Grapes are one of the oldest cultivars, with roots going back over 8,000 years. They have been grown around the globe and can survive in Wisconsin with a little TLC. Grapes can be a long-lasting investment and require thoughtful siting and annual care and pruning. In return they provide a flexible fruit suitable for the table, dehydrator, or wine bottle. In this workshop, you’ll learn the basics of planting, growing, caring and pruning years one through four, suitable for a backyard grower. Although the extension service has produced a guide to growing grape vines in Wisconsin, it is best to get hands-on practice with an experienced grower.
This course will cover basic aspects of grape vine planting, pruning, and care. Please bring any pruning supplies and your questions about growing grape vines, but extra pruning supplies will be available if you do not have any. You will receive a handout and other printed information covering grape cultivars for wine production in Wisconsin and table grapes, but you may like to bring a notebook. We will spend a little time indoors covering some basics before we work outside. Also, please wear clothing appropriate for the weather and activity: close-toed shoes, pants, etc. We’ll have light refreshments and snacks, but feel free to bring your own as well.
The workshop will take place at the Low Technology Institute on May 26, from 1:00–5:00 p.m. This session will cover planting bare-root grape vines, pruning, and care. The cost of the workshop is $45 (members get a $5 discount, find out more about joining the institute here). You can reserve your spot by paying the workshop fee at our online store. If the course is sold out, please check out with the $0 “Waitlist” option to be added to the queue.
Judith Reith is a grape researcher and instructor with over a decade of experience. She was theassistant superintendent of the UW–Madison West Madison Agricultural Research Station and studied winter-hardy wine and seedless table grapes. She consults with large conventional vineyards but is also an experienced grape educator with knowledge of sustainable growing practices and serves on the Wisconsin Grape Growers Association Board of Directors. She has been recognized with numerous awards including the Staff Agricultural Researcher of the Year and Industry Person of the Year by the Wisconsin Grape Growers Association.