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.
Prairie Yard Garden Growing Grapes
(gentle music) Prairie Yard Garden is a production of the University of Minnesota Morris in cooperation with Pioneer Public Television. Closed captioning is provided by Mark and Margaret YackelJuleen in honor of Shalom Hill Farm, a nonprofit rural education retreat center in a beautiful
prairie setting near Windom in southwestern Minnesota. Shalom Hill Farm, shalomhill Did you hear that a new crop is appearing on the prairieé Growing grapes has created an interest among a few individuals who like the challenge of adapting it to our region. Join me on Prairie Yard Garden as we visit a vineyard to learn about the process and challenges
of growing grapes on the prairie. (soft lighthearted music) A new crop has appeared on the prairie: growing grapes And today I have Florian Ledermann with me who's been involved with the process for the last four to five years. Florian welcome to the show and tell me, how did you get interested in growing grapesé ^We got interested actually at the
University of Morris's Horticultural Night. We sat down in a tent and learned that the university just released four new varieties of grapes that are actually coldhardy. And before that, I always kind of figured grapes were the crop that just kind of came up and never really bore and died every winter and died back. So that's what spiked our interest.
And so that very nextspring, we bought five. And they survived and I did a little more research and decided to go with an acre. And a year later, another acre so we ended up with 1,350 vines as a result of that little adventure in Morris. Larry That's interesting. 1,300 vines, how long does it take you
to put all those in the groundé Florian We used family labor. (Florian laughs) So we had, it took us, I think probably when we were planting, it took us about threedays to put one acre in. That would be for the planting. The posts and the trellis system and everything
Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards NC Weekend UNCTV
gt;gt;gt; WHEN YOU THINK OF THE NORTHCAROLINA MOUNTAINS, YOU MAY THINK OF PANORAMIC VIEWS ANDWATERFALLS. VINEYARDS MAY NOT BE ONE OF THEFIRST THINGS THAT COMES TO MIND, BUT PRODUCER CLAY JOHNSON SHOWSUS HOW THAT'S CHANGING IN AT LEAST ONE MOUNTAIN COMMUNITY. gt;gt; HENDERSON COUNTY IS NORTHCAROLINA'S APPLE COUNTRY. THOUSANDS OF ACRES OF ORCHARDSCOVER ITS ROLLING HILLS. IT'S ALSO ALAN WARD'S HOME.
HIS FAMILY FARMED THIS AREA FORGENERATIONS. WARD WORKED IN THE FINANCIALSECTOR BUT DECIDED TO LEAVE THAT FIELD FOR A FARM FIELD. gt;gt; DON'T HUNT, FISH OR PLAYGOLF, SO FARMING WAS A NATURAL FOR ME. gt;gt; WARD LOOKED INTO GROWING WINEGRAPES BUT WAS TOLD THIS REGION COULDN'T GROW GOOD GRAPES. gt;gt; SO I KIND OF TAKE OFFENSE ATTHAT AND TOOK THAT AS A
CHALLENGE. gt;gt; WARD DID EXHAUSTIVE RESEARCH. gt;gt; GREATEST LESSON I LEARNED ISTO ASK QUESTIONS AND NOT ASSUME AND TO ASK QUESTIONS FROM THOSETHAT KNOW. gt;gt; AND HE LEARNED HE COULD GROWA WIDE VARIETY OF GRAPES HERE. gt;gt; WE DO HAVE SOME OF THE BESTSOILS HERE THAT ARE VERY SIMILAR TO THE SOILS IN FRANCE, IN THEBURGUNDY REGION. gt;gt; THE HIGH ELEVATIONS CAN BE ACHALLENGE.
gt;gt; WE DO HAVE HIGH ELEVATIONS,BUT WE'RE SO FAR SOUTH THAT WE'RE VOID OF KIND OF THE SUPERFREEZES AND THE LATE, LATE FROSTS. gt;gt; FOR THE STEEP TERRAIN, WARDBOUGHT THESE ITALIAN VINEYARD TRACTORS. THEY ARE NARROW AND LOW TO THEGROUND. gt;gt; AND THEY ARTICULATE IN THECENTER, LIKE IF THIS IS THE CAB AND THIS IS THE CHASSIS WHERETHE ENGINE IS, YOU HIT A A
ROCK OR A HOLE, THESE THINGSARTICULATE. SO IT WOULD BE VERY HARD TO TURNTHEM OVER UNLESS YOU DROVE THEM OFF A CLIFF. gt;gt; WARD'S YEARS OF RESEARCH ANDWORK PAID OFF. IN 2012, HE OPENED SAINT PAULMOUNTAIN VINEYARDS. IT'S THE FIRST COMMERCIALVINEYARD AND WINERY IN HENDERSON COUNTY. HE'S GROWING 14 VARIETIES OFGRAPES, MOSTLY FRENCH VINIFERA,
AS WELL AS SOME GERMAN ANDAUSTRIAN VARIATIONS. THE DRY RIESLING IS ONE OF THEMOST POPULAR. gt;gt; HAS A VERY HONEYSUCKLE NOSETO IT. SO WHEN YOU SMELL IT, YOU THINKIT'S GOING TO BE SWEET, BUT THEN ON THE PALATE IT'S VERY DRY. gt;gt; IT PAIRS WELL WITH POULTRY. THE CABERNET SAUVIGNON IS A RICHRED WITH A TASTE OF BLACK CHERRY AND A HINT OF SPICE.