Anyone growing Grapes in Edmonton, Alberta?

Discussion in 'Grapes and Grape Vines' started by Granrey, Aug 31, 2008.

  1. Charles Philip

    Charles Philip Member

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    Location:
    Edmonton, Canada
    I would love to discuss pruning practices that maintain a smaller size of the grape plants, and thereby encouraging more fruit production.
     
  2. sgbotsford

    sgbotsford Active Member

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    Location:
    Rural Edmonton Alberta area, Canada
    Grapes require a fair amount of work to get decent production.

    * Low cordon for the main branch. This gives your core plant maximum winter protection.


    In our climate we have a tough time getting enough heat for grapes to ripen well.

    * Grow against a light colored south facing wall.

    * Put a strip of dark colored rock in front of them. This will soak up heat during the day, and re-radiate it at night.

    Any tricks for getting ripe tomatoes can also be used.

    One thing I've thought of, but not done: Construct a zig zag wall of solid face pallets with the zig meeting the zag at about 150 angle. Orient them so they are actually facing a bit east, or rather the zig is east west, and the zag faces south east. This can help them warm up early in the morning. Paint them white. Plant one vine at the bottom of each south facing V so that it gets sun from early morning to late afternoon. My thought is that this would form a hot pocket.

    The north side could be used for lettuce, cabbage, and other vegies that tend to bolt in summer. Or hostas, astilbe, or other shade lover.
     
  3. Delvi83

    Delvi83 Member

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    Location:
    Novara, Italy
    It depends on cultivars.....some can resist -5 ° F or lower !!!
     
  4. TerryR

    TerryR New Member

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    Location:
    Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada
    With the snow and -5 c temps of early September 2014, my rather large 'Trollhougan' had froze back most severely right to the base of the plant. Such was a bit of a surprise, though the vine had been lush and green with little sign of hardening off when the early cold struck. I expected similar of 'Somerset', though it managed to maintain a good deal of wood and this summer produced a few small clusters of high quality fruit. Both the fruit and vines of 'Somerset' ripen early and the plant displays good decent hardiness, thus definitely worthy of trial on the prairies.
     
  5. sgbotsford

    sgbotsford Active Member

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    Location:
    Rural Edmonton Alberta area, Canada
    Ideas for overwintering:

    If you have access to flax straw, use it. It's fairly prickly, so mice don't like it, and it's stiff enough that it doesn't mat down as much as grain straw does.

    ***

    Pruning: Try youtube.

    ***

    Enough heat:

    * In spring, cover the ground around the roots with clear plastic. This will warm up the ground faster. Plastic should not be tight to the surface, and should not be sealed around the edges. You want some air.
    * In summer replace clear plastic with something white. This should surround the base of the plant and extend several feet south. This will reflect more sunlight onto the plants. This apparently works better than black plastic

    Earlier I suggested dark rock to keep them warm at night. Grapes are mostly grown in mediteranean climates -- fairly dry, so with marked difference between day and night temps. OTOH, dark surfaces will heat up, and warm the surrounding air.

    An easy way to make coloured surfaces is to paint old carpet. (Paint the back side. ) Carpet is a good weed barrier.
     

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