Encyclopedia Article

Grapes (Vitis vinifera)


The common grape is the grape of commerce.  There are hundreds of selections of grapes and many have been cultivated for centuries.  Grape vines can grow up tall trees and reach heights of over 100 feet long.  They are the rich brown, shreddy-barked vines that you swung from in the woods when you were a child.  When under cultivation, they are usually pruned and kept at shorter lengths.  Beyond commercial production, grapes have never become an ornamental plant of significance in American gardens.

Hardiness- Zone 6 to Zone 9

Growth rate- medium

Mature shape- Dependent on pruning practices.  When left alone in the wild, they can become thick vines with dark brown shreddy-looking bark and they can climb trees to the height of 100 feet or more.

Features-  Not used much as a landscape feature.  Mostly used to be cultivated for its fruit.  Some varieties offer rich crimson to scarlet fall color.