There are many effective ways to propagate grape bushes – seeds, cuttings, grafting. In this article, we will talk in more detail about the simplest method – digging in the vine and getting layering. This is a simple process, if you know the basic rules and subtleties of the procedure, then even a novice gardener can cope with it.
Advantages and disadvantages
One of the easiest and most ubiquitous ways to propagate a grapevine is to use cuttings. This method has been tested for centuries, it is suitable even for beginners. The technique gives a high result when breeding hard-to-root varieties.
Layers are rooted stems obtained by dropping and subsequent separation from the parent bushes. In the process of rooting, the young plant is directly connected with the mother bush, due to which it is provided with good nutrition.
This stimulates the active appearance and growth of roots.
The technique of propagation of grapes by layering has its undoubted advantages:
ease of execution – does not require special skills, special skills and tools;
minimum expenditure of time, effort and money;
preservation of all varietal characteristics of the parent plant;
high level of survival, even for difficult-to-root varieties that are not suitable for any other propagation methods;
the possibility of harvesting the next year;
rapid expansion of the vineyard area.
This technique is often used by nurseries that make a profit from the sale of seedlings.
However, the method also has its drawbacks:
it is suitable only for those plots of land where there were no diseases that affect the roots;
the development of layering requires the expenditure of the vitality of the parent plant, so the mother bush is greatly depleted.
In order for the layering method of reproduction to be effective, and roots appear on the buried fragments of the vine, it is important to observe a number of conditions.
The main factor in root formation is constantly moistened soil. To keep moisture in the ground, several techniques are used:
regular abundant watering;
mulching the breeding area with peat, straw or mowed grass;
creating a darkening of the soil using plastic / metal sheets, slate, cardboard or boards.
The supply of nutrients directly affects the rate of root formation. Therefore, layering must be fed. For this purpose, organic and mineral fertilizers are applied to the soil.
Active growth of the root mass is possible only in the dark. Grapevine cuttings must be dug to a depth of about 15-20 cm.
This will minimize the risk of penetration of sunlight, and in addition, maintain sufficient humidity parameters.
If the vine is not dug deep enough, the penetrating light will slow down the rooting process. In this case, it is necessary to additionally cover the ground with dense material.
How to propagate with different layering?
The method of propagation by layering combines several options.
The main advantage of propagation by green layering is the good rooting of the vine and increased survival. To carry out reproduction, it is necessary to choose the most powerful, healthy, exceptionally good bush. It is desirable that it be located in a spacious area.
Preparation for propagation of the grape bush begins during spring pruning. At this stage, two or three green shoots are kept near the base, which will subsequently be laid in the soil.
The best choice would be strong, healthy shoots growing as close to the ground as possible.
The next stage of work is carried out in the summer, when the shoots reach a length of 2-2,5 m, but at the same time retain their flexibility. To do this, follow a few simple steps.
Near the bush, it is necessary to dig a ditch about 50 cm deep and wide. Its walls should be sheer.
Drainage is laid out at the bottom – it can be expanded clay, gravel or broken brick.
A third of the pit is filled with organic matter mixed with garden soil. The substrate is thoroughly shed.
Layers are carefully laid in the resulting ditch. They need to remove the antennae, leaves, and stepchildren in advance.
After that, the track is partially covered with garden soil, thoroughly rammed and irrigated at the rate of 15 liters per linear meter.
After all the moisture is absorbed, the ditch is completely covered with soil.
The upper part of the shoot, placed in the ground, is brought up and attached to the pegs with a soft twine. At the top, you need to save about 3-4 leaves, while the growth point should be above ground level.
After 3-4 days, sprinkled layers are irrigated, after which the irrigation procedure is regularly repeated throughout the summer period. It must be accompanied by loosening, mulching and removal of all weeds.
From mid-August, the tops of the layers must be broken off to stop the growth of the aerial part of the future seedling. Thus, nutrients will be redirected to building roots.
At the end of September – the first decade of October, the layers are carefully dug up. They need to be separated from the parent plant, placed in a container with soil, and then placed in a cool, damp place.
In April-May, a young plant can be planted on a permanent site.
This technique involves the use as planting material for rooting a perennial sleeve of a grape bush along with young vines.
In this case, a trench is made near the bush to a depth of 40-60 cm, manure or compost mixed with garden soil is placed in it.
To obtain a young seedling, one shoot is deepened so that only the top with 3-5 eyes remains above the soil surface.
