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Prices and Shipping
The following prices apply to all grapevines, except where indicated. Minimum order 5 vines. Shipping charges extra.
Assorted vines........................................................ $1.50 ea.
Ten or more of one variety........................................ .95 ea.
Fifty or more of one variety...................................... .7 5 ea.
Per thousand rate (minimum 500 of one variety). $380/M
We accept orders throughout the year for spring shipment. We do not recommend fall planting. We suggest early ordering to avoid disappointment, as all orders are entered on a first-come-first-served basis. If ordering late, please specify second choice or give us the right to make appropriate substitution, to save correspondence
We ship none but sound, healthy vines. As these are out of our control once they leave the nursery they are shipped without guarantee of replacement. Any adjustment is based on individual circumstances.
Grape varieties differ a great deal, in the vineyard and as nursery stock. As received, some have fat flourishing roots and heavy top growth, others the reverse. The weaker-looking variety may be the more durable and productive once it gets started.
We are always glad to answer inquiries. Those including a stamped return envelope get priority.
We receive winery visitors by appointment, on Thursdays and Fridays only.
Please date this catalog and save for your own reference or for lending to friends. Actually, it has historical value and belongs with your wine books.
Cover photograph: One of our vineyards, near the village of Monkton in north-central Maryland.
Wine Growers and Nurserymen
J. & P. Wagner, props.
Box 38, Riderwood, Md. 21139
Tel. (301) 823-4624
Office Hours - 8: 00 to 5: 00
The Story Behind These Grapevines
We are nurserymen specializing in French Hybrid grape-vines, the grapes which are now revolutionizing the eastern winegrowing industry. These grapes are also producing superior table wines both commercially and on a family scale in many parts of the country where that wasn't thought possible before. We were the first to offer these wines commercially, and they have become well known.
Here is the background. The classic wine grapes of Europe, the so called vinifera, are at home in the Mediterranean climate of California. They do fairly well in a few other limited are-as. But for climatic reasons they are not well adapted to most parts of the United States. This is not particularly surprising. All plants have climatic requirements and limitations. In parts of Europe, the vinifera don't succeed either.
In par-,s of the country where the vinifera wine grapes are not sufficiently winter hardy and disease resistant, wi-nemakers had to fall back, until recently, oil the so-called "foxy" American grapes such as Concord, which do not give wine of the European type.
The French Hybrids provide a way around this. They are crosses of the classic European sorts with certain tough American species. They combine the wanted European wine quality with the hardiness and disease resistance of the American parentage.
We introduced the French Hybrids commercially in this country more than three decades ago. Vines originating in our nursery are today yielding good wines in almost every state of the Union. Several of the hybrids have already become standard wine grapes in the older grapegrowing districts such as New York State and Ohio.
The family of the French Hybrids is large and varied: early ones for the more northerly regions, some that stand up under humid conditions and severe winters, others for hot dry climates, and so on. It is possible to choose with reasonable assurance for most parts of the country. But remember, the finest grape varieties and the famous vintages of Europe have behind them several thousand years of selection and adaptation and centuries of winemaking experience. You can expect to produce very good wine from the hybrids, but do not expect to equal the "great" wines of Bordeaux or Burgundy or Chablis. Truly great wines will always be rare.
We constantly experiment with new hybrids in our vineyards. But it takes many years to discover the weaknesses as well as the strengths of a new grape variety. Thus we hold our listing to the most widely tested and reliable varieties.
Most of the hybrids are identified by the name of the hybridizer plus the number he assigned to it as a seedling. Examples: Seibel 13053 (a redwine grape) and Seyve-Villard 12375 (a white-wine grape). Some of the hybrids have also picked up a name along the way. In such cases, the name follows the number in the catalog.
The following descriptions contain references to "cane pr-uning" and "spur pruning". These terms are explained later on.
Grapes for Red Wine
Asterisk indicates our leaders-safest and surest for the amateur who wants good wine without too much experimenting,
BACO No. 1 (Baco Noir) - Early, hardy, disease resistant, ultravigorous, moderate crops. When properly handled, its wine sometimes recalls red Bordeaux. Its great vigor can make it hard to handle in commercial plantings, but is no obstacle in family vineyards and makes it ideal for decorative trellis or arbor. Cane pruning.
FOCH. * Extra early, originating in Alsace. Widely adapted, especially valuable for short-season areas of rigorous climate, and remarkably disease resistant. Good wine quality and reliability promise an important future. Cane pruning.
JOANNES-SEYVE 26-205 (Chaii7,boui,cin). Mid-season, wine of very superior quality. Grown in the French Loire Valley and Savoie. Hardy and relatively dise-ase-free, but spray treatments cannot be neglected. Short cane pruning.
LANDOT 4511 (Landot Noir). Very vigorous, early mid-season, moderate disease resistance. Our wine of this variety won a silver medal at the Bratislava Wine Exposition in 1975. Short cane pruning.
MILLOT. * Relative of Foch, equally healthy, a bit earlier ripening. Good Burgundy-like bouquet with bottle age. Cane pruning.
SEIBEL 7053 * (Chancellor). Early mid-season, hardy. A compact grower and one of the heaviest producers, combining quantity with good quality. Widely planted in southern France. Spur pruning.
SEIBEL 8357 (Colobel). Mid-season, hardy, vigorous, moderately productive, good disease resistance. A teintitrier grape giving 10 times the color intensity of normal red wines, used for blending in small proportion with lightly pigmented wines. A real asset in a cold, rainy year. Cane pruning.
SEIBEL 9549 (de Chauizac). Early, hardy, disease resistant, good vigor and highlyproductive. Its popularity is growing. Cane pruning.
SEIBEL 10878 * (Chelois). Medium early and already a "standard" in the Northeast. Wine somewhat recalls Burgundy. Growth starts relatively late in spring, an advantage in frosty spots. Short cane pruning.
SEIBEL 13053 * (Cascade) - Extra early, before Foch. Very reliable, and one of the best for short-season areas. Blends well with the other red-wine hybrids and makes a fine rosé. Cane pruning.
SEIBEL,14596 (Bellandais). Very vigorous and a heavy producer of huge bunches. One of the best for the Southwest and other fairly dry, long-season areas. Short cane pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 5247. * Bushy habit of growth; early, hardy and healthy, large crops of big compound lavender-colored bunches. Used for rosé or for blending with more heavily pigmented red-wine varieties. Short cane pruning
SEYVE-VILLARD 18-315 * (Villard Noir). Late mid-season, very heavy producer, disease resistant. Now the most widely grown red-wine hybrid in southern France, well adapted over here in all but short-season areas. Wine he-avy-bodied and very good, what the French call gros rouge. Spur pruning.
Grapes for White Wine
Asterisk indicates our leaders-safest and surest for the amateur who wants good wine without too much experimenting
Burdin 4672 Early mid-season, dependable producer. When fully ripe yields a delicately fragrant white wine with a touch of what the French call the "gout d'Alsace." We consider it a real comer, though it has not been tested as long as some others. Our supply is limited. Cane pruning.
Meynieu 6 Early mid-season. A hybrid from Bordeaux turning out to be a rustic and steady producer of white wine recalling "Graves." We foresee a future for this one too, under a wide range of conditions. Cane pruning.
RAVAT 51 (Vignoles). Mid-season. Vigorous and hardy, but a moderate producer. Clean, crisp white wine recalling "p-etit Chablis." Has Chardonnay in its ancestry. Cane pruning.
*SEIBEL 4986 (Rayon d'Or). Trim, handsome vine, healthy and hardy; fruit greyish-pink at maturity, in beautiful winged bunches, to be picked proi-n_ptly when ripe. Very regular producer, wine of high quality, and one of the basic grapes in our own white wine production. Spur or short cane pruning depending on vigor.
*SEIBEL 5279 (Aurore). Very early. Now the leading white wine variety in the Finger Lakes region ar4d other short-season areas, for still wine or champagne. Very vigorous and hardy, not so well adapted to warm, humid conditions. Wine pale, fresh, delicate. Delicious for eating or fresh juice. Cane pruning.
