Knowing how to grow muscadine grapes is pretty important when starting out with your own commercial vineyard business. It will make all the difference in how quickly and easily your business can grow, not only financially but also in terms of your client base. This article will tell you how I learned all about growing grapes properly and how I went about turning my garden into a thriving commercial vineyard.
Muscadine grapes are a native variety of wild grapevine native to the New World: the mulberry trees. They naturally have that old-growth wild vigor in them, and their development has been a marvel to behold for the last five decades or so. Growing them has been relatively easy for me; after all, they are extremely hardy grapes with firm, high-quality fruit. They have a low yield but very consistent fruit production and are surprisingly resilient plants.
So what exactly is the best time to plant them? You should plant them either in full sun or partial shade during their dormant season (the first week of December through January in most of the United States). This will allow them to receive the full dose of Vitamin D3 (the only real vitamin in grapes) they need as a vital food source during their dormant season. It will also help them make the most of their newly acquired root system and establish strong root networks throughout their growing field. Ensure they are planted far enough apart so that their new growth stems will have plenty of room to spread out before they start spreading out the actual fruit.
When I first started trying to grow muscadines, I was having quite a lot of difficulty. My first attempts at actually building a trellis to support my vines failed miserably. I learned my mistake and built a much more robust vine system that has since blossomed beautifully. Today I only use a small trellis to support two or three grapevines. One of my favorite things about my trellis is that it has a built-in screen so that any stray fruit that falls off the vine can be easily picked off and eaten on your next visit.
The key to growing muscadines is to keep them healthy during their growing season. One way to do this is to make sure they have access to all the resources they need. For example, I give them a bentonite/vermiculite fertilizer every month during their growing season. I also give them a liquid fertilizer every six weeks during the summer. These two liquids make sure they get the best start in their life, giving them everything they need to produce big, bold, fruited plants that will rival the best vintners. In addition, the liquid fertilizer serves as an important part of their pest control since it helps prevent the wine from becoming a nuisance by attracting unwanted visitors.
Another effective way to maximize your vine’s potential is to maintain a perfect flowering schedule. When I say perfect flowered, I mean that you don’t cut back the amount of fruit produced during your growing season because you are afraid of an outbreak of insects or diseases. This approach makes perfect sense if you want to grow big and bold grapes to compete with the best vintners. Your crops should be large and robust during the prime growing season and continue to grow strong and healthy throughout the year.
The best time of year to plant your muscadine grapevine is in the early spring, but there isn’t really a set rule for when you plant them. Some people prefer to plant them right after May, and others like to wait till the last week of June. However, for your peace of mind, wait until the ground has warmed up from late fall to early spring. If you’re planting them right after a hard frost, you’ll probably want to place them in a cold frame with a screen top to protect them from too much heat and sunlight.
There are many varieties available to choose from, so you’re sure to find the perfect choice for your particular climate and soil. It would be truly unfortunate to harvest your crop before it’s ready. However, if you are new to growing grapes and muscadines, I suggest that you purchase a small container garden kit that contains all the equipment you’ll need. There are even kits that contain the starter plant and fertilizer for the first growing season.