Inter-nodal shoots. Remove?

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mobrule

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Should I be removing shoots that are growing between the leaf and the main shoot aka laterals.
 
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Skashoon

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Yes they should be removed. They’re referred to a laterals or lateral shoots. Just snap them off.
 

BigH

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Should I be removing shoots that are growing between the leaf and the main shoot aka laterals.
what year are your vines? Are you talking all laterals, or specific ones?

H
 

mobrule

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3rd year vines with fruit. I was wondering generally whether laterals should be removed, not specific laterals. I want to be sure light and air penetrate the canopy and the laterals seem to hinder that...and I’m not sure whether they are contributing to fruit quality or taking energy away from the plant.
 

Skashoon

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I remove all laterals. I want the energy going into ripening grapes, not more vegetative growth. You are correct to want more circulation and sun to your ripening clusters. Some may disagree but I’ve been a lateral puller since day one. It works for me.
 

BigH

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3rd year vines with fruit. I was wondering generally whether laterals should be removed, not specific laterals.
Excessive laterals and leaves in the fruit zone should be removed to promote good airflow, good canopy penetration of pesticides, even cluster ripening and the development of good flavor compounds, but you don't want to over expose the fruit to the sun either. Beyond cluster zone lateral and leaf removal, I have not seen a research publication that has advocated for the blanket removal of all laterals. If you find such advice, please post a link. I did find this video. Looks like she removes the lowest 3 laterals on their VSP


A few things to keep in mind:

  • The energy for ripening grapes comes from photosynthesis, which is driven by leaf area
  • It takes about 12 leaves to ripen one cluster
  • Large, old leaves near the base of a shoot have less photosynthesis activity then newer, mid sized leaves
  • Any removal of leaves or laterals will envigor the vine, resulting in even more lateral growth
  • Leaf area from laterals might be important if you get hit with phyloxerra, deer pressure, or JB's
On mature vines, I don't remove laterals unless they are shading fruit, or a portion of the canopy gets crazy thick. I do practice shoot positioning (high wire cordon), so a few laterals below the fruiting zone usually don't create an excessively thick canopy. On my La Crosse, I have to remove more laterals because they are capable of growing from near the ground back up to the fruiting wire.

H
 

acorad

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I remove all laterals. I want the energy going into ripening grapes, not more vegetative growth. You are correct to want more circulation and sun to your ripening clusters. Some may disagree but I’ve been a lateral puller since day one. It works for me.
Maybe it depends on location, but I take most laterals off, for reasons that I explain here:

 

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