Brianna Grape Vine- Zone 4
Characteristics of the tree
Brianna is a medium to large grape, weighing about 3g on average per grape and greenish gold in colour. The skin is moderately thick, and adheres to the pulp. The thickness of the skin is an advantage for conservation, as it helps the grape to store longer. Each grape contains up to five seeds, which is the one disadvantage of this grape. Otherwise, Brianna’s flavour is simply delicious: sweet and fruity, with hints of tropical fruit like pineapple and mango. While it makes an excellent seeded table grape it is also very popular as a juice grape, imparting a unique and complex flavour. It is harvested in mid-season and can be conserved for several weeks or up to around two months in good conditions (at a temperature of 0-4°C, with high humidity).
The Brianna grapevine is an early producer with high vigour and productivity. It gives medium sized and compact clusters, within an orderly growth habit. The clusters can be susceptible to millerandage (meaning that some of the grapes do not ripen, or ripen or unevenly) resulting in some incomplete clusters. The vine has medium to good resistance to most common grape diseases, but is susceptible to crown gall. It is very cold-hardy, up to at least zone 4 or 3 with snow cover, while being very tolerant to temperature extremes at both ends of the spectrum. It has good self-fertility, but will benefit from pollination with another variety.
Brianna was developed by Elmer Swenson in 1983, and it was selected as a table grape in 1989. It became available for propagation in 2001. It is a cross between Kay Gray and E.S. 2-12-13.
Like all vines, grape vines are of the nature to climb on a nearby support, gripping onto it by their tendrils. The support you provide will, to a great degree, determine the growth of your grape vine (i.e., it will not grow any taller than its supporting structure). This illustration shows a grape vine growing horizontally along a fence. You could also choose a pergola or another form of support.
Bear in mind also that you should not allow your vine to grow unrestrained as much as it pleases, if you wish to harvest a good amount of fruit. It should be properly pruned each year after it begins to produce.
All our grape vines are sold bare-root, without pots. They have been cultivated directly in our soil. Bare-root trees must be taken out of the ground and shipped during their period of dormancy, which is why we only ship trees in the spring. A big advantage with these kinds of trees is that they take up very little space, and can therefore be easily shipped by mail all over Canada!
This photograph shows a 1-2-foot grape vine, just like one that you might receive. It’s worth noting that grape vines are among the plants that are the latest to open their buds – so don’t panic if your vine seems to take longer than normal to break dormancy after you plant it.
When planning where to plant your grapevines and what kind of supporting structure to use, you might want to consider the possibility of laying down the vines under the snow for the winter. While all the cultivars we offer are hardy to at least zone 4, and therefore should not need extra protection for winter, we prefer to be on the safe side. Therefore, after we have pruned our grapevines in fall, we lay down the branches on the ground so that they will be insulated by the snow during the winter. We designed our fence with this in mind: you can see how we made it here. This might not be necessary in warmer zones, but is something you should consider if you are in zone 4a or colder.