Saturday, 6 June 2015

Hard to graft

They said it couldn't be done and indeed this may be so but while agonising as to what to do with our Triomphe d'Alsace vines in our experimental vineyard we though that one solution might be to graft another variety onto Triomphe stems.

We have been told this doesn't work well in the UK and in any event not if the vines are over 4 years old. Our Triomphe vines are 20 years old. Nothing daunted we took a bud from one of our vigorous Solaris vines and with the help of You Tube, have done our best to make a graft. The wrapping is grafting tape from China (via Amazon). We may be wrong but we fancy seeing a little growth already. Wishful thinking no doubt.

Elsewhere in the vineyard there is a mystery vine. It came in the original batch of Bacchus vines about 20 years ago as well as the Triomphe, but it is not Bacchus and we have no idea what it is. It is by far the most vigorous vine in the vineyard (and now we are counting more than 20 (experimental) varieties). It has never produced a single grape but grows madly threatening to engulf its neighbours. We hack it back mercilessly but it seems to like this treatment.

So we have devised a use for this brute. Earlier this year we received a batch of 7 Acadie Blanc cuttings which we have been trying - unsuccessfully - to grow in plantpots. So far they have manifested no sign of life whatsoever but opinion is divided as to whether they are dead or not. Some of the buts are dried up and hard but others are still soft. We took one of these soft buds and have tried to graft it onto the Brute. If the insane vigour of The Brute doesn't bring it to life nothing will.

Watch this space.

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