of the Emerging Oklahoma Grape Industry

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Profile and Challenges,of the Emerging Oklahoma,Grape Industry. by Eric T Stafne, Former Assistant Professor Extension Fruit and Nut Specialist. Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture. Oklahoma State University,Please contact Becky Carroll. Extension Assistant Fruit Crops Pecans for more information. This publication is a historical account of the Oklahoma Grape Industry up to 2007. Some items may have changed since this publication was written such as the occur. rence of Pierce s Disease in the state Grape Berry Moth now can be a significant pest. Licensed winery numbers have grown to 64 as of May 2015 Oklahoma vineyard own. ers continue to experiment with new varieties both vinifera and hybrid types and are. working to find the best management strategies in this somewhat new industry. Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service, Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. Oklahoma State University, Oklahoma State University in compliance with Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 Executive Order 11246 as amended and Title IX.
of the Education Amendments of 1972 Higher Education Act the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and other federal and state laws and. regulations does not discriminate on the basis of race color national origin genetic information sex age sexual orientation gender identity. religion disability or status as a veteran in any of its policies practices or procedures This provision includes but is not limited to admissions. employment financial aid and educational services The Director of Equal Opportunity 408 Whitehurst OSU Stillwater OK 74078 1035. Phone 405 744 5371 email eeo okstate edu has been designated to handle inquiries regarding non discrimination policies Director of Equal. Opportunity Any person student faculty or staff who believes that discriminatory practices have been engaged in based on gender may. discuss his or her concerns and file informal or formal complaints of possible violations of Title IX with OSU s Title IX Coordinator 405 744 9154. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work acts of May 8 and June 30 1914 in cooperation with the U S Department of Agriculture. Director of Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service Oklahoma State University Stillwater Oklahoma This publication is printed and issued. by Oklahoma State University as authorized by the Vice President Dean and Director of the Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural. Resources and has been prepared and distributed at a cost of 4 00 cents per copy 0715 GH. Profile and Challenges of the Emerging Oklahoma,Grape Industry. Past and Present Overview of the Oklahoma Grape Industry. Oklahoma has had a long standing relationship with grape culti. vation Oklahoma once had vast vineyards of domesticated table and. wine grapes in the late 1800s and early decades of the 20th century Cul. tivar constitution of those vineyards is mostly unknown but probably. involved Catawba Concord and Delaware as major components. Fischer 1977 The acreage of grapes grown in 1907 and 1908 was esti. mated to be 3 700 acres and 5 425 acres respectively Oklahoma Grape. Growers and Wine Makers Association OGGWMA 2005 The cli. mate and soils of Oklahoma are favorable for grapes as several spe. cies are native to the state including Vitis aestivalis Michx V lincecumii. Buckl V mustangensis Buckley V riparia Michx and V rupestris Scheele. Munson 1909 many of which have been instrumental in creating high. quality French American hybrids Munson 1909 indicated that some. V vinifera L could be grown as far north as southern Oklahoma. Prohibition laws have played a prominent role in the shaping of. the Oklahoma grape and wine industry In the 1890s the Anti Saloon. League and the Woman s Christian Temperance Union focused on cre. ating local anti alcohol laws and by 1917 the Bone Dry Law banned. all importation of alcoholic beverages into Oklahoma This law was. overturned the following year but the 18th Amendment enacting prohi. bition soon followed in 1919 McCraw 2005 From 1919 to 1932 over. all grape related activity declined although Oklahoma still produced. more than 1800 tons of grapes on average more than any state in the. south central U S aside from Arkansas for the period of 1925 through. 1928 USDA 1929, The dust bowl and depression era followed yet Oklahoma State. University then Oklahoma A M College re initiated grape research. in 1933 with 75 American and other hybrid cultivars adding 43 French. American hybrids in 1950 Hinrichs 1955 Because prohibition con. tinued for Oklahoma until 1959 these trials were essentially done to. identify locally appropriate juice and table grapes Einset and Pratt. 