Grapes! Finally! Delicious, juicy, spray-free grapes are yours for the growing!
For decades grapes took a backseat to tree fruits on my farm and that was primarily because I lost them almost every year to black rot, a devastating fungus that, without regular fungicide sprays, turns the grapes into hard, black inedible “raisins.” Then about 12 years ago I 1) rediscovered the old (from the late 1800s) Munson varieties and 2) the climate had changed enough that I thought it was time to try muscadines again. Wow! Suddenly grapes went from being one of the hardest fruits to grow to one of the easiest!
There are lesser problems like the grape berry moth and downy mildew, but if you plant these black rot-resistant varieties and provide reasonable care (annual pruning, weed control, watering), you can have all the grapes you want. All grapes are on their own roots (not grafted or budded). All the varieties are seeded (no seedless grape has enough disease resistance to produce in the South without fungicides).
NOTE: We had a propagation failure due to flooding in our bunch grape propagation area. (The muscadines are fine.) Among the bunch grapes, we will only have Elvicand and Champanel in any significant number. We will have just a smattering of the other varieties. We’ve learned our lesson and expect to be back to full production next year.