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Indoor Grape Vine

Lincolnshire, United Kingdom Gb

I have three vines in an indoor summerhouse, every year (past ten years!) i get scores of bunches of grapes but loose them all around May time when they are no bigger than large pin heads. They appear to go to seed, drying up and falling off, the vine continues to thrive. Some grapes (odd bunches) do grow. I think i have tried everything, heat, cold, water, no water etc etc. Can anyone help before i loose them this coming season?? thanks for all your answers, i think my problem is probably in the pollination, everything growths very strongly and continues to grow throughout the summer even when the small grapes have dried up and fallen off as if they have flowered. There is plenty of light i have over various years tried over watering/under watering but the same always happens. The odd bunch of grape (they are black table grapes) do grow now and again and they are delicious. I'll try cross polinating, whats the best methods??



It looks as if they have not been pollinated, the fact is they have not made any seed only fruit , like you can buy seedless Grapes.. You may have to pretend you are a Bee and make sure the pollen is transferred to the stigmas. Or obtain a flowering branch of another Grape Vine to ensure cross fertilization, as it may be like Apples needing a mate.

10 Dec, 2008


It may be your culture method, now is the time to prune, hard back to the main rods, bring the rods down to a horizontal level.
Feed the root area with blood, fish and bone, super phosphate and sulphate of potash, plus a good mulch of humus.
In February thin out the developing buds, tie the rods back up to main support.
Stop growth at 2 leaves after developing bunches of grapes and tie in, then one leaf on side growth.
Watch out for adult vine weevil in May.
Thin out bunches in July.

10 Dec, 2008


Just a little addition,
When we pollinated we cut down on spraying and damping down, letting the flower open.
Bang the main rods about midday for three or four days.

10 Dec, 2008


maybe your not watering any wear near enough

10 Dec, 2008


My recollection is that grapes are wind pollinated not insect pollinated. I may be wrong, but cross-pollination is always preferred. I would suggest Siegerrebe, and all the Angevines and possibly Muscat of Norwary. Doctorbob is correct in his suggestions.

This is a long issue, and I would suggest a web search for British viticulture links.

I put in a vineyard with low heat index grapes. Madeline Angevine, sylvaner, Muscat, Mueler Thurgau and two red grapes. Dornfelder and Dunkelfeder. Regen might have been a better choice. I am propagating the latter.
If you planted a Merlot, or Pinot or other high heat index grape, nothing you do will help.

First horizontal arms are at 1 ft. above the ground, and I keep them to only four feet in each direction. Three upgright spurs. Fruit, thinned to three clumps ea. I also have two replacement canes to replace last years horizontal arms.

In a greenhouse training and everything would be different.
Is the greenhouse glass or fiberglass? If the latter you may simply not be getting enough light. Such materials deterorate after a time.

This is one home grown fruit that I generally say. BUY IT.
Same for the vineyard I started. The yield vs. the expense and labor just is not profitable. Even most wineries that are successful, are not because of sales of their wines but of the gift store add ons. This is one hard way to earn a living.

12 Dec, 2008


Here I was thinking you lived on my side of the equator, but no. Grapes shouldn't ripen in May. They ripen late summer and get picked early autumn. Doctorbob if these grapes are grown in an indoor summerhouse, can the May weevel still get to them? I don't know much about indoor grapes. Do you get enough sunshine in through the roof of the summerhouse? Skyline it is not clear if Ianwarsap is talking about wine grapes or table grapes. Somehow I think he is talking about table grapes. But weather table or wine grapes they need pruning back hard each winter, to ensure healthy growth in spring. Skyline we did have cellar sales and not have a gift store. People left with cartons of bottles of wine. Ianwarsap when is it you get these scores of bunches, how come they still hang in there in May???
Have to ask the expert about the pollination, I forgot. I am sure we had scores of bees there, as the beekeeper always brought his hives early summer to our place.
Ianwarsap, what kind of grapes do you have and which species? It doesn't matter how old the vines are, I still had grapes after 25 years. The poor vines were old and rustic and nearly fallen over grown like that because of prevailing winds, yet I pruned them back each winter and they were thankfull.

12 Dec, 2008


I explained the culture methods for dealing with grapes for personal use, we are not talking mass production. They are being grown on a small scale for personal use.
Adult vine weevils are active in May and will feed on the tender parts of the vine, hence damaging the grapes in their infancy.
Our method of control was to place young Hydrangea leaves on the floor of the vinery and inspected them and caught and destroyed the adults, replacing the leaves as they withered until the insects had been destroyed.

12 Dec, 2008


Doctorbob, That is a great idea. We may have a different vine weevel here. So far I have seen no activity on the grapes or hydrangeas. Strawberry Vine Weevil, is what we have. It works on Rohodendrens and Bergenia and is devastating on strawberries..

Bergenia leaves would be my trap leaf here.
Here in the Northwest, bee activity is nill at the time the grapes blossem If insects are involved it would be bumblebees or mason bees. I do not have mason bee nests up there, so I do think some are self-fertile, and those that are not are benifited by having other varieties planted near by.

I suspect that mason bees would be benificial, but not necessary. In a greenhouse, bee presence would be necessary, as well as having two or more different plants.

12 Dec, 2008

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