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Maiden grapes, Amur grapes, aconitol grape and common hops for coloring your garden
There are amazing plants in the northern regions that are so elegant and unpretentious that they completely reconcile us with the consciousness of the impossibility of decorating our garden with a southern riot of colors, say, wisteria flowers, or making a grape pergola, where the bunches of wine grapes will hang beautifully and tease with their ripeness.
But we can afford a pergola or a gazebo. I would like to tell you more about grapes. Driving through the city, you always pay admiring attention to the walls of houses entwined with maiden grapes (Parthenocissus), growing without any tricks, if once it was planted and given the initial support.
Lianas of maiden five-leafed grapes (it is also called so) climb on their antennae with suckers to a height of up to 15 m. In early spring, it elegantly sprouts with reddish buds and shoots. The openwork of its green carved leaves on long (6–8 cm) purple petioles is unusually good in spring and summer, and the autumn colors in scarlet, crimson and even purple tones simply do not allow the eyes to be taken away, they delight and invigorate.
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Its flowers are almost invisible - small, greenish-yellow in the terminal inflorescences. Its small dark blue with a waxy bloom of fruit, of course, cannot be compared with a bunch of real, edible grapes, but they are very elegant among red, burgundy leaves, and in winter - in silver frost against a background of brown vines.
For all its unpretentiousness, maiden grapes grow on fertile soil so that one plant can cover up to 20 square meters of vertical surface.
Amur grapes (Vitis amurensis) are rarely found in northern gardens - a deciduous climbing liana up to 10 m high with broad-oval leaves up to 25 cm long, having 3-5 lobes and large teeth along the edge.
Its leaves are dark green above, dull, slightly wrinkled with sparse long hairs, below they are lighter, short-bristled. The leaf petioles are long, slightly tomentose pubescence. In general, they are pleasing to the eye and pleasant to the touch. The leaves of Amur grapes turn scarlet in autumn, and this is an unforgettable sight!
They plant a bush not only at a support or a wall, but next to any tree - bird cherry, old apple tree, and the liana will freely spread on its branches, surprising the sometimes uninitiated viewer with the miracle of its fiery color of leaves and incomprehensibility of the botanical appearance of this woody-liana community. Amur grapes - black berries up to 8 mm in diameter - are much more reminiscent of southern bunches, but they can be used only for propagation by winter sowing.
However, they are edible, sour in taste. There are already Amur grape varieties, which can be found with a strong desire. The plant is dioecious, therefore, in order to obtain fruits, it is necessary to have several specimens in the garden, or specifically - male and female. This species is suitable for both sunny and semi-shady areas with fertile soil without lime.
Even less common is the aconitol grape (Ampelopsis aconitifolia), but it can also be found among the abundance of planting material and planted in the garden and near the city house. This graceful deciduous woody liana grows up to 5 m tall and clings to the supports with its antennae. Leaves about 7 cm long on long petioles deeply dissected into 3–5 oval lobes with large teeth.
This liana blooms in August, its flowers in small inflorescences are hardly noticeable among the foliage. Fruits are small berries that turn orange when ripe. The 'Chinese Lace' variety has exquisitely cut leaves like green lace. A fast growing vine suitable for shady areas with fertile soil and sufficient moisture. In severe winters, the vineyard can be damaged above the snow level, it is sensitive to spring frosts, but then grows back well.
It is worth recalling the common dioecious hop (Humulus lupulus), which grows well on any supports, near the walls of a house, on a gate and a fence, near outbuildings, decorating them with its numerous shoots and rough leaves, and at the end of summer - with cones useful in in all respects. Hop shoots are rigidly pubescent, like leaves, they grow up to 10 m and die off for the winter. Interestingly, they twist counterclockwise around the supports. His homeland is North America, where he grows in thickets along the banks of rivers and streams.
- The dried cones are put in a beautiful bag and kept near the head - they believe that this is the best way for a restful and light sleep.
- An infusion of hop cones (a handful per 200 ml of boiling water) with the addition of 0.5 cups of dry grape wine is used as a lotion for the care of normal skin, and without alcohol additive - for the care of oily skin of the face and body.
- Infusion of hops and calendula (15 g of cones, 10 g of flowers and 20 g of crushed calendula roots for 3 cups of boiling water) rinse the hair and rub it into the hair roots 2-3 times a week for 1-2 months to strengthen them.
- Leaves and young shoots of hops are used for making salads, soups, porridge, sauces with mushrooms, as well as beer, sbitn, bread sourdough and other dishes.
Common grapes, or wine (Vitis vinifera) and some of its winter-hardy varieties ('Brant' and others) are sometimes used in vertical gardening in the middle lane and rarely in the northwest, but its fruits will not give you much pleasure. By the way, the seeds of large-fruited grape varieties can be sown in a pot and grown as an indoor ampel or trellis plant, in the summer they can be taken out to the balcony, terrace and garden, and returned home in the winter to a warm loggia.
