Wild Grape Vines
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Wild Grape Vine – Vitis riparia
Often called the riverbank grape because it grows so well in these areas, the Wild Grape Vine grows in several other places as well. This is a vining plant that does not have a trunk. Instead, it climbs using tendrils or stems that curl around trees or bushes. The tendrils are typically opposite leaves. The green leaves alternate on the vine and are heart-shaped with long tips that are pointed. The leaves have divisions that do not extend even halfway to the base. They are serrated along the edges and feel smooth. The leaves of the Wild Grape Vine are generally about four inches wide, somewhat smaller than those of domestic grape vines. The Wild Grape Vine can grow to heights of more than 100 feet. Small white flowers bloom in clusters about four inches long on the vine early in the summer. The grapes develop afterward, starting as tiny hard green grapes. They are generally ripe by the end of summer. When grapes are produced they grow in loose bunches in a pyramid shape. They are quite dark, often appearing black or a deep purple. There may be up to forty grapes in each bunch. Ripe grapes may be eaten; however, after the first frost of the season the taste improves, and they become sweeter. The grapes can grow up to one inch in diameter, and the leaves may be eaten as well. They have a citrus taste. The leaves are often used in salads or stuffed. The grapes and leaves can be frozen for later use. The uniquely flavored grapes are also used for making jams, jellies, and wine.
The Wild Grape Vine can grow in most climates. It is a hardy plant and can withstand cold temperatures as well as thriving in tropical climates. Unpicked grapes will shrink and resemble a raisin, providing food for wildlife in the winter. Wild Grape Vine, or Vitis riparia, is a climbing vine with no solid, upright trunk. This vine has small tendrils that wrap themselves around anything they can find. Wild Grape Vine grows clusters of tiny, white flowers which bloom in early summer. These flowers give way to small, hard green grapes that will ripen later in the summer months until the first frost. Wild Grape Vine leaves are heart-shaped and deep green by the bases, and the blades extend out with long, pointed tips.Wild Grape Vines are versatile plants that have been known to grow along riverbanks, fences, and forests. They are a perennial vine, coming back year after year. Wild Grape Vines prefer fertile, moist, well-drained soil. These vines are very popular with gardeners and landscapers alike as they provide a gorgeous conversation piece, and possess the unique quality of being trained to climb structures. This creates a striking look. The Wild Grape Vine is a hardy plant that can survive many varied conditions. These vines attract lots of birds that enjoy eating the grapes and require very little maintenance once they are trained in the direction you want them to grow. A bonus is once the grapes themselves mature, they can be used for their juice, and they freeze well. These gorgeous plants are shipped to the consumer in their bare root form, so they arrive in top notch condition.