Pruning Grapes for Maximum Harvest

| 10/14/2020 8:24:00 AM

Gnarly grape vines needing to be pruned 

In the Southern Colorado River Plateau region of Arizona, fruit production is iffy at best. Peaches produce about once every ten years or so, and apples average every fourth year. One fruit that is dang-near 100% reliable in this area, though, is grapes. And one particularly amazing variety here is the Himrod grape. But even though grapes will produce nearly every year with very little variance, the key to good quantities of grapes each year often comes down to pruning.

While it is appropriate to prune your grapes, and any other fruiting bush, tree, or vine any time there is damage, the best time to heavily prune grapes in our area is very early spring, around the first part of March. 

In the fall, your grape vines will look a bit like this (above), provided they had good water and grew well. 

Overgrown fall vines needing pruning

If you have relatively mild winters, it doesn't hurt to do some rough pruning at this stage. However, the best time to prune here is spring time, after the winter has killed back a lot of the sprouts from last year, leaving you being very sure about what is alive and what is dead. When I say "rough pruning", I mean taking off large danging branches that grow out of the main stalk, like here: 

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