What Is Grafting Trees?

Tree grafting is simply joining two trees together. The top graft is known as the scion and the lower graft is known as the understock. The concept of being able to do this is incredible when you consider that you can take one type of tree and graft it to another. Furthermore, you can perform multiple grafts and produce an apple tree with several varieties or a flowering shrub with several colors of flowers.

Reasons to Graft:

Not all plants can be grafted. Basically, only plants that are closely related botanically form a good graft union. Some of the reasons for grafting include:

* Some varieties do not come true from seeds.

* Some varieties are difficult or impossible to reproduce from cuttings or other propagation techniques.

* A method to change one tree to another variety.

* A method of using a root system better adapted to a soil or climate and grafting the desired tree to that lower trunk.

* Curiosity – It would be interesting to give it a try and see what happens.

What Is Grafting Trees?

What can be Grafted:

Trees and plants of the same botanical genius and species can usually be grafted even if they are of a different variety. Most varieties of a particular fruit or flowering species are interchangeable and can be grafted. There are exceptions where plants of different genera can be successfully grafted but it is less successful. In summary, plants of different families cannot be successfully grafted.

Grafting Techniques: There are basically two types of grafting techniques: 1- Grafting two parts that are nearly the same size 2- Grafting two parts where one is much larger than the other.

When making a successful graft the important steps are:

1- Preparing the stock and scion – The cuts made in both the stock and scion need to match as close as possible to fit like a puzzle. 2- Cutting the Stock 3- Cutting the Scion 4- Fitting the Stock & Scion – These need to be fitting as close and tightly as possible to form a good bond. 5- Wrapping the Graft – Wrap the graft to keep it from drying out. 6- Waxing – Cover the wrapped area with wax to help in protecting the graft.

Note: Once the graft begins to grow it must be given some attention. During the first season do not prune the branches that grow to give them the chance to really take off.

Note: The best time to graft is in the spring just as growth begins.