SEIBEL 10868. Early. Handsome, pale-pink fruit resembling Traminer in appearance though not in its wine. Very reliable and not yet fully appreciated. Wine crisp and refreshing, not unlike some of those from Switzerland and Austria. Short cane pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 5276 * (Seyval) - Early midseason. Medium vigor, no serious cultural defects, highly productive, compact grower. At this point, the jewel among the white wine hybrids for its combination of superior wine quality and excellent cultural characteristics. Our all around favorite, with a great future in American viticulture. Spur pruning.
* SEYVE-VILLARD 12375 (Villard Blanc). Mid-season. Remarkably vigorous vine and a heavy producer of large compound clusters. Does best in areas and seasons of low humidity. Not for short season areas, but otherwise widely adapted. Remarkable tonnage has been reported from some locations, especially the southwest. Spur pruning.
*'VIDAL 256. Mid-season. Originating in the French Cognac district, it is a hybrid of Trebbiano, the Italian white chianti grape, which it resembles in both wine and vine. Good vigor, big producer, mildew resistant (mildew being the bane of the Cognac district), one of our best. Foliage sometimes shows spots of mite damage which, however, are s,elf-healing. Short cane pruning.
WHITE ROGUE. Owing to a labeling mix-up years ago, the identity of this one was lost. We list it because it has tested out so admirably one of the earliest, extremely vigorous and productive, winter-hardy, disease resistant, good wine quality. A boon where the growing season is short and winters are difficult. Cane pruning.
We propagate these in smaller quantities. Some like Seibel 9110 are well tested but we have only limited foundation stock. Others have great promise but are still under test. Others have limitations though excellent in their place. Same prices.
BURDIN 7705 (Florental) - Early mid-season. A Gamay hybrid, wine a counterpart of French Beaujolais, but a weak grower and requires grafting. Short cane pruning.
BURDIN 8753 Early mid-season.Pinot Noir hybrid and wine has finesse. Moderate vigor and productivity, must have careful protection against mildew and blackrot. Short cane pruning
BURDIN 11042 Early mid-season. Hybrid of Pinot Noir Droit. Good vigor, moderate production, fair disease resistance. Cane pruning.
GALIBERT 238-35. Midseason. Midi type grape, requiring dry climate. Big bunches, high sugar, deep-colored wine. For the Southwest. Spur pruning.
JOFFRE. Ultra early cousin of Foch. Vigorous, hardy, disease-free, very small bunches. For marginal situations with short seasons and cold winters. Cane pruning.
RAVAT 262 (Ravat Noir). Early midseason. Pinot Noir hybrid, big deeply colored wine. Moderate vigor and productivity, relatively disease free. Short cane pruning.
SEIBEL 13666. Early mid-season. Moderate vigor, moderate productivity, fairly disease resistant, not for rigorous climates. Superior, well-balanced wine. Short cane pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 30-56. Mid-season. Midi-type variety, for trial in Southwest. Spur pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 18283 (Garon- nais). Midseason. Very vigorous, disease-free and a steady producer, grown in the Garonne Valley of France. Short cane pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 23-657. Mid-season. A Rhone Valley grape. Vigorous but stocky growth, heavy production, high sugar, full-bodied wine. For the Southwest. Spur pruning.
VINCENT. Early. A hardy, resistant and productive hybrid originating at the Vineland, Ont., Experiment Station. Heavy bodied, non-foxy but somewhat coarse wine. Cane pruning.
Burdin 5201. Early mid-season. Superior wine with "gout d'Alsace" when well ripened. Good disease resistance but lacks vigor except in rich soils and does better when grafted. Culturally inferior to Burdin 4672, but worth trial for its wine quality. Short cane pruning.
COUDERC 299-35 Early mid-season A true Muscat Fair vigor, good producer, fairly resistant, but the bees love it. For heightening bouquet. Spur pruning.
GALIBERT 261-13. Mid-season. A S6millon hybrid. Moderate vigor and resistance. For trial in the Southwest. Spur pruning.
LANDOT 2281. Midseason. Good vigor, productive, fair disease resistance. Spectacular long, shouldered clusters. Superior wine without special characteristics. Short cane pruning.
Ravat 6 (Ravat Blanc) – Early mid-season. A Chardonnay hybrid producing superb white wine of the white Burgundy type, but neither very hardy nor very disease resistant, hence interesting only for experimenters. Short cane pruning.
RAVAT 34. Early. Much superior culturally to the Ravat 6. Wine is pale, neutral and extremely clean-tasting but not up to that of Ravat 6. Short cane pruning.
SEIBEL 9110. Early m-id-season. Vigorous, hardy and resistant. Fruit exceptionally beautiful, with loose well-formed bunches of pinkish oval berries. Good table grape, pleasantly fragrant wine. Irregular bearing habit, -aid the bunches tend to shatter in hot ripening reasons. Hence a qualified recon,imendation. Short cane pruning.
SEIBEL 13047. Early, with S. 5279 which it resembles, though more disease resistant. Fruit in long loose bunches. Dual purpose grape, for both cating and wine. Cane pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 12309 (Rouca- neuf) - Late mid-season, for the South and Southwest. Strong grower, moderate producer, large bunches of oval fruit turning pinkish. Both wine and table. Spur or short cane pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 14287. Early. A true small-berried Muscat, for heightening bouquet. Weak grower, only moderate disease resistance, sets fruit irregularly. Spur pruning. For experimenters.
SEYVE VILLARD 23-410 (Valerien). Offspring of the famous SV 12375, somewhat less vigorous and productive but more disease resistant in humid locations, and its wine has more finesse. Requires more testing. Short cane pruning.
SEYVE-VILLARD 23-512 Early mid-season. Still under - t shows much prormse both culturally and for its wine quality. Worth a trial. Cane pruning.
SIEGFRIED. Early mid-season. A Riesling hybrid from Germany easily mistaken in the vineyard for the true Riesling. Differences: it ripens earlier than Riesling and is far more resistant to downy mildew-and it is not up to the true Riesling in wine quality though the Riesling nose is discernible when it is fully ripened.
Vinifira and Rootstock Material
As stated, the classic European vinifera wine grapes are unsatisfactory in most parts of North America, except California. Reasoiis: lack of winter hardiness, susceptibility to the vine diseases, lack of resistance to the root phylloxera. But despite three centuries of almost unbroken disappointment, there is a revival of interest in trying them out, the hope being that grafting on phylloxera-resistant rootstocks plus modern pesticides will carry them through.
We do no commercial grafting. But for experimenters we do propagate on their own roots a choice of the less vulnerable vinifera grapes. These will survive long enough to supply ample scion wood for those who wish to try their hand at grafting.
Along with these, we also propagate a number of the standard rootstock varieties best suited to American conditions, intended to be used as mother vines to provide grafting material.
Available vinifera: Aligoté, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Muscadet, Riesling and Ruby Cabernet.
Available rootstock vines: 1613, 5BB, Teleki 5C, 3306, 3309, Rupestris St. George, and AxR No. 1. St. George and AxR are easiest to graft; 5BB and 5C tolerate high lime; 1613 is somewhat resistant to nematodes.
Vinifera and rootstocks are sold at the single-vine price and are available only in very limited numbers.
Grapes for Eating
Though most of the French Hybrids are meant for wine, the following (already described) are suitable for table use: Seibel 5279, Seibel 9110, Seibel 13047, Seyve Villard 12309 and 12375. And incidentally, all of the French Hybrids yield delicious, delicately-flavored fresh juice and jellies, very different from the usual American grape juice and grape jelly.
We do not propagate such American table grapes as Concord and Niagara because they are generally available. In addition to the Hybrids mentioned above, we also offer the following:
Steuben. Medium early. An improved American table type, vigorous, hardy and resistant, good crops of handsome lavender-blue, bunches with an agreeably spicy flavor. Cane pruning.
Seedless Varieties. Two whites, Himrod and Romulus. Also Suffolk Red, bearing big clusters of bright pink seedless fruit. All are vigorous and hardy but rather capricious bearers. Limited quantities, single-vine price.
Landot 2832 (Dattier de Coiizieu). French-type table grape, huge clusters with berries as big as small plums. Mid-season. Vigorous and hardy, but vulnerable to disease in humid conditions. Single-vine price.
Seyve-Villard 20-365 (Dattier de St. Vallier). Golden-yellow lady-finger grapes carried in big loose bunches. Hardy and vigorous, but as temperamental as L. 3832. Single-vine price.
Establishing A Vineyard
Your vines will arrive packed with sphagnum moss to keep the roots in condition. If not ready to plant immediately, vines may be held in unopened package in a cool place for a week or 10 days. If delay is longer, open package, spread out roots and trench the vines in light soil with the tops exposed. Do not let dry out.
Vineyard layout. Varie@ties pruned to spurs or short canes are planted 6 feet apart in the row; 8 feet for those requiring cane pruning. Alleys between rows are 8 to 10 feet, not narrower.
How many vines? Planting 6' X 8' means 48 square feet per vine. Planting 8' X 10' means 80 square feet per vine. An acre equals 43,560 sq. ft. Thus you can compute the number of vines per acre after making due allowance for turning room, margins and cross alleys. The number runs from around 450 to 850 per acre.
Estimating yield. We are often asked this question, and there is no firm answer because of the many variables. A ton of grapes yields about 176 gallons of wine; a quarter-ton, 44 gallons. Then the variables enter. Production per acre may run from 2 tons to 6 tons depending on such factors as winter damage, occasional frost, nature of growing season, care in culture, disease and insect damage and other accidents, grape variety, etc. It is best to assume the low figure and be pleasantly surprised later. Small garden plantings yield proportionally, of course; often more because vines in small plantings are babied and get more individual attention.
Pruning. Grapevines require drastic annual pruning, undertaken in late winter or early spring. The many pruning systems cannot be described here, but essentially they boil down to two: cane p;-uning and spur pruning. The point to remember is that grapes are borne exclusively on "one-year wood," the woody canes which were the green shoots of the previous season. The wood of some varieties yields most heavily from the 3 or 4 buds closest to the trunk; so these are pruned by cutting back several canes to "spurs" of 3 or 4 buds and ti,inzt77,ing off everything else. The spurs yield sufficient crop. The canes of other varieties bear best from the 4th to the 10th buds, counting out from the trunk; so these are pruned by cutting back several canes to leave 8 to 10 buds each according to the vigor of the vine and counting from the trunk, then trimming off everything else and tying these "be-aring canes" to the trellis. In cane pruning, 2 short spurs are also left well placed near the he-ad of the vine, not for crop but to provide well placed "one year wood" for the following year.
Left: Ist year. As received from nursery and planted. Center: 3rd year. Prune to leave 4 spurs near head of vine.
Right: 4th year and subsequently. Cane pruned vines are pruned back to 2 bearing canes and 2 spurs as close as possible to head of trunk. Spur-pruned vines are pruned back each year to 4 spurs as in center illustration.
Planting and First Season. Keep young vines from drying out during planting, in a water bucket or moist burlap. Give soil a final cultivation just before Planting to kill weed seedlings, then lay off row. Dig hole and plant vine so the place where top growth begins is just above ground level. Trim off top growth to leave two buds only. Use fertilizer sparingly.
After growth begins and frost danger is past, rub off all shoots except the strongest one, which will become the permanent trunk and should be tied to a lath or stake as it grows during the season.. Rub off any suckers that may develop from the base, to concentrate all growth in the one shoot, or cane. Keep clean cultivated and water if necessary. Apply a general garden spray several times the first season.
Second Season. If main shoot made less than three feet of growth, prune back again to two buds, thus assuring growth of an extra-strong trunk even though a season is lost. If vines have made more than 3 feet of growth, set trellis posts every 3 vines in the row and put on bottom trellis wire (No. 9 smooth galvanized) about 36" from the ground. Set end posts firmly and secure with guy wires or braces. Tic cane securely to wire in early spring while vine is still dormant, cut off all lateral shoots, and prune back to 1 bud above wire.
