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Last Frost and Pruning

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Ricky2Guns

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As I drive down the countryside I see some vineyards have started pruning. They may also just be pruning excess. I also see Pecan trees being pruned. I’m in the El Paso, NM border so of course we get warm weather sooner. My question is for your particular area when do you begin to prune?
 

jgmillr1

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I'm in zone 5A and already have half the vineyard pruned. Ideally, it is best to prune after the worst of winter has passed so you can take into account winter damage. However, it takes me 3 months to prune the vineyard, so I don't have the luxury of waiting until March. So I prune long and leave extra buds in case of a damaging cold snap or late spring freeze.

When I was touring the Rhone valley in SE France a few years back, they had already finished pruning by mid November. The winters probably aren't too harsh between Lyon and Marseille so no real need to control for winter damage. Still was amazing though to me.
 

Ricky2Guns

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Sounds good, here in El Paso last frost is around 24 March. I’m ready to get back into listening to relaxing music while enjoying the morning/afternoon pruning the vines. Of course I only have 9 vines that sprawl over the entire run of the perimeter rock wall in the back yard so its no real labor for me. This weekend I will cut all the vines that went over and down the wall.

I’ll keep monitoring this site for more info on when its best to scale back to 1 or 2 buds. I had a really good harvest last fall with some of the tips I got here. The vines produced so much grapes I rang nearly every bell on my block to share my varieties of Black Manuuka, Syrah, Cab-Sav, Summer Royal, Vanessa, the vines were only a year old. I didn’t allow my 2 Thompsons vines to produce grapes so they can focus on growing larger canes for this coming season.
 

gsf77

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I live almost dead center of the state of Alabama. I normally prune mine back to 1-3 buds after leaf drop. However this year I finished up last week. It takes me 2-3 days to prune mine. Around here last year was a great year for blue berries, grapes, scuppernongs, and pecans. I have a friend of mine who lives around the Smokies and he was telling me about his vine. He said it hasn’t produce much of anything in the last few years. He took the hedge trimmer to it and had a lot of fruit the following season. I got to thinking, his vines may not look as pretty as mine but what the heck..,
 

srcorndog

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Are you growing just to eat or trying to make wine. In either case you should decide on some type of trellis system I would recommend a Geneva double certain or Watson google both you decide.
 

Rice_Guy

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When I lived in Houston I tried to have the garden planted in the free days between Christmas and new years, ,,, in zone 4 I aim for March mainly since the fingers don’t freeze.
 

Ricky2Guns

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I’m growing just for table grapes to enjoy with wine. I have many hobbies and don’t have room to store equipment for all of them, so wine making is out for now. I did set up a two cable VSP like the local vineyards have. I follow all the same set up, pruning times, etc as
La Vina, a well known local vineyard, so far, sooooo good.

What I could use help with is my micro Orchard of only 5 fruit trees :) I have no one locally to follow on those. They are Asian Pear, Southern Bartlett, Fuji Apple, Golden Delicious, and Arbequenia Olives.
since they all put out a good crop last season my question is mostly on how much I should prune back.
 

VinesnBines

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I'm in zone 6a/b (right on the cusp). I pruned baby vines in late February last year and that was too early since we had several late frosts and freezes. This year I'll be doing a light pruning in March and again in very late March/early April to delay bud break. A lot of vineyards in Virginia (zones 6b/7a) will be doing clean up pruning in February and March with the final pruning in mid-March to late March.

We know not to plant our tender annuals before May 10 or be prepared to re-plant.
 

Snafflebit

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In California the rains dictate when to prune. It is best to wait for the rains to stop, or to plan a pruning during a dry spell because fresh pruning wounds are susceptible to Eutypa spores kicked up by rain. or you can seal the wounds. But given the massive amount of grapes to prune, you get in, do the job and get out however you can.
 
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