A woody perennial vine, grape grows in clusters, usually with 15 to 300 fruits in each cluster. The color of the fruit will depend on the specific variety, but most of them are red, blue, pink, and green. The colors can also change as they become ripe. In most cases, grapes will require a large space to grow, especially because they are vines. Nonetheless, even without the luxury of space, you can have the pleasure of growing grapes at home.
When growing grapes indoors and in pots, one of the most important is to choose the right variety. One of the best is Early Muscat, which produces a medium and yellow-green fruit. For the red varieties, on the other hand, a good choice is the Emperor, which is a common type of table grape in New Zealand and Australia. You might also want to consider planting Pixie grape, a dwarf variety that grows one to two feet in height. This is actually one of the best to grow indoors, especially if you have a greenhouse.
Planting and Growing Conditions
While it is possible to plant grapes from seeds, this is one thing that we do not recommend. This will require you to be extra patient and will need a lot of effort for care and maintenance. With this, a better thing to do is to start with a young seedling, which you can purchase from a nursery and transfer in your own pot.
After choosing which variety to plant, next thing to do is to pick your container. Because it is a vigorous vine, see to it that the pot is large enough to accommodate its growth. The pot should have a depth of at least 16 inches and diameter of 18 inches. You can also initially plant the grape in a small pot and transfer it later on.
Aside from the pot, make sure that you have the right soil for growing grapes. Moist silt loam is one of the best potting mediums. Choose a healthy soil with organic amendments, which will minimize the need to use fertilizers.
After planting the grape in the soil, the next thing you have to think about is the right position of the pot. Choose a spot that is sunny and dry. If you have a patio or balcony, this is a good spot. It must receive at least six hours of sunlight in a day. Avoid windy and wet spots. See to it that there is proper ventilation, which is one way to prevent fungal infection.
Lastly, make sure that the plant receives water but make sure to not overdo it. The soil needs to be moist, but never soggy. See to it that there is a working drainage system for the container so that water will not accumulate. Otherwise, this can encourage root rot.
Grapes, whether you eat it fresh or consume in any other form, has a lot of health benefits, including the following:
- Prevents Cancer: This is because of the antioxidants that you can find in grapes. To be specific, grapes can be helpful in the prevention of breast, colorectal, prostate, and lung cancer.
- Improves Heart Health: Regular consumption of grapes will also lessen the likelihood that you will suffer from cardiovascular diseases. It relaxes the blood vessels and improves blood flow, which are all important for the health of the heart.
- Aids in Weight Management: If you are struggling to lose weight, you might want to eat more grapes. It contains resveratrol, which helps in reducing the fat storage capability of the cells. It also helps to make you full without consuming too many calories.
- Improves Vision: Several studies in the past prove that grapes will aid in protecting the retina to prevent deterioration. To add, it has protective proteins that reduce inflammation in the retina.
- Lowers Blood Pressure: For those who are suffering from hypertension, the regular consumption of grapes can also be beneficial. This will help to negate the impacts of too much sodium in the body.
- Treatment of Constipation: The high fiber content of grapes is the reason for this. These insoluble fibers will be instrumental in the production of digestive enzymes, which will provide digestive comfort. It will also help trigger regular bowel movements.
Pests and Diseases
Most of the problems in grapes are fungal diseases, such as powdery mildew and black spots. They are more common in places with warm weather. For pests, on the other hand, some of the most common causes of infestation include Japanese beetles, caterpillars, moths, and aphids.
Care and Maintenance
Below are some of the best things that you can do to take care of grapes indoors:
- As a vine, you need to provide support to the plant, even if it is in pot or containers. A trellis that is made of plastic and wood is one of the best to support the plant. Do this from the first year in order to train the plant.
- Pruning is also necessary, but do not prune until the first frost. You should first give the plant the time to establish its growth. When you prune, see to it that only two buds will remain. This is important to control the growth of the plant, making it more compact. This is also important to encourage fruiting.
- At one point, you will have to transfer the grape into a new container, especially one that is larger. This will prevent the restrictions in the growth of the roots. As much as possible, use new containers to be sure that it is free from contamination.
- Mulching will also help to improve the quality of the soil and supplement the nutrients that that plant needs. Mulch with compost or pine bark. This will also protect the root from fluctuations in temperature and will prevent evaporation.
- Patience is a virtue, even when it comes to grapes. Do not be in a hurry. In most instances, it will take at least two years before it will bear fruit. For the first few months, train the vine to follow the direction of your trellis.
You do not need to have a large land to plant grapes. As long as you choose the right variety, you can grow them even indoors, especially with the right conditions in the external environment. They may not be the easiest indoor fruit to cultivate, but given their many health benefits, it is indeed one of the fruits that you should have at home.