Benchgraft - from grafting to garden

I’m sorry to have to post this but my research seems to come up with conflicting information.

I may try my first benchgrafts this year and had literally an armload of pruned wood to practice the whip and tongue graft this winter. I think I’ve got it. I have also prepared a growout garden just for them.

My question is specifically from the time that I graft to placing them in the garden. I’ve seen to store them indoors for 2-3 weeks before planting them outside? Don’t they die? I am assuming for now that if you keep them moist they will be fine for 3 weeks. I just can’t get my head around that one.

I’ve seen video that says to store them (roots moist) between 36 and 42 degrees and then the next video says between 60 and 70 degrees? I could do either as I have a cool basement and a warm house. (and colder garage)

I’ve seen “keep them in the dark”?

I could also plant them in pots and keep them in the house except that I think that i would want to shake them bareroot again and might harm them.

I know that opinions vary and that all of the methods might work but I’m a computer guy and in that line of work there is usually one best way.
So maybe I could phrase my question as a vote?

36-42 degrees or 60 to 70 degrees?
Stored moist in plastic bag / tupperware or pot them up?
2- 3 weeks until it gets sure of no frost/freezing.

Thanks for any info that you provide.

Don’t know what video you have watched. It does not sound like the two video are talking about same thing.

I graft mine (one hundred plus per year) one day, placing them in water as soon as I graft them, then plant in my nursery the next day. I average 95 percent success. I find it a waste of time planting in pots and then planting in a nursery.

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I got my start bench-grafting because I had attended a class, where they had scions and rootstocks, in mid-March in Wisconsin. That meant things pretty much had to go in pots, as outside temps were going below freezing at night, at least sometimes, for another month or more.

So I potted because of weather. I could also see potting to keep the plants away from wildlife, and/or to be better able to “baby” them.

In any event, I’d IDEALLY wait on rootstock growth, graft when leaves are beginning to just open, and pot or plant at that time. No need to hide stuff away in the dark or at various temps in most cases, yes it can be done and may improve your take % somewhat, but if it is just going to stress you as a newbie (and I understand, totally) then graft it and stick it someplace in dirt. Or, as Womble does, give it an overnight in water to maximize rootstock hydration, then plant it.

Thanks for the advice. My concern is that it is still expected to be cold. We have predicted a low of 23 Fri/Sat.

Anyway, I panicked and potted them. I’ll let them start to push and then graft. I should have them in a frost free garden about the first week of May.

And yes my Plums and Peaches are frozen this year. Oh well.

I’m going to grow them for a year in the spot that I had a little garden last year.

In buckets

I’ll also grow out some seedlings that I started.

The seedlings will either get grafted or not, but either way they will end up in fence rows for deer food.