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question about grapevine pruning

Posted: Thu Apr 09, 2009 5:29 am
by Polypodia
OK so I've been reading over various books and searching the internet, and am not able to get a distinct answer. I have a first year grapevine ("Niagara" variety) and not sure how to prune. The majority answer seems to be to let it go the first year and just prune off any fruit that may develop. During the Winter select the healthiest vine to become the trunk in the 2nd year and trim the rest. Other sources say trim back to a main vine first and keep it pinched back once it reaches desired height, then prune heavy in late Winter. Which is correct or recommended?

Posted: Sat Apr 11, 2009 1:40 am
by The Helpful Gardener
Here's what I do...

After leaf drop the first year I prune the top back to the height I want. In late winter, very early spring (before sap flows or the vines bleed out, very debilitating and possibly fatal) I will select my two side branches from the main trunk and prune everything else off, and the side branches back considerably (if I don't have the branches where I want them, I would tip the main tunk at this time, prune everything else and grow it out again). Then in late fall select back to the two branches and the established main height...

HG