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Heat-loving crops have long been registered on the plots of gardeners living in regions with a changeable climate. This became possible due to the development of new varieties and hybrids with high frost resistance and immunity to diseases. Until recently, it seemed impossible to grow large and sweet grapes in the middle lane. However, today it is quite possible if you choose the right variety. The Valek grapes have many admirers both among summer residents who grow crops for the needs of the family, and among large farms engaged in the cultivation of vines on an industrial scale.
Breeding history and characteristics of the variety
Experiments in the field of selection are carried out not only by scientists, but also by amateurs. And sometimes the latter manage to create such hybrids that are in no way inferior to the work of professionals. One of the most successful developments of an amateur from the Kirovograd region Vishnevetsky N.P. was the Valek grape variety. Initially, it was bred for cultivation in the climatic conditions of Ukraine, but has long since overcome geographical boundaries and has become a favorite of Russian gardeners.
Several varieties were taken as a basis for the hybrid: Rizamat, Kesh 1 and Zvezdny. Valek took all the best characteristics from his parents.
Frost and disease resistance
The Valek hybrid can withstand winter temperatures down to -25 degrees. However, experienced winegrowers advise 1-2-year-old seedlings to be insulated for the winter. Valek's immunity to diseases of the vine is above average, which simplifies the process of caring for the bushes. It is enough to carry out preventive measures on time so that the vine is healthy and brings the declared yields. Fungal diseases and various types of rot do not often affect the hybrid.
The beginning of fruiting and the amount of harvest
The Valek hybrid belongs to the early ripening varieties. Already in early August, gardeners of the southern regions pick the first berries. In colder climates, it will take a little longer to ripen, the first bunches ripen by the end of the last summer month. In the description, the manufacturer specifies a period of 105 days.
Gardeners who grow Valek on their plots have noted a high yield of the hybrid.
In a good year, up to 30 kg of berries are harvested from one bush. The weight of one brush can reach 2 kg with proper agricultural technology and a suitable climate. Valek grapes begin to bear fruit already in the second year after planting.
Taste qualities of berries
Taste is the main advantage of the hybrid, for which gardeners love it. Large yellowish-green berries are very sweet and tasty. And although the fruit has a thick skin, it does not spoil the taste of the grapes, it is just as tasty and sweet.
The weight of one berry reaches 18 grams. The pulp is dense, when biting through, a light nutmeg aroma and a pear flavor are felt.
Transportability and shelf life of the crop
The bunches of Valek grapes perfectly tolerate long-distance transportation, which makes it possible to grow it for sale. During storage, the berries do not crack, rot and do not lose their taste. In a properly equipped room, fruits are stored for up to 3 months.
It is not only the taste that attracts gardeners, but also the appearance of the vine. Valek is one of the most beautiful hybrids that will decorate the site.
Bushes and shoots
The bushes of the Valek vine are vigorous, strong, not afraid of gusts of wind. Shoots are highly developed and grow rapidly. The young vine has time to fully ripen during the summer. If you do not prune in time, the bush can grow quite wide in width.
Berries and bunches
Huge cone-shaped clusters are one of the main advantages of the hybrid. Despite the high density of the brush, the berries are not damaged, they have time to ripen over the summer and do not crack even in a rainy summer.
The gardener will be able to assess all these characteristics only in the case of competent planting and care. There is nothing difficult in the process of growing Valek. He needs standard agronomic measures - a suitable place, watering and feeding, pruning and shaping vines, preventing diseases and pests.
When planning Valek's landing on his site, it is worth considering his love for space:
- Its root system grows strongly both in depth and in width, so the distance between young seedlings should not be less than 3 meters.
- If you plan to plant several rows, then a distance of 4 meters is observed between them.
- The depth of the planting pit is about 80 cm. Then the vine has enough nutrients for full development.
- Dislikes a hybrid of wet swampy soils and shaded areas.
- Bunches need sunlight to ripen.
- The best soils are considered to be loams with a small content of chernozem.
- The southern and southwestern slopes with protection from drafts and cold winds are suitable.
- Experienced growers are advised to plant young bushes along the buildings, leaving 1.5 meters from the wall.
At first, after planting grape bushes, you need to pay attention to the soil. Remove weeds in time, loosen the soil for better aeration and water permeability. It is in the first planting season that the basis for the health and productivity of the vine in the future is laid. The trunk circle can be mulched with sawdust or straw, this will save time on weeding out weeds and retain moisture in the soil.
Watering and fertilizing
In the first season, a young bush needs frequent, but not abundant watering. Humidification frequency depends on weather conditions. In hot weather, irrigation is increased, if it rains from time to time, then watering is reduced so as not to provoke decay of the root system.
An adult vine is moistened three times a season: during the formation and blooming of buds, when pouring berries and before preparing for winter.
In the first year of development, the young seedling will have enough nutrients introduced into the planting pit. In the future, organic and mineral fertilizers are used for nutrition. In the spring, nitrogen-containing compounds will be needed, during the fruiting period, preference is given to phosphorus and potassium mixtures, and in the fall they use organic matter.
For vigorous Valek bushes, a strong support is required. It is made of metal with their own hands or they acquire a ready-made structure. The trellis helps to speed up the ripening of the grape bunches and prevents the berries from rotting. For growing several bushes, a single-plane structure is suitable; for cultivation on an industrial scale, a two-plane structure is installed.
Pinching and trimming
Pinching the upper part of the shoot is done before flowering, it is necessary in order to limit the growth of the bush. So the nutrients will fully saturate the vine during the fruiting period. They also remove stepchildren, who take away strength from fruiting shoots.
In the autumn, pruning is carried out to prevent overgrowth of the bush.
In the southern regions, the Valek hybrid does not need additional insulation for the winter, but in colder climates, the vine is covered to avoid freezing of the roots. The root space is mulched with peat and sawdust and a shelter is built, which is removed with the establishment of a positive temperature.
If you are late with this event, the vine may under the shelter and begin to rot.
Gardeners note the good ability of Valek cuttings to take root. If there are several bushes of the variety on the site, then there is no need to purchase planting material in nurseries. Cuttings are cut from the middle part of the vine, they are stored in the cellar in winter, and in the spring they start rooting.
You can propagate Valek with the help of layering. Seed propagation is undesirable, young seedlings will not have the characteristics of the parent variety.
Diseases to which the variety is susceptible
Subject to agricultural technology, the vine rarely suffers from fungal pathologies. However, prevention is still needed.
Rarely, but it is still possible to become infected with the fungal disease powdery mildew. The leaves are covered with a gray bloom, the berries crack on the bushes and get wet. In case of damage, all damaged leaves and fruits are urgently removed, and the bush is treated with sulfur-based preparations.
In a cold summer with a large amount of precipitation, a fungal disease with mildew develops; it is determined by oily spots on the leaves. For the treatment of Valek bushes, copper-containing preparations are used, for example, a solution of Bordeaux liquid.
Valek grape berries can damage wasps and birds. During the ripening period, insect traps are set, and a special net is pulled from the birds.
Prevention of diseases and pests of grapes
Preventive measures include:
- timely weeding out;
- harvesting last year's leaves;
- fungicide treatment in spring;
- timely thinning of the Valek vine.
Wasps found on the site are immediately destroyed in order to prevent insect breeding.