Benchgraft Timing?

Mike HughesMarch 11, 2014

I should have my rootstock in a week and will make my first grafting attempts. My question is when to plant out my benchgrafts? I really don't have any access to cold storage so, I was planning on planting them out as soon as I graft them. It sounds like some people like to allow benchgarfts to callus over before planting them. I don't understand if they are put into cold storage to allow the graft to take or to wait for ideal planting conditions. The weather is always unpredictable this time of year. Will fresh benchgrafts tolerate frost or even a hard freeze?

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I believe that most people who delay transplanting their bench-grafted plants do so in order to aleviate some of the stress placed upon the plant. You can probably transplant right away if the weather is not extremely cold and be successful, but I prefer to delay the transplant until the grafts have taken. I have done it both ways with success.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2014 at 7:16AM
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my experience is that you are much better off planting the rootstalks when they arrive and keep the scions in the fridge in a sealed bag with a 'damp' paper towel in the bag as well, and graft when the buds start to open on the rootstalks. Kids, pets, birds all play a roll in success, plus a late graft just hits the ground running.

Bench grafting is easier then grafting in the field, but field is not very hard. Just practice grafting on random tree branches in the meantime. Cut and graft back to itself.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2014 at 9:50PM
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Mike Hughes

Thanks for the replies. I have around 2200 rootstocks coming and have started about 1000 Antonovka seedlings. I will try to bench graft around 1500, plant everything and see about trying bud grafting in the summer. It's time to field test my textbook knowledge. I will try to make some post documenting the progress.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2014 at 10:47PM
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