Flowering: Missouri Vineyards in Bloom
May 22, 2018
Flowering is the next stage in a grapevine’s growing cycle after Bud Break. It’s an exciting and delicate time when the flowers burst through their caps (calyptra to be technical) carrying the pollen that will fertilize the vine and result in grape berries.
As the vines grow, small clusters of flowers will begin to appear on the new shoots of the grape vine. At first all that is visible are the caps (or calyptra) and they look like little buttons. Generally, flowering in Missouri vineyards takes place between the end of May and the beginning of June. After the initial clusters appear, they will continue to get larger and then begin to bloom.
Most grape varieties are hermaphroditic plants, meaning they are self-pollinators. When the flowers bloom, they release their pollen from the anthers of the stamen, pollinating the ovary which then produces seeds and the flowers begin transforming into a grape berry. The grape berries will then encapsulate the seeds. This is a delicate time for the grape vine when certain types of weather can be quite detrimental. Too much rain, wind or cool temperatures can be especially dangerous during this stage of growth as they can affect how many flowers are fertilized and ultimately how many grapes are produced.
Flowering is a beautiful time to visit the vineyards of Missouri wine country. But don’t wait! This wonderful phase of the grape-growing cycle won’t last long and then it will be on to fruit set.