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Apple Clone

Posted by Galasoneth 8b (My Page) on
Wed, Jan 30, 13 at 14:55

I am wanting to clone my apple tree. I dont know what kind of tree, though I know they are not delicious reds or green apples, or what type of root stock. The idea im having is to propagate some cuttings from the roots of the tree for my root stock and cuttings from the top of the tree for the apple tree. Then, once they are old enough, graft them together. I understand its not as simple as each cutting has its own set of challenges but I have been reading and have not really seen anyone cloning a tree this way.




Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Apple Clone

Hi Jeremiah - you might want to try this question on the Fruit and Orchards Forum. There are some real fruit experts over there.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fruit and Orchards

RE: Apple Clone

We need to know a few things to be able to better guide you and/or answer questions. Do you know if your tree is grafted? If so, are you completely satisfied with the characteristics of its rootstock? If you are, are the conditions where you want a new tree similar to the conditions where the original tree is growing? If the answer to all of these questions is yes, then doing as you propose (creating a new rootstock from the original rootstock and obtaining a scion from the same tree) sounds perfectly fine.

I am a little concerned that I may be missing something in your questions. The reason I'm wondering, is because what you propose seems somewhat common.

A second concern I have is whether the original rootstock (assuming the original tree is grafted) is necessarily the best choice. Now, it very well may be, and if you are happy with it, that's fine. But, do realize that you have the opportunity to choose a rootstock that may better meet your needs than the current one does.

RE: Apple Clone


I do not know if the tree is grafted. I am guessing yes since it is no more then 10' tall. Though base of the tree is about 10" wide and I dont see a pronounced graft ring as you do on some. I love the tree and it does great in its current location. I got about 2 gal of apple jax from it this year and mmm so yummy.

So far my only resource for this research has been the internet. Looking to buy a book on propagation, up for recommendations as I have been looking at the American Horticultural Society Plant Propagation.

I have been looking around on the internet and have not been able to find a supplier of root stock that is not wholesale. Been thinking of trading some on the forums here though not sure how if feel about the sources.

RE: Apple Clone

I have been reading and have not really seen anyone cloning a tree this way.

==>> if i understand you correctly.. you cant find any reference to 'grafting' of fruit??? that is surprising...

since you seem to have a time frame that stretches into years .. i would suggest that you harvest seed from your apples.. learn to grow the trees to pencil size.. in pots ...

and then use those for understock ... should take 2 to 4 years ...

the fruit forum peeps have many mail order sources .. for understock.. they can NOT all be wholesale ...

the piece you cut off your tree is called 'scion' ... see link for info ... including youtube ...

i wish you luck


Here is a link that might be useful: 71 thousand sites ...

RE: Apple Clone


Let me clarify "have not really seen anyone clone a tree this way". I have seen lots of videos on scion propagation and a few on propagating from root stock. I have just not seen anyone specifically clone a tree using the same root stock and scions from the same tree.

thanks for all the great info

RE: Apple Clone

man.. your words mess me up ...

cloning .... is simply an exact duplication

grafting is one way of duplicating ...

apple must be grafted onto apple ... in simplest terms ...

i just dont understand this part: I have just not seen anyone specifically clone a tree using the same root stock and scions from the same tree.

and interchanging a few of my words...:
I have just not seen anyone specifically 'graft' a tree using the same root stock and scions from the same tree.

==>> why is imperative to use the roots of that specific tree????

roots is roots.. its the apple/fruit that we want.. in your words.. its the apple.. the fruit itself we want to clone.. not the roots .. any apple roots [within certain bounds] will do ...

all this said.. to grow the root stock.. to graftable size.. then graft.. and grow to fruit bearing age.. 5 to 10 years..

why not just mail order a tree .. why are your apples so distinctly yummy ... and cut your time down to 3 or 4 years.. until you get an apple???

saying it another way.. the roots can not.. and will not change the apple itself.. they are irrelevant.. except as a mechanism for structure and nutrients..

again.. i dont understand why you are fixated on them ...

i am trying to get you to where you need to be.. w/o writing a thesis on the process ...


RE: Apple Clone

"roots is roots...any apple roots [within certain bounds] will do."

That statement couldn't be more wrong. Rootstock determines or influences:

1. ultimate size of your tree
2. growth rate
3. amount and complexity of maintenance
4. ease of harvest
5. productivity
6. preciosity
7. senescence
8. hardiness
9. adaptation to different soils and soil conditions
10. drought tolerance
11. how well the tree will be anchored
12. whether the tree will need permanent or temporary support (not just how well it's anchored)
13. fruit size
14. resistance to certain diseases
15. resistance to certain pests
15. rootstock and scion graft compatibility
16. tendency to sucker
17. and I'm sure I'm leaving off at least something.

So unless none of those things are important, selecting the right rootstock is VERY important!

"i would suggest that you harvest seed from your apples"

That would likely serve little purpose here. One would end up with a non-dwarfing rootstock with probably none of the many advantages offered by commercial rootstocks.

A few retail suppliers or apple rootstock:

Boyer Nurseries & Orchards, Inc. - multiple types of fruit trees and plants and nut trees - limited, excellent G.WD. rating -

Grandpa's Orchard, LLC - affiliated with Moser Fruit Tree Sales, Inc. - rootstocks and various types of fruit trees and plants - excellent G.WD. rating - but not taking orders right now -

I bet there are quite a few others, but I cannot think of anyone else right now. Also, you might be able to get rootstock from some member of the Fruit and Orchards Forum.

Since it does sound likely that your original tree was cloned (the term commonly used, especially by many fruit peeps, for this situation) using a rootstock (given it's size and the fact that it produces good quality apples), the original tree might be a good bet for rootstock.

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