Grapes Don Dawns: Characterization of the Variety and Recommendations for Growing

Grapes are the only plant that a whole science studies - ampelography. Thanks to her achievements, gardeners have the opportunity to choose the one that is suitable for the climatic conditions of the area from the colossal amount of resistant grapes and hybrids of grapes. One of the promising hybrid forms with such characteristics can be called Don Dawns grapes.

History of the Don Dawn variety

Don Dawns (GF I-2–1-1) is a table grape of Russian selection, bred at the end of the 20th century at the Institute of Viticulture named after Ya.I. Potapenko (Novocherkassk). This hybrid form was created as a result of the complex crossing of three grape varieties:

  • The hybrid form of Kostya (I-83/29);
  • Arkady (Nastya);
  • Fairy (Lyudmila).

Don dawns - the result of crossing several grape varieties

It should be noted that grapes I-2-1-1-1 are not included in the State Register of selection achievements allowed for use, therefore it can only be called a variety conditionally.

Grapes Don Dawns is considered a promising hybrid form, which has become widespread in all regions of Russia, including Siberia and the Far East, due to the early ripening and unpretentiousness.

Varietal characteristics

The variety Donskoy Zori has a lianoid, medium- or strong-growing bush, characterized by a special growth rate. The clusters have an attractive appearance, and the berries have a harmonious taste with a little astringency. Specialists-tasters highly appreciated the taste of fresh fruits of this variety - 8.2 points.

The berries of Donskoy Zory are large, the minimum weight is 5 g, the maximum is 10 g

Table: basic features of the Don Dawn hybrid

LeavesLarge, serrated at the edges, the color can vary from light green to green.
GrapesLarge, dense, cylindrical-conical shape. The mass of the bunch is 700–900 g.
Berry shape, size and weightOval shape. Length - about 28 mm, width - about 21 mm. Weight - 6–7.5 g. The color is white-pink or pink. The skin is thin, almost not noticeable when eating.
TasteSugar content of berries - 21.7 g / 100 ml, acidity - 7.8 g / l. The variety is considered to be a "sugar accumulator", that is, it quickly gains sugar content and loses the acidity of the juice.
Grape colorDepends on the light. The more sun the berry receives, the pinker it is. If the brushes are in the shade of the leaves, then the fruits may not stain and remain milky green.

This grape belongs to the varieties of a very early ripening period - 105-110 days. Harvest can be harvested at the end of August - the first days of September (depending on the weather). The young bush begins to bear fruit 2-3 years after planting. The vine ripens well and fairly early. In the absence of frost and heavy rainfall, ripened clusters can remain on the bush until early October.

When rewriting, berries can become ripe.

The brushes on the Don bush dawns are formed almost identical in shape and size and can reach a kilogram weight

The shape of grapes I-2–1-1 attracts with the level of productivity: the fertility of each cluster is 65–70%, the average number of clusters per fruiting shoot is 1.2–1.4.

The flowers of this grape are functionally bisexual, so there is no need to plant pollinating varieties nearby. Pollination is going well, measures to improve it are not required.

The Don Dawns grapes bloom in early to mid-June, however, the specific timing depends on the sum of active temperatures in

The bush has frost resistance up to -24 0С, but nevertheless this variety requires shelter for the winter, as many winegrowers note the freezing of fruit shoots without special insulation.

One of the characteristics of the Don Dawns grapes is their average resistance to mildew disease, and the lack of immunity to oidium (signs of the disease: torsion of leaves, the presence of gray spots on them, brown spots on the vine, the appearance of mold on the processes). You can fight this disease with the help of colloidal sulfur, as well as Bayleton, Topaz, Skor.

If oidium is damaged, the harvest of Don dawns may die

Another negative feature of Don dawns is the frequent decay of berries inside the bunch. This happens most often after heavy rainfall or with a strong filling of the brush with fruits. In the first case, washing the bunch with Farmayodom according to the instructions saves from gray rot. In the second case, timely rationing of the crop helps.

