Thomas Volney Munson (September 26, 1843 – January 21, 1913) often referred to simply as T.V. Munson, was a horticulturist and breeder of grapes in Texas.In 1888, Munson was the second American, after Thomas Edison, to be named a Chevalier du Mérite Agricole by the French government.
Horticulture has been defined as the culture of plants, mainly for food, materials, comfort and beauty. According to an American horticulture scholar, "Horticulture is the growing of flowers, fruits and vegetables, and of plants for ornament and fancy." A more precise definition can be given as "The cultivation, processing, and sale of fruits, nuts, vegetables, and ornamental plants as well as many additional services". It also includes plant conservation, landscape restoration, soil management, landscape and garden design, construction and maintenance, and arboriculture. In contrast to agriculture, horticulture does not include large-scale crop production or animal husbandry.
Texas is the second largest state in the United States by both area and population. Geographically located in the South Central region of the country, Texas shares borders with the U.S. states of Louisiana to the east, Arkansas to the northeast, Oklahoma to the north, New Mexico to the west, and the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas to the southwest, and has a coastline with the Gulf of Mexico to the southeast.
Thomas Alva Edison was an American inventor and businessman, who has been described as America's greatest inventor. He developed many devices in fields such as electric power generation, mass communication, sound recording, and motion pictures. These inventions, which include the phonograph, the motion picture camera, and the long-lasting, practical electric light bulb, had a widespread impact on the modern industrialized world. He was one of the first inventors to apply the principles of organized science and teamwork to the process of invention, working with many researchers and employees. He established the first industrial research laboratory.
Thomas Volney Munson was born in Astoria, Illinois.He was a son of William Munson (1808-1890) and Maria (Linley) Munson (1810-1890). Munson was an 1870 graduate of the University of Kentucky. Shortly after completing his education, he married and moved to the vicinity of Lincoln, Nebraska. In 1873 he became interested in improving the various species of grapes native to the United States and planned to do systematic work in the way of developing new varieties by cross-pollination and hybridization. His experiments failed because of climatic rigors and a visitation of the Rocky Mountain locusts. Undismayed, in April 1876 Munson moved to Denison, Texas, where two of his brothers had already relocated.
Astoria is an incorporated town in Fulton County, Illinois, United States. The population was 1,141 at the 2010 census.
The University of Kentucky (UK) is a public co-educational university in Lexington, Kentucky. Founded in 1865 by John Bryan Bowman as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Kentucky, the university is one of the state's two land-grant universities, the largest college or university in the state, with 30,720 students as of Fall 2015, and the highest ranked research university in the state according to U.S. News and World Report.
Lincoln is the capital of the U.S. state of Nebraska and the county seat of Lancaster County. The city covers 96.194 square miles (249.141 km2) with a population of 287,401 in 2018. It is the second-most populous city in Nebraska and the 70th-largest in the United States. The city is the economic and cultural anchor of a substantially-larger metropolitan area in the southeastern part of the state called the Lincoln Metropolitan and Lincoln-Beatrice Combined Statistical Areas. The statistical area is home to 356,083 people, making it the 105th-largest combined statistical area in the United States.
While primarily remembered as horticulturist, Munson was interested in a variety of fields. He is credited with several inventions, including a primitive helicopter. He became recognized as a botanist as well as a viticulturist. He wrote Native Trees of the Southwest under the direction of the United States Department of Agriculture and submitted a similar thesis in 1883 to satisfy requirements for the master's degree at the Kentucky Agricultural College. Munson died on January 21, 1913in Denison, Texas.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), also known as the Agriculture Department, is the U.S. federal executive department responsible for developing and executing federal laws related to farming, forestry, and food. It aims to meet the needs of farmers and ranchers, promote agricultural trade and production, work to assure food safety, protect natural resources, foster rural communities and end hunger in the United States and internationally.
Denison is a city in Grayson County, Texas, United States. It is 75 miles (121 km) north of Dallas. The population was 22,682 at the 2010 census. Denison is part of the Texoma region and is one of two principal cities in the Sherman–Denison Metropolitan Statistical Area. Denison is known as the birthplace of Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th President of the United States.
