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(Labrusca, Vinifera)

Alexander, Black Cape, Christie's Improved Isabella, Conckling's
Wilding, Constantia, Dorchester, Gibb's Grape, Hensell's Long Island,
Payne's Early, Helene, Woodward

Isabella (Plate XX) is now of little more than historical interest, it
having been one of the mainstays of American viticulture. In
appearance, the fruit of Isabella is fully as attractive as that of
any black grape, the clusters being large and well formed and the
berries glossy black with thick bloom. The flavor is good, but the
thick skin and muskiness in taste are objectionable. The grapes keep
and ship well. Isabella is surpassed in vine characters by many other
kinds, notably Concord, which has taken its place. The lustrous green,
ample foliage which remains late in the season, and the vigor of the
vine, make this variety an attractive ornamental, well adapted for
growing on arbors, porches and trellises. The origin of Isabella is
not known. It was obtained by William Prince, Flushing, Long Island,
about 1816 from Mrs. Isabella Gibbs, Brooklyn, New York.

Vine vigorous, hardy, productive. Canes short, numerous with heavy
pubescence, thick, light brown; nodes enlarged, flattened;
internodes short; tendrils continuous, long, bifid or trifid.
Leaves thick; upper surface dark green, smooth, glossy; lower
surface whitish-green, heavily pubescent; lobes three when present
with terminal lobe obtuse; petiolar sinus shallow, narrow, often
closed, overlapping; basal sinus usually wanting; lateral sinus
shallow, narrow, frequently notched; teeth shallow, wide. Flowers
self-fertile, open in mid-season; stamens upright.

Fruit late, keeps and ships well. Clusters large, cylindrical,
frequently single-shouldered; pedicel slender, smooth; brush
long, yellowish-green. Berries medium to large, oval, black with
heavy bloom, persistent, soft; skin thick, tough, adherent,
astringent; flesh pale green, translucent, juicy, fine-grained,
tender, meaty, some foxiness, sweet; good. Seeds one to three,
large, broad, distinctly notched, short, brown with yellow tips.

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