Pruning advice for newbie

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Mkrizzz83

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Hey there, I’m new to this forum and grape growing in general. Located in Milwaukee. Last year I planted 6 vines (Frontenac and Marquette). My question is what do I do with this years growth. I pruned in winter back to pencil thickness and the trunks are sprouting like crazy. I’m still trying to do trunk development to teach my top wire and not looking for grapes yet. My question is, what do I do with all of the buds that are sprouting? Do I let them go a while and then choose two close to the top and flush cut the rest to promote those reaching the top wire? If so, when should I remove the rest of the buds? I’m hesitant to remove them because I don’t want to lose all the energy generation from the vines. Any advice would be helpful. I’ve attached a picture of one of the vines as they are all in about the same growth stage.

Mattimage.jpg
 

srcorndog

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remove that wire raped around your vine first and replace with a 5/16 rebar use a piece of hay rope that will rot off do not tie to tight allow for growth. Remove the suckers of the bottom leaving the top three train one to the right and one to the left.
 

Mkrizzz83

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That’s not wire, it’s a very loose piece of string tied to the top trellis wire so it’s not tight around the vine at all. Second, when should I remove all the buds I don’t want? Should I do it now or wait til they are longer to choose the strongest ones?
 

sour_grapes

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I cannot help you with your questions, but I want to say "Welcome to WMT" from a fellow Milwaukeean.
 

balatonwine

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If those were my vines, and only one years growth, I would strip and remove all but the top 2 to 3 buds now. If they are two or three year growth I would leave 4 to 5 buds. All at the bottom would be removed in all cases.

Leaving buds does not loose energy, rather it weakens the vine. Because a young vine has two options: (1) put energy into buds or (2) put energy into roots. If you leave too many buds you long term weaken the vine as it does not then develop a strong root system. Vines are amazing plants, they will grow a lot of foliage even with just a few buds. But with too many buds they will sap energy from the roots to grow those buds, and may have a shorter and weaker life span. Hope this helps.
 

Rice_Guy

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Welcome to WMT,
Do you know there is a vinters club in Milwaukee with quite a few folks who grow grapes and berries and dandelions etc? ,,, and we expect outside meetings as early as June.

@balatonwine gives the technical answer, and at this stage I would say you are lucky, the bunnies prune all my first year vines so I have never had your problem ,,, but then the neighbors are soybeans and corn with wood chucks and fox tossed in. My view is relax and see how it grows after all maybe in 2022 the bunnies will prune for you.
 
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