The hybrid form Don Dawns has good compatibility with many grape varieties and can serve as a stock or graft for vaccination. This property has a positive effect on the quantity and quality of the crop. Easily propagated by cuttings, which quickly take root.

One of the positive qualities of the hybrid form I-2-1-1-1 is that cracking of berries during waterlogging is not often observed. Wasps and birds do not harm the crop due to the dense and elastic skin of the fruit, which is almost not felt when eating.

The transportability of the fruit in the variety is average. The best transportation option is clusters laid out in boxes in one layer.

Table: advantages and disadvantages of Don Dawns grapes

Grade AdvantagesVariety Weaknesses
  • early bearing
  • stable yield;
  • bisexual flowers
  • attractive appearance;
  • high sugar content in berries and pleasant taste;
  • rare cases of cracking and damage to the fruit by pests;
  • frost resistance;
  • medium resistance to mildew;
  • high vaccination compatibility;
  • the possibility of simple breeding chubuk.
  • lack of resistance to oidium;
  • the green-white color of grapes with a lack of sun resembles unripe fruits;
  • the need for rationing the crop;
  • frequent rotting of berries inside the bunch;
  • special conditions for transporting fruits.

Features of the cultivation of grape varieties Don Dawns

In order for the bush to be able to demonstrate its full potential, the gardener is required to observe the basic principles of planting and caring for the vine.

Rules for planting a bush

When choosing a site for Don Dawns, it is necessary to consider the following points:

  • grapes love heat and the sun, and in the shade the growth of the bush slows down, the number of ovaries decreases, the fruit ripening period lengthens;
  • the bush does not tolerate drafts, requires protection from the wind;
  • does not tolerate stagnation of water;
  • it does not tolerate heat well: at an air temperature of +38 ° C, the plant experiences severe depression, and at a temperature of +45 ° C and higher, burns appear on the leaves, the berries dry out and the grapes paralyze.

Therefore, the southern, unshaded side of the plot, sheltered from the wind with a deep bed of groundwater, is an ideal place for planting a bush. Since grapes of the Don Dawns often have a long-growing bush, they should be placed in such a way that in the future they have free access for watering, processing and pruning.

Season and method of planting are determined by the climate of a particular area. In the south, both spring and autumn planting of seedlings is carried out, in the north and in the center it is practiced only in spring.

Variety Don Dawns is well suited for cultivation in regions with a short summer. Berries have time to ripen before the onset of cold weather.

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The most common planting technique is to plant a seedling in a planting pit. The depth and width of the pit is selected depending on the quality of the soil. Recommended sizes:

  • on chernozem - 60x60x60 cm;
  • on loam - 80x80x80 cm;
  • in the sand - 100x100x100 cm.

Landing pit must be prepared in advance. As a rule, this is done in the fall: they dig a pit, organize drainage, and apply organic fertilizers

The recommended distance between the bushes is 150-200 cm. After planting, the bush is watered with warm water and attached to the support.

In the climatic conditions of "northern viticulture", it is often practiced to plant early grape varieties in greenhouses or on high ridges. These planting methods can improve soil warming and accelerate plant vegetation.

Video: vineyard in the greenhouse

Care Tips

Care for the bush includes the following procedures:

  • Watering. The intensity depends on climate and weather conditions. On average, carried out once a month, with the exception of the flowering period. Water should be warm. The optimal is drip irrigation.

    Drip irrigation creates ideal conditions for grapes, maintaining a constant level of humidity without sharp fluctuations

  • Loosening and weeding weeds. These procedures are carried out after each irrigation.
  • Shaping and pruning of the bush. Often, winegrowers for the Don Dawns variety use fan molding. It simplifies plant care and harvesting. Pruning is required frequently. The load on the bush should be 45-50 eyes.
    • Spring pruning is performed before the sap flow begins, removing shoots affected by frost.
    • In August, minting is carried out, cutting the vines to a normal leaf, so the plant will retain the nutrients necessary for wintering.
    • Autumn pruning is carried out after leaf fall and involves the removal of all young shoots above half a meter from the ground and shortening of the lateral and lower shoots to 3-4 buds, leaving 8-10 eyes on the top.
  • Top dressing. It is recommended to carry out it monthly, using mineral fertilizers.
  • Disease Prevention To prevent the appearance of fungal diseases, the bush can be treated with copper sulfate or Bordeaux liquid twice or thrice during the growing season.
  • Frost protection. Don dawns are a cover variety, despite the stated frost resistance. After leaf fall, the vines are removed from the supports and wrapped with special materials (for example, fiberglass) . The basal part is insulated with coniferous branches, less often with straw.

