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(Labrusca, Vinifera)

Merrimac is often accredited as the best black grape among Rogers'
hybrids, but an analysis of the characters of the several black
varieties grown by Rogers shows that it is surpassed by Wilder,
Herbert and possibly Barry. The vine is strong in growth, productive,
hardy and exempt from fungal diseases; but the grapes are not high in
quality, and flesh, skin and seed characters are such that the fruit
is not as pleasant to eat as the other black varieties named. Merrimac
is worthy a place in collections for the sake of variety. Rogers gave
this variety the name Merrimac in 1869.

Vine vigorous, usually hardy, productive. Canes slender, dark
brown, surface roughened; nodes enlarged, flattened; internodes
short; tendrils intermittent, short, bifid. Leaves large, thin;
upper surface very light green, glossy, smooth; lower surface pale
green, pubescent and cobwebby; lobes three with terminal one
obtuse; petiolar sinus deep, narrow, sometimes closed and
overlapping; basal sinus usually lacking; lateral sinus shallow,
narrow; teeth shallow. Flowers self-sterile, open in mid-season;
stamens reflexed.

Fruit mid-season, keeps and ships well. Clusters variable in size,
broad, tapering; pedicel slender, covered with numerous
inconspicuous warts; brush wine-colored. Berries large, round,
black, glossy with abundant bloom, persistent, firm; skin thick,
tough, adherent, astringent; flesh light green, translucent,
juicy, fine-grained, tender, stringy; good. Seeds adherent, one to
five, broad, long, with enlarged neck, brown.

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