This is a guest post by Andy Finn. If you want to guest post on this blog, click here to get more information.
Grapevine is a common term for a vast variety of the Vine Genus Vitis. This is the vine that is commonly grown for human consumption, either as a fruit bearing or a wine-producing plant. The grapevine origins are rooted in the Mediterranean region, possibly southern Turkey where they spread to Greece and Italy. Wild varieties are also present in Northern America and were eaten by the natives as berries, though they are unsuitable for wine production.
Of the Genus Vitis, there are many varieties that are suitable for backyard landscaping ideas. Generally speaking, fruit grapevines bear larger and seedless berries through human selection, with a sugar content of about 15% as opposed to wine grapevines that produce smaller but sweeter berries of about 24% sugar content.
Red grapes contain also healthy polyphenol antioxidants from the seeds and the skin that have a beneficial impact on blood vessels, reducing high pressure and increasing life expectancy if eaten or drunk as wine in moderation, as they do in France where they live a long life despite a fat rich diet.
Wine grapevines must be carefully pruned in winter times so as to direct the vine energies into berry production rather than plant growth, making a fruit grapevine a better choice for landscaping purposes, as it needs less maintenance and provides any landscaped area with a fast growing foliage to cool and partition different areas of your garden as well as a welcome sweet berry production.
Grapevines grow fast and are particularly useful for covering old brick walls or unsightly parts of your garden, climbing well over trellises and pergolas and giving a characteristic Mediterranean “al fresco” feel. They are best suited to mild climates with warm summers, though some vines have been selected for cooler climates, like the Einset Seedless, Reliance and Venus. Warm climate fruit grapevine varieties include the Thompson Seedless, the Black Monukka, the Ruby Seedless, the Flame and the Fantasy.
Grapevines are best suited for landscaping away from the house because their berries will inevitably attract ants and insects that will naturally carry on into your house. If you need to cover a patio pergola attached to the house, an English Ivy could be a better solution, but for a free-standing pergola, a garden partition, a gazebo, a trellis or a wall, grapevines will confer that unique rustic ambiance you can see while visiting California or Tuscany.
They require good drainage and exposure to the sun, so plan a south-facing growing spot if you live in the northern hemisphere and vice versa if you live down under. For the care and attention they require, grapevines offer unparalleled returns, as not only do they cool and protect from the sun but they also beautify the garden as well as providing a ready-made source of edible fruits.
If regularly pruned and looked after they can live a very long time but are sensitive to mildew, so be prepared to use non toxic fungicides if necessary. Because grapevines are fast growing, check regularly their tendrils and shoots so as to guide them where you want to, up a trellis or over the pergola joists. With a little of tender care you’ll be rewarded with a beautiful display of cascading foliage and berries that will enhance the coziness and appeal of your garden, making them a focal point of you landscaping features and attracting family and friends to join you for a relaxing time over a glass of wine.
Backyard landscaping ideas such as grapevine landscaping is a unique, yet satisfying approach to making your yard stand out from the rest in the neighborhood!
Andy Finn likes outdoors and property landscaping. He built himself a DIY pergola and would like to share his experience with tips and suggestions on how to build one as well as garden landscaping in general.
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