2017 Grafting Thread


Anyone else tally up their success rate? It could still change a bit, but most of my results are in (persimmons aside).

Whip grafts -The bigger the diameter the harder they are to graft

Here’s my late-season bench graft, using dormant M111 that had been in the fridge for two months and scion wood from a Mississippi seedling apple named Umfress, which had been in the fridge for four months. I did the graft on June 17, only eight days ago.

Here’s another Mississippi apple, the Captain Davis. Same storage conditions and grafting date as above.

We will see how much growth these put on before fall.




Well I decided to crunch the numbers just for you, they are just preliminary at this point as there are many still unknown or recently grafted so I counted those as fails until they actually take. I also rounded down. Around a 1,000 grafts this year, I don’t want to see another graft again for at least a year.

70% Apple
20% Stone
50% Cherry
65% Pear


I learned something this year, maybe not new to most well established grafters but new to me. I had a scion of Smokehouse worked onto a Sask. Prairie Sun apple last year. In the summer it grew to about three feet long and this spring it never leafed out yet the branch looked alive. All my other Smokehouse in the yard had leafed out, the tree this one was grafted to had flowered and set fruit, still no growth from the Smokehouse scion, so I cut it back by 1/2 and lo and behold a week later the buds woke up and started to push. Not sure if they would have anyway, but it is something for me to think about next year.


70% on ten apple T buds. That’s low. I don’t know what went wrong.

100% on 4 apple splice grafts

60% on bark grafts of nectarine

90% on apricot and nectarine T buds

80% on peach and nectarine splice grafts.


I need to do a better job next year keeping track of my grafts…


I grafted to new rootstocks, most of which I first potted and grafted to after leaves started pushing. Mostly splice & cleft grafts, but also some side grafts on peaches

Apricots: 2/12 - 17%

Peaches/Nectarines: 10/34 - 29%

Cherries: 15/25 - 60%

Plums: 9/11 - 82%

Apples: 39/42 - 93%

Pears: 3/3 - 100%

My previous grafting instruction had been to just wrap graft with parafilm, but the expertise of this forum taught me to wrap with stronger tape. I used electricians tape over parafilm, and noticed higher percentages of takes compared to last year. I also started wrapping scion with parafilm on peaches, apricots, & cherries and some others, but had some buds die after getting hung up in the parafilm. After seeing that I slit parafilm after the buds started waking up, but found that to be dangerous and killed a lot of peaches and cherries when the sudden change in humidity (?) did in the developing bud. After deciding that was a bad technique, I ended up dipping in wax melted in hot water in an insulated mug as suggested on this forum, and that worked really well. Thanks, helpful wise people.


Last summer I “parked” four apple scion on a mountain ash tree in my yard. They looked happy for the summer, and I was able to get some bud grafts from them later, but none on the mountain ash survived the winter. This spring I parked a couple pears on the same tree, and they are slowly coming to life. I expect they’ll probably be winter casualties also.


I wonder if anyone else has noticed this. Maybe it’s what caused a few of my plums to fail. I just figured I’d loosened the graft too much.


It could just be that the graft failed. It wasn’t obvious until the scion tissue was exposed to the air.

Exposing the buds on a successful graft probably won’t hurt anything. Then again maybe the union was damaged while exposing the buds.


That’s good to know, as I’m about to mess with some bud grafts in the same way. For the earlier batch, I cut parafilm on all 25 of the cherries, and most did grow fine. I tried that on about 5 peaches which were looking promising, and they all died. The later peach grafts which I waxed had a higher incidence of continued growth if they started at all. My sample sizes are small, and I’m just guessing at interpretations as I’m new at this whole grafting thing.


My attempts to help buds out of parafilm did more harm than good. They are pretty good at releasing themselves.



Broke bud yesterday. Grainger Shagbark Hickory on Pecan. Grafted on May 18th.


Impressive hickory work.


I’ve not really paid much attention to my grafts the last month. But yesterday I noticed that most have really grown like gangbusters. Although I didn’t graft as much this spring it’s been a very successful grafting season.


Yes! In my mind hickory grafting = PhD in grafting.


I tried grafting a Harrow Sweet to an existing pear tree this spring. This is on a branch I just cut back but did not eliminate the shoots below the graft point. The graft looked like it was taking, but then we had our freak late snow storm. Since then the scion has pretty much been on hold, while the rest of the tree has been growing. The buds on the scion look alive just not doing anything.

Just wonder if cutting off the side shoots below the graft at this point might make it wake up. Any thoughts?


Cutting the side branches off might force the scion into growing. A less risky way would be to reduce the side branches to just a couple of buds. If your scion fails your stock can generate new grafting would for later attempts. When my grafts get 2-3" I cut everything off that is not wanted.