Spring is about ready to bust around here; so it’s time for part II of my grafting adventure. It seemed like a perfect day. It rained earlier followed by cool temperatures. All trees are full with buds. Perfect. Let’s get started.
Part I occurred last month when buds were clipped from the trees that will be grafted (nectarine, peach, and apple a bit later). The “buds” (twigs actually) were placed in Ziploc bags with a bit of moisture and stored in the refrigerator out in the garage. Nice and cold. Today, I sterilized a straight razor blade and pruning shears. Fresh cuts were made to the buds. The trunk of each tree was then studied to determine the best location for the grafting to enhance the espalier. The straight razor blade was used to carve a “T” in the bark. The bark was peeled back and the bud was inserted. The bark was then closed up over the bud.
Courtesy: Sonoma County Go Local
Green garden tape was used to secure the graft by wrapping and tying it around the surgery. The example above shows string being used to close the wound. I’ve heard of using tar, wax, and even aluminum foil. I just used the stuff I had. I’m hoping for the best; but if the grafts don’t take I can always try again and alter the method. My concerns are with almost everything…the cut, the bud, the tape. Everything. I’m completely nervous about this new thing I’m learning.
Grafts were made on the Fantasia Nectarine (3), the O’Henry Peach (2), and the Granny Smith Apple (1). The best results will be grafts that thrive. The worst result will be that I’ve killed my trees.