Viticulture, as a part of agriculture, is an ancient craft. The first cultivated grapes were grown more than a thousand years ago. Of course, then the plant was completely different in taste and appearance. Today there are a large number of varieties, so the choice is difficult. Especially if there is no description of the qualities of the grapes, the main characteristics are not indicated.
We present to our readers the Libya grape, grown recently, but managed to win the hearts of gardeners. The author of the variety is Vitaly Vladimirovich Zagorulko, who lives in Zaporozhye. He has been engaged in breeding work for a long time. Russian winegrowers are familiar with its hybrid grape varieties. Many grow Bazhena, Veles, Zabava, Sofia and others. The Libya grape variety (see photo) was obtained from the crossing of Flamingo and Arcadia and has been entered in the register in Ukraine since 2011.
The photo shows a bunch of grapes of the Libya variety.
It is difficult to imagine Libya grapes by ear without a description of the variety of photos and reviews of gardeners. We will try to characterize, indicate the advantages and disadvantages of the plant, telling about everything in detail.
Libya grapes - a variety of table purposes. It contains both female and male flowers. They are inconspicuous, as you can see in the photo, but the result of flowering is amazingly tasty berries.
Ripens early, literally in three months (100 days). Vine productivity is high due to large, from 8 to 15 grams of berries and a dense brush, the weight of which reaches from 600 to 900 grams, or even more. There is practically no “peeling” on the hands. The photo clearly shows the size of individual berries. It is easy to imagine them in comparison with a nickel.
Attention! Not only is the weight of the bunches impressive, but also their length. Most often it is about 35 cm.
The berries are juicy, fleshy, with a nutmeg flavor. The skin is soft and hardly noticeable during consumption. There are very few seeds, no more than three. On one bunch of grapes at the same time, the berries can be yellow and pink with a purple tint. The fact is that the color changes during the ripening process.
The berries are also different in shape: spherical, oval or ovoid. Libya's bunches feel best on the sunny side. Then ripening goes on more amicably and the harvest is richer, as in the photo below. Although the technical ripeness in the hand does not come at the same time. Our readers working in Libya often write about this in their reviews.
The grapes of the Libya variety have a high sugar content - up to 25%. This is why growers often refer to it as candy.
On a young shoot, the crown is light green, pubescence is absent. There is no separation on the first sheet, but on all the others there are five blades with an average dissection. It is easy to determine whether an annual shoot is ripe: it will be light brown in color. The vine in Libya is powerful, strong, rises high up.
Important! After planting, with the correct formation of the bush, you can enjoy the first berries in three years.
Variety Libya, video filmed by a winegrower:
Characteristics of the variety
Libya today is grown not only in summer cottages, but also on an industrial scale. Based on the characteristics, I would like to point out the advantages of grapes:
- High keeping quality: cut bunches of Libya do not lose their presentation and taste throughout the month. Which is quite consistent with the description: dense berries with fleshy pulp do not wither, do not lose turgor, do not crack.
- Another important characteristic is the excellent transportability of grapes: the berries in bunches do not crumple. This is a very good indicator for farms.
- Even experienced gardeners are impressed by the stability of the grape harvest when properly cared for.
- The Libya variety is self-pollinated, so at a summer cottage you can plant one bush for a test and get a good harvest.
- The frost resistance of this grape variety allows it to be grown in central Russia with a safe shelter. A temperature of -21 degrees is tolerated by the vine with practically no loss.
Talking about the Libya variety, one cannot be silent about some of the shortcomings, although they are few in number:
- Uneven coloring of ripening berries on the brush.
- Low resistance of grapes to diseases such as mildew and oidium.
Features of care and cultivation
Caring for Libya is not much different from other grape varieties:
- The vine needs abundant watering, top dressing, timely pruning and pinching.
- Grapes of the Libya variety during growth need additional fertilizing, especially in potassium-phosphorus fertilizers and organic matter. Fertilizers are applied dry under the plants in late autumn or spring.
- Libya is a vigorous plant, so short pruning should be done from time to time. The formation of a bush consists in regulating the load: it is recommended to leave no more than 45 eyes on one plant. Experienced gardeners note in reviews that a larger amount leads to a decrease in yield, since some of the bunches on the vine do not ripen. Unlike other varieties in Libya, it is not recommended to pick the leaves.
