Grape vine beginner

Good afternoon all, just joined the forum and hoping to tap into everyone’s vast knowledge in fruit growing!

I’ve just planted a chardonnay grape plant, picture attached. My question is when do i prune it, and how much? Basically, the stem has 2 branches which both have leaves and are looking well. My plan is to train it to grow over my pergola. Do i continue with both branches growing and prune in the autumn/winter, or just grow 1 branch to focus purely on? I’m in the UK, and it is located in full sun in a south facing garden.

Apologies if my terminology is not correct, always learning!


I’d wait till winter before pruning to give energy to roots plus there will be plenty of time to read up on pruning techniques.

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Prune your stem to only one branch. This will be the trunk of your grapevine. Attach a durable string to a small stake in the ground with the string going to the top of your pergola attached to where you want it. As the tip grows upward train it to the string by tying it with something like soft jute twine. Keep all shoots pruned off while the tip of the trunk grows up to the top of the pergola. The idea is to get it to the top of the pergola as quick as possible. Do it now instead of waiting.

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