Munson made extensive use of American native grape species, and devoted a great deal of his life to collecting and documenting them. He released hundreds of named cultivars, but his work identifying American native grape (especially those from Texas) is of great significance today for their use in rootstock. Though breeding for wine quality seems to have occupied a great proportion of his effort, his work on rootstock development had the greatest impact on viticulture. This work provided European grape growers with phylloxera-resistant rootstocks, allowing them to recover from the devastating epidemic of the late 19th century while still growing the ancient Vitis vinifera cultivars. These rootstocks are still used worldwide. In honor of this work, the French government named him Chevalier du Merite Agricole of the French Legion of Honor, and Cognac, France, became a sister city to Munson's home of Denison.
A rootstock is part of a plant, often an underground part, from which new above-ground growth can be produced. It could also be described as a stem with a well developed root system, to which a bud from another plant is grafted. It can refer to a rhizome or underground stem. In grafting, it refers to a plant, sometimes just a stump, which already has an established, healthy root system, onto which a cutting or a bud from another plant is grafted. In some cases, such as vines of grapes and other berries, cuttings may be used for rootstocks, the roots being established in nursery conditions before planting them out. The plant part grafted onto the rootstock is usually called the scion. The scion is the plant that has the properties that propagator desires above ground, including the photosynthetic activity and the fruit or decorative properties. The rootstock is selected for its interaction with the soil, providing the roots and the stem to support the new plant, obtaining the necessary soil water and minerals, and resisting the relevant pests and diseases. After a few weeks the tissues of the two parts will have grown together, eventually forming a single plant. After some years it may be difficult to detect the site of the graft although the product always contains the components of two genetically different plants.
Viticulture or winegrowing is the cultivation and harvesting of grapes. It is a branch of the science of horticulture. While the native territory of Vitis vinifera, the common grape vine, ranges from Western Europe to the Persian shores of the Caspian Sea, the vine has demonstrated high levels of adaptability to new environments. Thus, viticulture can be found on every continent except Antarctica.
Grape phylloxera ; originally described in France as Phylloxera vastatrix; equated to the previously described Daktulosphaera vitifoliae, Phylloxera vitifoliae; commonly just called phylloxera is a pest of commercial grapevines worldwide, originally native to eastern North America.
The rootstocks that Munson recommended to the French were Texas native Vitis Berlandieri, cinerea and cordifolia (vulpina) grapes that were found in the central Texas hill country at Dog Ridge in Bell County near Temple, Texas. These wild grapes can still be found there.Munson specified these Texas native grapes because soils in this location closely match the limestone soils in French vineyards and these grapes were highly tolerant of high pH limestone soils. Later, Munson was also asked to advise on a Phylloxera-resistance rootstock for California vineyards, and through discussions with Luther Burbank he recommended Vitus rupestris.
Central Texas is a region in the U.S. state of Texas surrounding Austin and roughly bordered by San Saba to Bryan and San Marcos to Hillsboro. Central Texas overlaps with and includes part of the Texas Hill Country and corresponds to a physiographic section designation within the Edwards Plateau, in a geographic context.
Temple is a city in Bell County, Texas, United States. As of 2018, the city has a population of 76,600 according to a US census estimate.
In chemistry, pH is a scale used to specify how acidic or basic a water-based solution is. Acidic solutions have a lower pH, while basic solutions have a higher pH. At room temperature (25 °C), pure water is neither acidic nor basic and has a pH of 7.
In the 1880s, Munson worked on a monograph on native grapes that was to be illustrated by William Henry Prestele, the first artist appointed to the staff of the recently formed Pomological Division of the United States Department of Agriculture in Washington, D.C.Munson sent live and dried specimens to Prestele, who made color sketches of details that Munson would then review; Prestele would then use these detail drawings to create life-size paintings. The U.S. Secretary of Agriculture eventually decided the cost of printing the monograph with the illustrations would be prohibitive, so it was never published in its intended form. However, Munson went on to use the text he wrote as the foundation for his 1909 book Foundations of American Grape Culture, regarded as one of the founding texts of American grape breeding and widely referenced even today. Instead of Prestele's watercolors, it was illustrated with photographs. Grape breeder Elmer Swenson credited it with inspiring his early interest in the field.
Wilhelm Heinrich Prestele was a botanical artist known for his lithographs and watercolor work commissioned by the US Department of Agriculture.
