Champanel Grape Bine is a relatively new wine or table grape for the humid Southern climate. It is very resistant to heat and drought with good Pierce disease resistance. This large black grape with nice white blooms has strong thin skin with a tender, juicy inside. This plant adapts well in any soil, including alkaline and black soils. The Champanel grape vine produces large, loose clusters of grapes that ripen in early July. Grows in zones: 6 – 10. Champanel is a Pierce’s Disease (PD) tolerant hybrid grape cultivar. It was developed
by T.V. Munson in 1893 as a cross between
the native Texas species Vitis champinii and
the Worden cultivar. Worden is a Vitis labrusca
hybrid grape, similar to Concord. As such,
Champanel resembles Concord in appearance
and flavor but is better adapted to the growing
conditions in Texas.
Champanel has a procumbent (downward)
growth habit with pubescent shoots and leaves.
These fine “hairs” grow densely on the back side
of the leaves, giving them an aesthetic silver or
light grey appearance. The leaves of Champanel
can be quite large—6 to 8 inches across (Fig. 2).
Champanel is a vigorous grower and should
be trained to a high wire system that allows the
shoots to cascade downward. Champanel is very
popular for arbors and other structures due to
its attractive appearance and fruit. Champanel
grapes make excellent jelly and are often used to
make a fruity-flavored red wine. Champanel is typically grown as un-grafted
or own-rooted vines. It has been used as rootstock due to its tolerance to a wide range of soil conditions and possible tolerance to cotton root
While Champanel has good resistance to
most fungal diseases, anthracnose can cause
losses in the Eastern Texas with wet conditions
in the spring (Fig. 3). The most common insect
pest of Champanel is the grape leaf folder moth.
This moth often heavily infests the leaves of
Champanel and the wild mustang grape (Vitis
mustangensis). The grape leaf folder moth lays its
eggs on leaves. After emerging, the larvae fold
the leaf over themselves with silken webbing
(Fig. 4). This provides protection as they grow
and consume leaf tissue until adulthood. Infestation of grape leaf folder usually occurs from
mid-July to August in most areas of the state.
This pest generally does not greatly injure vines
but gives them an unsightly appearance (Fig. 5).
It may be controlled with Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) or other insecticide products.
Champanel vines have a moderate yield,
producing 10 to 20 pounds of fruit with a spacing of 8 to 10 feet between vines (Figs. 6 and 7).