In 2010 I ordered and planted a grape “vine”. It was the sorriest excuse for a plant I’ve ever seen…nothing more than a twig. I planted it next to my fence with room to sprawl several feet in each direction. The first year, 2010, it lived. That was good enough.
Last year, in 2011, I expected bigger things from this vine. Basically it grew one longish stem and a few leaves (which were then attacked like candy by Japanese beetles), and had a flower or two that didn’t come to anything.
Now we’re here in 2012. I looked up many resources on pruning grape vines and they all said the same thing. You need to select one or two branches of last year’s wood to grow this year’s grape vines on.
This vine is in it’s third spring in my yard but it’s still so small you can barely see it against the fence there. It is leafing out and beginning to send up new stems. Those horizontal vines are one year old wood that will produce this year’s new shoots, flowers and fruit (if any).
Let’s pray that, magically, all the Japanese beetles are absent this year. One can dream.