Not often do you hear of someone growing their own grapes unless they own a winery, but in reality, grapes are fairly easy to grow, don’t require much space, and add a beautiful ornamental look to any garden. Learn how to grow grapes in your own yard with this easy to follow gardening guide and be the envy of your neighborhood. And who knows, maybe after a harvest or two, you might even think about making your very own wine!
How to Grow Grapes
There are many different grape varieties, so before you plant, it’s important to know which varieties will thrive in your climate and which will not. The North American variety for example, is cold hardy, meaning it will grow in colder climates, while the European variety will not sustain cold weather and do better in warm and dry climates.
Be sure to purchase grape vines from a reputable nursery and choose vigorous, 1-year-old plants for the best harvest.
Planting Grape Vines:
- Plant dormant, bare-root grape vines in the early spring.
- Before planting, be sure to build a trellis, or have a fence ready so that the vines can grow and spread out.
- Before planting, soak the roots in water for 2 to 3 hours.
- Soil will need to be deep, well draining, and loose.
- Try to plant in an area with full sun, or at least make sure your grapes will get morning sun.
- Space vines 16-20 feet apart.
- For each vine, dig a planting hole that’s about 12 inches deep and 12 inches wide and fill with 4 inches of top soil.
- Cover the roots with 6 inches of soil and tap down.
- Water after planting.
- In the first couple of years, the vines should not produce any fruit, but rather just grow in size and lengthen.
- Prune annually when vines are dormant, usually in March or April.
- In the first year, cut back all buds except for 2 or 3.
- In the second year, prune back all canes and leave a couple of buds on each of the arms.
- Do not fertilize in the first year.
- Use mulch to keep moisture.
So now that you know how to grow grapes, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to planting!