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Vitis acerifolia

One of about 30 American species or wild vines with the complete botanical name Vitis acerifolia Raf. It was first described in 1830 by the French polymath Constantine Samuel Rafinesque-Schmaltz (1783-1840), who for this reason is immortalized in the botanical name. Together with the species Vitis riparia and Vitis rupestris it forms the group Ripariae. Old names are Vitis longii after the discoverer Colonel Long as well as Vitis solonis, which probably goes back to a misread name of a bundle of cuttings sent to Europe.

The name means "maple-leaved vine". Trivial synonyms are Bush Grape, Long's Grape, Maple-Leaf Grape and Panhandle Grape. The vine is widespread in some western US states such as Kansas and Colorado, and in northern Texas in the so-called Panhandle area. There, it is found mainly along rivers, in gorges and in swamplands, which is why it is also called swamp vine. It overgrows rocks and bushes, but rarely climbs trees.

It has very good resistance to phylloxera and virus-carrying nematodes. Although it has no inherent resistance to the vine disease Pierce Disease, it is rarely affected. The virus-transmitting cicada species is presumably kept away by the hairy leaves. The early ripening vine produces colourful, low-acid red wines without foxtone. It is mainly used as a table grape and for rootstocks. Vitis acerifolia genes are contained in the new varieties Dr. Deckerrebe, Solonis and Vincent. See also under American Vines and Vine System.

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