Synonyms: NC 57-56
Keywords: bitter rot tolerance, black rot susceptible, crown gall susceptible, hot climate, humid climate, multiuse, Pierce’s disease susceptible, and powdery mildew tolerance

Carlos is a widely grown bronze muscadine that was released by North Carolina State University in 1970 by W.B. Nesbitt, V.H. Underwood, and D.E. Carroll. It has multiple uses including juice, jelly, U-pick, and wine. The vines are vigorous and high yielding with smaller berries that ripen between August and October. Vines will develop Pierce’s disease symptoms and are susceptible to black rot, crown gall, and leaf rust, but they do have intermediate tolerance to angular leaf spot, bitter rot, and powdery mildew.

Adaptability: Humid, Subtropical
Berry Color: White
Berry Maturity: Mid-Season
Berry Size: Small
Cluster Compactness: Loosely Compact
Cluster Size: Small
Fruit Use: Jelly, Juice, Multi-use, and Wine
Product Flavor: Musty, Scuppernong
Pruning: Spur
Seeds: Seeded
Soluble Solids: 16° Brix
Species / Varieties in Pedigree: Vitis rotundifolia
Vine Vigor: High
Yield Potential: High


A cluster of Carlos grapes.

A cluster of Carlos grapes.

Shoot tip and tendrils of Carlos.

Shoot tip and tendrils of Carlos.

Adaxial and abaxial sides of Carlos leaves.

Adaxial and abaxial sides of Carlos leaves.

Origins and History

Carlos is a muscadine that was released by W.B. Nesbitt, V.H. Underwood, and D.E. Carroll at North Carolina State University in 1970. It was the result of the cross Howard x NC 11-173 (Topsail x Tarheel) made by C.F. Williams in 1951, and it was later selected in 1954 as NC 57-56. Its lineage includes only Vitis rotundifolia.

Vine Traits

Carlos is one of the most widely planted muscadine cultivars. It has self-fertile flowers and is a highly vigorous and productive vine. Clusters are loosely compact and consist of bronze round berries that average only 5 grams in weight. They tend to ripen uniformly from August to October. They also are relatively cold hardy, and their buds will increase in hardiness over the winter months, surviving down to -21.5˚C.


Carlos has intermediate tolerance to bitter rot (Greeneria uvicola (Berk. & M.A. Curtis) Punith.), powdery mildew (Erysiphe necator (Schw.) Burr.), and angular leaf spot (Mycosphaerella angulata Jenkins). However, it is susceptible to black rot (Phyllosticta ampelicida (Engelm.) Aa), leaf rust (Phakopsora muscadiniae Buriticá), and crown gall (Agrobacterium tumefaciens). Additionally, they may develop Pierce’s disease (Xylella fastidiosa subsp. fastidiosa Wells et al.) in high pressure areas.

Vineyard Considerations

Carlos vines will perform well in USDA cold hardiness zones 7 through 10. They are often trained to either a single wire bilateral cordon or a Geneva double curtain with two bilateral cordons. They should be spaced 12 to 20 feet between vines and 10 to 12 feet between rows, and they should be spur pruned.


Due to their smaller size, wet stem scar, and short storage capacity, Carlos berries have limited value for fresh market. Though, they are widely used for juice and wine production, allowing for their suitability for mechanical harvest. Juice made from Carlos has been scored higher than commercial juices for flavor, but it was rated as slightly too intense in muscadine flavor and too tart. It does, however, have a preferable soluble solid to acid ratio.


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Article Submitted: March 09, 2023
Article Updated: