Columbian Imperial is a Labrusca-Vulpina hybrid chiefly remarkable for
the great size of its reddish-black berries, although the vine is so
exceptionally healthy and vigorous as to give it prominence for these
characters as well. The variety has remarkably thick leathery leaves
which seem almost proof against either insects or fungi. The quality
of the fruit, however, is inferior, and the small clusters vary in
number of berries and these shell easily. The only value of the
variety is for exhibition purposes and for breeding to secure the
desirable characters named. The parentage of Columbian Imperial is
unknown. It originated with J. S. McKinley, Orient, Ohio, in 1885.
Vine vigorous, hardy, healthy, unproductive. Canes long, numerous,
thick, dark reddish-brown, heavily pubescent, spiny; nodes
prominent; internodes short; tendrils continuous, long, bifid.
Leaves green, very thick; lower surface pale green shading into
bronze on older leaves with little pubescence; lobes three,
indistinct; teeth sharp, shallow, wide. Flowers self-fertile;
Fruit late. Clusters medium in size, sometimes shouldered;
peduncle slender; pedicel long; brush long, slender, green.
Berries very large, round, slightly oval, dull reddish-black with
faint bloom, firm; skin thick, tough, unpigmented; flesh juicy,
tough, sweet at the skin but acid at center; fair in quality.
Seeds adherent, large, plump, broad, blunt.