Bridge Graft Question

Just discovered I need to do a bridge graft ASAP on a one inch diameter young apple tree. Is one bridge graft enough for this small diameter?

Yes but I would do as many as you can fit so you will up the odds of success. The last bridge graft like that I put 4 on and I think 2 took.

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It doesn’t look like we’ve had a detailed conversation on Bridge Grafting anywhere on this site. I’m wondering if people have experiences/techniques/recourses they can share. I have some pretty serious damage on my Nadia and am going to take scion but am also going to see if I can bridge graft it to save the tree I have. I’m assuming bridge grafting needs to happen when normal grafting does, but I might try an earlier round too.

Do you already know this video?

I have an apple tree with a very low damage. In that circumstance an inarch graft seems to be the right choice. Thats when you essentially plant another tree besides the damaged tree and graft its stem into the damaged tree right above the damage. Its like a bridge graft “on its own roots”.

Until now my tree holds its own but it isnt really able to close the damage. I am thinking about an inarch graft to help the tree.


I hadn’t seen that video. It’s helpful. Maybe inarching is the way to go for my tree.

I have another bridge graft question and this seems a good place to put it. I’ve read a lot about how to do it, and I have two grafts done, but now I’m wondering how to manage the grafted piece. Is it best to remove the leaves or does the piece need some leaves to keep it alive while it grows into the trunk?? One graft is a small sucker near the trunk and the other is a piece cut from another tree. I’d like to know what others have done and your experience (hopefully successful). Thanks, Sue


Yes ,remove leafs


Hi Scott,
I have been reading up on bridge repair grafts. So far I find very little advice on when to do it; ie best season, using green scions with buds removed or dormant scions? I have two candidate trees that show pretty severe damage. One is a recent Hachiya persimmon that you saw earlier, this one I did a green bridge graft because about 2/3 of the bark just above the graft union to rootstock has not healed from an unknown damage source. The other is a sweet cherry tree that I am finally having good success with converting it over to plums, but this 20 year old tree is being held back in vigor by a rather large vertical split in the bark which may have been borers? Now it seems to not be able to regrow the bark on about 1/3 of the circumference. A pic below, the dark is pruning sealer I applied for a year or so, while hoping it would heal over the scar. Now that it’s apparent that will not occur, should I try a bridge graft this long? And when should I do so, what season?
Kent, Wa

Dennis, I don’t do bridge grafts if 1/3 of the bark is still there. The bridge graft is going to add bark on maybe 1/6th of a large trunk so there is not much advantage to it. They also are not super reliable. That scar may not heal but it should be able to get more than 1/3 live bark over time.

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Good points

Could someone post a picture of a healthy tree saved by bridge grafting five years or more after the grafting was done?

I think @joleneakamama has posted such.