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Title: American Grape Training - An account of the leading forms now in use of Training the - American Grapes
Author: Bailey, Liberty Hyde (L.H.)
Language: English
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  An account of the leading
  forms now in use of Training
  the American Grapes.

  _By L. H. BAILEY_


    _By the same Author._

    =Annals of Horticulture= in North America for the year 1889. A
    witness of passing events and a record of progress. 249 pages, 52

    =Annals for 1890.= 312 pages, 82 illustrations.

    =Annals for 1891.= 416 pages, 77 illustrations.

    =Annals for 1892.=

    *.* A new volume is issued each year, each complete in
    itself. Cloth, $1; paper, 60 cents.

    =The Horticulturist's Rule-Book.= A compendium of useful information
    for fruit-growers, truck-gardeners, florists and others. Second
    edition, revised to the opening of 1892. 221 pages. Cloth, $1;
    paper, 50 cents.

    =The Nursery Book.= A complete guide to the multiplication and
    pollination of plants. 304 pages, 106 illustrations. Cloth, $1;
    paper, 50c.

    =Cross-Breeding and Hybridizing.= With a brief bibliography of the
    subject. 44 pages. Paper, 40 cents. (Rural Library Series.)

    =Field Notes on Apple Culture.= 90 pages, 19 illustrations. Cloth,
    75 cents.

    =Talks Afield=: About plants and the science of plants. 173 pages,
    100 illustrations. Cloth, $1.






  Introduction      9-11

  Pruning      11-24


  Preliminary Preparations for Training--The Trellis--Tying      25-33


  The Upright Systems. (Horizontal Arm Spur System. High Renewal. Fan
    Training)      34-55


  The Drooping Systems. (True or Four-Cane Kniffin. Modifications of
    the Four-Cane Kniffin. The Two-Cane Kniffin or Umbrella System. The
    Low or One-Wire Kniffin. The Six-Cane Kniffin. Overhead, or Arbor
    Kniffin. The Cross-Wire System. Renewal Kniffin. The Munson System)


  Miscellaneous Systems. (Horizontal Training. Post Training. Arbors.
    Remodeling Old Vines)      83-92

[Illustration: (Drawing of grapes)]



   1. Grape Shoot      12

   2. The Bearing Wood      13

   3. Diagram      15

   4. Spur      18

   5. Renewal Pruning      19

   6. A Newly Set Vineyard      21

   7. Horizontal Arm Spur Training      35

   8. Horizontal Arm (Diagram)      36

   9. Short Arm Spur Training      38

  10. The Second Season of Upright Training      40

  11. Making the T-Head      42

  12. The Third Season of High Renewal      43

  13. High Renewal, before Pruning      44

  14. High Renewal, Pruned      45

  15. High Renewal, Pruned and Tied      46

  16. High Renewal with Four Canes      47

  17. High Renewal Complete      48

  18. A Slat Trellis, with Upright Training      51

  19. Fan Training, after Pruning      55

  20. William Kniffin      57

  21. The True Kniffin Training      59

  22. No. 21, when Pruned      60

  23. A Poor Type of Kniffin      64

  24. The Y-Trunk Kniffin      65

  25. Umbrella Training      67

  26. A Poor Umbrella System      68

  27. Eight-Cane Kniffin (Diagram)      70

  28. Overhead Kniffin      71

  29. Overhead Kniffin      72

  30. Overhead Kniffin, before Pruning      73

  31. Cross-Wire Training      75

  32. Cross-Wire Training, Outside View      76

  33. Munson Training. End View      78

  34. Munson Training. Side View      79

  35. Horizontal Training      83

  36. Low Post Training      86

  37. A Yearling Graft      91


This little book has grown out of an attempt to teach the principles and
methods of grape training to college students. I have found such
teaching to be exceedingly difficult and unsatisfactory. It is
impossible to firmly impress the lessons by mere lectures. The student
must apprehend the principles slowly and by his own effort. He must have
time to thoroughly assimilate them before he attempts to apply them. I
therefore cast about for books which I could put before my class, but I
at once found that there are very few succinct accounts of the subjects
of grape pruning and training, and that none of our books portray the
methods which are most largely practised in the large grape regions of
the east. My only recourse, therefore, was to put my own notes into
shape for print, and this I have now done. And inasmuch as all
grape-growers are students, I hope that the simple account will find a
use beyond the classroom.

This lack of adequate accounts of grape training at first astonished me,
but is not strange after all. It must be remembered that the cultivation
of the native grape is of very recent origin. There are many men who can
remember its beginning in a commercial way. It seldom occurs to the
younger generation, which is familiar with the great vineyards in many
states, that the Concord is yet scarcely forty years old, and that all
grape growing in eastern America is yet in an experimental stage.
Progress has been so rapid in recent years that the new methods outstrip
the books. The old horizontal arm spur system, which is still the chief
method in the books, has evolved itself into a high renewal training,
which is widely used but which has not found its way into the manuals.
The Kniffin type has outgrown its long period of incubation, and is now
taking an assured place in vineyard management. So two great types,
opposed in method, are now contending for supremacy, and they will
probably form the basis of all future developments. This evolution of
American grape training is one of the most unique and signal
developments of our modern horticulture, and its very recent departure
from the early doubts and trials is a fresh illustration of the youth
and virility of all horticultural pursuits in North America.

This development of our grape training should form the subject of a
historical inquiry. I have not attempted such in this little hand-book.
I have omitted all reference to the many early methods, which were in
most cases transportations or modifications of European practices, for
their value is now chiefly historical and their insertion here would
only confuse the reader. I have attempted nothing more than a plain
account of the methods now in use; in fact, I am aware that I have not
accomplished even this much, for there are various methods which I have
not mentioned. But these omitted forms are mostly of local use or
adaptation, and they are usually only modifications of the main types
here explained. It is impossible to describe all the variations in grape
training in a book of pocket size; neither is it necessary. Nearly
every grower who has given grape raising careful attention has
introduced into his own vineyard some modifications which he thinks are
of special value to him. There are various curious and instructive old
books to which the reader can go if he desires to know the history and
evolution of grape training in America. He will find that we have now
passed through the long and costly experiment with European systems. And
we have also outgrown the gross or long-wood styles, and now prune close
with the expectation of obtaining superior and definite results.

I have not attempted to rely upon my own resources in the preparation of
this book. All the manuscript has been read by three persons--by George
C. Snow, Penn Yan, N. Y., William D. Barns, Middle Hope, N. Y., and L.
C. Corbett, my assistant in the Cornell Experiment Station. Mr. Snow is
a grower in the lake region of western New York, and employs the High
Renewal system; Mr. Barns is a grower in the Hudson River valley, and
practices the Kniffin system; while Mr. Corbett has been a student of
all the systems and has practiced two or three of them in commercial
plantations. These persons have made many suggestions of which I have
been glad to avail myself, and to them very much of the value of the
book is to be attributed.

     L. H. BAILEY,

     ITHACA, N. Y., _Feb. 1, 1893_.

John Adlum, of the District of Columbia, appears to have been the first
person to systematically undertake the cultivation and amelioration of
the native grapes. His method of training, as described in 1823, is as
follows: One shoot is allowed to grow the first year, and this is cut
back to two buds the first fall. The second year two shoots are allowed
to grow, and they are tied to "two stakes fixed down to the side of each
plant, about five or six feet high;" in the fall each cane is cut back
to three or four buds. In the third spring, these two short canes are
spread apart "so as to make an angle of about forty-five degrees with
the stem," and are tied to stakes; this season about two shoots are
allowed to grow from each branch, making four in all, and in the fall
the outside ones are cut back to three or four buds and the inner ones
to two. These outside shoots are to bear the fruit the fourth year, and
the inside ones give rise to renewal canes. These two outer canes or
branches are secured to two stakes set about sixteen inches upon either
side of the vine, and the shoots are tied up to the stakes, as they
grow. The renewal shoots from the inside stubs are tied to a third stake
set near the root of the vine. The outside branches are to be cut away
entirely at the end of the fourth year. This is an ingenious renewal
post system, and it is easy to see how the Horizontal Arm and High
Renewal systems may have sprung from it.




Pruning and training the grape are perplexed questions, even to those
who have spent a lifetime in grape growing. The perplexity arises from
several diverse sources, as the early effort to transplant European
methods, the fact that many systems present almost equally good results
for particular purposes and varieties, and the failure to comprehend the
fundamental principles of the operations.

It is sufficient condemnation of European methods when applied in
eastern America, to say that the American grapes are distinct species
from the European grapes, and that they are consequently different in
habit. This fact does not appear to have been apprehended clearly by the
early American grape-growers, even after the native varieties had begun
to gain prominence. American viticulture, aside from that upon the
Pacific slope which is concerned with the European grape, is an industry
of very recent development. It was little more than a century ago that
the first American variety gained favor, and so late as 1823 that the
first definite attempt was made, in Adlum's "Memoir on the Cultivation
of the Vine in America," to record the merits of native grapes for
purposes of cultivation. Even Adlum's book was largely given to a
discussion of European varieties and practices. In 1846 "Thomas' Fruit
Culturist" mentioned only six "American hardy varieties," and all of
these, save the Catawba, are practically not in cultivation at the
present time. The Concord appeared in 1853. American grape training is,
therefore, a very recent development, and we are only now outgrowing the
influence of the practices early imported from Europe. The first decided
epoch in the evolution of our grape training was the appearance of
Fuller's "Grape Culturist," in 1864; for while the system which he
depicted and which yet often bears his name, was but a modification of
some European methods and had been outlined by earlier American writers,
it was at that time placed clearly and cogently before the public and
became an accepted practice. The fundamental principles of pruning are
alike for both European and American grapes, but the details of pruning
and training must be greatly modified for different species. We must
understand at the outset that American species of grapes demand an
American system of treatment.

The great diversity of opinion which exists amongst the best grape
growers concerning the advantages of different systems of training is
proof that many systems have merit, and that no one system is better
than others for all purposes. The grower must recognize the fact that
the most important factor in determining the merits of any system of
training is the habit of the vine--as its vigor, rate of growth, normal
size, relative size and abundance of leaves, and season and character of
fruit. Nearly every variety differs from others in habit in some
particular, and it therefore requires different treatment in some
important detail. Varieties may thrive equally well upon the same
general system of training, but require minor modifications; so it comes
that no hard and fast lines can be laid down, either for any system or
any variety. One system differs from another in some one main principle
or idea, but the modifications of all may meet and blend. If two men
practice the Kniffin system, therefore, this fact does not indicate that
they prune and train their vines exactly alike. It is impossible to
construct rules for grape training; it is, therefore, important that we
understand thoroughly the philosophy of pruning and training, both in
general and in the different systems which are now most popular. These
points we shall now consider.


Pruning and training are terms which are often confounded when speaking
of the grape, but they represent distinct operations. Pruning refers to
such removal of branches as shall insure better and larger fruit upon
the remaining portions. Training refers to the disposition of the
different parts of the vine. It is true that different methods of
training demand different styles of pruning, but the modification in
pruning is only such as shall adapt it to the external shape and size of
the vine, and does not in any way affect the principle upon which it
rests. Pruning is a necessity, and, in essence, there is but one method;
training is largely a convenience, and there are as many methods as
there are fancies among grape growers.

[Illustration: 1. GRAPE SHOOT.]

