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BritGrower

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I have a grape vine ready to be trained, the main trunk has now reached around the curved side of a polytunnel and is now at it's highest point (8ft).



I have the materials to fit horizontal wires for tieing in lateral growth amd I can understand and follow the pruning that I will need to do this season and in the future after reading many sources, but a couple of things are unclear to me, as I cannot seem to find refernce to them online.

1. These lateral sideshoots (cordons?), how far apart should they be, before I train the next one out laterally?
2. Sub laterals (rods?): I take it I do not just let these grow until they reach the next lateral up the plant, and do I encourage them to grow upwards or downwards?
3. I'm guessing that initial sub lateral growth is determined by pruning two leaves after a bunch of grapes, but in the future when the vine is stronger would you allow two bunches of grapes then prune two leaves beyond that or always stick with just one bunch.

I just want to ensure that I get this initial framework correct and ensure I have future proofed it for max production later on.

Many thanks for your help!

Steve...:)
 

balatonwine

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Vine training actually includes a lot of issues. It can be complicated and depends on the type of grape you are growing (wine or table grapes, vinifera or hybrid, etc.), where you are growing it, how you are growing it, etc..

Normally, one trains a vine during the winter dormant pruning season, not now when it has growth, except for maybe a Pergola training method.




Wine Folly has an article on some the most used training methods. To give the best advice to your question, please start with which one did you envision using for your grapes? And what type of grape is this (the varietal).

 

BritGrower

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Vitis vinifera - Black Hamburg is the grape I photographed in my first post and is in my polytunnel.

I want to grow this as a double cordon and the roots are planted inside, This part of the tunnel stays damp year round but not waterlogged, hence my choice to grow fully indoors. I want to grow cordons out left and right to the length of the tunnel (28ft) so 14ft each side. I want to grow the first dbl cordon at around 5ft height, then another one further along the main stem and possibly even a third, I guess now it becomes more of a Scott Henry shape, but I am unsure how much space I should leave between one dbl cordon and the next and this will determine if I have two or three dbl cordons.

Regards,

Steve...:)
 

balatonwine

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You have to think in terms of what amount of growth will give you maximum yield with appropriate ripeness. And that will depend on your environmental conditions. You may, for example, force 14 ft on each side. But that may result in decreased yield, and less ripe fruit. While just 7 ft on each side may get you actual optimal yield (which may be more fruit, at better ripeness, than if you used 14 ft). That is, in grape growing, bigger is not necessarily better. What works best may be best determined from other growers in your area. On this, local knowledge is best.

As a rule of thumb, a canopy will need at least 4 ft (1.2 m) of leaves above the cordon to ripen fruit in an ideal environment. So, if you grow both up and down, then you need 8 ft of total vertical space for the canopy. If you want to grow vertically and tie the vine down (and you will need to spend a lot of work to tie them, as they typically will want to grow up), then a modified Scott Henry (ala a Smart-Dyson system) is easier to work with as it requires only one cordon:

 

BritGrower

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Many thanks for your informative answer baltonwine, I'll have to see if I can find a grower close to me for answers to some of those questions that are to do with our local area and climate.

Much food for thought in your post.

Steve...:)
 

CK55

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Many thanks for your informative answer baltonwine, I'll have to see if I can find a grower close to me for answers to some of those questions that are to do with our local area and climate.

Much food for thought in your post.

Steve...:)
Keep us updated on how it goes, was a informative read for everyone.
 

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