The Kerr Center has their Tomato Grafting data listed
Here is a link that might be useful: Tomato Grafting Trial
Thanks for posting the link. I like to read the results of any actual experience with grafting. The results were very similar to what I would expect with the rootstock they used. I'm going to try Maxifort, Emperador and He-Man. I've also read where there has been some good results using certain eggplant varieties as rootstock. A common one is EG-203. I feel the results from grafting tomatoes will continue to improve as better rootstock is developed and as more growers become experienced at doing it. And develop practices that will promote the maximum results from grafted stock. If I'm able to get mine in the ground this year I will post results. I plan to keep good records and also take several pictures. Jay
Jay do you have a source for reasonably priced seeds for rootstock? I considered trying to graft this year but the cost of seeds made me pass out.
At the present that is the main drawback to grafting. And why so many have tried to use other hybrids like Celebrity, cherry types ect as rootstocks. The results I've seen from using them hasn't been as good. Others have used certain egg plant varieties with better results. I received several seeds of one rootstock to try. Bought the other 2. If and when I find a rootstock I really like then I will pursue a way to find it cheaper. Don't think they will ever be cheap but maybe save a few dollars. Jay
Jay, okay here's another question. Let's say I splurged on rootstock seeds one year. What if I let one or two of those seeds grow to maturity, set fruit, and saved the seeds from that? Could I use that seed to produce rootstock the following year? Or would I have to purchase new seed each year? Thanks! Jo
I'm not Jay, but I the rootstock that I have seen is hybrid.
Soonergrandma what does that mean? If I plant a hybrid seed will I get the same stock? Sorry for the really basic question but I googled inexpertly and can't find an answer.
I have a black thumb and I suspect I have killed all of my wintersown containers. :(
I am almost ready to give up and just grow wildflowers.
I don't know how well I can explain this, but an hybrid plant is produced when two plants with differing traits are bred. This is normally done so that the seed produced will have the best traits from both parents. The seed from that cross will grow a desirable plant, with good fruit. However, if you try to save seed from the fruit of the new plant, it will not grow true to it's parent. The first generation frequently is a strong plant and has what is described as 'hybrid vigor'. This plant would be an F1 Hybrid. I know that Johnny's sells Maxifort, Emperdaor, and Beaufort rootstock and they are all shown as F1 hybrids.
I have bought seeds of Solanum torvum (Turkey Berry)as a rootstock for eggplant. I want to this try rootstock for tomatoes as well, but not sure it will have any success with toms. Wiki says grafted plants are very vigorous and tolerate diseases affecting the root system, thus allowing the crop to continue for a second year. This year is going to be years of R&D. -Chandra
Chandra, I would love to grow good eggplant so I hope your experiment works. I have to keep mine covered until they are strong enough to withstand the flea beetles but they never become big strong plants. The only person I know here that raises nice eggplant sprays insecticide on his plants and I don't want to do that. R&D is what makes gardening more fun.
I've been fairly sucessful grafting Brandywine, Trust and Betterboy using Maxifort as a root stock. I also like to root suckers for my hydro garden and this works well. What I have not been able to do is start a Maxifort from rooting a sucker. They just will not put forth roots, as will virtually any plant I have tried this with. Anyone have any idea why Maxi suckers will not root?
Last year I planted cuttings (pruned branches) of the tomato with some flowers left on it, they rooted very well and even though those flowers drooped but soon it produced new blooms and three green tomatoes then frost hit... I think planting tomato cuttings will produce fruits much early than seeds. Question is where to get cutting before seed starting? Is there is anyway to preserve tomato cuttings from this year to next year?
You can produce many rootstocks from one Maxifort plant by vegetative propagation provided seed co. won't have patent restriction... this one of the weird thought! -Chandra
I haven't been online much the last few days. Have been busy and when I have dropped by I didn't see the last posts to this thread. I will add what little information I have.
Carol answered the hybrid question well. When talking about hybrids if you plant the first cross which is usually labeled F1 you will get fruit of all the same type, flavor, color, ect. If you save seeds from the F1 fruit they will vary in shape, color, type, ect. To keep it simple if you save seeds from F1 hybrid rootstock you likely won't see the same results.
I will be interested in your results. I usually don't have any problem raising nice eggplant here but you never know when things might change.
Interested in more information on your experience grafting. I had never heard about Maxifort not rooting. The draw back I've read about trying to root suckers or vegative propagation is getting one started with the right size of stem to graft the scion onto. Both stems need to be very close to the same diameter. That is why those who graft a lot plant seeds of both rootstock and scion every 2-5 days so they will have plants of the right size to graft. I suppose with experimentation a person could perfect a way to have the stems the same size at the correct time to graft. I have never heard of anyone doing it successfully though. I will ask at a place where I chat some and see if anyone there has heard of or experienced the problem with Beaufort not rooting. Jay
Thank you Carol and Jay. I can't see coughing up that kind of change every year to experiment in grating, so IF we stay here and I want to grow anything that's not nematode resistant, I will turn to containers. It will be far cheaper.
