Attempted some bench grafts this afternoon. Chestnut crab, Pai Li pear, Tennosui pear, as well as a few scions from trees I have. Mostly cleft grafts, though I also did a splice and a saddle with a Zenport-type grafting tool. The tool cut fat scions pretty well, but tended to crush smaller pear wood. Many of the clefts were quite a bit rougher than I’d like, but I strove, to the best of my very limited ability, for good compression and at least some cambial contact—so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that at least one from each variety can make it. My first victim (cleft grafted end of February) continues to grow, so maybe there’s some small measure of hope for these.
The Tennosui scion, curiously, was starting to swell its lowest bud—actually showing some green—despite the fact it’s been in my refrigerator (which runs at around 35F) for a few weeks. Don’t figure that bodes well, but I went ahead and grafted it anyway. The upper buds seemed more asleep, so maybe there’s a better chance for the graft that I got out of the top of the scion. If not, there’s always “some other spring”!