Wednesday, October 6, 2010

FAQ: When is the best time to prune muscadine vines?

Q. I have inherited my fathers property which include his coveted muscadine vines. He could put anything in the ground and it would grow. These vines are at least 20+ years and it looks as if they need a little pruning. Dad made it to 90 years old and I don't think he could care for them the last couple of years like he use to. There are still some green leaves on them and I was wondering if this month (October) is a good time to do some pruning?  We live in south central Louisiana in case the region would need to be taken into consideration.

A. You could do some pruning now if you simply need to thin out some of the vines or trim them up so they don't run along the ground.  But if you need to do some radical pruning, as described in my Youtube videos, you should wait until the vines drop their leaves and become dormant.  Around here, that would be after Thanksgiving.  Don't be alarmed if the spurs (remaining stubs of the cut vines) drip water during warm spells; the will not "bleed" to death.

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1 comment:

Unknown said...

I remember pruning your vineyard with Jono and Nathan during winter break in order to make extra cash. We would prune and prune until our hands could not grip the shears, then we would switch hands and prune some more. When we were done, we would return to your house where Mrs. Marshall (Miss Cindy) would have some sort of home cooked confection like cake or brownies waiting for us, and we would take turns massaging each others raw hands. Thanks for that memory and for the work, Mr. Marshall!!!! Please send the family my love :)