The most valuable attribute of Vergennes (Plate XXIX) is certainty in
bearing. The vine seldom fails to bear although it often overbears,
causing variability in size of fruits and time of ripening. With a
moderate crop, the grapes ripen with Concord, but with a heavy load
from one to two weeks later. Vergennes is somewhat unpopular with
vineyardists because of the sprawling habit of the vines w
them untractable for vineyard operations; this fault is obviated by
grafting on other vines. The grapes are attractive, the quality is
good, flavor agreeable, the flesh tender, and seeds and skin are not
objectionable. Vergennes is the standard late-keeping grape for
northern regions, being very common in the markets as late as January.
The original vine was a chance seedling in the garden of William E.
Greene, Vergennes, Vermont, in 1874.
Vine variable in vigor, doubtfully hardy, productive, healthy.
Canes long, dark brown; nodes enlarged, strongly flattened;
tendrils continuous, long, bifid or trifid. Leaves large, thin;
upper surface light green, glossy, rugose; lower surface pale
green, very pubescent; leaf usually not lobed with terminus
broadly acute; petiolar sinus wide; teeth shallow. Flowers
semi-sterile, mid-season; stamens upright.
Fruit late, keeps and ships well. Clusters of medium size, broad,
cylindrical, sometimes single-shouldered, loose; pedicel with
numerous small warts; brush slender, short, pale green. Berries
large, oval, light and dark red with thin bloom, persistent; skin
thick, tough, adherent, astringent; flesh pale green, juicy,
fine-grained, somewhat stringy, tender, vinous; good to very good.
Seeds free, one to five, blunt, brown.