Why Are My Grapes So Small (5 Reasons + Solutions)

Grapes are one of the most produced fruits all over the world. Some even cultivate them as a hobby in their backyard.

One very common question that arises among the owners is, why are my grapes so small? 

There can be many reasons behind the small size. But some of the most common reasons are lack of Nutrition, lack of water, overuse of fertilizer, lack of pruning, and improper weeding. All of these reasons somehow affect the nutrition level in the plant. As a result over the period the size of grapes reduces. 

In this article, we tried to show the causation behind the small size of grapes and how you can deal with those causes. Solutions are quite convenient to imply and easy to execute. 

Reasons  Solutions 
Lack of Nutrient Provide nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, iron, copper and zinc.
Shortage of Water Provide 1 inch water weekly.
Excess Use of Fertilizer Apply grape specialized fertilizer.
Pruning Poorly 90% pruning. 
Improper Weeding Twice a month

Why Grapes Are Growing So Small?

1. Lack Of Nutrients

The proper nutrients are very important in the proper development of any fruits and vegetables.

If you want them to be in good shape and size it is important to make sure that they are getting proper nutrients from time to time. 

Grapes need both macro and micronutrients to grow properly in size.

Among the macronutrients, grapes need nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. In micronutrients, it needs copper, iron, and zinc. 

Both macro and micronutrients are necessary for increasing the number of grapes in grape veins.

Especially as micronutrients are not as much included in fertilizers you need to take special care of their availability. 

The micronutrients also stabilize the strength of veins to hold into the grapes. If the veins are not strong enough then as self-defense the plant will reduce the size of the grapes.

Thus it is important that you ensure both the macro and micronutrients in the proper amount in the grape cultivation.

When you see premature ripening of grapes, then it is surely due to the lack of macronutrients and micronutrients in the production.

If these nutrients are not introduced timely then they will also lack in production in the long run. 


The best way to resolve the deficiency of nutrients in grape cultivation is to introduce fertilizers. 10-10-10 fertilizers are the best fertilizer for grape cultivation.

To balance the lack of potassium you might need to apply Potassium Sulfate.

To apply Potassium Sulfate you will need to dig the ground and make sure it is applied as near to the roots as possible. 

During this process, it is important that you do not harm the root of the plant. Depending on the age of the veins you will need to change the amount of Potassium Sulfate.

In this process, you will also need to apply magnesium. Dolomitic limestone will help you to increase the level of magnesium and boost the application of calcium and phosphorus within. 

But the application should not be overdone otherwise that can be dangerous too.  

2. Shortage of Water

All plants need to have an adequate water supply to survive. Grapes veins are not out of the chart in this case. Rather, grape veins are very sensitive to a deficiency of water.

Drought stress dries the veins. The deficiency of water causes a reduction in the photosynthesis process.

As a result, no matter how many substitutes you have provided the plant will not be able to nurture them and provide them as a medium of nutrients. 

Even in minor cases of water shortage, the grape vein can dry so much that the plant will die eventually. If before dying the water shortages run for a long time, then it will affect the size of the Grapes.

As a result, you will have small grapes on your plant.

If you see that there are small grapes in your grape vines, then you need to take the hydration of the soil into account as soon as possible. 


To grow grapes, plants need 1 inch of water per week. It is very important to ensure that the water is reducing the deep roots of the grape plant.

Otherwise, it will be difficult for the grape to soak the water from the soil. 

As the plants need the water to go deep down to the roots it becomes necessary that the drainage system is very good.

Otherwise, if the water gets accumulated in the roots it can even start to rot the roots. 

Watering has to be done in a proper way so that it not only cleans the leaves but also the roots get the water. Install an irrigation system or user soaker hose for watering.

Therefore when you are watering the plants frequently it doesn’t wet the leaves and there is no fungus build-up. 

It is not wise to provide all the water at a time. Rather it is important to water the cultivation every day.

Depending on the weather where you are living you might even need to water the plants twice a day. 

3. Excess Use of Fertilizer

Fertilizer is the main source to ensure nutrients for your grape plants. But that doesn’t mean the more fertilizer you use the more benefits you get.  

In reality, it is quite the opposite. Using excess fertilizers can cause severe damage to your plants.

Due to the use of excess fertilizers the plants tend to produce more leaves and stems rather than grapes. The amount of grapes reduces both in number and size.

Whenever there will be a large number of leaves and stems it doesn’t mean that you will have more opportunity or space for grapes.

But it will absorb the nutrients that were supposed to be used introducing healthy and juicy grapes. 

The effect of over-fertilization is severe if you apply it in late summer or during the fall season.

If you apply your fertilizer during this time even if that grows grapes it will get damaged due to the low temperature which is known as Frost damage. 


The first way to avoid over-fertilization is by testing the soil. This way you will recognize which nutrients are lacking in the soil and future indefinite amounts.

Lots of easy kits are available. Using these kits you can determine all the nutrients as a whole or a definite one.

Once you recognize the necessity for your plant, choose the specific fertilizer. This is the best way to use any fertilizer avoiding exercise use. 

Another thing to keep in mind is the season. If you fertilize your grape wine once a year then it is best to apply them during the early summer or spring season.

Especially after the flowers have arrived in the veins. This way you can avoid growing your leaves in place of grapes.

There are several specific fertilizers available just for grapes. These fertilizers are specialized in grape production.

Therefore if you follow the instructions provided with those fertilizers you won’t go overboard. Another important factor to remember is that nitrogen is very necessary for grape production.

But excess nitrogen burns the root of the grape plant which leads to the death of the plant. 

