Muscadine – Dropping Little Fruit
Q: I was out looking at my muscadine vines this morning and the fruit seems not as plentiful compared to previous years. Looking on the ground, I see these small fruit. Is this possibly a pest chewing the small stems or are they dropping for another reason? I have ‘Magnolia’, ‘Hunt’, ‘Higgins’, and ‘Noble’ varieties.
A: When muscadine grapes drop off when they are small, it is generally a pollination problem. As you know, some muscadine varieties have perfect flowers (having male and female parts). Other varieties have flowers that have only female parts. Female varieties must have a perfect flowered variety within 50 feet in order to get pollen and produce grapes. Your ‘Hunt’ and ‘Higgins’ are female varieties. The ‘Magnolia’ and ‘Noble’ have perfect flowers.
That means you SHOULD be getting pollination…but aren’t.
Check to see if the ‘Hunt’ and ‘Higgins’ (females) are the vines dropping little fruit or if all the vines are equally affected.