Growing Grapes in Texas Jim Kamas Central Texas Gardener
I love Tait Moring's sense ofgardening style. Thanks so much for opening your gates for us. Right now we're going to talk aboutgrowing grapes. One of the hottest topics here in Texas because of all the wineries. We have Jim Kamas with us. It's great to have you back on theprogram. Welcome. Thanks, Tom, I appreciate it. Welcome back to Central Texas Gardener. You've just published a great new bookGrowing Grapes in Texas.
Congratulations on that! Thanks a lot. It took a couple years to get done, but I'm I'm pretty happy with it. Well you know, like I said, it's a hottopic. A lot of people are very interested in growing grapes in their backyard. Maybe one ofthose famous table grapes, like Concord or something like that. Well Concord ispretty tough to grow here. Concord likes acid soils which we don'thave. And it's much more adapted a cooler climates. If you wanted to grow Fredonia or some of the other lebrusca types, they'll work, but
Concord is a pretty tough one to grow here. Ok, well your book is filled with tips aboutvarieties and things like that. Let's focus on that home grower. You know , I know for example I go out to hillcountry every now and again to go to Fredericksburg, places around there. And I see wineries springing up like mushrooms now. And it kinda makes me wanna grow grapeshere in town. What does a home gardner need to know to get startedé Well if you're a homeowner and you want to grow enough vines to produce a little bit of wine
my advice is plant what you like. If you're planting a commercial vineyards we're going to have a very different discussion. But if you like Merlot, plant Merlot. If you like Syrah, plant Syrah. For smallscale, you have no big economicinvestment, so plant what you like and go with that. Yeah okay, that makes sense. In terms of the space needs, the sun,
all those kinds of things, grapes arerather particular and disease prone. Yes. So let's give people an idea of whatthe basics are that they would need to have any kind of success. Sure. Commercially our rows are spaced nine to ten feet apart, but in the backyard if you are maintaining the row centers with alawnmower or something, you can place the rows as close as six feet apart.And you can also go as tight as five to six feet between vines. You can put a lot of vines in arelatively small space.
So small space is OK. When we talk about the rows, we are talking about providing structures on which the the vines can grow and supportthemselves. Yes, a lot of times in California you'll see these free standing vines that are called head pruned vines. They don't do very well here because we need to keep our vines up off the ground because it rains here duringthe summer and they are very disease prone as you mentioned.
Aphids White Fly Control Using Only Water
Alright! This is John Kohler with GrowingYourGreens today we have another exciting episode for you and this one is going to be a quick oneat that. What we're going to do today is we're going to show you 3 easy, nontoxic,lowcost methods to get rid of the aphids in your garden, alrightéYou know, sometimes I use neem oil, Bronner's Sal Suds so if you could check my past episodeon that for the hard hitter but I don't always like to come out of the ring fighting.I do try to play nice and then escalate as needed. So, this are my first ways that Ilike to deal with aphids before I start getting out any sprays.So, step number one: I want to show you guys
what these aphids look like. It's likeâ€¦in this case they're gray but depending on what they're eating, what plant they'reon, they're going to turn different colors, I've seen them black and I've seen themred before. Basically, they show up on the bottom side of the leaves, on many times,and then especially when the flower isâ€¦ when it's going to flower and setting seed.It really likes the light tender shoots to like latch in to it. What aphids are is they'resoft body insects which literally send their little fangs, like a vampire into your neck,they're setting their fangs into the stems of the plants and the leaves of the plantsto suck out all the plant's juices, all
the nutrition that's supposed to be feedingthe plants so this will hinder your plant growth and can cause challenges. Although,a few aphids here and there are not a big deal but when you have a big outbreak likethis it can be a problem because they're going to multiply very quickly and spreadto infect other plants which we definitely don't want. So it's very important tokeep them under control. So, I want to go ahead and give you guys a closer shot of whatthis aphids look like and thanks to the advance optical technology of Canon we're goingto be able to do that. Checking out these aphids up close, checkit out, I can see them on there. Ok, we're
going to pan over, there you go, do you guyssee themé It's thoseâ€¦ I've got some wind here but they're on the stem there,all those little gray things on the stem there. So, now that you guys have seen what the aphidsare; the easiest way to control them is, number one, some sheers and we're going to go downto the plant and basically where they all are, they're on the top of the plant, we'regoing to just cut off this whole section. That kind of does me a favor too because Iwant this plant, the dinosaur kale, to produce more leaves instead of more flowers and shoots,although I do let some go so I can save seed. So we can still just cut off whole sectionsof plants and put them in the compost and
we're going to compost those aphids intofurther protein for the compost pile; that's way number one.Way number two is if you have it on leaves or even on the stems, you know, you've gotsome of the best aphis smashers in the whole world. I can do a lot of other things withmy fingers too but we've got aphid smashing fingers here so we can simply find the aphidson the back side of leaves and what I like to do is literally smoosh them. I just rubmy hand up on here, smoosh them all and I've got aphid fingers. Mmmm smells like somethingI know, but anyways so yeah, smoosh them all. So, these are the first two steps I may useto rid my garden of aphids. Now, yes, this
can take a bit of time, it's not as easyas spraying some junk but you're not sraying anything and this costs you no money ,exceptsome time. Have some local kids smash aphids for you. The next step is another way Ilike to do if I have to escalate, if I have a big aphid challenge; if there's maybesome plants in my garden that have an infestation then actually I don't want to snip off.I don't particularly care if I cut off pieces of the dinosaur kale but I do care about mytree collards I want them to go to seed so I can save some seed because it rarely goesto seed and so I'm going to use another technique, so let me go ahead and hare thatwith you next.