Elmer Swenson was a pioneering grape breeder who introduced a number of new cultivars, effectively revolutionizing grape growing in the Upper Midwest of the United States and other cold and short-seasoned regions.
Although Munson is best remembered as a horticulturist, he was also active in the Freethought movement. In July 1890, when James D. Shaw, the controversial editor of the Independent Pulpit was elected president of the newly formed Texas Liberal Association at a meeting held in Waco, Texas, members chose Munson to serve as treasurer, a post to which he was re-elected the following year in San Antonio, Texas.Munson also subscribed to infidel newspapers such as the Blue-grass Blade and occasionally lectured at Freethinker meetings. When he died in 1913, his funeral was held in a public hall instead of a church and the services, which were “simple and brief,” consisted largely of a funeral oration composed by the deceased himself “when still in good health.” He was afterward buried in Denison’s Fairview Cemetery.
The West Campus of Grayson County College in Denison, Texas, preserves much of Munson's work. In 1974, the T.V. Munson Memorial Vineyard was established that preserves many of his cultivars and produces stock for propagation. This was followed in 1988 with the opening of the T.V. Munson Viticulture and Enology Center that serves as a repository for documents and other historical materials regarding Munson. It also houses research, classroom and conference facilities. The grapes that Munson recommended for rootstocks for Phylloxera resistance in both Europe and California are still widely used worldwide.
The sports arena at Denison High School is named Munson Stadium.
A vineyard is a plantation of grape-bearing vines, grown mainly for winemaking, but also raisins, table grapes and non-alcoholic grape juice. The science, practice and study of vineyard production is known as viticulture.
In botany, chlorosis is a condition in which leaves produce insufficient chlorophyll. As chlorophyll is responsible for the green color of leaves, chlorotic leaves are pale, yellow, or yellow-white. The affected plant has little or no ability to manufacture carbohydrates through photosynthesis and may die unless the cause of its chlorophyll insufficiency is treated, although some chlorotic plants, such as the albino Arabidopsis thaliana mutant ppi2, are viable if supplied with exogenous sucrose.
Vitis labrusca, the fox grape, is a species of grapevines belonging to the Vitis genus in the flowering plant family Vitaceae. The vines are native to eastern North America and are the source of many grape cultivars, including Catawba, Concord, Delaware, Isabella, Niagara, and many hybrid grape varieties such as Agawam, Alexander and Onaka. Among the characteristics of this vine species in contrast to the European wine grape Vitis vinifera are its "slip-skin" that allows the skin of the grape berries to easily slip off when squeezed, instead of crushing the pulp, and the presence of tendrils on every node of the cane. Another contrast with European vinifera is the characteristic "foxy" musk of V. labrusca, best known to most people through the Concord grape. This musk is not related to the mammalian fox, but rather to the strong, earthy aromas characteristic of the grapes that were known by early European-American settlers in the New World. The term "foxy" became a sort of catchall for the wine tasting descriptors used for these American wines that were distinct from the familiar flavors of the European viniferous wines.
Vitis californica, with common names California wild grape, Northern California grape, and Pacific grape, is a wild grape species widespread across much of California as well as southwestern Oregon.
Vitis × labruscana is a subgroup of grapes originating from a hybridization of Vitis labrusca and other species, most commonly Vitis vinifera. Popular examples include Concord and Niagara grapes, which comprise nearly all grapes processed for juice or jelly in the United States. Such cultivars are frequently referred to as "labrusca", however many are as little as half Vitis labrusca in their pedigree. Another common term, arguably more accurate, is "labrusca-type". These varieties do in fact possess many of the traits of Vitis labrusca, frequently including slipskin fruit, strong "foxy" flavor/odor, and large leaves with lighter colored and pubescent undersides. Most are self-fertile, unlike wild Vitis labrusca.
Hybrid grapes are grape varieties that are the product of a crossing of two or more Vitis species. This is in contrast to crossings between grape varieties of the same species, typically Vitis vinifera, the European grapevine. Hybrid grapes are also referred to as inter-specific crossings or "Modern Varieties." Due to their often excellent tolerance to powdery mildew, other fungal diseases, nematodes, and phylloxera, hybrid varieties have, to some extent, become a renewed focus for European breeding programs. The recently developed varieties, Rondo, and Regent are examples of newer hybrid grape varieties for European viticulturalists. Several North American breeding programs, such as those at Cornell and the University of Minnesota, focus exclusively on hybrid grapes, with active and successful programs, having created hundreds if not thousands of new varieties.
