Vitis labrusca

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Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Vitis labrusca, Linn. (V. Blandii, Prince). Fox Grape. Skunk Grape. Fig. 1705, Vol. III. A strong vine, climbing high on thickets and trees: young shoots tawny or fuscous, with much scurfy down: lvs. large and thick, strongly veined (especially beneath), broadly cordate-ovate, mostly obscurely 3-lobed toward the top (on strong growths the sinuses sometimes extending a third or even half the depth of the blade, and rounded and edentate at the bottom) or sometimes nearly continuous in outline and almost deltoid-ovate, the petiolar sinus mostly shallow and very open (ranging to narrow and half or more the length of the petiole), the margins shallowly scallop-toothed with mucro-pointed teeth (or sometimes almost entire), and the apex and lobes acute, the upper surface dull green and becoming glabrous but the lower surface densely covered with a tawny white, dun-colored or red-brown tomentum: stamens long and erect in the sterile fls. and (in wild forms) short and recurved in the fertile ones: raceme short (berries usually less than 20 in wild types), generally simple or very nearly so, in anthesis about the length of the peduncle: berries large and nearly spherical, ranging from purple-black (the common color) to red-brown and amber-green, generally falling from the pedicel when ripe, variable in taste but mostly sweetish musky and sometimes slightly astringent, the skin thick and tough; seeds very large and thick. Cent. New England and southward in the Alleghany region and highlands to W. Cent. Ga. Not known to occur west of E. N. Y. in the N., but occurs in S. Ind. and Tenn.—The parent of the greater part of American cult. grapes (probably largely through hybridization). It is often confounded with V. aestivalis in the S., from which it is distinguished by the habitually continuous tendrils, the more felt-like lvs. which are not floccose, and especially by the small-toothed lvs., very short clusters, and large berries and seeds.

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