When growth begins and frost danger is past, rub off all shoots from the base of the vine up the cane, except the top f our. Let these develop throughout the season. If they try to produce fruit, pinch off the small bunches this second season. Adopt a regular fungicide/insecticide spray schedule.
Third Season. Vines are ready to bear first crop. In early spring, cut back the four shoots, now woody canes known as "one year wood," to stubs, or spurs, of two to four buds each. Shoots from these buds will produce the crop. Suckers emerging during the @on from elsewhere on the young vine must be rubbed off. Spray and cultivate regularly. A second wire placed 12 inches above the bottom one serves as a catch wire.
Subsequent Seasons. For spur-pruned vines, cut back again to 4 spurs of one-year wood placed as close to the head of the trunk as possible, and remove all other growth. For cane-pruned vines, remove all growth except two spurs and two canes of 5 to 10 buds, depending on vigor. The canes are tied horizontally along the bottom wire. Continue your program of cultivation, suckering and fungicide/insecticide spray.
Spray Schedule. Spraying has a double purpose: to protect against (1) fungus diseases and (2) insect damage. Failure to follow a spray routine can compromise your entire crop. The materials commonly used are formulated for these purposes only and are harmless in application when instructions are followed. So is their residue since they degrade and lose their fungicidal and insecticidal power after a few days. For information on materials and application consult your county extension agent or a good book on grape growing or general fruit growing.
Books on the Subject
We call attention to two books by Philip M. Wagner which together constitute a library of grape-growing and wine-making:
A Wine Grower's Guide, by Philip M. Wagner. 2nd ed. Knopf, $7.95. (A comprehensive manual of grape-growing, with special attention to wine grapes.)
Grapes Into Wine: The Art of Wine-Making in America, by Philip M. Wagner. Knopf. $12-50. Paperbound, $5.95. (This newly published work supersedes Mr. Wagner's standard work on wine-making, "American Wines and Wine-Making " which went through many editions. It is a 9
text for the serious amateur and the small-scale commercial producer.)
These may be had through your bookseller or direct from us. In ordering from us, please add 50 cents each for postage and handling.
At or shortly before Wagner passed on, Jim Russell ( a founding member
of the Maryland Grape Growers Association ) took and grew several cuttings of
a half dozen of Phillips more key or unusual selections. He added to them
some of his own to the point where the collection has small numbers (1-3 plants)
of the I have listed below.
GM 322-58 "Hibernal" a Riesling-like hybrid from Geisenheim. (The vineyard profile in the last MGGA Grapevine is by someone who grows it.)
Sigfried "Siegfried" another Riesling hybrid from Germany
Meynieu 6 A hybrid from Bordeaux turning out to be a rustic and steady producer of white wine recalling Graves.
S. 14596 "Bellandais" one of the best for the Southwest and other fairly dry, long-season areas.
SV 23-410 "Roucanouf" offspring of SV 12375 (Villard Blanc), white, more disease resistant, less exuberant growth, yet productive. Wine has more finesse than 12375. (Lucie Morton's book, see below, says the name is Valerien, and that the origin is unknown.)
Wagner White Rogue Identity lost, perhaps a Baco hybrid. Early, extremely vigorous and productive, winter-hardy, disease resistant, good wine quality.
Jim Russell Collected:
Humbert 3 Just one vine left, and it is in poor shape. Hope to bring it back with a little TLC.
Landot 244 red, Gamay-type variety, reliable, good wine quality
Ravat 51 "Vignoles" vigorous and hardy but only moderate producer. Clean, crisp white wine, Chardonnay in its ancestry. Can achieve high sugar levels, making it suitable for dessert wine production.
S. 9110 "Verdelet" Early mid-season, fruit exceptionally beautiful, with loose, well-formed bunches of pinkish oval berries. Good table grape, pleasantly fragrant wine.
Norton aka Cynthiana (not clear if they are identical) Natural hybrid(s) of Labrusca and aestivalis. Grown commercially in Missouri and Arkansas (Morton, 1979). It also seems to be successful commercially for Horton winery in Virginia.
St. Francis John McGrew, author of some of the AWS publications on grape growing, won some AWS wine competitions with this grape