Desert Wild Grape
Full Sun; Shade
(H X W) 50’x50’
Cut back in the late winter early spring to control growth
Desert Wild Grape is native to Southern California. It tends to grow streamside or oases for us locally and is found in more arid regions than Vitis californica. It is deciduous, in the winter the leaves turn a beautiful shade of red before they drop in the coldest months. Leafing out again in the spring. The flowers are inconspicuous, followed by edible purple fruits in the summer which attract many birds including California Thrashers. In the wild, it tends to climb over other plants with stems reaching up to 50 ft. In the garden, it can be trained to climb up a trellis, fence, or wall. Use Desert Grape on a shade structure to create a cool shady retreat! Makes an excellent addition to a wildlife habitat providing shelter and food. The natural habitat is riparian so it likes water but is drought-tolerant once established. Caution: Fruit (like all grapes/raisins) is toxic to dogs.
Growing Plants in the Desert — Important Information
The information presented here is, to the best of my knowledge, accurate and based on my research from reliable sources, observations I have made of plants growing in my, and other gardens I have visited, and observations of the plants in their native habitats. I would appreciate your feedback and experience to help me educate others!
Cacti: In my experience, cacti are much happier in the filtered shade here in the low desert of the Coachella Valley. Colors are more vibrant and they bloom more profusely, especially the non-native varieties. If you pay attention to how our native barrel and beavertail opuntia grow in the wild, it is frequently tucked in the rocks under creosote or another shrub.
Light Requirements: I have found that in our desert (Sonoran/Colorado) “full sun” plants can take and appreciate the late afternoon filtered sun, especially in the hot summer months.