How to make fruit grafts
The grafting technique is a form of multiplication or reproduction in fruit trees and is performed through the cutting of a branch to insert it later in another tree. But how to graft fruit trees correctly?
There are different types of grafts whose use depends on the objective you want to achieve with such a process. For example, there are grafts that are used to change a variety tree or to rejuvenate a tree with many years of age.
There is also the possibility of performing multiple grafts consisting of grafting more than one yolk or barb on the same pattern. In this way, you can get an apple tree with different varieties of apples or a rose bush with flowers of different colors.
First of all, let’s define the concept of grafting and the concept of pattern:
- Graft: piece of stem or bud that is fixed to the pattern with the aim of giving leaves, stems, flowers and fruits.
- Pattern: plant that receives the graft.
With this video of 10 and a half minutes you will better understand how a graft is performed correctly. Alberto Riveiro, a farmer with a lot of experience teaches us how to graft a plum and an apple tree.
Grafting fruit trees: steps to follow
There are different types of grafts, such as the double slit graft that we will talk about later, but in a generic way we will say that the steps to follow in any graft of fruit trees is as follows:
- Cut the branch at the same time as it begins to shoot with an approximate angle of 45 degrees.
- Pair or join the two cut branches with the help of insulating tape or graft tape. They must be put together tightly but without going over us since we could cut off the circulation of the branches.
- We must cover the graft with a paper bag to protect it from rain, insects or excessive sunlight.
- We will let the branches grow together (we will wait, approximately, 3-4 weeks).
- The moment we see that the branches have grown together, we will remove the paper bag, the rubbers and the graft tape so that the branch grows by itself.
In this interesting 11-minute video you can see how several grafts are performed, including a double slit graft that has no waste.
Double Cleft Graft
It is one of the oldest and most used grafts by horticulturists. Its usual use is to change the variety of the tree or rejuvenate old trees.
It is normal to apply this graft on small trees whose trunk diameter does not exceed 10 centimeters and is usually done during the winter in deciduous trees, mostly.
For its realization we will follow the following steps:
- Prepare two spikes with a bezel on both sides.
- We make a straight and clean cut to the standard tree, in addition to a longitudinal cut.
- The two spikes are inserted, one on each side of the slit. They will need to fit correctly so that their outer cortexes contact the pattern’s cortex.
Everything is tied and not untied until the buds have sprouted and measure between 5 and 10 centimeters.
If you still have doubts or simply want to learn more about grafts I recommend these two books, Grafts and reproduction techniques and All grafting methods explained step by step that will help you to be an expert in grafting fruit trees
Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.