How to Transplant Grapevines in Zone 5


Several varieties of grapes can be grown in USDA plant hardiness zone 5. The grapes can withstand the freezing cold temperatures of winter and produce good full-flavored fruit--suitable for preserves or wine. Once established, these grapes are very hardy, but if you are thinking of transplanting some vines, there are a few things you should know.

Step 1

Transplant your grapevines in the spring. Some of the other zones can get away with doing it in the fall, but zone 5 is far too cold and harsh in the winter for the roots to withstand. Plan on planting your vines just as soon as all threats of frost have passed, usually mid-May. This will give the grapes a whole growing season to stretch their roots down and become established plants before the next cold season.

Step 2

Dig holes at least a few inches larger than the rootball. If you bought your plants in a bare root packaging, make sure you soak it in water for three or four hours or overnight before planting. Loosen the soil around the outside of the hole and add a shovelful of compost to give the vine a boost.

Step 3

Plant the grapevine in the hole, holding it straight up and down. You want the roots to fan out around the plant without circling back on itself. If you have a long spindly root, it can be trimmed back. Add the dirt back into the hole over the roots and around the stem, packing it down as you go to remove any air pockets.

Step 4

Prune the transplant so that there are only one or two canes with just two or three buds on each. As the plant grows you will have to prune the vines each year to prevent it from becoming a tangled mess. Make your cuts at 45-degree angles away from the plant and just after a bud.

Step 5

Water your transplanted grapevine immediately after planting and then once a week for the first growing season. It shouldn't need to be watered after that unless you experience a real dry spell.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost


  • Growing Grapes on the Front Range
  • Backyard Grape Growing
Keywords: grape transplanting, cold hardy, vines fruit

About this Author

Based in Maryland, Heidi Braley, currently writes for local and online media outlets. Some of Braley's articles from the last 10 years are in the "Oley Newsletter," "Connections Magazine," GardenGuides and Braley's college life included Penn State University and Villanova University with her passions centered in nutrition and botany.