Vineyards and grape farms normally grow their grapes by grafting. Wild grapes are sown by birds and humans. Grape seeds can be tossed on the ground and allowed to germinate naturally where weather and soil conditions are favorable. Grape seeds have a long dormancy period so it can take a while for the seeds to germinate as the seeds have very thick coats. However it is still possible to grow a grape vine from seeds by choosing the right variety that grows easily. Below are tips on how to seed a grape vine.
- Get the best grapes that will grow in your area. One of the most adaptable ones is the Concord grape. Choose only the seeds from mature and even overripe grapes.
- Grape vines are usually planted in the spring when the danger of frost is over so you should be able to time when the seeds have to germinate. It can take about three to four months to complete the process of germination and waiting for the seedlings to sprout.
- The first process is called stratification where you get the seeds to germinate in an ideal condition. Place the seeds on layers of damp paper towels and insert these inside a resealable plastic bag. Place the bag inside your refrigerator and leave it there for ninety to one hundred and twenty days. You can also use peat moss but you have to keep this moist throughout this period. The ideal temperature inside the refrigerator is one to three degrees Celsius.
- After stratification the seeds should be planted in seed pots on soil with a 1:1:1 combination of peat, perlite and sand. Grapes like to grow in well-drained soil. Place the seeds in shallow holes. Position the seed pots in an area where temperature can be kept constant at twenty degrees Celsius. Use a heat lamp if it is still cool at night.
- Wait for the seeds to sprout the first four leaves or about two inches high before you transplant them into individual bigger pots. In some areas, it is advisable that you allow the grape seedling to remain in the pot for at least a year before you transfer them to a permanent location in your garden. In other areas, you can plant them directly on the ground after the seedlings have their four first leaves. Make sure that the soil is sandy as grape vines do not like too much water. Grape vines should be transplanted in their permanent location when sudden frost will no longer be a problem.
- Other growers recommend that you provide the seeds with warm stratification for at least two days after you have removed them from the refrigerator. The seeds should not be removed from the plastic but rather kept in a place in your house where the temperature is around thirty to thirty six degrees Celsius for two days then soak the seeds in 0.5M hydrogen peroxide for forty-eight hours before you plant them on seed pots. Place the seed pots in an area where it will receive constant light for twelve hours and another twelve hours of darkness until the seeds sprout leaves.
Do remember that grape seeds do not carry all the genetics from the parent plant. Therefore do not be surprised if the grapes you get from the vine that you grew from the seeds to taste exactly like the grapes from which you got the seeds.