All intelligent pruning of the grape rests upon the fact that _the fruit
is borne in a few clusters near the base of the growing shoots of the
season, and which spring from wood of last year's growth_. It may be
said here that a growing, leafy branch of the grape vine is called a
_shoot_; a ripened shoot is called a _cane_; a branch or trunk two or
more years old is called an _arm_. Fig. 1 is a shoot as it appears in
the northern states in June. The whole shoot has grown within a month,
from a bud. As it grew, flower clusters appeared and these are to bear
the grapes. Flowering is now over, but the shoot will continue to grow,
perhaps to the length of ten or twenty feet. At picking time, therefore,
the grapes all hang near the lower end or base of the shoots or new
canes, as in fig. 2. Each bud upon the old cane, therefore, produces a
new cane, which may bear fruit as well as leaves. At the close of the
season, this long ripened shoot or cane has produced a bud every foot or
less, from which new fruit-bearing shoots are to spring next year. But
if all these buds were allowed to remain, the vine would be overtaxed
with fruit the coming year and the crop would be a failure. The cane is,
therefore, cut off until it bears only as many buds as experience has
taught us the vine should carry. The cane may be cut back to five or ten
buds, and perhaps some of these buds will be removed, or "rubbed off,"
next spring if the young growth seems to be too thick, or if the plant
is weak. Each shoot will bear, on an average, two or three clusters.
Some shoots will bear no clusters. From one to six of the old canes,
each bearing from five to ten buds, are left each spring. The number of
clusters which a vine can carry well depends upon the variety, the age
and size of the vine, the style of the training, and the soil and
cultivation. Experience is the only guide. A strong vine of Concord,
which is a prolific variety, trained upon any of the ordinary systems
and set nine or ten feet apart each way, will usually carry from thirty
to sixty clusters. The clusters will weigh from a fourth to a half pound
each. Twelve or fifteen pounds of marketable grapes is a fair or average
crop for such a Concord vine, and twenty-five pounds is a very heavy

[Illustration: 2. THE BEARING WOOD.]

The pruning of the grape vine, therefore, is essentially a thinning
process. In the winter pruning, all the canes of the last season's
growth are cut away except from two to six, which are left to make the
fruit and wood of the next year; and each of these remaining canes is
headed back to from three to ten buds. The number and length of the
canes which are left after the pruning depend upon the style of training
which is practiced. A vine which may completely cover a trellis in the
fall, will be cut back so severely that a novice will fear that the
plant is ruined. But the operator bears in mind the fact that the grape,
unlike the apple, pear and peach, does not bear distinct fruit-buds in
the fall, but buds which produce both fruit and wood the following

[Illustration: 3. DIAGRAM.]

Let us now suppose, therefore, that we have pruned our vine in the fall
of 1891 to two canes, each bearing ten buds. We will call these canes A
and B, respectively. (Fig. 3.) In 1892, therefore, twenty shoots grow
from them, and each of these shoots or new canes branches, or produces
laterals. We will call these new canes of 1892, A 1, A 2, A 3, B 1, B 2,
and so on. Each of the new canes bears at the base about two clusters of
grapes, giving a total yield of about forty clusters. These clusters
stand opposite the leaves, as seen in fig. 1. In the axil of each leaf a
bud is formed which will produce a cane, and perhaps fruit, in 1893. If
each of these new canes, A 1, A 2, etc., produce ten buds--which is a
moderate number--the vine would go into the winter of 1892-3 with 200
buds for the next year's growth and crop; but these buds should be
reduced to about twenty, as they were in the fall of 1891. That is,
every year we go back again to the same number of buds, and the top of
the vine gets no larger from year to year. We must, therefore, cut back
again to two canes. We cut back each of the original canes, A and B, to
one new cane. That is, we leave only A 1 and B 1, cutting off A 2, A 3,
etc., and B 2, B 3, etc. This brings the vine back to very nearly its
condition in the fall of 1891; but the new canes, A 1 and B 1, which are
now to become the main canes by being bent down horizontally, were borne
at some distance--say three or four inches--from the base of the
original canes, A and B, so that the permanent part of the vine is
constantly lengthening itself. This annually lengthening portion is
called a _spur_. Spurs are rarely or never made in this exact position,
however, although this diagrammatic sketch illustrates clearly the
method of their formation. The common method of spurring is that
connected with the horizontal arm system of training, in which the canes
A and B are allowed to become permanent arms, and the upright canes, A
1, A 2, B 1, B 2, B 3, etc., are cut back to within two or three buds of
the arms each year. The cane A 1, for instance, is cut back in the fall
of 1892 to two or three buds, and in 1893 two or three canes will grow
from this stub. In the fall of 1893 only one cane is left after the
pruning, and this one is cut back to two or three buds; and so on. So
the spur grows higher every year, although every effort is made to keep
it short, both by reducing the number of buds to one or two and by
endeavoring to bring out a cane lower down on the spur every few years.
Fig. 4 shows a short spur of two years' standing. The horizontal portion
shows the permanent arm. The first upright portion is the remains of the
first-year cane and the upper portion is the second-year cane after it
is cut back in the fall. In this instance, the cane is cut back to one
fruiting bud, _b_, the small buds, _a a_, being rubbed out. There are
serious objections to spurs in any position. They become hard and
comparatively lifeless after a time, it is often difficult to replace
them by healthy fresh wood, and the bearing portion of the vine is
constantly receding from the main trunk. The bearing wood should spring
from near the central portions of the vine, or be kept "near the head,"
as the grape-growers say. In order to do this, it is customary to allow
two canes to grow out each year back of the canes A 1 and B 1, or from
the head of the vine; these canes may be designated C and D. (Fig. 3.)
These canes, C and D, are grown during 1892--when they may bear fruit
like other canes--for the sole purpose of forming the basis of the
bearing top in 1893, while all the old top, A and B, with the secondary
canes, A 1, A 2, B 1, B 2, B 3, etc., is cut entirely away. Here, then,
are two distinct methods of forming the bearing top for the succeeding
year: either from _spurs_, which are the remains of the previous top; or
from _renewals_, which are taken each year from the old wood near the
head of the vine, or even from the ground. Renewals from the ground are
now little used, however, for they seldom give a sufficient crop unless
they are headed in the first fall and are allowed to bear the second
year. It should be borne in mind that the spur and renewal methods refer
entirely to pruning, not to training, for either one can be used in any
system of training. Spur pruning, however, is growing in disfavor
amongst commercial grape-growers, and the renewal is more or less used
in all systems of training.

[Illustration: 4. SPUR.]

Fig. 5 illustrates a renewal pruning. This engraving shows the head of a
vine seven years old, and upon which two canes are allowed to remain
after each annual pruning. The portion extending from _b_ to _f_ and _d_
is the base of the bearing cane of 1892. In the winter of 1892-3, this
cane is cut off at _d_, and the new cane, _e_, is left to make the
bearing wood of 1893. Another cane sprung from _f_, but it was too weak
to leave for fruiting. It was, therefore, cut away. The old stub, _b_,
_f_, _d_, will be cut away a year hence, in the winter of 1893-4. In the
meantime, a renewal cane will have grown from the stub _c_, which is
left for that purpose, and the old cane, _b d_, will be cut off just
beyond it, between _c_ and _f_. In this way, the bearing wood is kept
close to the head of the vine. The wound _a_ shows where an old stub
was cut away this winter, 1892-3, while _b_ shows where one was cut off
the previous winter. A scar upon the back of the head, which does not
show in the illustration, marks the spot where a stub was cut away two
years ago, in the winter of 1890-1. This method of pruning can be kept
up almost indefinitely, and if care is exercised in keeping the stubs
short, the head will not enlarge out of proportion to the growth of the
stock or trunk.

[Illustration: 5. RENEWAL PRUNING.]

_Pruning Young Vines._--The time required after planting to get the vine
onto the wires or trellis varies with the strength of the vine when set,
the variety, the soil and cultivation, and the system of training; but,
as a rule, the training begins the second or third year, previous to
which time the vine is pruned, not trained. Two-year-old vines are most
popular for planting, although in the strong varieties, like Concord and
Niagara, well-grown yearling vines are probably as good, if not better.
The strong-growing kinds are commonly set from eight to ten feet apart
in the row, and the rows eight or nine feet apart. Delawares and other
small vines may be set closer, although eight feet is preferable. When
set, the vine is cut back to two or three buds. During the first year,
the young canes are usually allowed to lie upon the ground at will, as
seen in fig. 6. In the fall or winter, all the canes but one are cut
off, and this one is cut back to two or three buds. The vine is,
therefore, no larger at the expiration of a year's growth than it was
when planted; but in the meantime the plant has become thoroughly
established in the soil, and the second year's growth should be strong
enough to form the basis for the permanent trunk or arm. If, however,
the second year's growth is weak, it may be cut back as before, and the
third season's growth used for the trunk. On the other hand, the growth
of the first year is sometimes carried onto the wires to form the
permanent trunk and arms, but it is only with extra strong vines in good
soil that this practice is admissible. From this point, the treatment
of the vine is discussed under training.

[Illustration: 6. A NEWLY SET VINEYARD.]

_When to Prune._--Grape vines may be pruned at any time during the
winter. It is the practice among most grape-growers in the north to
prune as time permits from November to late in February, or even early
March. The sap flows very freely from cuts made in spring and early
summer, causing the phenomenon known as "bleeding," or in Europe as
"weeping," and in order to prevent this loss, pruning is stopped six
weeks or more before the time at which the buds usually swell. It is yet
a moot point if this bleeding injures the vine, but it is a safe
practice to prune early. The vine is cut off an inch or two beyond the
last bud which it is desired to leave, in order to avoid injury to the
bud from the drying out of the end of the cane.

The pruning is done with small hand pruning-shears. The canes are often
allowed to remain tied to the wires until the pruning is accomplished,
although it is the practice with most growers who use the Kniffin system
to cut the strings before pruning. The removal of the severed canes is
known as "stripping." In large vineyards, the pruner sometimes leaves
the stripping to boys or other cheap labor. The stripping may be done at
any time after the pruning is performed until spring. It must be done
before the growth starts on the remaining portions of the vine, however,
to avoid injury to the young buds when tearing the vines off the

_Summer Pruning._--There is much discussion as to the advisability of
summer pruning. It is essential to the understanding of the question
that the grower bear in mind that this summer pruning is of two
kinds--the removal or "breaking out" of the superfluous shoots, and
heading-in or "stopping" the main canes to keep them within limits. The
superfluous shoots are such as spring from small, weak buds or those
which break from the old arms or trunk of the vine. Shoots which start
from the very base of the old cane are usually weak and should be
removed. Buds in this position are shown at _a a_, in fig. 4. The
secondary or axillary branches, which often start from the base of the
season's shoots, should be removed or broken out. These superfluous
shoots are pulled off from time to time as they appear, or the buds may
be rubbed off before the shoots begin to grow.

The heading-in of the main canes, while desirable for the purpose of
keeping the vine within bounds, is apt to cause a growth of laterals
which choke up the vine and which do not mature, and in those styles of
training in which very little wood is allowed to grow, the practice may
prevent the development of a sufficient amount of leaf surface to
properly sustain the vine. Vines are often weakened by summer pruning.
These dangers can be overcome by careful attention, however, especially
by heading-in very lightly and by doing it as late in the season as
possible, when new lateral growth does not start readily. The necessity
of much heading-in has been largely obviated in late years by the
adoption of high or drooping systems of training, and by setting the
vines far apart. The strong varieties, like Concord, Brighton and
Niagara, should be set ten feet apart in the row, especially if grown
upon the Kniffin system. Catawba, being a very upright grower and
especially well adapted to upright training, may be set eight feet
apart, and Delawares are often set as close as six or eight feet. It is
doubtful, however, if any variety should be set less than eight feet
apart for trellis culture. In Virginia and southward, where the growth
is large because of the long seasons, vines are often set more than ten
feet apart. In the South, the rows should run north and south, that the
fruit may be shaded from midday sun. The only summer heading-in now
generally recommended is the clipping of the tips when they fall over
and begin to touch the ground. This clipping is often done with a sickle
or sharp corn-cutter.