4. Pruning Poorly

For proper development of grape trees and grape production, it is necessary to prune the plants. Often people don’t understand the necessity of pruning, and the production capacity reduces. 

Whenever you will not do a sufficient amount of pruning, your plants will turn bushy. 

The first impact will be that your plant will not get the necessary sunlight it needs. Secondly, the nutrients that are supposed to be used in grape production, are used in leaves and stem maintenance. 

As a result, your plants will suffer from malnutrition. The maintenance cost will increase without an increase in grape production. 


The first solution is that you need to realize pruning is very important for grape production. After harvesting for 1 season you will need to prune 90% of the plant.

It is not an exaggeration, but rather the least amount of pruning your plants need.

With this you allow your plant to breathe and absorb proper sunlight. Another benefit of pruning is the prevention of fungal diseases.

Whenever there are lots of bushes and leaves covering up air circulation and sunlight, it will cause fungus. Pruning is the ultimate solution to fungal problems. 

If you are cultivating grapes for the first time then it is suggested to prune your grape yard with a professional for the first 2 years.

This way you will understand how much you need to prune and how to do it without harming the plants. It is a must that you prune the grape plants every consecutive year.

There are mainly two types of pruning for grape vines, Crane and Spur. Speak with a specialist and learn how to do these types of pruning and which one is needed for your grape yard.

5. Improper Weeding

Weeds are direct competitors of your grape plants. If your grape yard has lots of weeds then every time you apply fertilizer or water it is absorbed by the weeds faster than your plants.

As a result, your plant suffers from malnutrition. Along with sharing the nutrients, weeds also take up lots of space that are supposed to be used for grape Vines. 

Another way weeds reduce the size of grapes is by cooling the soil. Even though grapes need lots of water to grow, they don’t need the soil to cool down.

Whenever the soil cools down the plant can not function properly and as a result, the size of grapes becomes small. 


To avoid such a situation, it is necessary that you remove weeds regularly. For this, you can use a bare hand or a hoe. If you are new to weed removal then take help from an expert. 

There are several companies that specialize in removing weeds in grape yards.

It is a sensitive job as it must be ensured that the plant’s roots are not hurt by any chance. Hurting the roots means the plant will die eventually.

How to Grow Grapes at Home?

If you’re planning to grow grapes in your home then here are some pointers that can help you.

1. Choosing the Types

There are several types of grape varieties available. Some of these varieties are specialized for wine production. Therefore they need special care which is quite impossible to provide in-home.

Vitis labrusca, V. vinifera, and French-American hybrids are ideal for home growth. You can easily find them online.

To choose the right variety, do proper research and make a list of which kind of care you can provide. Therefore, even if you’re planning to give less time to your plants they will still grow to full size with proper nutrition. 

2. Cultivating Them in Pots

If you are planning to cultivate grapes at home then it is wise to cultivate them in pots. This way it will be easier to maintain the nutrients in the soil, take out the weeds and also ensure water access. 

If the grapes are cultivated in pots then in adverse weather you can just place them wherever it is convenient for the plant.

In short, it becomes more convenient to take care of the grape plants if they are planted in pots and placed in your backyard. 

3. Cluster Thinning

Sometimes there are too many grapes forming in one cluster. As there is not much support for home planting, the cluster may fall prematurely due to heavy weight. 

If you can arrange proper settings, this pointer can be avoided. For cluster thinning you will need to check the plant after the flower has bloomed and turned to small buds. Then just carefully trim some of these buds. 

Taking Care Of Grape Plants

Requirement of Grape Plants Scale 
pH of soil  6.5 to .5
Temperature  77 degrees Fahrenheit to 90 degrees Fahrenheit
Season  Late winter to spring
Fertilizer  Must contain phosphorus, potassium, and nitrogen.


How Do You Increase the Size of Grapes?

Producers utilize a few strategies to build group and berry size: bunch and berry diminishing; trunk supporting, and gibberellic corrosive splashes. Gibberellic corrosive is an engineered plant development controller and isn’t accessible to home grounds-keepers.

Some expansion in size can be accomplished by bunch and berry diminishing and trunk supporting.

How Long Does It Take for Grapes to Get Big?

Assuming you want to actually say, “How quickly do grape vines produce grapes?”, the response is that they can require as long as three years to prove to be fruitful.

Pruning has a ton to do with organic product creation. For best outcomes, prune away every one of the fledglings emerging starting from the earliest stage of your grapevines in the main year.

When Should You Prune Your Grape Vines?

Grapevines are typically viewed as developed and completely useful in year three. Torpid pruning ought to be finished beginning in late February through Spring.

One-year-old wood (the past summer’s development) ought to be pruned back to three to five hubs for each spike.

How Long Do Grape Vines Live?

A full-grown plant will create natural products for a really long time! In any case, commonly following 30 years, a grape plant’s creation diminishes.

however, it’s as yet fit for proving to be fruitful anymore. Very much-tended plants can live for 50, 80, or even 100 years.

Why Do They Pick Grapes at Night?

Picking around evening time ensures the grapes are all at a similar temperature. Reaping around evening time brings about better wine, lower energy costs, and more noteworthy proficiency.

In especially sweltering environments, picking around evening time likewise implies cooler circumstances for the pickers.

Final Words

In this post we tried to answer your question, why are my grapes so small? All the reasons mentioned here are common reasons but there can be many others.

If you are already implementing the solutions and still not getting the result then it is wise to talk with an expert.

Sometimes even the area where you are trying to cultivate the grapes is not even the right place. In such cases, it is always suggested to do proper research on grapes and the area.

This is especially a must if you are trying to cultivate grapes for a business purpose.

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