have amazing ideas about growing grapes in your home, please share your experience with us.

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