Tuesday, November 6, 2007


It's been said that I'm obsessed with gardening, in fact, I heard it again just two days ago. I always want to reply with, "So?" I know I'm not alone and there are worse things in the world that a middle-aged woman could do with her spare time. I could be one of those crazy cat ladies that everyone talks about and looks at funny.

Oh . . . Yeah . . . So?

Anyway, I've got a new obsession within my obsession. Grapes! I want to grow grapes, just for eating. Even before we discovered the wild ones growing along the creek behind our property, I wanted to grow them, but Romie didn't think it was a good idea. That would mean more work he said. More work for whom?

While he does help me with the big stuff in the garden like digging ponds, planting trees, and moving the bigger rocks (and I'm very appreciative of his help), I'm the one that weeds, mulches, deadheads, cultivates, plants everything else, and generally takes care of the gardens.

He'd have to help me by putting in the posts and stringing the support wires, but once that's done, it would be my project. If he doesn't want to build the trellis, my dad said he'd help me and Romie's okay with that, so it looks like one way or another, we'll be growing grapes.
I know we won't be harvesting any for the first couple of years, but you've got to start sometime.

So now I'll do my homework and see which grapes grow best for the climate and conditions here on Our Little Acre and find out where I can buy the vines early next spring. Several sites have recommended reading The Grape Grower: A Guide to Organic Viticulture by Ron Lombough.

Oh, did I mention that Romie buys grapes every week when we go to the grocery and eats them every evening for a snack? Maybe if I tell him this grape growing thing is an act of love on my part, he'll look at it differently. Think he'll fall for that?
Photo of grapes from Wikimedia.com
Photo of The Grape Grower from Amazon.com.


Cindy Garber Iverson said...

I LOVE the grape photo in this post. So gorgeous! I'm planning on putting in table grapes in our garden as well. It's at least a year and a half away pending some construction that needs to be done. I'm anxious to see how your research and projects go so keep posting about it, okay? Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

Kylee Baumle said...

Cindy ~ I will do that! I hope that anyone that reads this post that has any advice to offer will do so. I know nah-thing! ;-)

Unknown said...

If you want to try something really neat, Kylee--and you can find a winegrower that will let you do this--pick a cluster of ripening wine grapes, and bite into them the way you would a peach. A grapegrower and winemaker showed me this a few years ago, and the taste is absolutely amazing.
I have one grapevine out back that I planted more out of curiosity about three years ago. This year, it produced something like twenty bunches of small, red grapes that are just now coming ripe. I think they're wine grapes, but I really don't remember, and I don't really care; they're there mostly for the birds and for the pleasure of looking at the vine, the leaves and now the fruit. So if I on my high windy hill can grow a vine, and get fruit without doing anything to the plant--you'll do fine. And Romie will go for it, too.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I like your angle on Romie about him getting to eat his own home grown grapes. Yes, it might work.

Yolanda Elizabet Heuzen said...

Kylee I planted 2 grapes last year and this year I already had many bunches of grapes from them. They are table grapes and very sweet and juicy to eat. And I really think you'll do Romy a big favour by growing your own grapes so that he can eat them straight from the vine. Grapes taste best like that, still warm from the sun.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

I wish I had a larger property to grow grapes and other foods too. That is my goal in the next five years. For right now though, I have to stay put and bloom where I'm planted.

Anonymous said...

Kylee, I'm sure your husband will be fond of the grapes you are going to give him in about two years!!I had a little vineyard until four years ago...we even made our private wine (not I dit it but my father who was wineproducer....you see, I grew up with grapes!!), but then I was fed up to work the whole vineyard alone and I changed it into a rose garden....here I do the gardenwork for my pleasure....:-)!! After planting a vine, you'll have the first grapes in about one to two years....depending on the sort you choose. So when you don't plant too many vines you won't have too much work...but a lot of wonderful sweet and healthy fruits!! Have a go! Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I tried grapes a few years ago, planted 1 red, one white, and one blue. I thought that would be cool. As soon as I started to get grapes, the japanese beetles completely covered the bunches and devoured them. I tried spraying them, and then covering them, but nothing worked. So I finally gave up and removed them. I hope you don't have the same problem.

Unknown said...

I definitely think that angle is worth a try with Romie!

My grandma (in Ottawa) and her neighbor both have 'Concord's trained on short fences. Grandma goes in there and slashes at it in the late winter, and again whenever something starts hitting her in the face when she's mowing. (Yes, at 83 she still insists on doing most of the mowing on her 2+acre lot.) That's the extent of what care it gets, other than her harvesting the grapes and making numerous jars' worth of jam every year. So I definitely think you can do it!

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