1975 Interest in wine grapes increased in Oklahoma throughout the. 1960s and 1970s McCraw 2005 but waned during the 1980s A steady. increase in grape production has occurred since the mid 1990s and con. tinues to today Recently a resurgence of the grape growing and wine. making industries in Oklahoma has led to an increase of vineyards es. pecially along the Route 66 corridor that runs through the state Stafne. 2006 Recent developments in Oklahoma such as the passage of State. Question 688 in November 2000 that allowed Oklahoma wineries to. sell wine they produce directly to liquor stores and restaurants initi. ated the expansion of the grape growing and wine making industries. However in 2006 that legislation was ruled to be unconstitutional and. Oklahoma wineries must currently use wholesalers to distribute their. products The grape and wine industry is working toward modification. of current laws to help expand the industry, The winegrape industry in Oklahoma is primarily dependent upon. V vinifera cultivars although some areas of the state have found hy. brids and American cultivars more appropriate V vinifera or Euro. pean grapes are generally considered the premium grapes for wine. making French American hybrids arose from the phylloxera outbreak. in France in the late 19th Century and combine V vinifera with American. species such as V labrusca V riparia and V rupestris Originally they. were bred as rootstocks but good wine quality later became important. as well There are many American species of grapes but few of them. are acceptable for wine making without combining with another spe. cies They do possess better cold hardiness and disease resistance than. V vinifera and therefore are important in breeding especially for use in. difficult climates, As recently as 1997 approximately 170 acres of grapes were grown. in the state of Oklahoma that number grew to 375 acres in 2002 and. 525 acres in 2005 OGGWMA 2005 The number of licensed wineries. has increased from four in 2001 to 50 in 2007 and continues to grow. While much of the growing industry is supported by V vinifera culti. vars opportunities remain for high quality hybrids Hybrids offer bet. ter cold tolerance and disease resistance than V vinifera cultivars which. is important in the Oklahoma climate where temperatures can change. drastically in a short period of time Winter temperatures can fluctuate. significantly and humidity in the summer can foster high disease pres. sure Despite the difficult environmental conditions many growers. have not embraced hybrids as a viable alternative to European grapes. Current Industry Profile, In 2006 a survey was conducted through the Oklahoma Grape.
Growers and Wine Makers Association OGGWMA with direction. from the author to help ascertain the present state of the grape growing. industry in Oklahoma The survey was distributed to all members of. the OGGWMA as well as being posted on their organization website It. was also sent to all Oklahoma county Cooperative Extension educators. who might have contact with grape growers The survey consisted of. 33 questions two preliminary three introductory six on cultivar infor. mation 13 on yield and use eight general and one optional comment. A total of 90 surveys were returned Questions concerning all aspects of. viticulture were addressed especially those that brought problem areas. to the forefront, Only 16 of the more than 40 wineries at the time participated in. the survey The survey results identified approximately 240 acres of. vineyards in the state If one were to estimate total acreage based on the. percentage of wineries that responded 40 percent the total acreage. would likely approach 600 acres statewide Even though the reported. acreage likely does not reflect the extent of the industry the cultivars. and other information are representative of the industry as a whole. Therefore acreages in Table 1 are presented both as an absolute number. and as a relative percentage of the total reported. State Grape Production, Red grapes are preferred by growers with nearly 60 percent of the. total acreage Table 1 Vitis vinifera dominates the species breakdown. at nearly 80 percent Hybrid grapes account for less than 15 percent. American species grapes approximately 7 percent and muscadine. grapes make up less than 1 percent of the total The majority of grapes. grown in Oklahoma are for use in wine but grapes for fresh market. juice and jelly are also being grown Room exists for expansion of. muscadine grape production Stafne and Carroll 2007 as it is a much. sought after commodity in surrounding states Muscadine produc. tion in Oklahoma is primarily limited to the far southeast corner of the. The breakdown of grapes being grown by county in Oklahoma had. Lincoln County reporting the largest acreage followed by Pottawat. omie McClain Washita Okfuskee Oklahoma and Kiowa Counties. Table 1 Approximate acreage percentage and number of vines break. down of winegrape types in Oklahoma,Grape Color,Color Acres of vines. Red 137 5 59 2 85 101,White 94 8 40 8 57 201,Grape Types. American 17 7 7 3 9 661,Hybrid 34 5 14 3 19 793,Vinifera 188 8 78 0 117 971.
