GRAPES IN BELARUS – GROWING
I planted the first grape bush on my plot 30 years ago. It was a variety Alpha. Then others appeared, because growing vines is easy and interesting.
For our climatic conditions, which is northeast of Belarus, Alpha was the most stable and widespread variety for growing in open ground and without shelter. Currently, I have not given up on it, it grows beautifully, entwining our gazebo, and we use the berries to make wine.
I grow table grape varieties in open ground. I have five of them: Kishmish 342, Rusbol, Krasotka, Nadezhda AZOS and Delight. At the beginning of August, Kishmish 342 ripens, then Rusbol, Vostorg, Krasotka, and in September Nadezhda AZOS.
PLANTING GRAPES IS A RESPONSIBLE BUSINESS
I grew seedlings indoors from lignified cuttings. Rooted and with one green shoot, I planted them at a distance of 2 m from each other in a row, which was located from north to south. It was the second ten days of May, when the soil mixture in the planting hole warmed up to 10-12°C. On the north side the site is protected by a continuous fence.
I dug planting holes measuring 60x60 cm and 70 cm deep.. Since real clay already lies at this depth, the bottom was covered with small stones in a 15 cm layer for drainage, so that water would not stagnate. The holes were filled with a mixture of humus (1 buckets), fertile soil from the upper soil horizon and 5 buckets of sand. First I added 0 liters of wood ash, 5 cups of superphosphate, 2 cups of potassium chloride and mixed thoroughly.
The seedlings in the pits were installed vertically, but so that when the soil shrinks, the upper eye of the shoot cut into a stump would be 5-7 cm below the soil level. With this planting, the trunk of the future bush is formed underground, and not above it. This condition is mandatory for grape varieties that need shelter for the winter.
Some gardeners for watering and fertilizing the vines, pipes with a diameter of 70-100 mm are installed near the wall of the pit, the lower end of which rests on the drainage. I do not have them. But every spring, after the soil has thawed, within a radius of 40-50 cm from the center of the bushes, I use a crowbar to punch 10-15 holes to a depth of 50 cm. They serve all summer and autumn for fertilizing and watering. Thanks to these holes, nutrition and moisture immediately saturate the root layer and are available to the plants.
Above the plantings I built a vertical trellis made of galvanized wire with a diameter of 3 mm and 4 tiers.
FEEDING IS VERY IMPORTANT FOR GRAPES
During the season, I feed the bushes with aqueous solutions of complex fertilizers 3-4 times. Early in the spring, after removing the dry cover, I add 100 g of nitrophoska (16:16:16) dissolved in 20 liters of water under the bush. The second time I feed the grapes before flowering (as soon as the clusters begin to form) with the same solution.
I apply the third fertilizing when the berry is the size of a pea. This time, under each bush I add 50 g of nitrophoska (16:16:16), dissolved in 15 liters of water. At the same time, the berry is formed larger, its quality improves.
That the vine overwintered painlessly, one shelter is not enough. It should mature well. To do this, at the beginning of September I feed the bushes with phosphorus-potassium fertilizers. For each bush, in 10 liters of water, I dissolve 20-25 g of double or 40-50 g of simple superphosphate and 20 g of potassium sulfate or potassium chloride and water it. And to speed up ripening, every 4-5 days I spray an additional 2-3 vines with an infusion of sifted ash: pour 1 liter of ash into 10 liters of water and leave for 5-6 days, stirring occasionally. For better adhesion of the solution, I add 50 ml of liquid soap.
Once every 4 years, I add 1-5 buckets of humus or well-ripened compost into circular grooves 40 bayonets deep, which I dig around the perimeter of the bush 3 cm from the center, lightly compact it and cover it with earth.
FORMING AND CUTTING GRAPES
I form bushes with two sleeves. During the growing season, I tie up the shoots all the time, but not vertically, but with an inclination in the form of a fan. At the beginning of summer, I break out excess and underdeveloped shoots, and then begin to pinch out the stepsons above one or two leaves.
After the first frost, I prune the bushes. I cut out the fruit shoots, as well as the green part and stepsons on the shoots that grew from replacement knots.
You cannot remove all growing points of a green shoot. By simultaneously removing all the shoots at the very base without leaving 1-2 leaves and pinching the top of this shoot, overwintering buds, laid to form a future harvest, can awaken. As a result, thick shoots with inflorescences will grow from them and the harvest will be ruined. Therefore, when carrying out operations with the green parts of the bush, it is imperative to leave 2-3 stepsons at the top of the shoot. If they grow long, they are shortened, leaving 2-3 leaves on each. When new stepsons appear from the axils of the left leaves, they are also pinched over 2-3 leaves.
TO KEEP THE VINE HEALTHY
Primary Fungal diseases oidium, mildew, gray rot and anthracnose cause harm to grapes.. I carry out several preventive treatments against them.
In the spring, when the buds are swelling, I spray the bushes with 3% Bordeaux mixture. When the fourth leaf appears on the shoots, I treat it with Ordan or Metaxil. A week and a half before flowering and two weeks after it, I spray the vine with Tiovit Jet.
At the beginning of berry ripening, I treat against gray rot with baking soda (100 g per 10 liters of water) and Fitosporin-M.
After leaf fall, before dry cover, to destroy the fungal infection, I spray the pruned bushes with 5% iron sulfate.
Reference by topic: What work needs to be done in the vineyard before frost?
GROWING GRAPES IN BELARUS – VIDEO
© Author: Sergey Kupriyanov, Mogilev Photo by the author
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