After this cold, long winter and spring my Concorde grapes which were well-established for over 12 years are showing almost no signs of life. There are now just a small number of leaves developing where there used to be hundreds. Is there any hope that they will rejuvenate? I have purchased Blue bell variety as replacements, but I just want to be sure that there is no hope for the Concordes before tearing up and removing my beloved patio arbor vines. If it is necessary to replace them, should all the dead/injured vines and their roots be removed before new planting is done? Do you have any tips for soil preparation? Thank you and I will be anxious to receive your suggestions.
Winona County Minnesota
We just went thru the coldest winters in thirty years and many plants that we thought were hardy experienced major dieback or death. Concord grapes are very hardy in other states but they are not dependably hardy in Minnesota. You are in the warmest part of the state but Concord grape’s lack of hardiness and late ripening date makes it a relatively poor choice for MN. Prune off all of the dead wood. The root system may be 6 foot deep so it will be almost impossible to remove all of the roots. Normal pruning removes at least 70% of the grapevine wood. http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yard-garden/fruit/growing-grapes-for-home-use/ A soil test will indicate whether a nutrient deficiency exists. http://soiltest.cfans.umn.edu/ Pruning severely winter-damaged grapevines in Michigan http://msue.anr.msu.edu/news/pruning_severely_winter_damaged_grapevines_in_michigan http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yard-garden/fruit/growing-grapes-for-home-use/