    Shelter of grapes saves shoots and roots from freezing

Grade Reviews

Personally, I have not encountered this grape variety. But summarizing the winemakers' impressions about him, I want to note that their opinions differ depending on the area of ​​cultivation. So, the majority of “northerners” and residents of the middle zone speak positively of Don Dawns. They are fascinated by the appearance and taste of berries, attracted by the short period of their ripening and frost resistance of the bush. They also note that in these regions the plant is rarely affected by diseases. Gardeners of the southern regions, who are able to grow a much larger assortment of grape varieties, are not satisfied with the Don dawns. For them, the taste of berries seems mediocre and tart, the skin is tough. They complain of frequent illnesses and the fact that the berry inside the brush is crushing and decaying even after several thinning. After a couple of years of fruiting, many of them eventually re-transplant other grape varieties onto this bush.

This year our summer was cold, but spring and autumn are warmer than usual. Due to the warm spring, the Don Dawns were very good. We left about 20 clusters, even in some places 2 clusters to escape (which we usually don’t do), at the end of August it was already possible to cut them off. The taste is pleasant, harmonious. There was no acid, clusters of up to 800 g, berries of 8 g each. The clusters were very dense, on those below were single spoiled berries, but cut in time. And those that hung higher, even remained until the trim. Only tastier than steel, they were very well painted, as never before. Fruits in 4 years. In the cold of 2009 and 2010, the vine matured poorly, but this year is good.

Tamara from Novosibirsk

Yes, beautiful and large, that berry, that bunch. The taste is quite interesting, sweet and sour in my conditions, but you can eat it. It is sad that the dense bunch and the berries inside rot. And the bunch itself after cutting quickly loses its beautiful appearance, the berries become somehow brownish, probably because they are very tender, despite the size. The second time I would not have planted, despite the good reviews. Grapes - a culture of place and time, unfortunately, not many early southern varieties show themselves well in my conditions. Therefore, the Don Dawns, like the Beauty of the Don, are under a very big question

Olga from Kazan

Don dawns, the second fruiting, finally saw clusters of up to 800 grams, two rains in late July and early August revealed a serious flaw - the complete decay of berries inside the cluster, a serious minus in addition to poor transportability. Conclusion - not my GF, for re-grafting.

Evgeny Anatolevich

We have been growing Don Dawns since 2006. We are not going to delete, because early, sweet, beautiful, delicious. Because we almost do not crack any grapes, then DZ does not crack. It happens that the clusters are very dense and the berries begin to choke. But, usually at this time you can already shoot it. The beginning of flowering was June 14, in total there were 20 clusters per bush in 2017, at the end of August sugar was 17%, but since there is no acid in it, it is sweet.

Peganova Tamara Yakovlevna

For diseases, I had no problems with the Don Dawns when (4 years), a couple of years without any treatment at all. The berry is early, ready at the beginning of August, but ... a little moisture, even the same fog - started ... and stable from a week until ready ... + \ - a few days .. I don’t want to go every day and remove the rot.


Today I cut the last bunch of Don Dawns. The berries were colored well, though unevenly. Such yellow-red turned out. Sugar scored, but not to say very sweet. The taste is very simple, I do not really like it. And ripening is very long, it is difficult to call it super-early. Galbena know, for example, I have now sugaryly sweet.

Sergey Donetsk

When choosing grape seedlings for planting, pay attention to the hybrid form of the Don Dawns. It has several advantages, but also has its drawbacks. For the grapevine of this variety to decorate your garden, it will take a lot of effort, since the plant requires systematic and proper care.


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