Also known as
Bush Grape, African Grape, Forest Grape, Monkey Rope, Wild Vine, Bosdruif, Wildedruif, Bostou, Bobbejaantou (Afr.)
Harvest the dark-purple berries in winter when dark in colour.
Wild Grape Overview
Rhoicissus tomentosa is a woody, evergreen, semi-shade creeper similar to grape vines. It has lovely edible berries in winter which will attract birds to your garden. It can be used as a hedge when you plant it next to a wall or trellis. Wild grape is indigenous to South Africa, found in coastal forest-like areas from the Eastern slopes of Table mountain all the way up the coast into Mozambique and even some places in Malawi.
Common problems with Wild Grape
Wild grape is generally pest and disease free.
Wild Grape Companion Plants
Naturally grow with shade plants and over trees and shrubs.
How to propagate Wild Grape
Seeds can be harvested from the berries and plant them in autumn.
Semi-hardwood cuttings can be placed in river sand. Keep moist to encourage root formation.
Special features of Wild Grape
Birds feast on the berries during winter. Knysna and Purple-crested louries have been among the frequent visitors in some areas.
Some natural light is required though.
Wild grape's nature is to climb up things. If you provide it with a wall or trellis it will cover it in due time. It does need a support structure.
Other uses of Wild Grape
No medicinal uses for humans are known. The roots boiled in milk can be used to treat calves with intestinal worms.
The dark purple berries are edible in the winter months. They can even be boiled with loads of sugar to make wild grape jam.