imagesYou’ve decided to grow grapes in your backyard. Now you need to decide a few things before planting. Are you planting a vineyard? A trellis or an arbor to have a seating area under? Then you must decide on the type of grape you want to plant. Is it solely for eating or possibly making wine?

First you need to select an area in your yard that gets full sun. Next, is construct a trellis or an arbor before planting for young plants will need to be trained. You want your soil to be well drained, on the sandy side, PH of 5.3-6 is best. You want to purchase 1 year old grapes from a reputable nursery and plant in the spring. Plant grapes in the same depth as the nursery pots, pack soil firmly around the the roots. Prune newly set plants to a single cane, head back to 2-3 buds. The first season tie all shoots that develop to a stake. Fertilize the first year with 10-10-10 3 weeks after planting. The second year, cut all the canes back. For established grapes, prune when dormant, March or early April before the buds begin to swell. Select a couple of strong canes.                                                                                                                      Types of grapes for growing in New England: Labrusca grapes are hardier and have shorter ripening periods. “Concord” are one of the more popular grapes grown in New England due to their hardiness of -15 F. They are also popular for making juice, wine or jelly. They are blue colored. “Bluebell” is another hardy and disease resistant fruit.It ripens before September, larger than the concord and produces blue-black large compact clusters. images-28

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