Hermann Jaeger, a native of Switzerland, was a celebrated enologist, honored as a Chevalier of the Ordre National du Mérite Agricole for his part in saving the French wine industry from the phylloxera root louse pest.
Jules Émile Planchon was a French botanist born in Ganges, Hérault.
Bouchalès or Grapput is a red French wine grape variety that is grown primarily in Bordeaux and Southwest France wine appellations. Plantings have declined in recent years as the vine has shown high sensitivity to downy mildew and black rot.
Texas has a long history of wine production. The sunny and dry climate of the major wine making regions in the state have drawn comparison to Portuguese wines. Some of the earliest recorded Texas wines were produced by Spanish missionaries in the 1650s near El Paso. The state is home to over 36 members of the Vitis grape vine family with fifteen being native to the state, more than any other region on earth. As of 2006, the state had over 3,200 acres (1,300 ha) planted with Vitis vinifera. Despite being the largest of conterminous states, this relatively small amount of planted land is dwarfed by the production of even the smallest French AOCs like Sancerre. The Texan wine industry is continuing its steady pace of expansion and has gained a reputation as an established wine growing region in the United States.
Vitis (grapevines) is a genus of 79 accepted species of vining plants in the flowering plant family Vitaceae. The genus is made up of species predominantly from the Northern hemisphere. It is economically important as the source of grapes, both for direct consumption of the fruit and for fermentation to produce wine. The study and cultivation of grapevines is called viticulture.
The Great French Wine Blight was a severe blight of the mid-19th century that destroyed many of the vineyards in France and laid waste the wine industry. It was caused by an aphid that originated in North America and was carried across the Atlantic in the late 1850s. While France is considered to have been worst affected, the blight also did a great deal of damage to vineyards in other European countries.
The Texoma AVA is an American Viticultural Area located in north central Texas, on the south side of Lake Texoma and the Red River that forms the border with the state of Oklahoma. The Texoma region is where 19th century viticulturist Thomas Volney Munson discovered that grafting Vitis vinifera grapevines onto native American varieties of vine rootstock resulted in vines that were resistant to phylloxera. The technique saved the European wine industry when it was brought to France, which was suffering its first phylloxera epidemic. The region was not designated an American Viticultural Area until 2005.
Château Pavie-Macquin is a Bordeaux wine from the appellation Saint-Émilion, ranked Premier grand cru classé B in the Classification of Saint-Émilion wine. The winery is one of three Pavie estates, along with Château Pavie and Château Pavie-Decesse, located in the Right Bank of France’s Bordeaux wine region in the commune of Saint-Émilion in the department Gironde. Having risen in esteem in the 1990s, it was promoted to Premier Grand Cru Classé in 2006.
Vitis berlandieri is a species of grape native to the southern North America, primarily Texas, New Mexico and Arkansas.
Black Spanish was originally assumed to be a seedling of an American hybrid grape which resulted from a crossing of the American Vitis aestivalis species of grape with an unknown Vitis vinifera pollen donor. However, just recently it has been revealed from microsatellite DNA analysis, that the American wild grapevine parent of Black Spanish is Vitis berlandieri and not Vitis aestivalis. This hybridization is not known to have been purposeful, and may have occurred naturally, as was the case with many of the early American grape cultivars. Riaz et al. (2019) have now published the genetic profile of the Jacquez grapevine as follows (percentages): V. vinifera: 69% V. berlandieri: 21% V. rupestris: 7% V. riparia: 3%.
The propagation of grapevines is an important consideration in commercial viticulture and winemaking. Grapevines, most of which belong to the Vitis vinifera family, produce one crop of fruit each growing season with a limited life span for individual vines. While some centenarian old vine examples of grape varieties exist, most grapevines are between the ages of 10 and 30 years. As vineyard owners seek to replant their vines, a number of techniques are available which may include planting a new cutting that has been selected by either clonal or mass (massal) selection. Vines can also be propagated by grafting a new plant vine upon existing rootstock or by layering one of the canes of an existing vine into the ground next to the vine and severing the connection when the new vine develops its own root system.