Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Muscadine Fall Maintenance Reminder

It's time to remove any fruit left on the muscadine vines
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Removal of fruit.
Any fruit left hanging on the vine that was not harvested should be removed. If left on the vine the fruit will rot or mummify (become raisin like) on the vine. This rotting fruit can lead to a build up of disease over the winter and will be present in the spring. If you do not remove the fruit you will have much more disease pressure such as ripe rot or macrophema rot that can affect next years harvest.

Many vines will also have what are called "shot berries", these are grapes that get about as big as a dime and are green and will not ripen on the vine. They are the product of the vine either trying to set a second crop or late blooms being pollinated but do not have enough time allowed for the ripening of the fruit. Any green or shot berries should also be removed this time of year.


Do not prune too early. For years we pruned our vines beginning after the Thanksgiving Holiday. But through trial, error and experience we have found the best time to prune muscadine vines is from mid January to mid March. We have found that a vine that has not been pruned can handle colder temperatures or big swing in temperatures better than a vine that has been pruned. In general we experience our coldest temperatures from late December-January, by pruning later we are giving our plants a better chance of coming through the winter with little or no cold weather damage.

If you are used Blue-X plant shelters this year and your vines have reached the top wire, now is the ideal time to remove the shelters.

On a planting report we have a beautiful crop of muscadine vines this year, so if you are thinking about adding a few vines or considering planting some acreage now is a good time to begin getting your orders in. Take advantage of the Early Bird Discount by ordering before November 15th. The all new 2013 Catalog will be available later this week. Check it out or request one to be mailed to you.

I hope these tips will ensure  that you have an abundant crop for 2013.

Happy Planting & Keep Growing!
Greg Ison

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