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With the help of grapes of different types, you can create a wide variety of small architectural forms, as landscape designers call it.
The entrance to the garden is usually formed by an arch through which, along with other vines, you can plant grapes. The walls of the house, entwined with grapes, are picturesque - this is already a Mediterranean landscape, and in autumn the colors and patterns of the leaves are unusually good. As for the device of the gazebo and pergola (a covered openwork gallery entwined with plants), the main thing here is to create a support in the form of vertical posts made of wood or metal, on top you can lay a bar in the form of a canopy for branches, or the roof of the gazebo will serve as a support.
Dense shoots of grapes very soon braid the supports and form cozy corners for relaxing on a hot day, for receiving guests and just for evening tea. Such a pergola, set at a right angle, can be fenced off from neighbors on the site. The paths to the house are effectively decorated with a grape-covered openwork gallery. A cobbled canopy over a summer kitchen or recreation area will also be unusually good if grapes are put on it. And if you cannot escape in heavy rain without a continuous covering, then it is quite possible to hide from the drizzling rain, continuing a conversation or tea drinking with companions dear to your heart.
Finally, the maiden grape is a wonderful ground cover plant, if spun along the ground, along cobbled paths, throw numerous whips over a tall old tree stump, or let it run along the trunks of a dry tree and let it scatter on the ground around any of the supports.
Given the shade tolerance, unpretentiousness, resistance of grapes to diseases and pests, it can be considered an ideal plant for vertical gardening of any buildings, including balconies, loggias and terraces. The combination of different species interspersed with other lianas - honeysuckle, honeysuckle, petiole hydrangea, hops, actinidia, lemongrass, woodworm, clematis - will make your garden cozy and attractive at any time of the year.
To continue building creativity, you will need additional planting material for grapes, and it is easy and simple even for an inexperienced gardener to get it. Firstly, you can always dig out the layers with roots (as well as lay them during the season). Secondly, in the spring, before the buds bloom, the branches of the grapes are cut into cuttings with 3-4 nodes and stick them deeply into the moist soil (leaving 1 node on the surface) where there is space and a little light.
You can plant them along the edge of the site, along the rows of black currants, raspberries, chokeberries, or on a special bedding bed. They will need partial shade and moist soil. During the season, cuttings take root, and in September they can already be planted in a permanent place after 70-100 cm, depending on need. With the same success, lignified grape cuttings can be cuttings in the fall, at the end of September - October. The main thing is to press the planted stalk very tightly in the ground along its entire length.
The planting hole should be made larger than the volume of the seedling root system (50x50x50 cm), fill it with nutritious soil with compost, add 1-2 teaspoons of AVA granules and plant the rooted cutting, pouring water into the hole and covering the roots with earth.
A feature of planting clematis and grape seedlings is the deepening of their root collar by 8–15 cm, which allows protecting the buds from the cold of a snowless winter and forming additional roots from the shoot nodes in the coming season. The planting is mulched with dry soil, peat, sawdust to retain moisture. And in the spring, the trunk circle is decorated with planting low-growing or ground cover perennials, which creates optimal conditions for the life of clematis and grapes.
Rooted grape cuttings in autumn or spring can be planted in a large deep container or box on the balcony, adding AVA to the nutrient mixture, so that you do not have to worry about feeding (AVA works in the soil for 2-3 years, slowly melting under the influence of root secretions), and then grapes will grow very close to you.
First, it is necessary to direct its branches along the trellises, wire to the wall or upper console, and then it will keep itself on the plane. In spring and early summer, grapes and other vines will need nitrogen fertilization in any convenient form (urea, humus, Unifor-growth, Kemira and other brands of fertilizers for growth). AVA granules and powder do not contain nitrogen, but AVA capsules and powder with nitrogen are already there and can be added to the container when planting.
In addition to lignified cuttings, grapes are also propagated green, but this requires constant care, regular spraying several times a day, keeping the cuttings under cover, as is usually the case with green cuttings. It is convenient to sow seeds, washed from pulp, collected after the first frost, before winter.
In the garden bed, they undergo the necessary stratification and germinate in spring. Seedlings grow slowly, they are planted in a permanent place 2 - 3 years after sowing, but the amount of planting material can be quite large if there is a "vineyard" nearby. But still the most convenient and inexpensive way of reproduction is winter cuttings, of which you can cut an unlimited amount, and the vines shortened when harvesting cuttings will curl even more willingly, creating long-term green, and in the fall purple-red lace wherever you allow them to settle.
Read the next part. Maiden grape and Clematis Fargeziodes - a brilliant partnership →
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