_Objects of Pruning._--The objects of pruning the grape, as of other
fruits, are five:

  1. To produce larger and better fruit.

  2. To maintain or augment the vigor of the vine.

  3. To keep the vine within manageable limits.

  4. To facilitate cultivation.

  5. To facilitate spraying.



Training the grape vine is practiced for the purpose of keeping the vine
in convenient shape and to allow each cluster to receive its full amount
of space and light. A well trained vine is easily cultivated and
sprayed, and the grapes are readily harvested, and it is only upon such
vines that the best and fairest fruit is uniformly produced. Some kind
of training is essential, for a vine will not often bear good fruit when
it lies upon the ground. In essence, there are three general types or
styles of training, which may be designated as the upright, drooping and
horizontal, these terms designating the direction of the bearing shoots.
The upright systems carry two or more canes or arms along a low
horizontal wire, or sometimes obliquely across a trellis from below
upwards, and the shoots are tied up as they grow to the wires above. The
horizontal systems carry up a perpendicular cane or arm, or sometimes
two or more, from which the shoots are carried out horizontally and are
tied to perpendicular wires or posts. The drooping systems, represented
in the Kniffin and post-training, carry the canes or arms upon a high
horizontal wire or trellis and allow the shoots to hang without tying.
To one or another of these types all the systems of American
grape-training can be referred.

There is no system of training which is best for all purposes and all
varieties. The strong-growing varieties more readily adapt themselves to
the high drooping systems than the weaker varieties, although the
Delaware is often trained on a comparatively low Kniffin with good
effect. The high or drooping systems are of comparatively recent date,
and their particular advantages are the saving of labor in summer tying,
cheapness of the trellis, and the facility with which the ground can be
cultivated without endangering the branches of the vine. The upright
training distributes the bearing wood more evenly upon the vine and is
thought, therefore, to insure more uniform fruit, it keeps the top near
the root, which is sometimes thought to be an advantage, and it is
better suited to the stature of the small-growing varieties. There is,
perhaps, a greater temptation to neglect the vines in the drooping
systems than in the others, because the shoots need no tying and do not,
therefore, demand frequent attention; while in the upright systems the
shoots soon become broken or displaced if not watched. For very large
areas, or circumstances in which the best of care cannot be given the
vineyard, the Kniffin or drooping systems are perhaps always to be
recommended. Yet the Kniffin profits as much from diligence and skill as
the other systems; but it will give better results than the others
under partial neglect. The strong varieties, especially those making
long and drooping canes, are well adapted to the Kniffin styles; but the
smaller sorts, and those stronger sorts which, like Catawba, make an
upright and stocky growth, are usually trained upon the upright systems.
But the merits of both systems are so various and even so little
understood, that it is impossible to recommend either one unqualifiedly.
The advantages in either case are often little more than matters of
personal opinion. It should be said, however, that the Kniffin or
drooping systems are gaining in favor rapidly, and are evidently
destined to overthrow much of the older upright training. This fact does
not indicate, however, that the upright system is to be entirety
superseded, but rather that it must be confined to those varieties and
conditions for which it is best adapted. The two systems will
undoubtedly supplement each other. The horizontal systems are
occasionally used for choice varieties, but they are little known.

_Making the Trellis._--The fall or winter following the planting of the
vineyard, the trellis is begun if the upright systems are used; but this
operation is usually delayed a year longer in the Kniffin systems, and
stakes are commonly used, or at least recommended, during the second
season. In the South the trellis is made the first year. The style of
trellis will depend upon the style of training, but the main features
are the same for all. Strong posts of some durable timber, as cedar,
locust or oak, are placed at such distance apart that two vines can be
set between each two. If the vines are set nine feet apart, the posts
maybe eighteen or twenty feet apart, and a vine will then stand four or
five feet from each post. If the posts in the row are eighteen feet
apart and the rows eight feet apart, about 330 posts will be required to
the acre. Except in very hard and stony lands, the posts are driven with
a heavy maul, although many people prefer to set the end posts in holes,
thinking that they endure the strain better. In all loose soils,
however, posts can be made as firm by driving as by setting with a
spade. All posts should be as firm as possible, in order to hold up the
heavy loads of vines and fruit. In setting posts on hillsides, it is a
common practice to lean them slightly uphill, for there is always a
tendency for the posts to tilt down the slope. For the Kniffin systems,
especially for the strong-growing grapes, the posts must stand six or
six and one-half feet high when set, but a foot less will usually be
sufficient for the upright and horizontal systems. The posts should
stand higher at first than is necessary for the support of the wires,
for they will need to be driven down occasionally as they become loose.
The end posts of each row should be well braced, as shown in several of
the illustrations in this volume.

The wire ordinarily used is No. 12, except for the top wire in the
Kniffin training, which is usually No. 10, as the greater part of the
weight is then upon the top wire. No. 9 is sometimes used, but it is
heavier than necessary. No. 14 is occasionally used for the middle and
upper rows in the upright systems, but it is not strong enough. The
following figures show the sizes and weights of these and similar iron
and steel wires:

  No.    Diameter in inches.    Weight of 100 feet.   Feet in 2,000 pounds.

   9             .148              5.80 pounds.              34,483
  10             .135              4.83    "                 41,408
  11             .120              3.82    "                 52,356
  12             .105              2.92    "                 68,493
  13             .092              2.24    "                 89,286
  14             .080              1.69    "                118,343
  15             .072              1.37    "                145,985
  16             .063              1.05    "                190,476

The plain annealed iron wire costs about 3 cents per pound, and the
galvanized--which is less used for vineyards--3-1/2 cents. Of No. 12
wire, about 160 pounds is required per acre for a single run on rows
eight feet apart, and about 500 pounds for three runs. The cost of No.
12 wire per acre, for three runs, therefore, is about $15.

The wire is secured to the intermediate posts by staples driven in
firmly so that the wire will not pull through readily of its own weight,
but still loosely enough to allow of the tightening of the wires. In
other words, the head of the staple should not quite touch the wire.
Grape staples are of three lengths, about an inch, inch and a quarter,
and an inch and a half respectively. The shortest length is little
used. The medium length is used for hard-wood posts and the longest for
soft posts, like chestnut and cedar. These staples cost five cents per
pound usually, and a pound of the medium length contains from 90 to 100
of the No. 10 wire size. An acre, for three wires, will therefore
require, for this size, about nine or ten pounds of staples. In windy
regions, the wires should be placed upon the windward side of the posts.

There are various devices for securing the wire to the end posts, but
the commonest method is to wind them about the post once and secure them
with a staple, or twist the end of the wire back upon itself, forming a
loop. The wires should be drawn taut to prevent sagging with the weight
of fruit and leaves. In order to allow for the contraction of the wires
in winter, some growers loosen the wires after harvest and others
provide some device which will relieve the strain. The Yeoman's Patent
Grape-Vine Trellis is a simple and effective lever-contrivance attached
to each wire, and which is operated to loosen the wires in fall and to
tighten them in spring. The end post is sometimes provided upon the back
with a square-headed pin which works tightly in an inch and a half augur
hole and about which the end of the wire is wound. A square-headed iron
wrench operates the pin, while the tension of the wire around the side
of the post keeps the pin from slipping. This device is not durable,
however. An ingenious man can easily contrive some device for relieving
the tension, if he should think it necessary. As a matter of practice,
however, the wires soon stretch and sag enough with the burden of fruit
and vines to take up the winter contraction, and most growers do not
release the wires in fall. It will be found necessary, in fact, to
tighten the wires and to straighten up the posts from year to year, as
they become loose. It is always a profitable labor to tamp the ground
firmly about all the posts every spring. The wires should always be kept
tight during the growing season to prevent the whipping of the vines by
wind. This is especially important in white grapes, which are discolored
by the rubbing of leaves and twigs. Unless the vines are very strong it
will be necessary to stretch only one wire the first winter.

Trellises are often made of slats, as shown in Fig. 18, but these are
always less durable than the wire trellises and more expensive to keep
in repair; and in the older portions of the country, where timber is
dear, they are also more expensive at the outset. They catch the wind,
and, not being held together by continuous strands, are likely to blow
down in sections. Fuller particulars concerning the styles of trellis
are given in the discussions of the different systems of training.

_Tying._--Probably the best material for tying the canes and shoots to
the trellis is raffia. This is a bast-like material which comes in
skeins and which can be bought of seedsmen and nurserymen for about 20
cents a pound. A pound will suffice to tie a quarter of an acre of
upright training throughout the season. Raffia is obtained from the
strippings of an oriental palm (_Raphia Ruffia_). Wool-twine is also
still largely used for tying, but it is not so cheap and handy as
raffia, and it usually has to be cut when the trellis is stripped at the
winter pruning, while the raffia breaks with a quick pull of the vine.
Some complain that the raffia is not strong enough to hold the vine
during the season, but it can easily be doubled. Osier willows are much
used for tying up the canes in the spring, and also for summer tying,
especially in the nursery regions where the slender trimmings of the
cultivated osier willows are easily procured. Wild willows are often
used if they can be obtained handily. These willows are tied up in a
small bundle, which is held upon the back above the hips by a cord
passed about the body. The butts project under the right hand, if the
person is right-handed, and the strands are pulled out as needed. The
butt is first used, the tie being made with a twist and tuck, the strand
is then cut off with a knife, and the twig is operated in like manner
until it is used up. When wool-twine is used, the ball is often held in
front of the workman by a cord which is tied about it and then passed
about the waist. The ball is unwound from the inside, and it will hold
its shape until the end becomes so short that it will easily drag upon
the ground. Some workmen carry the ball in a bag, after the manner of
carrying seed-corn. Raffia is not so easily carried in the field as the
wool-twine or the willow, and this fact interferes with its popularity.
Green rye-straw, cut directly from the field, is much used for tying the
shoots in summer. Small wire, about two-thirds the size of broom-wire,
is used occasionally for tying up the canes in spring, but it must be
used with care or it will injure the vine. Corn-husks are also employed
for this purpose when they can be secured. Bass-bark is sometimes used
for tying, but in most of the grape regions it is difficult to secure,
and it has no advantage over raffia.

It is very important that the canes be tied up early in spring, for the
buds are easily broken after they begin to swell. These canes are tied
rather firmly to the wires to hold them steady; but the growing shoots,
which are tied during the summer, are fastened more loosely, to allow of
the necessary increase in diameter.

[Illustration: (Drawing of grapes)]



The upright systems are the oldest and best known of the styles of
American grape training. They consist, essentially, in carrying out two
horizontal canes, or sometimes arms, upon a low wire and training the
shoots from them vertically upwards. These shoots are tied to the upper
wires as they grow. This type was first clearly and forcibly described
in detail by A. S. Fuller, in his "Grape Culturist," in 1864, and it
became known as the Fuller system, although it was practiced many years
previous to this time.

_Horizontal Arm Spur System._--There are two types or styles of this
upright system. The older type and the one described in the books, is
known as the Horizontal Arm Spur training. In this method, the two
horizontal branches are permanent, or, in other words, they are true
arms. The canes are cut back each fall to upright spurs upon these arms,
as explained on page 15 (fig. 4.) Two shoots are often allowed to grow
from each of these spurs, as shown in fig. 7. These spurs become
overgrown and weak after a few years, and they are renewed from new
shoots which spring from near their base or from the arm itself.
Sometimes the whole arm is renewed from the head of the vine, or even
from the ground.


The number of these upright canes and their distance apart upon these
permanent arms depend upon the variety, the strength of the vine and
soil and the fancy of the grower. From twelve to twenty inches apart
upon the arm is the common distance. If a vine is strong enough to carry
five canes and the vines are eight feet apart, then the canes are
distributed at intervals of about twenty inches. Some very strong vines
of vigorous varieties will carry eight canes upon the two arms
together, and in this case the canes stand about a foot apart. In the
fall or winter, the cane is cut away and the strongest new cane which
springs from its base is left for the bearing wood of the following
year. This new cane is itself headed in to the height of the trellis;
that is, if the uppermost and lowermost wires are 34 inches apart--as
they are in the Brocton vineyards of western New York, where this system
is largely used--this new cane is shortened in to 34 inches long. Upon
this length of cane there will be about seven good buds in the common

[Illustration: 8. HORIZONTAL ARM. (Diagram.)]

A modification of this horizontal arm system is shown in fig. 9. It is
used about Forestville, in Chautauqua county, New York. The arms in this
case are very short, and canes are taken out only at two or three
places. The picture shows a vine in which two canes are taken from the
end of each arm, making four canes for the bearing top of the vine.
These canes are cut back to spurs in the fall, as explained in the above
paragraph. Sometimes one or two other canes are taken out of these arms
nearer the main trunk. The advantages urged for this style of training
are the stronger growth which is insured by so few canes, and the small
amount of old or permanent wood which is left to each vine.

[Illustration: 9. SHORT ARM SPUR TRAINING.]

The horizontal arm training is less popular than it was twenty years
ago. It has serious faults, especially in the persistence of the old
spurs, and probably will eventually give place to other systems. Aside
from the spur pruning, the system is much like the following, which is a
modification to allow of a renewal pruning and to which the reader is
referred for further details. This modification, which may be called the
High Renewal, and which is one of the most serviceable of any of the
styles of training, although it has never been fully described, we shall
now consider.

_The High Renewal_, or upright training which is now very extensively
employed in the lake regions of New York and elsewhere, starts the head
or branches of the vine from eighteen to thirty inches from the ground.
The ideal height for most varieties is probably about two feet to the
first wire, although thirty inches is better than eighteen. If the vines
are lower than two feet, they are liable to be injured by the plow or
cultivator, the earth is dashed against the clusters by heavy rains, and
if the shoots become loose they strike the ground and the grapes are
soon soiled. A single trunk or arm is carried up to the required height,
or if good branches happen to form lower down, two main canes are
carried from this point up to the required distance to meet the lower
wire, so that the trunk becomes Y-shaped, as seen in figs. 10, 16 and
17. In fact, vineyardists usually prefer to have this head or crotch a
few inches below the lowest wire, to facilitate the spreading and
placing of the canes. The trellis for the upright systems nearly always
comprises three wires, although only two are sometimes used for the
smaller growing varieties, and very rarely four are used for the
strongest kinds, although this number is unnecessary. The lowest wire is
stretched at eighteen, twenty-four or thirty inches from the ground, and
the two upper ones are placed at distances of eighteen or twenty inches


[Illustration: 11. MAKING THE T-HEAD.]

The second season after planting should see the vine tied to the first
wire. Fig. 10 is a photograph taken in July, 1892, of a Concord vine
which was set in the spring of 1891. In the fall of 1891 the vine was
cut back to three or four buds, and in the spring of 1892 two of these
buds were allowed to make canes. These two canes are now tied to the
wire, which was stretched in the spring of 1892. In this case, the
branches start near the surface of the ground. Sometimes only a single
strong shoot grows, and in order to secure the two branches it is broken
over where it passes the wire, and is usually tied to a stake to afford
support. Fig. 11 shows this operation. A bud will develop at the bend or
break, from which a cane can be trained in the opposite direction from
the original portion, and the T-head is secured.



The close of the second season after planting, therefore, will usually
find the vine with two good canes extending in opposite directions and
tied to the wire. The pruning at that time will consist in cutting off
the ends of these canes back to firm and strong wood, which will leave
them bearing from five to eight buds. The third season, shoots will grow
upright from these buds and will be tied to the second wire, which has
now been supplied. Late in the third season the vine should have much
the appearance of that shown in fig. 12. The third wire is usually added
to the trellis at the close of the second season, at the same time that
the second wire is put on; but occasionally this is delayed until the
close of the third season. Some of the upright shoots may bear a few
grapes this third season, but unless the vines are very strong the
flower clusters should be removed; and a three-year-old vine should
never be allowed to bear heavily. It must be remembered, however, that
both these horizontal canes, with all their mass of herbage, are to be
cut away in the fall or winter of the third year. Some provision must
have been made, therefore, for the top for the fourth year. It will be
recalled that in discussing the renewal pruning (page 16, fig. 5), it
was found that two or more shoots are allowed to grow each year to form
the basis of the top the following year. In fig. 12 three or four such
shoots can be seen springing from the Y-shaped portion in the center of
the vine. These shoots or canes are to be bent down to the lowest wire
next spring, and the bearing shoots will arise from them. This process
will be seen at a glance from figs. 13, 14 and 15. The first shows a
full grown old vine, trained on three wires. Fig. 14 shows the same vine
when pruned. Two long canes, with six or eight buds each, are left to
form the top of the following year. The two stubs from which the renewal
canes are to grow for the second year's top are seen in the center. In
the fall of the next year, therefore, these two outside canes will be
cut away to the base of these renewal stubs; and the renewal canes, in
the meantime, will have made a year's growth. These renewal stubs in
this picture are really spurs, as will be seen; that is, they contain
two ages of wood. It is the purpose, however, to remove these stubs or
spurs every two or three years at most, and to bring new canes
directly from the old wood or head. If possible, the renewal cane is
brought from a new place on the old wood every year in order to avoid a
spur. Such was the case in the vine shown in fig. 5, page 19. Fig. 15
shows the same vine tied down to the lowest wire. Two ties have been
made upon each cane. Fig. 16 shows a vine in which four canes have been
left to form the top for the following year. The stubs for the renewals
can be seen in the Y. It is customary to leave more than two canes,
occasionally, in strong-growing varieties like Concord. Sometimes four
and occasionally six are left. If four canes are left, two may be tied
together in each direction upon the bottom wire. If six are used, the
two extra ones should be tied along the second wire, parallel with the
lowest ones. These extra canes are sometimes tied obliquely across the
trellis, but this practice should be discouraged, for the usual tendency
of the vine is to make its greatest growth at the top, and the lower
buds may fail to bear.

[Illustration: 14. HIGH RENEWAL, PRUNED.]

[Illustration: 15. HIGH RENEWAL, PRUNED AND TIED.]

The ideal length of the two canes varies with different varieties and
the distance apart at which the vines are set. Very strong kinds, like
Concord and Niagara, can carry ten or twelve buds on each cane,
especially if the vines are set more than eight feet apart. Fig. 17
shows half of a Concord vine in which about ten buds were left on each
cane. These strong sorts can often carry forty or fifty buds to the vine
to advantage, but when this number is left the canes should be four, as
explained in the last paragraph. In Delaware and other weak-growing
varieties, twenty or twenty-five buds to the vine should be the maximum
and only two canes should be left. In short-jointed varieties, the canes
are usually cut to the desired length--four to six feet--even if too
great a number of buds is left, but the shoots which spring from these
extra buds are broken out soon after they start. A Delaware vine which
has made an unusually short or weak growth will require fewer buds to be
left for next year's top than a neighboring vine of the same variety
which has made a strong growth. The Catawba, which is a short but very
stiff grower, is usually cut back to six or eight buds, as seen in figs.
13, 14 and 15. The grower soon learns to adjust the pruning to the
character of the vine without effort. He has in his mind a certain ideal
crop of grapes, perhaps about so many bunches, and he leaves enough buds
to produce this amount, allowing, perhaps, ten per cent. of the buds for
accidents and barren shoots. He knows, too, that the canes should always
be cut back to firm, well-ripened wood. It should be said that mere
size of cane does not indicate its value as a fruit-bearing branch.
Hard, smooth wood of medium size usually gives better results than the
very large and softer canes which are sometimes produced on soils rich
in nitrogenous manures. This large and overgrown wood is known as a
"bull cane." A cane does not attain its full growth the first year, but
will increase in diameter during the second season. The tying therefore,
should be sufficiently loose or elastic to allow of growth, although it
should be firm enough to hold the cane constantly in place. The cane
should not be hung from the wire, but tied close to it, provision being
made for the swelling of the wood to twice its diameter.



The shoots are tied to the second wire soon after they pass it, or have
attained firmness enough to allow of tying, and the same shoots are tied
again to the top wire. All the shoots do not grow with equal rapidity,
and the vineyard must be gone over more than twice if the shoots are
kept properly tied. Perhaps four times over the vineyard will be all
that is necessary for careful summer tying. Many vineyardists tie only
once or twice, but this neglect should be discouraged. This tying is
mostly done with green rye straw or raffia. A piece of straw about ten
inches long is used for each tie, it usually being wrapped but once
about the shoot. The knot is made with a twist and tuck. If raffia is
used, a common string-knot is made. When the shoots reach the top of
the trellis, they are usually allowed to take care of themselves. The
Catawba shoots stand nearly erect above the top wire and ordinarily need
no attention. The long-growing varieties will be likely to drag the
shoots upon the ground before the close of the season. If these tips
interfere with the cultivation, they may be clipped off with a sickle or
corn-cutter, although this practice should be delayed as long as
possible to prevent the growth of laterals (see page 21). It is probably
better to avoid cutting entirely. Some growers wind or tie the longest
shoots upon the top wire, as seen in fig. 17. It is probably best, as a
rule, to allow the shoots to hang over naturally, and to clip them only
when they seriously interfere with the work of the hoe and cultivator.
The treatment for slat trellises, as shown in fig. 18, is the same as on
wire trellises, except that longer strings must be used in tying.


It is apparent that nearly or quite all the fruit in the High Renewal is
borne between the first and second wires, at the bottom of the trellis.
If the lower wire is twenty-four or thirty inches high, this fruit will
hang at the most convenient height for picking. The fruit trays are set
upon the ground, and both hands are free. The fruit is also protected
from the hot suns and from frost; and if the shoots are properly tied,
the clusters are not shaken roughly by the wind. It is, of course,
desirable that all the clusters should be fully exposed to light and
air, and all superfluous shoots should, therefore, be pulled off, as
already explained (page 21). In rare cases it may also be necessary, for
this purpose, to prune the canes which droop over from the top of the

After a few years, the old top or head of the vine becomes more or less
weak and it should be renewed from the root. The thrifty vineyardist
anticipates this circumstance, and now and then allows a thrifty shoot
which may spring from the ground to remain. This shoot is treated very
much like a young vine, and the head is formed during the second year
(page 16, bottom). If it should make a strong growth during the first
year and develop stout laterals, it may be cut back only to the lowest
wire the first fall; but in other cases, it should be cut back to two or
three buds, from one of which a strong and permanent shoot is taken the
second year. When this new top comes into bearing, the old trunk is cut
off at the surface of the ground, or below if possible. A top will
retain its vigor for six or eight years under ordinary treatment, and
sometimes much longer. These tops are renewed from time to time as
occasion permits or demands, and any vineyard which has been bearing a
number of years will nearly always have a few vines in process of
renewal. The reader should not receive the impression, however, that the
life or vitality of a vine is necessarily limited. Vines often continue
to bear for twenty years or more without renewal; but the head after a
time comes to be large and rough and crooked, and often weakened by
scars, and better results are likely to be obtained if a new, clean vine
takes its place.

The High Renewal is extensively used in the lake region of Western New
York, for all varieties. It is particularly well adapted to Delaware,
Catawba, and other weak or short varieties. When systematically pursued,
it gives fruit of the highest excellence. This High Renewal training,
like all the low upright systems, allows the vines to be laid down
easily in winter, which is an important consideration in many parts of
Canada and in the colder northern states.

_Fan Training._--A system much used a few years ago and still sometimes
seen, is one which renews back nearly to the ground each year, and
carries the fruiting canes up in a fan-shaped manner. This system has
the advantages of dispensing with much of the old wood, or trunk, and
facilitating laying down the vine in winter in cold climates. On the
other hand, it has the disadvantages of bearing the fruit too
low--unless the lower clusters are removed--and making a vine of
inconvenient shape for tying. It is little used at present. Fig. 19
shows a vine pruned for fan-training, although it is by no means an
ideal vine. This vine has not been properly renewed, but bears long,
crooked spurs, from which the canes spring. One of these spurs will be
seen to extend beyond the lower wire. The spurs should be kept very
short, and they should be entirely removed every two or three years, as
explained in the above discussion of the High Renewal training.

The shoots are allowed to take their natural course, being tied to any
wire near which they chance to grow, finally lopping over the top wire.
Sometimes the canes are bent down and tied horizontally to the wires,
and this is probably the better practice. Two canes may be tied in each
direction on the lower wire, or the two inner canes may be tied down to
the second wire. In either case, the vine is essentially like the High
Renewal, except that the trunk is shorter.

[Illustration: 19. FAN TRAINING, AFTER PRUNING.]



In 1845 William T. Cornell planted a vineyard in the Hudson River
Valley. A neighbor, William Kniffin, was a stone mason with a few acres
of land to which he devoted his attention during the leisure seasons of
his trade. Cornell induced Kniffin to plant a few grapes. He planted the
Isabella, and succeeding beyond his expectations, the plantation was
increased into a respectable vineyard and Kniffin came to be regarded as
a local authority upon grape culture. Those were the pioneer days in
commercial grape growing in North America, and there were no undisputed
maxims of cultivation and training. If any system of close training and
pruning was employed, it was probably the old horizontal arm spur
system, or something like it. One day a large limb broke from an
apple-tree and fell upon a grape-vine, tearing off some of the canes and
crushing the vine into a singular shape. The vine was thought to be
ruined, but it was left until the fruit could be gathered. But as the
fruit matured, its large size and handsome appearance attracted
attention. It was the best fruit in the vineyard! Mr. Kniffin was an
observant man, and he inquired into the cause of the excellent fruit.
He noticed that the vine had been pruned and that the best canes stood
out horizontally. From this suggestion he developed the four-cane system
of training which now bears his name. A year or two later, in 1854, the
system had attracted the attention of those of his neighbors who
cultivated grapes, and thereafter it spread throughout the Hudson
valley, where it is to-day, with various modifications, the chief method
of grape training. Its merits have become known beyond its original
valley, and it is now spreading more rapidly than any other system. The
ground upon which the old Isabellas grew is now occupied by Concords,
which are as vigorous and productive as those grown upon newer soils.
William Kniffin died at his home in Clintondale, Ulster county, New
York, June 13, 1876, at fifty-seven years of age. The portrait is from a
photograph which was taken two or three years before his death.

[Illustration: 20. WILLIAM KNIFFIN.]

_The True or Four-Cane Kniffin System._--Figure 21 shows the true
Kniffin system, very nearly as practiced by its originator. A single
stem or trunk is carried directly to the top wire, and two canes are
taken out from side spurs at each wire. Mr. Kniffin believed in short
canes, and cut them back to about six buds on both wires. But most
growers now prefer to leave the upper canes longer than the lower ones,
as seen in illustration. The bearing shoots are allowed to hang at will,
so that no summer tying is necessary; this is the distinguishing mark of
the various Kniffin systems. The main trunk is tied to each wire, and
the canes are tied to the wires in spring. This system possesses the
great advantage, therefore, of requiring little labor during the busy
days of the growing season; and the vines are easily cultivated, and if
the rows are nine or ten feet apart, currants or other bush-fruits can
be grown between. The system is especially adapted to the strong
varieties of grapes. For further comparisons of the merits of different
systems of training, the reader should consult Chapter II.

[Illustration: 21. THE TRUE KNIFFIN TRAINING.]

[Illustration: 22. NO. 21 WHEN PRUNED.]

The pruning of the Kniffin vine consists in cutting off all the wood
save a single cane from each spur. Fig. 22 illustrates the process. This
is the same vine which is shown with the full amount of wood on in fig.
21. The drooping shoots shown in that illustration bore the grapes of
1892; and now, in the winter of 1892-93, they are all to be cut away,
with the horizontal old canes from which they grew, save only the four
canes which hang nearest the main trunk. Fig. 22 shows the vine after it
had been pruned. It is not obligatory that the canes which are left
after the pruning should be those nearest the trunk, for it may happen
that these may be weak; but, other things being equal, these canes are
preferable because their selection keeps the old spurs short. The
careful grower will take pains to remove the weak shoots which start
from this point, in order that a strong cane may be obtained. It is
desirable that these side spurs be removed entirely every three or four
years, a new cane being brought out again from the main body or trunk.
There is little expectation, however, that there shall be such a
complete renewal pruning as that practiced in the High Renewal, which we
discussed in the last chapter.

It will be seen that the drooping canes in fig. 22 are shorter than they
were originally, as shown in fig. 21. They have been cut back. The
length at which these canes shall be left is a moot point. Much depends
upon the variety, the distance between the wires, the strength of the
soil, and other factors. Nearly all growers now agree that the upper
canes should be longer than the lower ones, although equal canes are
still used in some places. In strong varieties, like Worden, each of the
upper canes may bear ten buds and each of the lower ones five. This
gives thirty buds to the vine. Some growers prefer to leave twelve buds
above and only four below.

These four pruned canes are generally allowed to hang during winter, but
are tied onto the wires before the buds swell in spring. They are
stretched out horizontally and secured to the wire by one or two ties
upon each cane. The shoots which spring from these horizontal canes
stand upright or oblique at first but they soon fall over with the
weight of foliage and fruit. If they touch the ground, the ends may be
clipped off with a sickle, corn-cutter or scythe, although this is not
always done, and is not necessary unless the canes interfere with
cultivation. There is no summer-pinching nor pruning, although the
superfluous shoots should be broken out, as in other systems. (See page

Only two wires are used in the true Kniffin trellis. The end posts are
usually set in holes, rather than driven, to render them solid, and they
should always be well braced. The intermediate posts are driven, and
they usually stand between every alternate vine, or twenty feet apart if
the vines are ten feet apart--which is a common distance for the most
vigorous varieties. For the strong-growing varieties, the top wire is
placed from five and one-half to six feet above the ground. Five feet
nine inches is a popular height. The posts will heave sufficiently to
bring the height to six feet, although it is best to "tap" the posts
every spring with a maul in order to drive them back and make them firm.
The lower wire is usually placed at three and one-half feet. Delawares,
if trained Kniffin, should not stand above five feet four inches, or at
most five feet six inches. Strong vines on good soil are often put onto
the trellis the second year, although it is a commoner practice,
perhaps, to stake them the second season, as already explained (page
27), and put them on the wires the third season. The year following the
tying to the trellis, the vine should bear a partial crop. The vine is
usually carried directly to the top wire the first season of training,
although it is the practice of some growers, especially outside the
Hudson valley, to stop the trunk at the lower wire the first year of
permanent training, and to carry it to the top wire the following year.

Yields from good Kniffin vines will average fully as high and perhaps
higher than from other species of training. W. D. Barns, of Orange
county, New York, has had an annual average of twenty-six pounds of
Concords to the vine for nine years, 1,550 vines being considered in the
calculation. While the Delaware is not so well suited to the Kniffin
system as stronger varieties, it can nevertheless be trained in this
manner with success, as the following average yields obtained by Mr.
Barns from 200 vines set in 1881 will show:

  1886            8-1/2  pounds to the vine.
  1887           11-3/4     "    "  "    "
  1888            8         "    "  "    "
  1889            9-1/2     "    "  "    "
  1890            7         "    "  "    "
  1891           16         "    "  "    "
  1892           13         "    "  "    "

_Modifications of the Four-Cane Kniffin._--Various modifications of this
original four-cane Kniffin are in use. The Kniffin idea is often
carelessly applied to a rack trellis. In such cases, several canes were
allowed to grow where only two should have been left. Fig. 23 is a
common but poor style of Kniffin used in some of the large new
vineyards of western New York. It differs from the type in the training
of the young wood. These shoots, instead of being allowed to hang at
will, are carried out horizontally and either tied to the wire or
twisted around it. The advantage urged for this modification is the
little injury done by wind, but, as a matter of practice, it affords
less protection than the true drooping Kniffin, for in the latter the
shoots from the upper cane soon cling to the lower wire, and the shoots
from both tiers of canes protect each other below the lower wire. There
are three serious disadvantages to this holding up of the shoots,--it
makes unnecessary labor, the canes are likely to make wood or "bull
canes" (see page 50) at the expense of fruit, and the fruit is bunched
together on the vines.

[Illustration: 23. A POOR TYPE OF KNIFFIN.]

Another common modification of the four-cane Kniffin is that shown in
fig. 24, in which a crotch or Y is made in the trunk. This crotch is
used in the belief that the necessary sap supply is thereby more readily
deflected into the lower arms than by the system of side spurring on a
straight or continuous trunk. This is probably a fallacy, and may have
arisen from the attempt to grow as heavy canes on the lower wire as on
the upper one. Nevertheless, this modification is in common use in
western New York and elsewhere.

[Illustration: 24. THE Y-TRUNK KNIFFIN.]

If it is desired to leave an equal number of buds on both wires, the
Double Kniffin will probably be found most satisfactory. Two distinct
trunks are brought from the root, each supplying a single wire only. The
trunks are tied together to hold them in place. This system, under the
name of Improved Kniffin, is just coming into notice in restricted
portions of the Hudson valley.

_The Two-Cane Kniffin, or Umbrella System._--Inasmuch as the greater
part of the fruit in the Four-Cane Kniffin is born upon the upper wire,
the question arises if it would not be better to dispense with the
lower canes and cut the upper ones longer. This is now done to a
considerable extent, especially in the Hudson valley. Fig. 25 explains
the operation. This shows a pruned vine. The trunk is tied to the lower
wire to steady it, and two canes, each bearing from nine to fifteen
buds, are left upon the upper wire. These canes are tied to the upper
wire and they are then bent down, hoop-like, to the lower wire, where
the ends are tied. In some instances, the lower wire is dispensed with,
but this is not advisable. This wire holds the vine in place against the
winds and prevents the too violent whipping of the hanging shoots.
During the growing season, renewal canes are taken from the spurs in
exactly the same manner as in the ordinary Kniffin. This species of
training reduces the amount of leaf-surface to a minimum, and every
precaution must be taken to insure a healthy leaf-growth. This system
of training will probably not allow of the successful girdling of the
vine for the purpose of hastening the maturity and augmenting the size
of the fruit. Yet heavy crops can be obtained from it, if liberal
fertilizing and good cultivation are employed, and the fruit is nearly
always first-class. A Concord vine trained in this manner produced in
1892 eighty clusters of first quality grapes, weighing forty pounds.

[Illustration: 25. UMBRELLA TRAINING.]

Another type of Umbrella training is shown in fig. 26, before pruning.
Here five main canes were allowed to grow, instead of two. Except in
very strong vines, this top is too heavy, and it is probably never so
good as the other (fig. 25), if the highest results are desired; but for
the grower who does not care to insure high cultivation it is probably a
safer system than the other.

[Illustration: 26. A POOR UMBRELLA SYSTEM.]

_The Low, or One-Wire Kniffin._--A modification of this Umbrella system
is sometimes used, in which the trellis is only three or four feet high
and comprises but a single wire. A cane of ten or a dozen buds is tied
out in each direction, and the shoots are allowed to hang in essentially
the same manner as in the True or High Kniffin system. The advantages
urged for this system are the protection of the grapes from wind, the
large size of the fruit due to the small amount of bearing wood, the
ease of laying down the vines, the readiness with which the top can be
renewed from the root as occasion demands, and the cheapness of the

_The Six-Cane Kniffin._--There are many old vineyards in eastern New
York which are trained upon a six-cane or three-wire system. The general
pruning and management of these vines do not differ from that of the
common Kniffin. Very strong varieties which can carry an abundance of
wood, may be profitable upon this style of training, but it cannot be
recommended. A Concord vineyard over thirty years old, comprising 295
vines, trained in this fashion, is still thrifty and productive. Twice
it has produced crops of six tons.

[Illustration: 27. EIGHT-CANE KNIFFIN. (Diagram.)]

_Eight-Cane Kniffin._--Eight and even ten canes are sometimes left upon
a single trunk, and are trained out horizontally or somewhat obliquely,
as shown in the accompanying diagram (fig. 27). Unless these canes are
cut back to four or five buds each, the vine carries too much wood and
fruit. This system allows of close planting, but the trellis is too
expensive. The trunk soon becomes overgrown with spurs, and it is likely
to become prematurely weak. This style is very rarely used.

[Illustration: 28. OVERHEAD KNIFFIN.]

[Illustration: 29. OVERHEAD KNIFFIN.]

_Overhead, or Arbor Kniffin._--A curious modification of the Kniffin is
employed somewhat on the Hudson, particularly by Sands Haviland at
Marlboro'. The vines are carried up on a kind of overhead arbor, as
shown in figs. 28, 29 and 30. The trellis is six feet above the ground,
and is composed of three horizontal wires lying in the same plane. The
central wire runs from post to post, and one upon either side is
attached to the end of a three-foot cross-bar, as represented in fig.
28. The rows are nine feet apart, and the vines and posts twelve feet
apart in the row. Contiguous rows are braced by a connecting-pole, as in
fig. 29. The trunk of the vine ends in a T-shaped head, which is well
displayed in the vine at the extreme right in the foreground in fig. 30.
From this T-head, five canes are carried out from spurs. It was formerly
the practice to carry out six canes, one in each direction upon each
wire, but this was found to supply too much wood. Now two canes are
carried in one direction and three in the other; and the positions of
these sets are alternated each year, if possible. The canes which are
left after the winter pruning are tied along the wires in spring, as in
the Kniffin, and the shoots hang over the wires. The chief advantage of
this training is that it allows of the growing of bush-fruits between
the rows, as seen in fig. 29. It is also said that the clusters hang so
free that the bloom is not injured by the twigs or leaves, and the fruit
is protected from sun and frost. Every post must be large and firmly
set, however, adding much to the cost of the trellis. Several styles
similar to this are in use, one of the best being the Crittenden system,
of Michigan. In this system, the trellis is low, not exceeding four or
five feet, and the vines cover a flat-topped platform two or three feet


_The Cross-Wire System._--Another high Kniffin training, and which is
also confined to the vicinity of Marlboro', New York, is the Cross-Wire,
represented in figs. 31 and 32. Small posts are set eight feet apart
each way, and a single wire runs from the top of post to post--six and
one-half feet from the ground--in each direction, forming a check-row
system of overhead wires. The grape-vine is set at the foot of the
stake, to which the trunk is tied for support. Four canes are taken from
spurs on the head of the trunk, one for each of the radiating wires.
These canes are cut to three and one-half or four feet in length, and
the bearing shoots droop as they grow. Fig. 31 shows this training as it
appears some time after the leaves start in spring. Later in the season
the whole vineyard becomes a great arbor, and a person standing at a
distance sees an almost impenetrable mass of herbage, as in fig. 32.
This system appears to have little merit, and will always remain local
in application. It possesses the advantage of economy in construction of
the trellis, for very slender posts are used, even at the ends of the
rows. The end posts are either braced by a pole or anchored by a wire
taken from the top and secured to a stake or stone eight or ten feet
beyond, outside the vineyard.

[Illustration: 31. CROSS-WIRE TRAINING.]


_Renewal Kniffin._--It is an easy matter to adapt the Kniffin principle
of free hanging shoots to a true renewal method of pruning. There are a
few modifications in use in which the wood is annually renewed to near
the ground. The trellises comprise either two or three wires, and are
made in the same manner as for the upright systems, as the High Renewal.
At the annual pruning only one cane is left. This comprises twelve or
fifteen buds, and is tied up diagonally across the trellis, the point or
end of the cane usually being bent downward somewhat, in order to check
the strong growth from the uppermost parts. The shoots hang from this
cane, and they may be pinched back when they reach the ground. In the
meantime a strong shoot is taken out from the opposite side of the
head--which usually stands a foot or less from the ground--to make the
bearing wood of the next year; and this new cane will be tied in an
opposite direction on the trellis from the present bearing cane, and the
next renewal shoot will be taken from the other side of the head, or the
side from which the present bearing wood sprung; so that the bearing top
of the vine is alternated in either direction upon the trellis. This
system, and similar ones, allow of laying down the vines easily in
winter, and insure excellent fruit because the amount of bearing wood
is small; but the crop is not large enough to satisfy most demands.

_The Munson System._--An unique system of training, upon the Kniffin
principle, has been devised by T. V. Munson, of Denison, Texas, a
well-known authority upon grapes. Two posts are set in the same hole,
their tops diverging. A wire is stretched along the top of these posts
and a third one is hung between them on cross-wires. The trunk of the
vine, or its head, is secured to this middle lower wire and the shoots
lop over the side wires. The growth, therefore, makes a V-shaped or
trough-like mass of herbage. Fig. 33 is an end view of this trellis,
showing the short wire connecting the posts and which also holds the
middle trellis-wire at the point of the V. Fig. 34 is a side view of the
trellis. The bearing canes, two or four, in number, which are left after
the annual pruning, are tied along this middle wire. The main trunk
forks just under the middle wire, as seen at the left in fig. 34. A head
is formed at this place not unlike like that which characterizes the
High Renewal, for this system also employs renewal pruning. The trellis
stands six feet high. The shoots stand upright at first, but soon fall
down and are supported by the side wires. The following account of this
system of training is written for this occasion by Mr. Munson:

"After the vines have flowered, the bearing laterals have their tips
pinched off, and that is all the summer pruning the vine gets, except to
rub off all eyes that start on the body below the crotch. Two to four
shoots, according to strength of vine, are started from the forks or
crotch and allowed to bear no fruit, but are trained along over the
lower central wire for renewal canes. When pruning time arrives, the
entire bearing cane of the present year, with all its laterals, is cut
away at a point near where the young renewal shoots have started, and
these shoots are shortened back, according to strength of vine; some,
such as Herbemont, being able at four years to fill four shoots six or
eight feet long with fine fruit, while Delaware could not well carry
over three or four feet each way of one shoot only. The different
varieties are set at various distances apart, according as they are
strong or weak growers.

[Illustration: 33. MUNSON TRAINING. END VIEW.]

"Thus the trellis and system of pruning are reduced to the simplest
form. A few cuts to each vine cover all the pruning, and a few ties
complete the task. A novice can soon learn to do the work well. The
trunk or main stem is secured to the middle lower wire, along which all
bearing canes are tied after pruning, and from which the young laterals
which produce the crop are to spring. These laterals strike the two
outer wires, soon clinging to them with their tendrils, and are safe
from destruction, while the fruit is thrown in the best possible
position for spraying and gathering, and is still shaded with the canopy
of leaves. I have now used this trellis five years upon ten acres of
mixed vines, and I am more pleased with it every year.

[Illustration: 34. MUNSON TRAINING. SIDE VIEW.]

"The following advantages are secured by this system:

"1. The natural habit of the vine is maintained, which is a canopy to
shade the roots and body of vine and the fruit, without smothering.

"2. New wood, formed by sap which has never passed through bearing wood,
is secured for the next crop--a very important matter.

"3. Simplicity and convenience of trellis, allowing free passage in any
direction through the vineyard; circulation of air without danger of
breaking tender shoots; ease of pruning, spraying, cultivation,

"4. Perfect control in pruning of amount of crop to suit capacity of

"5. Long canes for bearing, which agrees exactly with the nature of
nearly all our American species far better than short spurs.

"6. Ease of laying down in winter. The vine being pruned and not tied,
standing away from posts, can be bent down to one side between the rows,
and earth thrown upon it, and can be quickly raised and tied in

"7. Cheapness of construction and ease of removing trellis material and
using it again.

"8. Durability of both trellis and vineyard."

[Illustration: (Drawing of grapes)]



_Horizontal Training._--There are very few types of horizontal shoot
training now in use. The best is probably that shown in fig. 35. This
particular vine is a Delaware, to which this training is well adapted.
It will be noticed that this picture represents the end of a trellis,
and the diagonal stick seen near the ground is a brace for the end post.
Two wires run from post to post, one about two and one-half feet above
the ground and the other five and one-half feet high. The posts are set
at the ordinary distance of 16 or 18 feet apart. The vines are set six
or eight feet apart, if Delawares. A strong stake is driven in the
ground behind each vine, standing as high as the top of the trellis when
set. The permanent trunk or head of the vine stands about a foot high.
The vine is renewed back to the top of this trunk every year. One cane
is left at each pruning, which, when tied up to the stake, is as high as
the trellis. From this perpendicular cane, the bearing shoots are
carried out horizontally. About six of these shoots are allowed to grow
upon either side of the cane. As the shoots grow, they are tied to
perpendicular slats which are fastened on the wires. These slats do not
touch the ground. Two slats are provided upon either side, making four
to a vine. They stand a foot or fifteen inches apart. The clusters hang
free from the horizontal shoots. If the shoots grow too long, they are
pinched in when they have passed the second slat. While these shoots are
covering the trellis, another shoot is taken out from the head or trunk
of the vine and, without being allowed to fruit, is tied up along the
central stake. This shoot is to form the top next year, for all the
present vine is to be entirely cut away at the winter's pruning. So the
vine starts every spring with but a single cane.

[Illustration: 35. HORIZONTAL TRAINING.]

Excellent results are obtained from the slender growing varieties by
this method of training, but it is too expensive in trellis and in labor
of tying to make it generally practicable. Delaware, however, thrives
remarkably well when trained in this fashion.

_Post Training._--There are various methods of training to posts, all of
which possess two advantages--the saving of the expense of trellis and
allowing of cultivation both ways. But they also have grave
disadvantages, especially in the thickness of the head of foliage which
harbors rot and mildew and prevents successful spraying, and hinders the
fruit from coloring and ripening well. These faults are so serious that
post training is now little used for the American grapes. The saving in
cost of trellis is not great, for more posts are required to the acre
than in the trellis systems, and they do not endure long when standing
alone with the whole weight of the vines thrown upon them.

[Illustration: 36. LOW POST TRAINING.]

There are various methods of pruning for the stake training, but nearly
all of them agree in pruning to side spurs upon a permanent upright arm
which stands the full height of the vine. There may be one or two sets
of these spurs. We might suppose the Kniffin vine, shown in fig. 22, to
be tied to a post instead of stretched on a trellis; in that event,
the four canes would hang at will, or they might be wrapped about the
post, the shoots hanging out unsupported in all directions. The post
systems are essentially Kniffin in principle, for the shoots hang free.
In low styles of post training, the permanent head of the vine may be
only three or four feet high. This head will have a ring of spurs on it,
and at the annual pruning three to five canes with from six to ten buds
each are left. Fig. 36 is a view in such a post vineyard.

The main trunk is usually tied permanently to the post. The canes left
after pruning are variously disposed. Sometimes they are bent upwards
and tied to the post above the head of the vine, but they are oftenest
either wound loosely about the post, or are allowed to hang loose. Two
trunks are frequently used to each post, both coming from the ground
from a common root. These are wound about the post in opposite
directions, one outside the other, and if the outside one is secured at
the top by a small nail driven through it, or by a cord, no other tying
will be necessary. Sometimes two or three posts are set at distances of
one foot or more apart, and the vines are wrapped about them, but this
only augments the size and depth of the mass of foliage. Now and then
one sees a careful post training, in which but little wood is left and
vigorous breaking out of shoots practiced, which gives excellent
results; but on the whole, it cannot be recommended. The European post
and stake systems or modifications of them, are yet occasionally
recommended for American vines, but under general conditions, especially
in commercial grape growing, they rarely succeed long. One of the latest
recommendations of any of these types is that of the single pole system
of the Upper Rhine Valley, by A. F. Hofer, of Iowa, in a little treatise
published in 1878.

_Arbors._--Arbors and bowers are usually formed with little reference to
pruning and training. The first object is to secure shade and seclusion,
and these are conditions which may seriously interfere with the
production of fine grapes. As a rule, too much wood must be allowed to
grow, and the soil about arbors is rarely ever cultivated. Still, fair
results in fruit can be obtained if the operator makes a diligent use of
the pruning shears. It is usually best to carry one main or permanent
trunk up to the top or center of the arbor. Along this trunk at
intervals of two feet or less, spurs may be left to which the wood is
renewed each year. If the vines stand six feet apart about the
arbor--which is a satisfactory distance--one cane three feet long may be
left on each spur when the pruning is done. The shoots which spring from
these canes will soon cover up the intermediate spaces. At the close of
the season, this entire cane with its laterals is cut away at the spur,
and another three-foot cane--which grew during the season--is left in
its place. This pruning is essentially that of the Kniffin vine in fig.
22. Imagine this vine, with as many joints or tiers as necessary, laid
upon the arbor. The canes are tied out horizontally to the slats instead
of being tied on wires. This same system--running up a long trunk and
cutting in to side spurs--will apply equally well to tall walls and
fences which it is desired to cover. Undoubtedly a better plan, so far
as yield and quality of fruit is concerned, is to renew back nearly to
the root, bringing up a strong new cane, or perhaps two or three every
year, and cutting the old ones off; but as the vines are desired for
shade one does not care to wait until midsummer for the vines to reach
and cover the top of the arbor.

_Remodeling Old Vines._--Old and neglected tops can rarely be remodeled
to advantage. If the vine is still vigorous, it will probably pay to
grow an entirely new top by taking out a cane from the root. If the old
top is cut back severely for a year or two, this new cane will make a
vigorous growth, and it can be treated essentially like a new or young
vine. If it is very strong and ripens up well, it can be left long
enough the first fall to make the permanent trunk; but if it is rather
weak and soft, it should be cut back in the fall or winter to two or
three buds, from one of which the permanent trunk is to be grown the
second season. Thereafter, the instructions which are given in the
preceding pages for the various systems, will apply to the new vine.
The old trunk should be cut away as soon as the new one is permanently
tied to the wires, that is, at the close of either the first or second
season of the new trunk. Care must be exercised to rub off all sprouts
which spring from the old root or stump. If this stump can be cut back
into the ground and covered with earth, better results may be expected.
Old vines treated in this manner often make good plants, but if the
vines are weak and the soil is poor, the trouble will scarcely pay for

These old vines can be remodeled easily by means of grafting. Cut off
the trunk five or six inches below the surface of the ground, leaving an
inch or two of straight wood above the roots. Into this stub insert two
cions exactly as for cleft-grafting the apple. Cions of two or three
buds, of firm wood the size of a lead-pencil, should be inserted. The
top bud should stand above the ground. The cleft will need no tying nor
wax, although it is well to place a bit of waxed cloth or other material
over the wound to keep the soil out of it. Fill the earth tightly about
it. Fig. 37 shows the first year's growth from two cions of Niagara set
in a Red Wyoming root. Great care must be taken in any pruning which is
done this first year, or the cions may be loosened. If the young shoots
are tied to a stake there will be less danger from wind and careless
workmen. In the vine shown in the illustration, no pruning nor rubbing
out was done, but the vine would have been in better shape for
training if only one or two shoots had been allowed to grow. Such a vine
as this can be carried onto the trellis next year; or it may be cut back
to three or four buds, one of which is allowed to make the permanent
trunk next year, like a two-year set vine.

[Illustration: 37. A YEARLING GRAFT.]

If it is desired, however, to keep the old top, it will be best to cut
back the annual growth heavily at the winter pruning. The amount of wood
which shall be left must be determined by the vigor of the plant and the
variety, but three or four canes of six to ten buds each may be left at
suitable places. During the next season a strong shoot from the base of
each cane may be allowed to grow, which shall form the wood of the
following season, while all the present cane is cut away at the end of
the year. So the bearing wood is renewed each year, as in the regular
systems of training. Much skill and experience are often required to
properly rejuvenate an old vine; and in very many cases the vine is not
worth the trouble.

[Illustration: (Drawing of grapes}]



  Adlum, quoted, 10

  Arbor Kniffin, 72

  Arbors, 88

  Arm, defined, 13

  Barns, W. D., quoted, 63

  Bass bark, 33

  Bleeding, 22

  Breaking-out, 23

  Brocton, Training at, 37

  Bull cane, 50, 66

  Cane, defined, 13

  Chautauqua County, Training in, 37

  Contraction of wires, 30

  Cornell, William T., 56

  Cornhusks, for tying, 33

  Crittenden training, 74

  Cross-wire training, 74

  Crotch Kniffin, 66

  Double Kniffin, 66

  Drooping systems, 56

  Eight-cane Kniffin, 70

  Fan training, 54

  Forestville, Training at, 37

  Four-cane Kniffin, 58

  Fuller, quoted, 10, 34

  Girdling, 69

  Grafting, 90

  Haviland, Sands, 72

  Heading-in, 23

  High Renewal training, 39

  Hofer, A. F., 88

  Horizontal Arm training, 34

  Horizontal training, 83

  Husks, for tying, 33

  Improved Kniffin, 66

  Kniffin systems, 58

  Kniffin training, Comparison of, 26

  Kniffin, William, 56

  Low Kniffin, 69

  Marlboro', Training at, 72, 74

  Modified Kniffin, 63

  Munson training, 78

  Munson, T. V., 78

  Objects of pruning, 24

  Old vines, Remodeling of, 89

  One-wire Kniffin, 69

  Overhead Kniffin, 72

  Planting, 20

  Posts, 28

  Post training, 85

  Pruning, 11

  Pruning, Objects of, 24

  " of young vines, 20

  " Summer, 23

  " Time for, 22

  Raffia, 32

  Raphia Ruffia, 32

  Reasons for pruning, 24

  Remodeling old vines, 89

  Renewal, defined, 18

  Renewal Kniffin, 77

  Rubbing off, 14, 23

  Rye straw for tying, 33

  Sagging of wires, 30

  Setting, 20

  Shoot, defined, 13

  Six-cane Kniffin, 70

  Spur, defined, 17

  Spur training, 34

  Staples, 29

  Stopping, 23

  Stripping, 22

  Summer pruning, 23

  Superfluous shoots, 23

  Systems compared, 25

  T-head, 41

  Thomas' Fruit Culturist, quoted, 10

  Tightening wires, 31

  Trellis, Making, 27

  True Kniffin, 58

  Twine for tying, 32

  Two-cane Kniffin, 66

  Tying, 31

  Umbrella training, 66

  Upright training, 34

  Walls, Training on, 89

  Weeping, 22

  Willows, for tying, 32

  Wire, for trellis, 28

  " for tying, 33

  " weights and sizes, 29

  Wool-twine, 32

  Y-trunk Kniffin, 66

  Yeoman's patent trellis, 30

  Yields of grapes, 14, 63, 69, 70

  Young vines, Pruning of, 20

[Illustration: (Drawing of grapes}]


=THIS ILLUSTRATION= was made from a photograph of fair
samples of the different grades of our grape vines, reduced to one-tenth
their natural size.

We take great pride and comfort in our ability to furnish _strong_,
_fibrous-rooted_ stock, so well appreciated by intelligent and
experienced fruit growers.



Grape Vine Specialist And General Nurseryman.

When writing name this book.




We desire to call the attention of planters to our large and complete
stock of Grape Vines.

We propagate and offer for sale upwards of sixty varieties, embracing
the popular old sorts as well as the new ones which seem to have merit.
Our catalogue contains accurate descriptions, and classifies the
different varieties according to color.

Besides the above we offer an immense collection of all kinds of Fruit
and Ornamental Trees, Shrubs, Roses, Hardy Plants, etc. Our General
Catalogue (160 pages), embellished with numerous engravings of the most
popular Trees, Shrubs, etc., and enclosed in an illuminated cover, will
be mailed free to all who have not received it.

Our Supplementary Catalogue (28 pages) of Rare and Choice Trees, Shrubs,
etc., including several valuable novelties and many specialties of
superior merit, will also be mailed free.


      Mount Hope Nurseries,

53rd Year.     ROCHESTER, N. Y.

Pleasant Valley Nurseries

PEAR TREES.--Lincoln, Coreless, Bessemianka, Japan Golden Russet,
Kieffer, LeConte, etc., Nut Trees in variety. Fruit Trees of all sorts.
Ornamentals, Eleagnus Longipes, Japanese Wineberry Juneberry, Trifoliate
Orange and other valued novelties.


STRAWBERRIES, Van Deman, E. P. Roe, and other new varieties; all the old
standard sorts, Gooseberries, Raspberries, Blackberries, Currants,
Asparagus Roots and Grape Vines.

J. S. COLLINS & SON, Moorestown, N. J.

Send for Catalogue.


For the Farm and Household.

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receipt of price.

Be careful to write name and post office plain, so that there may be no
mistake in mailing.


_The Rural Publishing Co., New York._

POPULAR ERRORS ABOUT PLANTS.--By A. A. CROZIER. A collection of errors
and superstitions entertained by farmers, gardeners and others, together
with brief scientific refutations. Highly interesting to students and
intelligent readers of the new and attractive in rural literature, and
of real value to practical cultivators who want to know the truth about
their work.

Price, cloth, $1.

THE NURSERY BOOK.--By L. H. BAILEY. A complete handbook of Propagation
and Pollination of Plants. _Profusely illustrated._ This valuable little
manual has been compiled with great pains. The author has had unusual
facilities for its preparation, having been aided by many experts. The
book is absolutely devoid of theory and speculation. It has nothing to
do with plant physiology or abstruse reasoning about plant growth. It
simply tells, plainly and briefly, what every one who sows a seed, makes
a cutting, sets a graft, or crosses a flower wants to know. It is
entirely new and original in method and matter. The cuts number 107, and
are made expressly for it, direct from nature. The book treats all kinds
of cultivated plants, fruits, vegetables, greenhouse plants, hardy
herbs, ornamental trees, shrubs and forest trees.


I.--SEEDAGE. On Propagation by Seed.


III.--LAYERAGE. Propagation by Layering.

IV.--CUTTAGE. Propagation by Cuttings.

V.--GRAFTAGE.--Including Grafting, Budding, Inarching, etc.

VI.--NURSERY LIST.--This is the great feature of the book. It is an
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which of the operations described in the first five chapters are
employed in propagating them. _Over 2,000 entries_ are made in the list.
The following entries will give an idea of the method:

=Acer= (MAPLE). _Sapindaceæ._ Stocks are grown from stratified seeds,
which should be sown an inch or two deep; or some species, as _A.
dasycarpum_, come readily if seeds are sown as soon as ripe. Some
cultural varieties are layered, but better plants are obtained by
grafting. Varieties of native species are worked upon common or native
stocks. The Japanese sorts are winter-worked upon imported _A.
polymorphum_ stocks, either by whip or veneer grafting. Maples can also
be budded in summer, and they grow readily from cuttings of both ripe
and soft wood.

