Archive | Common Grape Vine RSS feed for this section

Vitis vinifera

16 Sep

Vitis vinifera fruit (03/09/2011, Amorgos, Greece)

Vitis vinifera fruit (03/09/2011, Amorgos, Greece)

Position: Full sun to partial shade  

Soil: Well drained

Flowering period: Mid spring

Eventual Height: 35m

Eventual Spread: 5m

Hardiness: 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a

Family: Vitaceae

Vitis vinifera is a long stemmed woody climbing vine, with flaky bark. The leaves are alternate, palmately lobed,  5-20cm long and mid-green. The leaves turn yellow, orange or red during autumn. Vitis vinifera use trees and other forms of support to climb to gain better access to light; using twining tendrils to gain support. The fruit is a berry, commonly known as a grape; in the wild species it has a 6 mm diameter and ripens dark purple to a blackish hue with a pale wax bloom. 

Vitis vinifera (03/09/2011, Amorgos, Greece)

Vitis vinifera (03/09/2011, Amorgos, Greece)

Vitis viniferacommonly known as the Common Grape Vine, is a species of Vitis native to the Mediterranean region, central Europe and southwestern Asia. In the wild this species is found by streams in humid forests. The wild form of the Grape is known as Vitis vinifera subsp. sylvestris with the cultivated form know as Vitis vinifera subsp. vinifera. Cultivars of this species form the basis of the majority of wines produced all around the world. Humans have been using this plant since the Neolithic period.

 The etymological root of the binomial name Vitis is derived from the Latin meaning ‘vine or grape vine’. Vinifera is derived from the Latin meaning ‘wine bearing’.

Vitis vinifera shading (03/09/2011, Amorgos, Greece)

Vitis vinifera shading (03/09/2011, Amorgos, Greece)

Vitis vinifera is useful to the landscape architect as a vigorous fruit bearing climber suitable for wall training. It can also be trained to provide a shade providing canopy. This plant requires supports to climb.

Ecologically, Vitis vinifera is a source of food for aphids called Phyloxera vastatrix, species which affect its rooting system. Birds, rabbits and deer also use the vine as a source of nutrition by nibbling the bark as well as eating the fruit.

Vitis vinifera prefers well drained soil conditions, soil pH being neutral to basic and soil texture from sand to clay.

The Royal Horticultural Society has given a number of varieties of the climber Vitis vinifera their prestigious Award of Garden Merit.

Vitis vinifera autumn leaf (05/12/2011, London)

Vitis vinifera autumn leaf (05/12/2011, London)

Vitis vinifera may require formative punning if grown as an ornamental climber. To produce quality grapes, choose a variety which is suitable for the climate. It should be pruned in late winter and if necessary once during the summer months.

%d bloggers like this: