Chapter 2

Wine Grape Varieties


Today, with increasingly diverse plant materials available, growers planting new vineyards need to consider choice of clones as well as choice of variety. A clone is defined as a genetically uniform group of individuals derived originally from a single variety by asexual propagation (cuttings, grafting, etc.). While conforming to the overall character of the variety, some of the viticultural characteristics that make clones distinct include berry and cluster size and morphology, yield, fruit chemistry, color, phenolics, flavor, and aroma characteristics, time of budbreak and ripening period, vine vigor, cold hardiness, disease resistance, and tolerances to heat, humidity and drought. It should be noted that most of the interest in clones applies to the classic European varieties (V. vinifera) and has not extended into hybrid varieties.

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