... to get the Christmas decorations out of the loft. This involves crawling into the loft space and dragging out a millionfew seven boxes containing decorations accumulated over the years. Tinsel, garlands, baubles, bells, nativities and trees are now awaiting a place in my home. My first task is to sort out as I really think I need a cull.
The bags in front are destined for the CS and this little lot is destined for an untangle.
It's the last trim of the year for the strawberries and ...
... the grape vine.
I was going to wait until all the leaves had fallen but decided to trim on this sunny day (interspersed with showers).
The new vine is growing nicely and I only trimmed off one side shoot and no other leaves. The main stem can clearly be seen. I've trained the stem onto a wire at the back of the greenhouse which runs parallel with one of the offshoots of the main vine.
All the unwanted growth was removed from the main vine stem.
The side lead was trimmed back so the stem can clearly be seen.
The main lead runs down the centre of the roof and quite a lot of growth has been trimmed away.
The end of the lead has been cut back.
All neat and tidy now and ready for next year.
The showers came before I finished the strawberry patch.
The cutting of the Chinese lantern plant from a friend has grown well and the lanterns are a welcome autumnal splash of colour.
They clash with the leaves of the blueberry bush though.
Thank you garden for all your produce this year. I've eaten most of you and now you can recover over the winter ready for new growth next year.
Dani has asked if I could post a close up shot of my grape vine pruning. Your wish is my command but this is my way of pruning and the vine still produces fruit for me. Basically I prune for me rather than the grape vine. The greenhouse is not large and I want the vine to go where I want it to go rather than where it wants to go. There is one main stem which comes into the greenhouse from its planting position outside. Roots outside, stem inside. This bigger vine has survived transplanting from growing in our kitchen to growing in the greenhouse. Each year I prune it back to the bare bones - usually in spring. Throughout the growing period I am continually cutting back the pieces I don't want. On the bigger vine I have 2 main leads, one running down the centre of the greenhouse and one over to one side. I cut off all the side shoots in spring and then wait. Quite a lot of side shoots will grow from the main stems. Wait until you see a bunch of grapes and then cut off the side shoot one leaf after the bunch. More side shoots will grow - just keep cutting them off.
Here's my very last bunch of grapes.
Unfortunately I only ate about 3 of these as the rest are definitely 'past it'.
The vine leaves have started to fall.
This is a picture of our most recently planted vine - (planted about a year and a half ago). The roots were planted outside the greenhouse and the shoot trained in through a gap to the inside.
Our main vine comes in along the same wall. It's much thicker as it's much older. See the side shoots? They can be cut off.
The stem grows up to the middle of the roof of the greenhouse ...
... and travels the whole length. A side shoot off the main stem has been trained to run along one side of the greenhouse.
Here you see the side shoot. From these main stems other side shoots grow and on them grow the grapes. (Grew the grapes.)
All the leaves will eventually fall off and then I will be able to see the skeletal vine. From there I will start to prune back long and unwanted shoots.
To sum up - prune to however many leading stems you want. From those leading stems prune off any side shoots you don't want. The vine will grow like mad in the growing season. Keep pruning to keep it in check and in some form of order.
Hope this helps, Dani. I will post whenever I get out my secateurs so you can see the vine's progress over the year.