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(Labrusca, Bourquiniana, Vinifera)

French Grape, Gray Delaware, Ladies' Choice, Powell, Ruff

Delaware (Plate VII) is used wherever American grapes are grown as the
standard to gauge the quality of other grapes. Added to high quality
in fruit, the variety withstands climatic conditions to which all but
the most hardy varieties succumb, is adapted to many soils and
conditions, and bears under most situations an abundant crop. These
qualities make it, next to Concord, the most popular grape for garden
and vineyard now grown in the United States. Besides the qualities
named, the grapes mature sufficiently early to make the crop certain,
are attractive in appearance, keep and ship well and are more immune
than other commercial varieties to black-rot. Faults of the variety
are: small vine, slow growth, susceptibility to mildew, capriciousness
in certain soils and small berries. The first two faults make it
necessary to plant the vines more closely than those of other
commercial varieties. Delaware succeeds best in deep, rich,
well-drained, warm soils, but even on these it must have good
cultivation, close pruning and the crop must be thinned.

Delaware is grown North and South, westward to the Rocky Mountains. It
is now proving profitable in many southern locations as an early grape
to ship to northern markets. It is an especially desirable grape to
cultivate in small gardens because of its delicious, handsome fruit,
its compact habit of growth and its ample and lustrous green,
delicately formed leaves which make it one of the most ornamental of
the grapes. Delaware can be traced to the garden of Paul H. Provost,
Frenchtown, New Jersey, where it was growing early in the nineteenth
century, and from whence it was taken to Delaware, Ohio, in 1849 and
from there distributed to fruit-growers.

Vine weak, hardy, productive. Canes short, numerous, slender, dark
brown; nodes enlarged; internodes short; tendrils intermittent,
short, bifid. Leaves small; upper surface dark green, dull,
smooth; lower surface pale green, pubescent; lobes three to five
in number, terminal one acute; petiolar sinus narrow; basal sinus
narrow and shallow when present; lateral sinus deep, narrow; teeth
shallow. Flowers self-fertile, open late; stamens upright.

Fruit early, keeps well. Clusters small, slender, blunt,
cylindrical, regular, shouldered, compact; pedicel short, slender,
smooth; brush light brown. Berries uniform in size and shape,
small, round, light red, covered with thin bloom, persistent,
firm; skin thin, tough, adherent, unpigmented, astringent; flesh
light green, translucent, juicy, tender, aromatic, vinous,
refreshing, sweet; best in quality. Seeds free, one to four,
broad, notched, short, blunt, light brown.

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