Umbrella Kniffin System for Growing Grapes
David Handley: I'm David Handley, with theUniversity of Maine Cooperative Extension, and we're here to talk about pruning grapes.Very simple system for farnorthern production. Here in Maine, we need to protect the vinesas best we can through the winter, but at the same time try to get enough light andexposure to the canes that we're going to get good fruit set, and good fruit quality. One of the systems you can use for labruscatype or concord type grapes, which are the ones that do best here in Maine, which isthe umbrella kniffin. As opposed to the four arm kniffin, the umbrella kniffin puts allof its canes up at the top, or the first year
growth that's going to fruit. What we're talking about with cane growthhere is one yearold growth that has a chocolate brown color, and nice smooth bark with budson it. We're going to be saving four canes, plus the permanent trunk, to give us all ofour fruiting structure. Everything else is going to be coming off of here, and that includesanything that fruited last year. You can tell the two yearold canes, or thecanes that fruited last year, because they'll be thicker, and they'll have gray, peelingbark. All of these are going to come off, and we're going to save the one yearold canewith the chocolate brown color, and the smooth
bark. The first step in pruning is to look at ourpermanent trunk and remove all of the two yearold growth, the growth that fruited lastyear, saving a few canes that we'll be using for fruiting this year. Our first step isto cut some of these off, looking at that older bark there. We just cut that out, getit right out of there. This will open up the planting, and that twoyearold wood is not going to fruit. Unless we take it out, we'll find that our fruitingwood gets further and further away from the trunk. Part of the reason we're pruning isto keep that fruiting wood concentrated right
near the trunk. With the umbrella kniffin, which is what we'repruning to here, we're only going to maintain four of those fruiting canes. We want themall concentrated near the top of the trunk, or the top wire on our twowire trellis. We'regoing to take each of the canes that remain behind. As you can see here, here's my nicefruiting cane, smooth bark. All these are buds that are going to breakand give us long, green shoots that will have bunches of grapes on them. We're going todrape them over the top wire, and then we're going to attach them to the bottom wire, togive you that kind of quot;umbrellaquot; look, thus
the name of the system called the quot;umbrellakniffin.quot; Then we're going to cut off the ends of thecanes, so that there's only about 10 buds on each one. We just count those from thetrunk. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10. If I need to leave one ortwo on there to make it reach the bottom wire, that's fine. I'll just go to where I can attachthis to the bottom wire, like that. I need two for the other side, to completeour umbrella. You can see this leaves me with several other fruiting canes, and I need tosave some of those as well, but they don't need to be as long. What I'm calling theseare quot;renewal spurs,quot; because we need the buds
from these shoots to come out and give uscane that we'll be able to put up on the wire next year. For every fruiting cane that I'm leaving behind,I also need to cut some renewal cane, or renewal spurs, to provide us with fruiting wood fornext year. I just cut these back to one or two buds, and if they're not where I wantthem I can cut them off completely. But for every fruiting cane, I need to leave at leastone renewal spur. I tend to leave a couple of extra renewalspurs here in Maine, because I'm very sensitive to the fact that I'm likely to get winterinjury almost every year.
Growing Hyacinth Bean Vines
In the world of dependable annual vines, Ithink one has to include a vine called hyacinth bean. Hyacinth bean, as you see right here,is an extremely easy vine to grow from seed, and as you can see, it does it a really nicejob at covering most arbors or trellises that you might have in the garden. And what's really nice about this vine isthat it offers almost several different looks throughout the season. When it first startscoming up and growing, it offers you these really neat, trifoliate leaves that are greenwith kind of reddish veins in them. And then we start to get these really neat flowersâ€”flowersthat are kind of almost like peashaped flowers
on these long spikes. But what's reallynice about them it then ends up producing these very largeâ€”these are kind of smallright nowâ€”very large, reddishburgundy, shiny, glossy pods. And these will last on the vine for latefalland winter interest. So, if you're looking for a vine that's easy to grow, you canstart these indoors, set them out after frost, will easily climb up any kind of support orstructure in the garden for a full open sun spot, think about hyacinth bean.
Plant Vines in Your Garden
Who says that gardens only grow at ground leveléVines that are fast growing add vertical dimension to your landscape. Hi, I'm William Moss. I'm going to show you how to take your garden to new heights by choosing, planting, and growing versatile vines. Vines do things that other plants can't, like scale fences, gardenobjects and walls. This enables them to block wind, absorbsound, and provide privacy screening and shade. Vine grow by three methods: twining, tendriling and clinging. Twining vines suchas honeysuckle,
morning glory, and this wisteria,twist their stems around objects as they grow upward. These are fastgrowing vines that require sturdy poles pergolas or arbors to support them.Structures clad in twining vines look great as focal points of raised beds or guard entryways. Tendril vines like clematis, grapes and passion flowersreach out and grab chain link fence, latticework, and trellis as they grow up.
Plant them at the base of anything you wantto adorn with flowers and foliage. Clinging vines like English ivy, Virgina creeper and and trumpet vine, grow by using aerialroots and suction cups to cling to solid surfaces. English ivycreates beautiful walls of green and trumpet vine has red flowers whichinvite friendly bees and hummingbirds to the garden. Clinging vines can drape a wall or garagein lush foliage creating a green backdrop for other plants.Planting vines is
easy. You can either start from seed or a potted plant. Simply the follow the directions on the back of the packet or tag and make sure they have somethingto latch onto they start to grow. If you're new to growing vines, try growingannual vines like morning glories cardinal climber or pole beans on atrellis. You can also make an easy, inexpensive tipi structure out of wooden or bamboo poles simplytied it at the top. Kids love bean tipis make a greatheight out on a summer day.
Every landscape you use a vertical lift,ask your Lowe's garden center expert about which vines work best in your yard. With the leafy and flowering talents of annual and perennial vines, your garden can scale to new heights.