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Grape

Grapes are grown widely in the world. It is known that grapes go back to the Neolithic period; for example in 1996 a jug filled with wine-7000 years ago was discovered in northern Iran. In Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt other clues have been found pointing to the existence of grape cultivation and wine production. In 2007 the area cultivated globally with grape was estimated to be 708 million hectares with a total production of around 65 million tons of which 7.7 million tons were table grapes. Italy, France and Spain are the most important producers of grapes generally; Italy, Spain and Greece remain the most important producers of table grapes.

Taxonomy:
Family:
Vitaceae
Genus:
Vitis
Species:
V. vinifera
Occurrence & Agricultural Importance in this Country:
Cultivation Areas:
Grape cultivation in Syria is an important source of living for  many farmers and grapes are cultivated in many provinces, Homs is ranked first  with a production reaching 26% of total production, Dar’a is second with about 17% and Halab is  3rd with 12% production.
Main Varieties:
In Syria there are about one hundred varieties of grapes and the most important (Halawani) represents about 30 percent of the total production. Other important varieties include Zeini (15 %), Municipal (20 %) and Salti (20%) percent. These varieties represent about 85 % of the total grape production in Syria.
Marketing Information and Uses:
Use:
Table grapes are very important in Syria; the remainder of the production is used in the manufacture of molasses, raisins, fresh juice and vinegar.
Crop Management:
Cultivation conditions and methods:
Soil Type:
Grapes prefer fertile alluvial and deep soil but are able to  grow in many different types of soil from heavy – sandy soils. Grapes can even tolerate high calcium lands. Grapes tolerate only tolerate a moderate level of salinity and need irrigation.
Temperatures:
Grapes prefer the temperate climate in which they evolved, with warm, dry summers and mild winters. Winters of sustained cold kill grapevines. High humidity promotes vine disease. Tropical temperatures disrupt the normal vine cycle of winter dormancy.
Water Requirements:
In the absence of irrigation, grapes need to 500 mm rain in the year to grow without irrigation and this is possible in some areas like Homs and Tartous. In other areas, a program of litigation must be followed.
Nutrition Requirements:
appropriate fertilizers must be applied following an analysis of soil nutrients.
Harvesting Period:
Production of grapes starts in July and continues until November.
Harvesting Methods:
Hand Picking

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