Can I use just beeswax for grafting?

Can I use only beeswax for sealing grafts? Is it necessary to add in parafilm or the other things? I’m not sure that I will be able to find them locally.

I’m going to do the dip method.

Not quite following you. Are you talking about to store scions or putting wax on the graft union?
Brett

Sorry. Sealing the graft union with the wax. I’m going to be doing benchgrafts, so I am planning on making the graft, wrapping with rubber band, then dipping grafted end in the heated wax to seal it. Then dipping it in icewater to reduce stickiness.

I use grafting wax. I got it on ebay. I use a small utility brush, and paint the complete scion after I finish the graft union. You will also need a way to heat the wax.s-l500

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Yes you can definitely use wax. Personally I have never bench grafted, mine has always been in the field. Years ago when I first started I used wax to seal the graft but I had a tendency to get the wax too hot and therefore it would be too thin and end up getting in between the graft union and cause the graft not to take. Thats the only problem i ever had with it. Now I just use freezer tape and pruning sealer.

Brett

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Never tried beeswax alone but can tell you it’s very thick when mixed with water. I think it’s going to go on “chunky” unless you get enough beeswax only in there so when you dip you end up with so much wax on your scions that they’ll be coated way too heavy and look like candles. Here’s my recipe. You can see what I do and how you might be able to change it around. Best I can say. Dax

I do not recommend using pure beeswax for grafting sealant. Pure beeswax tends to crack exposing the graft. However, with the addition of a bit of pine rosin, it makes a good grafting wax. The usual mix is around 50/50 rosin/wax though some mixes are 60/40.

In the offbeat world, I’ve used wax toilet seal rings to graft with decent success.

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The only question is whether the rubber bands will hold the scion and rootstock firmly together.
If I didn’t have tape, I’d slice some sandwich bags or something and make me some wrapping tape. But, the bands theoretically work, just not for me.

Beeswax will do the job of sealing out air and moisture. Same as grafting wax.

The only wax I use now. Enough wax to do 100’s of grafts literally costs .99. I can find 5 year old toilet wax on completely healed cleft grafts, it does stick.

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I managed to find paraffin. I think I will give your recipe a shot. How much water do I need to add? Do I add a gallon and then add the beeswax and paraffin?

Where do you find pine rosin?

A lot depends on the type graft you are making. For field grafts, water is not needed. For bench grafts where the grafts are dipped into the wax container, wax floats on top of the water and coats the scion and graft union when they are dipped.

You can often pick up rosin from Ebay.

Agree this toilet bowl wax seems to be exactly what I needed today it’s sticky, very thick and compresses well into voids to give a watertight seal! Wonderful idea and easy to find most hardware stores!
Dennis

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Seems I remember some people say the toilet wax can cause damage to scions / bark ?

I’ve used toilet wax on perhaps 100 grafts and haven’t noticed any damage. It can still be seen there after four or five years although by then it looks more like an oil stain on the surface of the bark. It is a petroleum based product so it would make sense that it may be soaked up by the dead wood tissue over a period of years. I suppose the same thing applies to petroleum based tree wound sealers as well…

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I remember seeing this issue brought up and I was trying to search it yesterday - no luck. Until I find out for sure I’ll be careful to not get carried away with the stuff, but I’ll still use it. It’s reassuring to see @danchappell 's experience.

I’ve only ever used it to touch up the cut end of the scion or to dab over the point in a cleft graft where the parafilm doesn’t quite snug down as tightly as I’d like.

I like using the toilet bowl wax, or the bees wax they sell in the tubes for machine shops. I purchased the tube wax from Performance Tools.

Much of the beeswax on the market contains propolis which is basically plant resins collected by bees and used to coat the inside of the hive. If there is a significant amount of propolis, the beeswax becomes unsuitable for candle making, but it is very good for grafting wax. Just thought I would toss this into the mix since several have posted about using beeswax while I recommend against it. As a beekeeper, I make a point of producing high purity wax suitable for candles. I also wind up with a good bit of propolis scraped off of frames and other hive parts. I have enough propolis to make about 3 pounds of grafting wax which should be enough for my spring grafts. Using propolis is equivalent to mixing pure wax with pine resin. I also have access to all the pine resin I want from trees at my mother’s house. Borers damage the tree trunks. The trees ooze sap which hardens into clumps on the bark.

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