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Old 05-12-2010, 06:52 PM
 
Location: SW MO
1,238 posts, read 4,099,781 times
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I have a several-years old Thompson Seedless vine that produces HUNDREDS of grapes every year. They are delicious. However, they are about the size of my fingernail. I would like to grow bigger grapes. If I remove some of the clusters, will the remaining ones get bigger? The clusters are already forming this year. Ideas?
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Old 05-13-2010, 03:08 AM
 
Location: Escondido, CA
1,504 posts, read 5,568,086 times
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You have to remove clusters, and prune the plant aggressively. Thin the plant to 40 green branches and 1 cluster per branch.
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Old 05-13-2010, 04:22 AM
 
Location: Saudi Arabia
1,823 posts, read 1,689,199 times
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Hehehe hehe ..Whatchya talkin' 'bout Willis ?
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Old 05-13-2010, 09:20 AM
 
Location: SW MO
1,238 posts, read 4,099,781 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esmith143 View Post
You have to remove clusters, and prune the plant aggressively. Thin the plant to 40 green branches and 1 cluster per branch.
Thanks! I will try that. Plan to get out the pruners today and tackle the wisteria anyway. The birds are gonna be mad at me though-they get the lion's share of the small grapes. And the neighbor kids that walk by the house. I have caught neighbors snipping starts off the vine when they thought nobody was looking...but I don't mind. Might as well share the wealth!
We are having a very wet year so far. I'm going to have to be diligent with the fungicide or black spot will take them all.
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Old 05-14-2010, 12:00 AM
 
Location: Escondido, CA
1,504 posts, read 5,568,086 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firebll31 View Post
Thanks! I will try that. Plan to get out the pruners today and tackle the wisteria anyway. The birds are gonna be mad at me though-they get the lion's share of the small grapes. And the neighbor kids that walk by the house. I have caught neighbors snipping starts off the vine when they thought nobody was looking...but I don't mind. Might as well share the wealth!
We are having a very wet year so far. I'm going to have to be diligent with the fungicide or black spot will take them all.
Good for you. I anticipate not seeing any rain over here till sometime late fall. Last year we had a continuous stretch from April 12 to November 27 without any rainfall. I'm intimately familiar with all the various kinds of irrigation and I can even tell the difference between 0.620" OD and 0.700" OD poly tubing by sight. (Though it still eludes me why they are both called "1/2 inch"). And my water bill can at times resemble a mortgage payment for a small trailer in MO.

With regard to birds, I read about a good method to keep them off the berries. Just get some small paper bags (the sort that you use for coffee beans) and put them over the clusters, and affix them with scotch tape. That should also protect berries from fungus. Serious growers with tens or hundreds of vines buy a lot of bird netting and cover their entire rows. When you buy in bulk, netting can run as low as 20-25c /foot and it's reusable. But with a single vine, paper bags are optimal.
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Old 05-14-2010, 12:57 PM
 
Location: State of Jefferson coast
963 posts, read 2,679,797 times
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In order from most home-gardener-friendly to more commercial types of production, there are four strategies used to increase berry size:

1. Thinning of clusters
2. Thinning of berries within clusters (at pea size)
3. Girdling of fruiting canes
4. Spraying berry clusters with gibberellin at 30 ppm (done at pea size)

You'd have to do all four of these to get supermarket-size berries on homegrown Thompson Seedless.
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Old 05-14-2010, 09:10 PM
 
Location: SW MO
1,238 posts, read 4,099,781 times
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I thinned out at least two-thirds of the clusters and STILL have over a hundred. I can thin out some more and maybe remove some grapes once pea-sized. It kills me to remove so many clusters! And I'm a little scared to remove too much foliage at once-don't want to stress the plant too much. How does girdling the fruiting canes help? Doesn't this kill them? I'm not looking for grocery-store size, just bigger-than-fingernail size.
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Old 05-15-2010, 12:47 AM
 
Location: Escondido, CA
1,504 posts, read 5,568,086 times
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You could probably stop here and see how it goes. At least make sure that there's only one cluster per current-year green branch.

Girdling prevents the branch from sending carbohydrates into the roots for storage. So, anything that's not sent into the roots, ends up in the berries. And, since the branch is going to be pruned down to one bud or cut off completely in winter anyway (depending on pruning system), who cares whether it's going to survive?

Girdling and gibberellin, combined, will boost your berry size about 30%.
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Old 05-15-2010, 01:22 PM
 
1 posts, read 6,933 times
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thnkes allot for you
http://yfrog.com/0omrpalestineiconspffg
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