Purchasing or Propagating Vines

Purchase grapevines from a reputable nursery. Place orders early to ensure that the desired cultivars will be available. Request that the grapevines arrive in early spring, and plant as soon as possible after they arrive.

An alternative to purchasing vines is to propagate vines from cuttings of a known variety. (It is illegal to propagate vines that are patented.) Making your own cuttings is inexpensive, requires no special equipment, and is usually successful. Most grape cultivars root readily from dormant hardwood cuttings.

First, choose healthy plants of moderate vigor growing in sunny areas to supply cutting stock. Take cuttings (no more than one or two per plant) anytime from late fall after the leaves have dropped to early spring before

Figure 15. You can propagate your own grape vines by making cuttings from dormant one-year-old canes.

Figure 15. You can propagate your own grape vines by making cuttings from dormant one-year-old canes.

Tip end

Tip end

Bud buds swell. Select one-year-old canes that are 1/4 to 1/3 inch in diameter (see Figure 15).

Cut the bottom of the cane at a 45 degree angle just below a bud or node, and make an upper cut 1 inch above a bud. Each cutting should have about three buds. Place cuttings in damp peat moss, seal in a plastic bag, and store at 30 to 40 degrees F in a root cellar, refrigerator, or hole in the ground until the spring. If stored in the ground, place mulch over the top to maintain uniformly cold temperatures.

When planting in the spring, be sure to position the end of the cutting that was closest to the trunk in the ground and the end of the cutting that was nearest the tip above ground. If planted in well-prepared soil, roots will form from the bottom of the cutting.

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