Grapes are one of the most important crops of the world. It is cultivated for fresh fruits, making wines and to prepare raisins. However, in India it is mostly popular for table purpose. The cultivation of grapes is believed to have originated near the Caspian Sea. However in India it has become popular since the Roman times.
The total area devoted for cultivation of grapes in India is about 40,000 ha mainly in areas of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
Economic Importance of Grapes
Grape is an important commercial crop for:
- Table purpose
- Making wines and champagne
- Making raisins
Essential factors for Cultivation
- Soil should be fertile and pH range of 6.5 -8.5. The water holding capacity of the soil should be medium
- Sub-tropical, hot tropical and mild tropical climatic regions are ideal for cultivation.
- October to January is an ideal time for grape cultivation.
- Spacing for planting depends on soil type, variety and method of training. The distance between two rows may be 2 – 3 m while distance between vines within a row will be half of that, accommodating vines from 2000 to 5000 per hectare.
- Grapes need Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Calcium, Magnesium, Sulphur, Iron, Manganese, Zinc, Copper and Boron.
- Drip irrigation is an effective strategy as it efficiently meets the water requirement of the crop.
- It is necessary to use pesticides to keep your crop away from pest invasion. And there should be proper post handling of harvested grapes, which is essential for getting higher market prices and even essential for export of the crop. Presence of excess moisture on the berries and the handling of bunch of grapes during harvesting are major regulating factors for loss. Grading should be done for fetching different prices in the market. For packaging wooden crates or boxes are used. Packaging should be done according to the distance of transportation.