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 Grape Questions- root depth 
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Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 5:18 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Forest Grove, OR
Post Grape Questions- root depth
How deep do grape roots tend to go, are they invasive, and how close to a septic tank or associated plumbing is safe?

The cunning plan is to use them for a productive screen but the tank is located very close to my porch, quite predictably.


Thu Mar 17, 2005 5:23 pm
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Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 11:27 pm
Posts: 1154
Location: Yamhill County, Oregon
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Technomagos, I've heard that grape plants will send roots as far and deep as necessary to acquire the nutrients they need. It's also said one grape plant can be cultivated and trained to cover an entire acre :shock: - they're vigorous dudes!
I've have two main septic drainfield lines crossing within several feet of some very vigerous grape plants, and for a dozen years now have had no problem. The extra-green patches of grass following these lines well beyond the grapes show me they've not been plugged.
Having dug out established grape plants I've noticed their roots (like those of most plants) hang out in the richest soil available, generally up high. As noted, they can really dig deep - like they do in the poor hillside clay soils here in Yamhill County. But if you've got good topsoil I doubt they'll wander too far or deep.
Also, most septic tanks are virtually "sealed," with a "tight-line" heading off to your drain-field. There shouldn't be much - if anything - to draw them down around it. Just remember where the tanks lid is - they occasionally need to be pumped out!

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Sat Mar 19, 2005 9:19 am
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Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 5:18 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Forest Grove, OR
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Thank you for the information, it is most helpfull. Do grapes do well in less than full sun?


Sun Mar 20, 2005 6:27 pm
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Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 11:27 pm
Posts: 1154
Location: Yamhill County, Oregon
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I've known grapes to ripen pretty-much on time with basically a west facing exposure... At least the house I grew up in Portland allowed Concord's and Niagara's to ripen in their "less than ideal" location under the eves, and only 4 feet away from our house.
Out here in the (Yam) hills it's a different story. Cool air drainage at night from the Coast Range will nearly take my yard into dormancy on an otherwise hot summer day :shock: ! I've therefore given all my seedless grapes full sun. Unfortunately, I don't think the Concord's or Niagara's of my youth would ripen out here~ Location - location - location! (you're welcome)

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Sun Mar 20, 2005 9:08 pm
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Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 5:18 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Forest Grove, OR
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Thanks again. I'll have to ponder this a while, and get a compass and other hardware to determine exposure from the charts. On the plus side, the grapes are perfectly happy in their pots for the time being.


Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:56 pm
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