How can I tell if my grape vine is dead?

Grapes October 26, 2010 Print Friendly and PDF
It may be difficult to tell if your grape is dead in the winter or fall. Canes that have been dead for a while often appear somewhat "wrinkled" and will be dry and brittle; however, dormant vines that have died very recently or are dying over the winter may look healthy. Living buds usually begin to swell in early spring. They will appear pinkish or cinnamon brown and somewhat fuzzy. Also, sap usually drips copiously from living canes in spring when they are pruned. Some grapes break bud later in the spring, so you may have to wait to determine whether the vine is dead or alive. Even if the vine appears to be dead, new canes may grow from the trunk or from living portions of the vine near the roots.

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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.