- If many flowers form on the bush, then some of them must be removed.
- The Libya grape variety produces a lot of shoots and stepchildren. They need to be regulated. Before flowering, they must pinch off excess fruiting, remove stepchildren, otherwise the plant will waste energy on growth, and irreparable damage will be caused to the formation of the crop.
- As for the shelter for the winter of old plants, then, based on their characteristics and description of the variety, it is necessary if the region can have frosts below 21 degrees. Young plantings are covered, regardless of the temperature.
Attention! You can find more detailed information regarding the care of grapes on our website.
This is how a plantation with Libya grapes looks like in the photo.
Planting rules for new plants
Libya grapes are propagated in different ways: by cuttings, grafting. But we will dwell in more detail on planting seedlings.
To get a healthy plant, you need
- Have a healthy grape seedling with two or three buds, free from disease or pest damage. The roots on the grapes must be alive and the cut must be green.
- Before planting a bush in a permanent place, the tips of the roots are trimmed and treated with a growth stimulant.
- The pit under the future grapes should be three to four times larger than the seedling. It is filled with humus to the middle, and on top with sand or soil. If you put the plant directly on humus, you can burn the root system.
- When instilling, care must be taken not to damage the fragile roots. Two buds should remain on the surface.
It is better to plant new bushes of Libya in spring and autumn. Small shoots of the first year are first tied to stakes. In the second year, you need a reliable support, this, as a rule, is a trellis.
How to water
The grape variety Libya, judging by the characteristics and reviews of experienced gardeners, is watered twice a season. First time flowers bloom on plants. The second is after tying the berries. But this is on condition that it rains in between.
If there is no precipitation, then you yourself understand that additional watering is necessary. But it should be moderate, as excess water can cause the grapes to crack. Libya especially needs water when the heat is unbearable.
About diseases and pests
The care of the Libya grape variety also includes saving it from diseases and pests. The most dangerous diseases for the variety are oidium and mildew, although resistance is measured at 3.5 - 4 points out of 5:
- The signal of oidium is the appearance of gray mold on the leaves of grapes. If you do not take timely measures, it will appear on all other parts of the plant, including the bunches. Look at the photo below: this is how diseased plants look like.
- Preventive measures avoid grape disease. For spraying Libya from oidium, special preparations are used, as well as colloidal sulfur.
- Mildew (downy mildew) most often develops in heavily thickened plantings of Libya. As a preventive measure - timely pruning, pinching and pinching in order to create normal air circulation. Treatment of grapes with Bordeaux liquid helps against the disease.
If we talk about pests of grapes, then these are primarily wasps and birds. Berries that are sweet in taste (they paid attention to this in the description of the variety) become a real delicacy for them. To protect the grapes from birds, you need to throw a thin fabric, a transparent mesh over the trellises. Wasps are trapped with sweetened sugar or honey-insecticide around the grape plantings.
Advice! Put a bag of gauze on each bunch of Libya, the pests will not get to the berries.
Reviews of winegrowers about the variety Libya
Nikolay, 35 years old, Moscow region
I have been growing the variety Libya for several years. The berries of this grape are tasty, juicy, like the whole family. The only drawback, which cannot be ignored, is the uneven ripening of the bunch. Until you wait for the reddening of the last berry, the first are already overripe.
Yaroslava, 48 years old, Irkutsk region
Our climatic conditions, according to many gardeners, are not suitable for grapes. I must say right away that these are the speeches of lazy people. With the right care, even pineapples can be grown (just kidding). I brought one sapling of Libya grapes from the south when I was resting there. In the third year, the first berries were eaten. Amazingly delicious grapes. This does not happen in a store. Of course, you have to work in the fall at the shelter of Libya. But such worries are not a burden if there is a result.
Alexander, 62 years old, Ivanovo
Libya grapes have been growing for me for a long time, a whole plantation. Enough for the family, and it remains for sale. Ripens early, varietal and taste qualities of Libya are consistent with the description and characteristics. Although the uneven color and ripening of grapes is slightly depressing.
Violetta, 45 years old, Novorossiysk
There are a lot of grape varieties in my garden. Libya was recently planted and bore its first harvest last year. We decided to find out which berries are more to the taste of the grandchildren. Spouse installed signaling on Libya. Most often, the noise was heard there. In the fall, they planted a number of Libya, a delicious grape with a nutmeg aroma.