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Grapes?

 
pollinator
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Hi everybody,
I found a large collection of vines covered with what I believe to be wild grapes. They sure smell like them. The plants were found just outside of Boston, MA on September 4. They were found in a forest & existed both as freestanding vines & wrapped around a dead tree up which they had climbed about 30 feet. There is a swamp near the trees (60 feet away) that has dried up in our local drought.  Looking at these photos, am I correct in believing I found grapes? If yes, can you tell what variety? (I have more photos if helpful).
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gardener
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Well, they certainly look like grapes, and they might be concord grapes, but they also might be an unnamed wild variety, as were "concord" grapes before someone gathered and began propagating.

How do they smell?  Grapey?  If you decide to taste them, go very carefully, very very carefully, just as with any possible food plant that you do not already know, and there is not someone there eating large amounts because THEY know.

You could also take a piece of it to a local nursery for ID ing.
 
N Thomas
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Thekla McDaniels wrote:Well, they certainly look like grapes, and they might be concord grapes, but they also might be an unnamed wild variety, as were "concord" grapes before someone gathered and began propagating.

How do they smell?  Grapey?  If you decide to taste them, go very carefully, very very carefully, just as with any possible food plant that you do not already know, and there is not someone there eating large amounts because THEY know.

You could also take a piece of it to a local nursery for IDing.


Hi Thekla,
Yes, they smell grapey, like old time Kool Aid grape. Thanks for your tip about bringing the item to a garden store. That had never occurred to me before.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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And if they ARE grapes, here is a discussion on recipes for them.

https://permies.com/t/58726/gardening-beginners/Wild-grape-harvest#498497
 
gardener
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They sure do look like grapes. If they smell like koolaid they are ripe.  
 
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Hi all,
This looks like a good place to ask about my vines. They look like grapes but the bunches are random and the leaves are split instead of solid. I tried looking them up and the closest looking variety was a zinfandel but not a perfect leaf match. I'm thinking they are a local, maybe wild, variety. Anyone have any input?
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gardener
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Rex Reeves wrote:Hi all,
This looks like a good place to ask about my vines. They look like grapes but the bunches are random and the leaves are split instead of solid. I tried looking them up and the closest looking variety was a zinfandel but not a perfect leaf match. I'm thinking they are a local, maybe wild, variety. Anyone have any input?


Hi Rex. Those look an awful lot like Virginia Creeper, it's somewhat related to grapes, but not edible. Great for wildlife and a beautiful native plant, though!
If you look where it is attached to the building, do you see tendrils with little discs at the ends holding the vines up, almost like little suction cups? That'd be a pretty tell tale sign. Here's a link with identification information and photos. https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=paqu2
 
Rex Reeves
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Heather Sharpe wrote:
Hi Rex. Those look an awful lot like Virginia Creeper, it's somewhat related to grapes, but not edible. Great for wildlife and a beautiful native plant, though!
If you look where it is attached to the building, do you see tendrils with little discs at the ends holding the vines up, almost like little suction cups? That'd be a pretty tell tale sign. Here's a link with identification information and photos. https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=paqu2



Thanks for the suggestion! They do look similar but I cannot see any little discs, just tendrils. And the flowers are different too. I'll have to dig to find my pics of the flowers.

(Edit) I'm definitely not trying them until I get a good identification.
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Heather Sharpe
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Rex Reeves wrote:Thanks for the suggestion! They do look similar but I cannot see any little discs, just tendrils. And the flowers are different too. I'll have to dig to find my pics of the flowers.

(Edit) I'm definitely not trying them until I get a good identification.


Ooh, intriguing! Hopefully you can figure out who it is. I shall be curious to find out too! Flower pictures would definitely be helpful.
Good call.
 
pollinator
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Agreeing with the others.....your latter entry looks  like Virginia Creeper.  Although both grow as vines, the flower and berry clusters are rather different as are the leaves.
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