So, no decision has yet been made on staying or going?
No. It's frustrating.
Land up here on this hill that we love is pricey and hard to find. One acre lots run 100k and up. We had a nearby lot and a house plan picked out, and then the builder came to look at the lot and told us that due to the slope etc it would cost tens of thousands of dollars more in lot prep alone than we were originally quoted.
So we are back to square one and starting to lean towards just staying here and maybe fixing it up a little. We live in a small ranch on a hill covered with multi million dollar mansions though, so investing too much in the house doesn't make sense, as our value is all in the land because of the area.
I have done everything possible to win the nematode fight this time, including adding organic matter, actinovate, and chitin, and growing nematode resistant variaties, so hopefully my garden will be more productive this year.
I am happy here, so I don't mind staying.
I understand your decision on grafting. It is like anything with gardening. A personal decision. I'm still in the experimental phase myself. My thought is if I look at the price of a plant if I buy them, the cost I have in a plant I grow myself especially the water and then have them die when a 2-3 months old just when they start setting fruit heavily, that if I can achieve increased production and less plant loss I can offset the cost of rootstock seeds. Whether this is the case only actual growing and results will either prove or disprove it. And also I hope and feel that with experimentation and time I will be able to find cheaper rootstock. In the future I plan to try some alternatives and compare results. This year I felt I should start with proven suggested varieties and develop a base line to compare too. If I use seeds I save myself as the scion source the rootstock cost will add approx. 40 cents per plant to the cost. By the time a plant is setting heavy my figures show if I grow it I have between 2-3 dollars in it including everything. So if 40 cents can save my 2-3 dollar investment then it makes sense to me. If I buy a 4 inch potted plant they can cost anywhere from 3-5 dollars here. If not then I will look at other methods to increase production and survivability rates. In the end results will be the determining factor.
I understand your frustration about finding a place and possibly moving. I'm going through the same thing right now. In fact I will be leaving to go look at some places shortly. Finding a rural property that you like and that you feel would resell if you ever needed too is a hard to find. And don't last long even here in our remote area that is sparsely populated. I thought I had found my "perfect place" this last week. Was waiting for the real estate agent to get the keys from the bank as it was a repossessed property. Friday when I was hoping to finally get an inside look at the house I got a call from the agent and he said that the bank had notified him that it would never be listed as someone had put a contract on it. So the agent never even got the keys to the property and never even listed it. He had just told me in advance it was going to be available soon. Those that are available usually have reasons they are. So although there is supposed to be a depression it is hard to find a rural property. Now every agent I've talked too will beg you to consider a town property. They have lots of them. I hope to decide this week for sure what I will do. I'm down to the properties I will look at today, making an offer on one 17 miles from me and staying where I'm at. Hopefully something will work out for you. And after my employer changing their mind about the relocation incentive this week I'm not as serious as I was anyway. Jay
Elkwc: Guess what! My Maxi suckers have tiny roots this morning. I guess I just wasn't patient enough. I'm going to let them develop a little more and then see what happens when I graft them to Brandywine. I think i will be successful. Realize that this not practical for large scale , but for a hobbyist will probably be ok. I also grafted Betterboy scion to Maxifort suckers. After a week or so, the BB scions are looking very good but no rooting yet. Patience. I am surprised that I have had my best results by grafting Brandywine scions to Maxifort suckers and simply placing in a Coke bottle. If they root I will consider this a success...
Jo, So glad I found this conversation, although I'm not in Okla. I am practicing grafting on heirloom tomatoes this year for the first time in NC, because of disease issues, and also the difficulty in doing good crop rotation, since most of my garden is devoted to solanaceous vegetables.
Regarding the price of rootstock seed in bulk, you can find small amounts of rootstock seed and clips for sale for home gardeners at betterheirlooms website. If you start tomatoes from seed, it's really not too much trouble to do the extra step of grafting.
My seedlings are still incredibly small, and they have been in the ground for more than a month! but it has been a really cool spring here, and I planted them in some pretty marginal soil.
loubou -- I'd be really interested in hearing more about your success with grafting from rootstock suckers -- that could be a great way to get around the high price of rootstock. How do you do it? Please keep us posted.
I don't know hardly anything about grafting. Just wanted to put that out there first! LOL! But if you can graft tomatoes to eggplant rootstock, could you graft them to native Solanum rootstocks? I would assume they have resistance to the nematodes.