Hilling the head of a bush
This method is optimal for obtaining planting bushes with compact molding. This is an efficient way. However, the cultivation of layering in this case is accompanied by a strong depletion of the parent plant.
In the spring, when the shoots grow to 130 cm, they must be shortened by 1-2 eyes. After that, the parent bush is spudded with drained loose earth. In autumn, the resulting hill is carefully dug up, rooted shoots with a developed root system are carefully separated and planted.
This technique is optimal for propagating varieties of grapes with short shoots. It is advisable to carry out this procedure in the summer, in which case the first harvest of berries can be harvested in the fall.
Before starting work, you should dig a small hole 5-10 cm deep next to the parent bush and gently moisten it.
After that, a part of the shoot is lowered into it so that the top is about 10-20 cm above the soil surface. Then the hole is covered with nutrient soil mixture and well tamped, a peg is set near the top, and the vine is tied up.
This grape propagation method is based on the growth of new roots on old lignified shoots.
For reproduction, the most powerful shoot is selected, all leaves are removed from it, at a distance of 15-25 cm from the top, an annular incision of the bark 3-5 mm wide is formed.
The incision area is covered with moistened moss, and wrapped with a film of any dark color.
After some time, young roots will grow in this place.
In autumn, seedlings are pruned, moved to containers and put in a cool place for the winter.
With the arrival of steadily positive temperatures, new plants are dug up and moved to open ground.
This method of reproduction by layering demonstrates good adaptation parameters of young shoots – this is due to double nutrition. Nevertheless, the method is quite lengthy, since the final separation of young layers from parent bushes is carried out only 3 years after the start of the operation.
A hole is dug 50-60 cm deep near the parent bush, drainage is poured into it, and a layer of organic fertilizers mixed with the substrate is laid out.
The lowest shoot is carefully bent to the soil, lowered into the hole so that only the top with three or four eyes remains above the soil surface.
Already in the first year after this, new branches should appear, under favorable conditions they can even give a small harvest.
This method allows you to get from 15 to 25 seedlings in the shortest possible time. Usually used for weakly rooted varieties of grapes.
With the beginning of spring, the strongest strong shoots are chosen from the parent bush, placed as close to the ground as possible.
Then trenches are formed with a depth of about 30 cm, covered with compost mixed with potash fertilizer and superphosphate.
A shoot is placed in this hole and fixed with a hairpin in 2-3 places.
After that, the trench is carefully sprinkled with garden soil and thoroughly irrigated.
As new shoots grow from young buds, the earth must be topped up.
This technique involves reproduction not by layering, but by large bushes.
It is in demand for the reconstruction of adult vineyards, as well as, if necessary, to move them to a new site.
To date, it has not received wide distribution due to the complexity and resource intensity of the work.
After you pick up a bush for transplanting, a ditch is dug between the place where it grows at the moment and the place where you plan to transplant it. Its depth and width must be at least 50 cm.
A layer of organic matter mixed with a garden substrate is laid out at the bottom.
Then they pick up a couple of powerful shoots, remove eyes and leaves from them.
The first shoot is carefully bent in the form of a loop, led under a bush, and then taken out near the parent plant. The second is taken immediately to a new site.
The tops of both shoots are cut off, no more than 3 fruiting buds should remain above the surface.
At the end of the work, the future bush is sprinkled with a substrate and moistened
The nuances of reproduction, taking into account the period
Reproduction by layering has its own subtleties, taking into account the time of year. So, if the procedure is carried out on summer days, then you can start work only after the grape vine grows to 230-250 cm. In the middle lane, this coincides with the end of July – the first half of August. For reproduction, the strongest, growing close to the soil, are selected.
All leaves are cut off from them and placed in a ditch, after which they are sprinkled with a substrate so that only the top with a couple of eyes remains on the surface.
In the autumn formation of layering, the same technique is used. The only difference is that during this period the plant does not need top dressing, especially nitrogen ones – they will cause a rapid growth of green mass and the shoots will not have time to get stronger before the onset of frost. In addition, the trench with the layer must be additionally insulated, it is best to use a layer of spruce branches with a thickness of at least 30 cm for this.
Caring for grape layering is not very difficult. It is based on timely watering, regular loosening of the soil and getting rid of weeds. It will be correct to water with a frequency of 10 days. All weeds are uprooted as soon as they form. The earth near the bushes is loosened and dug up.