If you buy deciduous shrubs in autumn they might not be looking quite as beautiful as usual. The big benefit of planting shrubs in autumn is that by spring they will be well rooted in the garden and ready to burst into growth.
|Latin name:||Vitis vinifera 'Palatina' + 'Lidi' + 'Muscat Bleu'|
|Delivery type:||Supplied as container plant|
|Guarantee:||6 months growth and flowering guarantee|
|Leafs all year:||No|
|Harvesting:||September - October|
|Growing Height:||200 - 300 cm|
|Planting distance:||200 - 300 cm|
Ensure a well-drenched root ball before planting your Vitis vinifera - soak the plant in a bucket of lukewarm water.
Prepare a large hole and loosen the soil with a fork. Improve poor soil with a mix of humus rich compost before planting your grapevine at the correct depth - the top of the root ball should come to just below soil level. Fill the hole and heel well in before watering generously.
Vitis vinifera will thrive in a humus rich, permeable soil in the sun. Plant extra vines 150-200 cm apart. Growing in the greenhouse is of course also possible - as is, in a large planter on the patio, although your harvest will then be somewhat curtailed.
A grape is a climbing vine that needs support along a fence, pergola or a wall. Use chicken wire in places that need somewhere to tie the shoots in. Water extra in dry periods. Give a dose of lime in the autumn and a good mulch of mixed organic fertiliser in the spring. The soil should not be too wet for too long, this will not be tolerated. Keep birds off with netting or some other form of protection.
With the correct pruning technique you can expect a decent grape harvest.
Allow new plants to grow one main shoot and tie it in. The following year(s), keep side shoots at the required height by training them horizontally along wires. Side shoots from them can be cut back just before Christmas to just two buds (eyes) and these will grow really quickly in the spring.
You will see tiny bunches of flowers appear around June. Adult plants should be allowed to keep 2 to 3 flower clusters per side shoot. Cut back in June to 1 leaf past the furthest cluster of flowers.
When the grapes are grown to pea size, thin them out to allow more of them to grow bigger. In September, cut leaves away to allow the sun access and the grapes to ripen better.
The 'Palatina', 'Lidl' and 'Muscat Bleu' grapes are all juicy table grapes that form large bunches on the vine. Depending on the weather, the bunches should all be ripe from around the start of September. Vitis vinifera is a pest and disease resistant variety that grows fairly large grapes. A decorative vine, it will in any case be a pretty asset draped around a pergola or along a fence.
These three varieties of grape, 'Palatina, 'Lidl' and 'Muscat Bleu' are all self-pollinating.