Shrubs with a watery juice, tumid nodes, and usually climbing by tendrils; flowers small, regular, racemous, often polygamous or dioecious; calyx minute, truncated, the limb obsolete or 5-toothed; petals hypogynous, valvate in aestivation, as many as and opposite to the stamens; stamens inserted on the disk which surrounds the 2-celled, 1-styled ovary. Fruit a berry, usually 4-seeded; seeds, bony, albumen hard. (Fig. 449.)
Genera 7, species 260, natives of the warmer parts of both hemispheres. The grape fruit is the only important production of this order. The acid of the grape is tartaric. It contains a sugar which differs from the common sugar in containing a smaller quantity of carbon. 687 Flower of V. Labrusca.
1. VITIS, L. Grape Vines. (Celtic gwyd, a tree or shrub.) Petals deciduous, cohering at the top, or distinct and spreading; ovary partly enclosed within the torus, 2-celled, cells 2-ovuled; stigma sessile, capitate; berry 1-celled, 1 to 4-seeded. Ped. often changed into tendrils.
§ Petals cohering at top and falling without expanding.
Leaves hoary or rusty arachnoid-tomentous beneath............................
Leaves glabrous except the veins and green both sides.........................
Nos. 3, 4, 7
§ Petals free at top, finally expanding and falling.
Leaves simple, angular or not....................................
Leaves bipinnate or ternate........................................................
1 V. labrusca L. Lvs. broad-cordate, angular-lobed, hoary-tomentous beneath; berries large. - This vine is native through the U. S., growing in woods and groves. Like most of the N. Am. species, the flowers are polygamous. St woody, rough-barked, ascending trees often to a great height, and hanging like cables suspended from the branches. Lvs. very large, somewhat 3-lobed, at first white-downy beneath. Fls. small, green, in panicles with a leaf opposite. Fr. large, purple, often green or red. It is valued in cultivation for its deep shade in summer arbors, and for its fruit, which is pleasant in taste. The Isabella, and Catawba, and other sorts known in gardens and vineyards are varieties of this species. ‡
2 V. aestivalis L. Lvs. broadly cordate, 3 to 5-bbed or palmate-sinuate, coarsely aentate, with scattered ferruginous hairs beneath; fertile rac. long, panicled, berries small. - Grows in woods, by rivers, etc. St. very long, slender, climbing, with very large leaves, which are sometimes with deep, rounded sinuses, clothed beneath, when young, with arachnoid, rust-colored pubescence. Tendrils from the peduncles which are dense flowered, and with a leaf opposite. Petals cohering at summit. Berries deep-blue, well flavored, but small, ripe in Sept. Flowers in Jun.
3 V. cordifolia Mx. Frost Grape. Lvs. cordate, acuminate, somewhat equally toothed, smooth, or pubescent beneath the veins and petioles; rac. loose, many-flowered; berries small. - Grows in thickets, by rivers, etc, ascending shrubs and trees to the height of 10 to 20f. Lvs. large, membranous, often 3-lobed, with pubescent veins when young, and with a few acuminate-mucronate teeth. Berries nearly black, rather small, late, acid but well flavored after the frosts of November. Jn. (V. riparia Mx.)
4 V. vulpina L. Fox Grape. Scuppernong. Lvs. (small) cordate, slightly 3-angled or lobed, shining on both sides, coarsely toothed, the teeth not acuminate; rac. composed of many capitate umbels. - River banks Va, to Fla. Sts. many feet in length, straggling or climbing. Lvs. 2 or 3' diam., shining most on lower surface, having the sinus at base acute, and the terminal tooth rather pointed. Fr. large, pleasant, few in a cluster. The variety called "Scuppernong" is quite common in southern gardens.
5 V. indivisa Willd. Lvs. simple, cordate or truncate at the base, often angu-lar-lobed; panicles dichotomous; fls. 5-merous; berry 1-celled, 1 or 2-seeded.- Swamps, S. States to St. Louis. St. ascending trees many feet. Lvs. 3 to 5' broad, unequally toothed, pubescent on the veins beneath. Panicles with spreading branches, none of them changed to tendrils. Berry small (hardly 2" diam.), pale-red, mostly 1-seeded. (Cissus Ampelopsis Pers.)
6 V. bipinnata Torr. & Gr. Lvs. bipinnate, lfts. incisely serrate, glabrous; fls. 5-merous. Southern States along rivers. A species remarkably distinguished by its upright, scarcely twining stem, and its compound leaves. The lfts. are rhombic-ovate, about 1' in length or less, petiolulate mucronate. Tendrils none. Panicles few-flowered. Berry depressed-globous, the size of a pea, purplish-black. Jn., Jl. (Cissus bipinnata, Ell.)
7 V. vinifera L. European Wine Grape. Lvs. cordate, sinuately 5-lobed, glabrous; fls. all . - No plant in the vegetable kingdom possesses more interesting attributes, is cultivated with greater care, or has been worse perverted and abused, than the common vine. By cultivation it sports into endless varieties, differing in the form, color, size and flavor of the fruit, and in respect to the hardiness of its constitution.
2. AMPELOPSIS, Mx. Virginia Creeper. (Gr. a vine,
appearance.) Calyx entire; petals 5, distinct, spreading; ovary
2-celled, cells 2-ovuled; style very short; berry 2-celled, cells 1 to
2-seeded. - A shrubby vine. The tendrils attach themselves by an adhesive foot-like expansion at the end.
A. quinquefolia Mx. Lvs. quinate, digitate; lfts. oblong, acuminate, petiolate, dentate. A vigorous climber, found wild in woods and thickets. It has long been cultivated as a covering for walls, and is best known by the name of woodbine. By means of its foot-like, adhesive tendrils, it supports itself firmly upon trees or walls, ascending to the height of fifty feet. The large quinate leaves constitute a luxuriant foliage of dark, glossy green, changing to crimson in autumn. Fls. inconspicuous, greenish, in dichotomous clusters. Berries dark-blue, smaller than peas, acid. Jl.