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Wine can not only be cultivated in distinct wine-growing regions. Even in the home garden, one or the other vine can feel good and produce delicious grapes. If the site conditions are optimal and you keep to the basic needs of the plants, such a vine can become very old. But what if, for whatever reason, it has to be transplanted to another place and is that even possible?

transplant vine

The older the cane, the more difficult it is to transplant

Transplanting a vine is basically possible. However, the whole thing turns out to be all the more difficult and risky the older he is and the longer he has been at his location. Not only can these plants grow up to 10 meters in height, but their taproots are very strong and penetrate several meters into the ground. The older the plants are, the deeper they go into the ground.

Finer roots are hardly formed. As a rule, it is unavoidable that when a vine is moved, a large part of the roots are always lost, you would have to practically sacrifice them in order to get the vine out of the ground at all. Nevertheless, one should of course try as much root mass to get as possible. If the displacement is not absolutely necessary, it is better to do without it for the sake of the plant. If that is not possible, the first thing that matters is the right time and good preparation.

tip: Vines should not be planted near perennials, conifers, trees or other old vines, as the root pressure would impede each other's development. However, there is the possibility of planting several grape varieties together in a planting pit (quiver planting).

Best time

Moving a vine puts a lot of stress on the plant. In order not to further increase the stress factor, it is advisable to wait for the best time for this. But when is it? Ideally, you choose a day in the fall, if the wine should be cut anyway.

The grapevines stop growing as early as autumn and go into the so-called 'juice dormancy', which is the best time for such a difficult and time-consuming undertaking as transplanting. If necessary, it can also be postponed to late winter, i.e. January/February, but the probability that the ground will be frost-free by then is probably close to zero.

tip: In the event that you dig up the vine and possibly ruin it, it may be advisable to cut off a few shoots beforehand for possible propagation and allow them to be rooted accordingly.

Transplanting vines: instructions


Good preparation can greatly reduce the stress during transplanting for both the vine and the gardener. But when should it start? It is best to start two to three weeks before the actual transplanting.

  • Snip off roots around the stick
  • In radius of about 50-80 cm
  • Best with a sharp spade
  • Then loosen the root ball a little with a digging fork or digging fork
  • Water the root area thoroughly and copiously
  • In the last step, cut back the vine
  • Cut can be stronger
  • Pruning should compensate for the loss of root mass

Prepare new location

If necessary, you can then prepare the future planting area by digging up the soil about two spades deep, loosening it thoroughly, freeing it from all weeds and enriching it with plenty of compost. Then it is best to let it rest until planting. Ideally, the new location should be prepared in autumn of the previous year and then left until autumn of the following year, i.e. until planting.

Before planting out the vine, prepare the planting pit at the new location:

  • Depending on the strength of the root area, dig a correspondingly large planting pit
  • Pit should be about one and a half times the size of the root ball
  • Above all, it should be deep because of the long taproots
  • Root must fit in loosely without being pinched or pinched
  • Shortly before planting, touch up if necessary
  • If possible, enrich the excavated earth with rock flour or algae lime


If you have prepared the new location accordingly, the vine can be planted again without a long break, without exposing it to unnecessary stress.

  • Water again immediately before digging up
  • Cut off the prepared area around the trunk
  • On the outer edge of this area, uncover a small ditch
  • Should be about a spade and a half deep
  • Starting at the edge, expose the root
  • Always dig diagonally downwards towards the trunk
  • Dig up the vine with as much root mass as possible
  • Taproot at a depth of about 1 m, if necessary cut with a saw
  • Before planting in the new location, shorten the roots a little
  • Cut away possible injuries or bruises
  • Only use sharp cutting tools for cutting
  • Prune the vine vigorously if not done before digging up
  • Transport excavated vine to new location

After providing the bottom of the new planting pit with a thick drainage layer of grit or gravel, add a layer of soil and plant the vine in the middle. It is then filled up with excavated earth. So that no cavities remain in the root area, it makes sense to move the vine back and forth while filling it with soil.
After filling, tread down the soil and don't forget to water it generously. The grafting point should be about 4-5 cm above the ground after insertion. It may be useful to mound the vine lightly at first, similar to what you do with roses. In the spring you have to remove the piled up again. With a bit of luck, the root mass remaining on the vine is sufficient for the plant to grow well and bear fruit again.

tip: Due to their climbing growth, grapevines are dependent on a suitable climbing aid or a so-called trellis. This can be free-standing or fixed to a house wall.

Care after transfer

Proper care immediately after relocation is a prerequisite for the plant to grow or gain a foothold in its new location and subsequently to recover well and grow luxuriantly. The water supply a crucial role. Accordingly, you should water the vines plentifully and thoroughly about every 2-3 days for the first six weeks after transplanting, depending on the weather.

In order to keep the heat in the soil longer and to protect it from drying out, it is advisable to cover the root area mulch, ideally with grass clippings, grape seeds, chopped vine wood or the ash from vine trees. This mulch layer must be renewed regularly. Also when mulching, make sure not to cover the grafting area, it must remain free. Fertilization is not necessary in normal garden soil.

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