Muscadine 1 0 4 242, Table 2 Breakdown by county by approximate total acres of grapes bear. ing acres of grapes percent bearing acres grown and number of vine. yards of growers who responded to the 2006 grape grower s survey. Total Bearing Vineyards,County acres acres bearing reporting. Beckham 4 1 25 1,Creek 3 1 1 32 2,Caddo 3 2 67 1,Canadian 9 3 5 6 60 2. Cleveland 6 1 3 7 61 4,Comanche 2 5 0 0 2,Craig 6 6 4 1 62 2. Custer 5 0 0 1,Delaware 5 0 0 1,Greer 2 0 0 1,Hughes 2 5 0 5 20 2.
Kiowa 10 5 5 48 1,Lincoln 42 5 17 40 15,Logan 7 4 57 3. Major 5 5 4 8 87 2,Mayes 3 1 33 2,McClain 14 6 7 48 3. McIntosh 5 1 20 1,Murray 6 2 33 1,Okfuskee 11 3 9 80 3. Oklahoma 11 3 7 62 6,Osage 8 1 0 5 6 6,Payne 8 6 7 81 2. Pittsburg 5 5 0 0 1,Pottawatomie 16 1 2 2 14 7,Roger Mills 3 5 3 5 100 1.
Rogers 1 5 1 5 100 1,Seminole 3 5 2 57 3,Sequoyah 2 2 100 1. Stephens 5 0 0 2,Tillman 2 1 50 1,Tulsa 0 9 0 3 33 1. Wagoner 5 8 5 3 91 2,Washita 12 8 10 8 84 3,Total 241 1 113 8 47 86. Table 2 Four of the six counties are located in the mid central portion. of Oklahoma and the other two Washita and Kiowa are in the south. west area of the state Only Lincoln County reported more than 10. vineyards Forty seven percent of the reported acres were in produc. tion indicating that the majority of vineyards were planted within the. last three years, Of the V vinifera European grapes grown in Oklahoma Caber. net Sauvignon constitutes the most acres Table 3 Cabernet Sauvi. gnon is considered to be a fairly cold tender European grape that is. relatively easy to grow It is also one of the most widely grown grapes. in the world hence it is not surprising that it is grown by many grape. growers in Oklahoma This cultivar also has very late budbreak in the. spring which is a beneficial trait for avoidance of spring frosts Second. behind Cabernet Sauvignon is Merlot followed by Shiraz Syrah. Both of these grapes make excellent red wines and are widely grown in. grape growing areas throughout the world However neither of them. is particularly cold hardy thus they may be predisposed to injury from. cold mid winter temperatures as well as fluctuating fall winter and. spring temperatures Shiraz is also extremely vigorous and its veg. etative growth is difficult to control These two cultivars are probably. grown in Oklahoma more from name recognition rather than appropri. ateness for the climate Merlot and Shiraz are followed by Riesling. Riesling is one of the most cold hardy European grapes It may have. some difficulties with the oppressive summer heat in Oklahoma but. overall has been observed to have less winter injury when compared. to other European grapes Muscat Blanc and Chardonnay rank after. Riesling Chardonnay is somewhat cold hardy but breaks bud early. in the spring predisposing it to frost that can destroy succulent green. tissue and therefore result in crop reduction or loss Zinfandel is also. in the top 10 grapes grown in Oklahoma but often has difficulty ac. cumulating sugars in the fruit and is too fruitful as well leading to. overcropping of vines It is also highly susceptible to winter injury. The two hybrids in the top 10 are Chambourcin and Chardonel. Both of these are better options for certain parts of Oklahoma that expe. rience considerable cold periods during the winter Chambourcin is a. red wine grape that is grown in surrounding states and does quite well. in Oklahoma It is one of the less cold hardy hybrid grapes but still has. Licensed winery numbers have grown to 64 as of May 2015 Oklahoma vineyard own ers continue to experiment with new varieties both vinifera and hybrid types and are working to find the best management strategies in this somewhat new industry Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Oklahoma State University Oklahoma State University in

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