Grafting Propagation: A Very Popular Topic!
It is very popular topic among gardeners and horticulturists. Grafting is one of the most common methods of propagating plants. There are many different kinds of grafts such as leaf, root, stem, branch and flower.
Most of them are not only useful but they have their own advantages and disadvantages. Some varieties of flowering plants can be grafted with other varieties of flowers or even trees. They usually grow better when grown together.
The best way to propagate your plants is through grafting. You can use any kind of plant material including leaves, roots, stems, bark strips and even flowers. The main thing is that it must be compatible with the parent plant.
Types Of Grafting: Leaf Grafting
Leaf grafting is the method of growing new plants from existing ones. It involves taking a leaf off a larger plant and attaching it to another smaller one. The smaller one will eventually grow into a whole new plant.
You can also use any part of a stem, root or even a flower with this method.
There are two main types of leaf grafting: cleft and approach grafting. Cleft grafting is used to join two plants together and is perfect for adding fruit trees or flowers to your garden. This is done by cutting a Y incision, or cleft, into the stalk of the plant.
Another plant stem with the leaves that you want to add is inserted into the cleft. The cut stalk then heals over and grows with the new stem. The approach grafting method is used to add onto the branches of an existing plant and is most commonly used for flowers. The plant is cut and a new branch with a bud is attached to it. The cut then heals over and the bud begins to grow out. This method is also used for propagating fruit trees.
Types Of Grafting: Root Grafting
Root grafting is one of the most common types of grafting. It is done by taking a rootstock from one plant and joining it to the stem of another plant. Since the plants are technically different the roots of one plant can’t take over the other plant.
It is important to note that root grafting can be done only on certain varieties of plants and not all of them.
Three types of root grafting are: approach, in-vicinity and under-grafting. In approach grafting, the top parts of both the plants are cut and then joined together. In-vicinity grafting involves putting the stem of one plant into the ground just next to the roots of another.
Under-grafting is similar to approach grafting but the lower portion is joined together instead of the upper portion.
Strategies For Successful Grafting
There are many places where you should make the incision to join both plants. The first one is at the base of the plant. The stem of the root stock should be cut into two at a 45-degree angle.
The bottom part is the root and the top part is the stem. The other place where an incision can be made is just below a leaf. The leaf may or may not be joined depending on what type of leaf it is. If it’s a compound leaf then it should be left alone.
You can also make incisions in between the nodes of the stem. Always remember to make your cuts at a 45-degree angle. The best time to do this is in early spring or even late fall.
If you do it in the fall then you will have to protect the incision from any kind of frost damage.
When preparing the plant that you want to add, cut it at a similar angle as the plant you are grafting to it. The leaf in the same place as it was in the plant. Then you will have to carve out a notch for it to fit into.
You can also graft plants by burying part of one underground and then adding the other plant onto it. Doing this will take longer for the two plants to grow together so it’s best to do it early in the season.
In budding, a small part of the plant is cut and a bud is taken off to be grafted onto another plant. It is much easier than other forms of grafting because it involves very little cutting.
Be careful when you are performing any kind of grafting because if you do it wrong then both plants will die and you will have to start over again.
Aftercare And Other Things To Consider When Grafting
Always keep the plants or scions well hydrated so they will take easily. It may be helpful to dip the cut surfaces in a rooting hormone before you join them together. The plants should be kept in a shady area until they are healed and producing their own chlorophyll.
It is also a good idea to keep the area moist since plants do not like to dry out. Just make sure not to over water.
There are many factors that will influence the success rate of your grafting so here are some other things to remember:
Choose the best time of year to do it (early spring or late fall).
Make sure neither plant is in high stress as this can cause failure.
Make sure the plants are compatible to each other.
Keep the area shaded until they start to grow on their own.
If the grafting is done properly then after a few weeks you should see signs of new growth. Sometimes it is hard to see, but if you look closely, there will be a tiny new leaf forming where you made the cut. It should take about 3-5 years for the plant to completely heal and start growing strong again.
Grafting is a very useful skill to know if you want to start your own garden because it will ensure that your plants will grow even if they get a disease or become weak. It also allows you to plant varieties that would normally wouldn’t grow in your area.
You should practice on some different kinds of plants before you implement the knowledge on any of your own. It will take a few tries before you get the hang of it but once you do, you will be able to save any plant that is sick or dying.
That about covers grafting in a nutshell. I hope you have enjoyed this guide and that you will put your new knowledge to good use. Happy gardening!
Some Examples Of Plant/Tree Grafting
Here are some examples of plant and tree grafting and how they can affect the plant or tree. On the left you will see a photo of a normal tree that has not been grafted. On the right you will see a photo of a grafted tree.
As you can see the differences are quite dramatic.
Sources & references used in this article:
Forest fragmentation effects on patch occupancy and population viability of herbaceous plant species by O Honnay, H Jacquemyn, B Bossuyt… – New Phytologist, 2005 – Wiley Online Library
Budding and grafting of the walnut (Juglans regia L.) and their effectiveness in Bulgaria by S Gandev – Bulgarian Journal of Agricultural Science, 2007 – agrojournal.org
Plant propagation: Principles and practice by HT Hartmann, DE Kester – Soil Science, 1963 – journals.lww.com
Landscape fragmentation and the viability of plant populations by O Eriksson, J Ehrlén – SPECIAL PUBLICATION-BRITISH …, 2001 – books.google.com
Grafting and budding: A practical guide for fruit and nut plants and ornamentals by WJ Lewis, DME Alexander – 2008 – books.google.com
Effect of budding performed by hand and with manual grafting unit on kiwifruit propagation in the field by H Celık, H Zengınbal, M Ozcan – 2006 – researchgate.net