Monday, August 26, 2013

MUSCADINE GRAPE SURPRISE

Muscadine grapevine
This was a pleasant little surprise.  It's a Muscadine grape vine that I bought last year on end of Summer clearance.  I didn't put it in the ground because I can't just put it anywhere without some planning for a trellis and it got so hot so fast this year, I was concentrating on the fruit trees themselves.  So I've been babysitting it in the backyard in town, keeping it watered.  It's not the most attractive plant at the moment since all I've done is water it and it's kind of gangly, but notice the little surprise we found...





...an actual small cluster of grapes!  Only three here, but hiding behind another set of leaves were...








...four more ripe grapes!  We're excited that it actually produced fruit, while still in their small, plastic, garden center container.

Then we ate them.
OH. MY. GOODNESS.
The grapey-est (new word) grape flavor we've ever had.  Wow.  I had no idea they were so good!




So, I'm on my way to the garden center this week to get some more while they are 70% off!  I'll just keep them in town for now and I guess we will be planning a spot an area at the farm for several grapevines next Spring.  I mean, if I can leave them in a small container for over a a year without major intervention and get a few lovely grapes, what might happen if they were put into the actual ground?

For those unfamiliar with the variety, Muscadines are a grapevine species native to the Southern United States.  They make great jelly and can even be made into wine...if you were so inclined to do that of course.
Hmmm, homemade wine?  That sounds self reliant, huh?

HERE is a great link to the Texas A&M website about them.

Muscadine grapes in use, image courtesy of Southernliving.com
This is the photo from a Southern Living article on using the grapes and all the possibilities for them.  Can't wait to see what the future holds.

Anyone ever grown them?


13 comments:

Tonya @ My Cozy Little Farmhouse said...

Yay! My grapes (I have boring ol' Concord) are coming in, so it is time to make juice and jam!

Quinn said...

Maybe a nice grape arbor over the gate to your lovely fenced-in garden?

CityGirlCountryBloke said...

I love it when things just work out! We are planting Muscadine grapes on our Texas property for future wine production probably next year. Nice to know we can just eat 'em up too! Yum!

jaz@octoberfarm said...

what a nice surprise! i did not trim my grapes last year and i had very few grapes. then, the other day, i looked up in my serviceberry trees and about 30 feet up they were full of grapes. completely out of reach but loaded with grapes. time to trim them!

S'A said...

My folks had a couple of grape vines when I was a kid, but I've never had a spot for one. I do miss them--so good!

The Stay @ Home-Gardener said...

Mm grapes. Where is the Adonis to feed them out though?

1st Man said...

Hey, Concord is Welch's Grape Jelly and juice right? Nothing boring with that, ha. Yay for you. I'm kind of excited to have this, hopefully, opportunity.

1st Man said...

Oooh, not a bad idea. Of course, in my head I see something like a vineyard, LOL. I might need to scale that back, ha.

1st Man said...

Yay for you!!! I bought this because I did some research and found they are almost totally disease resistant, they survive extended droughts (though not always producing during that) and they are ok with humidity (important in our neck of the woods). I also found the four varieties that do best in our area too. I narrowed it down to two; Carlos and Cowart were the names. I only found the Carlos last year. I bought it because it's self fertile. Make sure you check that out. With a variety of different ones for wine production, you might not need to worry about that.

Since this one has worked, well, I'm sticking with it. I hope to get either 3 more (four total) or if I can find the other variety, Cowart, I'll get two of those and one more of these.

They tasted really good. Now they DO have seeds...and a couple had skins that were a bit tough but for juice, jelly, wine, etc, you'd put that through a mill anyway.

I'll keep you posted!

1st Man said...

Time to get that ladder out, LOL! I've heard that they need to be pruned to be more productive. I'm guessing I'll get the plants and then do some research for next Spring. I'm excited about them, need to googling, ha.

1st Man said...

This is our first experience with grapes (and just letting them grow in the garden center container isn't exactly "experience", haha) but it was great having them.

1st Man said...

LOL!!!!!!!!!! And the ones standing on the side fanning with giant palm fronds!

Linda said...

I have scuppernongs, a variety of muscadine. However, after reading this, I may go look for marked down muscadine. Only prune the grapes in the coldest part of the year, around the end of January. One year, I pruned too late and the grape vines, "bled" all summer. It was sad, and there were no grapes at all.