Once you buy your grapevines, it is important to maintain them properly so that you maximize your yield. Whether you want the grapes for wine or for delicious, inexpensive fruit, you want to ensure the grapes you choose will grow well in your climate. Once you have your grapes, you will then need to plant them properly.
Selecting an Area
You should make sure the spot you choose has full sun with a soil that is slightly acidic and has a good drainage system. Grapes will grow in almost any soil, other than wet or alkaline soils with four to five percent of organic matter. Over-fertilizing your soil is not healthy for the grapes, because it makes them grow fast without producing as much fruit.
You will want to have enough room to your plants because grape vines need to have good air circulation to prevent disease and fungus. Grapes prefer to grow on a slope, which will help the air move and will prevent frost in colder climates
To plant in rows, you will want rows aligned north to south so the plants receive the most sun unless you live in a hot climate. In hot climates, you may want northeast to southeast rows to reduce plant sunburn.
Once you buy your grape vines plants and they arrive, it is best to plant immediately. If you can’t do so, then you should keep the roots moist and cool. You can do this by wrapping the roots in a moist cloth or paper towel and place in the refrigerator.
When ready to plant, you will want to immerse the roots for up to six hours and then cut any broken roots off the plant. Dig your hole deeply and make sure each grape vine is at least six feet apart from another. Spread the roots in the hole and then shovel dirt into the hole.
Your grape plants will need about one inch of water every week for the first year. You will need to wet the roots specifically and misting or spraying won’t work well. Once vines are established, you won’t need to water them often because the leaves will drop.
Before planting, you should remove all weeds. However, after a few months, weeds may start to appear again, so make sure to hand pull or carefully hoe the weeds out from the base of the plant.