Your planting material and its preparationWhat planting material is suitable for the GroGuard?
GroGuard vineguards are suitable for all kinds of planting material including dormant rootlings and cuttings, as well as green growing material.
All material must be free of disease, disease lesions, and exposed, poorly healed wounds.
Current season grafts should be covered with wax that will protect the union in termperatures up to 60oC
GroGuard vineguards are not recommended for use on vines that have performed poorly in previous years.
Prepare your planting material so the vine grows only one shoot.
The sheltered environment of the GroGuard encourages the growth of a single dominant "leader" shoot, free of laterals ("feathers" or "side shoots").
Correct pruning and disbudding prior to planting will decrease the incidence of multiple shoots and side shoots to the point where summer pruning and training are unnecessary.
Green growing material needs no preparation other than to eliminate all but a single shoot.
Dormant rootlings (grafted and own-rooted) are pruned by first removing all but a single cane. Choose a cane where the third or fourth bud from the base is pointing back towards the centre of the vine. Cut through the node above that bud, and disbud one or two buds below it with a sharp knife.
It is good practice to shorten roots to about 25 mm. Vines take up water mostly through the new roots that grow from near the cut ends of the old roots (usually in pairs). Shortening the old roots shortens the conduit between the new, absorbing, roots, and the rest of the vine. Leaving the old roots long makes planting difficult and often the roots are left pointing upwards.
Cuttings are pruned to length first. Always shorten cuttings from the top! Cut mid way between nodes, on an angle. Cuttings should be just long enough to have a few nodes out of the ground, and 50 mm – 120 mm below ground. Shallower planting gives the roots a better start because the soil is warmer and more airy near the surface. A total length of 150 mm to 250 mm is typical.
Cuttings are disbudded by removing the two buds underneath the top one.
Make sure the bottom of the cutting is cut square just below a node.