poor success grafting persimmons
I grafted at least 41 stems (mostly one stem per tree but a few with two or three stems per tree) to scions from six different persimmons this year between April 3 and May 5. Of the 41 I recorded 27 were kakis and 14 were virginianas, all grafted onto native seedlings in my pastures except for 2 potted virginianas. Only 3 of the 41, one of each of the three virginianas, all in the pasture, are growing now, although one or two kakis are still green when I scratch the bark but without any growth or bud swell. The first 18 grafts I did were whip and tongue. All of those failed, although some grew really nicely for about a week, some even with a little shoot extension, before shriveling up and dying. (About three years ago I whip and tongue grafted some virginianas and had a little success with that, and they're mostly doing fine still.) The last 23 grafts I did this year (after April 18) were all bark grafts. Several of those had buds that swelled, turned green, and lengthened out a little before drying up and dying. Each of the varieties I grafted at least made it that far on at least one stem. I used David Osborn's bark grafting method from his online article for Quality Whitetails except I didn't use parafilm and I used pine rosin to seal the cut tip. I had pretty good success using the same method with a few pears this year. One of the 3 virginianas that's growing looks really vigorous: a foot or two of new growth and the stem above the graft is even larger in diameter than the stem of the stock right below it. The other 2 virginianas look really weak with really small leaves and probably not even an inch of shoot extension, but they're hanging in there.
So that's my long story. Is there better hope for me? Should it tell me anything that so many of my grafts started to grow and then dried up? I'd much rather not buy specialty products like parafilm, but maybe it's better than spending $35 or more per tree. Would parafilm make that much of a difference? Is there any other way to achieve better success?