=Phyllocactus, Phyllocereus, Disocactus= (LEAF CACTUS). _Cacteæ._ Fresh
seeds grow readily. Sow in rather sandy soil which is well drained, and
apply water as for common seeds. When the seedlings appear, remove to a
light position. Cuttings from mature shoots, three to six inches in
length, root readily in sharp sand. Give a temperature of about 60°, and
apply only sufficient water to keep from flagging. If the cuttings are
very juicy they may be laid on dry sand for several days before


Price, in Library Style, cloth, wide margins, $1 Pocket Style, paper,
narrow margins, 50 cents.

the influence of climate upon size, form, color, fruitfulness, etc.,
with a discussion on the question of acclimation. 35 pp.

Price, paper, 25 cents.

FRUIT CULTURE, and the Laying Out and Management of a Country Home.--By
W. C. STRONG, Ex-President of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society,
and Vice-President of the American Pomological Society. Illustrated. New
revised edition, with many additions, making it the latest and freshest
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Rural Homes--Choice of Locality--Treatment--A Good Lawn--The Approach.
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The Currant--Insects Attacking the Currant--The Gooseberry. The
Raspberry--The Blackberry. The Strawberry. The Mulberry--The
Fig--Rhubarb--Asparagus. Propagating Fruit-Trees--From the Seed--By
Division--By Cuttings--By Layers--By Budding--By Grafting.
Insecticides--Fungicides--Recipes. Price, in one volume, 16mo., cloth,

thorough book; especially adapted to the culture of Chrysanthemums in
America. The contents include Propagation by Grafting. Inarching and
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Synonyms. Staking and Tying. General Culture. Insects and Diseases.
Standard Chrysanthemums. Sports and Variations. Disbudding and Thinning.
Oriental and European History. Calendar of Monthly Operations.
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IMPROVING THE FARM, or Methods of Culture that shall afford a profit,
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LANDSCAPE-GARDENING.--By ELIAS A. LONG. A practical treatise comprising
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attractive a feature of _Popular Gardening_ and _American Gardening_
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Price, 50 cents.

THE BUSINESS HEN.--Breeding and Feeding Poultry for Profit. The pat
title of a unique book is The Business Hen. A condensed and, practical
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_The Rural New-Yorker_. Starting with the question, "What is an Egg?"
the book goes on step by step to indicate the most favorable conditions
for developing the egg into a "Business Hen." Incubation, care of
chicks, treatment of diseases, selection and breeding, feeding and
housing, are all discussed in a clear and simple manner. Two successful
egg-farms are described in detail. On one of these farms the owner has
succeeded in developing a flock of 600 hens that average over 200 eggs
each per year.

Price, cloth, 75 cents; paper, 40 cents.

FIRST LESSONS IN AGRICULTURE. (_2nd Edition, Revised and Enlarged._)--By
F. A. Gulley, M. S., Professor of Agriculture in the Agricultural
College of Mississippi. This book discusses the more important
principles which underlie agriculture in a plain, simple way, within the
comprehension of students and readers who have not studied chemistry,
botany, and other branches of science related to agriculture. It
supplies a much-needed text-book for common schools, and is useful for
the practical farmer. Includes all the latest developments in
agricultural science as applied to the subject.

Price, cloth, $1. Special prices for Schools and Colleges.

THE NEW POTATO CULTURE.--By ELBERT S. CARMAN. This book gives the result
of 15 years' experiment work on The Rural ground. It treats particularly
of: How to increase the crop without corresponding cost of production.
Manures and fertilizers: kinds and methods of application. The soil, and
how to put it in right condition. Depth of planting. How much seed to
plant. Methods of culture. The Rural trench system. Varieties, etc.,

Nothing old or worn-out about this book. It treats of new and profitable
methods; in fact, of _The NEW Potato Culture_. It is respectfully
submitted that these experiments at The Rural grounds have, directly and
indirectly, thrown more light upon the various problems involved in
successful potato-culture than any other experiments that have been
carried on in America.

Price, cloth, 75 cents; paper, 40 cents.

_American Gardening_, Horticulturist of the Cornell Experiment Station,
and Professor of Horticulture in Cornell University. It contains in
handy and concise form, a great number of Rules and Recipes required by
gardeners, fruit-growers, truckers, florists, farmers, etc.

Synopsis of Contents: Injurious insects, with preventives and remedies.
Fungicides for plant diseases. Plant diseases, with preventives and
remedies. Injuries from mice, rabbits, birds, etc., with preventives and
remedies. Waxes and washes for grafting and for wounds. Cements, paints,
etc. _Seed Tables_: Quantities required for sowing given areas. Weight
and size of seeds. Longevity of seeds. Time required for seeds to
germinate. _Planting Tables_: Dates for sowing seeds in different
latitudes. Tender and hardy vegetables. Distances apart for planting.
_Maturity and Yields_: Time required for maturity of vegetables; for
bearing of fruit plants. Average yields of crops. Keeping and storing
fruits and vegetables. _Propagation of Plants_: Ways of grafting and
budding. Methods by which fruits are propagated. Stocks used for fruits.
_Standard Measures and Sizes_: Standard flower-pots. Standard and legal
measures. English measures for sale of fruits and vegetables. Quantities
of water held in pipes and tanks. Effect of wind in cooling off glass
roofs. Per cent. of light reflected from glass at various angles of
inclination. Weights of various varieties of apples per bushel. Amount
of various products yielded by given quantities of fruit. Labels.
Loudon's rules of horticulture. Rules of nomenclature. Rules for
exhibition. Weather signs and protection from frost. _Collecting and
Preserving_: How to make an herbarium. Preserving and printing of
flowers and other parts of plants. Keeping cut-flowers. How to collect
and preserve insects. Chemical composition of fruits and vegetables, and
seeds, fertilizers, soils and vegetables. _Names and Histories_:
Vegetables which have different names in England and America. Derivation
of names of various fruits and vegetables. Names of fruits and
vegetables in various languages. Glossary. Calendar.

Price, cloth, $1; paper, 60 cents.

CROSS-BREEDING AND HYBRIDIZING:--The Philosophy of the Crossing of
Plants considered with reference to their Cultivation--How to Improve
plants by Hybridizing.--By L. H. BAILEY. It is the only book accessible
to American horticulture which gives the reasons, discouragements,
possibilities and limitations of Cross-Breeding. Every man who owns a
plant should have it, if for no other reason than to post himself upon
one of the leading practices of the day. The pamphlet contains also a
bibliography of the subject, including over 400 entries.

Price, paper, 40 cents.

Rural New-Yorker_. A concise and practical discussion of the
all-important topic of commercial fertilizers in connection with green
manuring in bringing up worn-out soils, and in general farm practice.

Price, paper, 20 cents.

ANNALS OF HORTICULTURE, Vol. IV.--Bright, New, Clean and Fresh. These
Annals are entirely rewritten every year. They are the _only records_ of
the progress in horticulture. Exhaustive lists of all the plants
introduced in 1892, with descriptions, directories, full accounts of all
new discoveries, new tools, and a wealth of practical matter for
_Gardeners_, _Fruit-Growers_, _Florists_, _Vegetable-Gardeners and
Landscape-Gardeners_, comprise its contents.

Ready soon. Illustrated. Vol. IV., cloth $1. Vols. I., II. and III. at
the same price.

INSECTS AND INSECTICIDES.--A practical Manual concerning Noxious
Insects and the Methods of Preventing their Injuries. By CLARENCE M.
WEED, Professor of Entomology and Zoölogy, New Hampshire State College.

I think that you have gotten together a very useful and valuable little
book.--DR. C. V. RILEY, _U.S. Entomologist_.

It is excellent. I must congratulate you on the skill you have displayed
in putting in the most important insects, and the complete manner in
which you have done the work.--JAMES FLETCHER, _Dominion Entomologist_.

I am well pleased with it. There is certainly a demand for just such a
work.--DR. F. M. HEXAMER, _Editor American Agriculturist_.

Price, cloth, $1.25.

THE CAULIFLOWER.--BY A. A. CROZIER. Teacher and Practical Origin and
History of this increasingly important and always delicious vegetable.

The Cauliflower Industry.--In Europe. In the United States. Importation
of Cauliflowers.

Management of the Crop.--Soil. Fertilizers. Planting. Cultivating.
Harvesting. Keeping. Marketing.

The Early Crop.--Caution against planting it largely. Special
directions. Buttoning.

Cauliflower Regions of the United States.--Upper Atlantic Coast. Lake
Region. Prairie Region. Cauliflowers in the South. The Pacific Coast.

Insect and Fungous Enemies.--Flea-beetle. Cut-worms. Cabbage-maggot.
Cabbage-worm. Stem-rot. Damping-off. Black-leg.

Cauliflower Seed.--Importance of careful selection. Where the seed is
grown. Influence of climate. American-grown seed.

Varieties.--Descriptive catalogue. Order of earliness. Variety tests.
Best varieties.

Broccoli.--Difference between Broccoli and Cauliflower. Cultivation, use
and varieties of Broccoli.

Cooking Cauliflower.--Digestibility. Nutritive value. Chemical
composition. Recipes.

Price, cloth, $1.

PRACTICAL FARM CHEMISTRY.--A Practical Handbook of Profitable
Crop-Feeding, written for Practical Men. By T. GREINER.

Part I. The Raw Materials of Plant-Food.

Part II. The Available Sources of Supply.

Part III. Principles of Economic Application, or Manuring for Money.

This work, written in plainest language, is intended to assist the
farmer in the selection, purchase and application of plant-foods. If you
wish to learn ways how to save money in procuring manurial substances,
and how to make money by their proper use, read this book. If you want
your boy to learn the principle of crop-feeding, and become a successful
farmer, give him a copy of this book. The cost of the book will be
returned a hundred-fold to every reader who peruses its pages with care
and applies its teachings to practice.

Price, cloth, $1.

SPRAYING CROPS.--Why, When and How to Do It.--By PROF. CLARENCE M.
WEED. A handy volume of about 100 pages; illustrated. Covers the whole
field of the insect and fungous enemies of crops for which the spray is
used. The following topics are discussed in a concise, practical manner:

Spraying Against Insects. Feeding Habits of Insects. Spraying Against
Fungous Diseases. The Philosophy of Spraying. Spraying Apparatus.
Spraying Trees in Blossom. Precautions in Spraying. Insecticides used in
Spraying. Fungicides used in Spraying. Combining Insecticides and
Fungicides. Cost of Spraying Materials. Prejudice Against Spraying.
Spraying the Larger Fruits. Spraying Small Fruits and Nursery Stock.
Spraying Shade Trees, Ornamental Plants and Flowers. Spraying
Vegetables, Field Crops and Domestic Animals.

Price in stiff paper cover, 50 cents; flexible cloth, 75 cents.


Illustrations have been moved to the nearest appropriate paragraph
break. For the benefit of readers of the text version of this e-book,
a small description was added to 5 decorative line drawings which have
no caption or description in the original text. This addition appears
in parentheses as: "(Drawing of grapes)".

An asterism in the text is represented as: *.*

Inconsistencies in the author's spelling and use of punctuation are
unchanged in this e-text.

Obvious typographical and printer errors have been corrected without

In addition to obvious errors, the following changes have been made:

   1. On page 87: "arguments" was changed to "augments" in the phrase,
     "... this only augments the size and depth...."

   2. On page 90: "side" was changed to "size" in the phrase, "...
     wood the size of a lead-pencil...."

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