I did about 30 budgrafts of assorted varieties to Bud118 rootstocks. When I made my cut on the rootstocks I noticed that it appeared more white than green (cambium). The buds that I removed from the budwood had a completely green cambium layer. I made my cuts with the same technique. I did not go that deep on the rootstock. I wrapped the union in parafilm. What are most common reasons for success/failure?
Everything sounds fine. Remove the parafilm in 3 weeks and if the buds are green you’re good to go. If dried up looking/darker color appearance, then unsuccessful. If you left some of the petiole it should have turned black and will fall off while the bud is still green. I leave about 1/4" petiole each time.
Next year cut off the rootstock an inch or so above the bud as Spring is showing signs of life on the rootstocks. Do not cut/force the buds this year because they could potentially grow and not harden off (in your zone) and get zapped during winter.
IMHO parafilm is not strong enough. I’d wrap something stronger like vinyl budding tape over the parafilm.
Thanks, hopefully I have some success
Can a wedge graft be done in the summer? I know that bench grafts are typically done in the spring while everything is dormant.
I agree with mrtexas. I use a budding strip and then cover with parafilm leaving the bud exposed by wrapping above and beneath it. After that, I snap off a piece of parafilm and stretch it to the shape of a rectangle/square and place that over the bud. That’s a thinner layer when stretched like that. I typically make a piece about 2" wide by 2" or 2" x 3" so it will go over the working area and stick to the parafilm on the back side of the rootstock. And now everybody does it a little differently. If while I’m wrapping parafilm and I end up with just a tiny bit remaining that will stretch thinly… then I use that to pass over the bud/working area.
Your window of success closes rapidly after spring/early summer grafting. Typically mid-June is the end of grafting dormant sticks. From mid-June onward you do a variety of other techniques: greenwood grafting aka greenwood budding or t-budding and chip budding. Right now since the bark does not slip, your only option are chip buds.
I’ll touch on one last point. From mid-June to August you will still have trees that slip (the bark slips) relatively well. You can do bark grafts and flap grafts during this period. Pretty well though when August arrives you won’t find many trees where the bark is still slipping.
Your wedge grafting and whip n’ tongue and veneer grafting (dormant scionwood sticks) are Spring thru mid-ish June.
After rain from mid-June thru August you will find trees where the bark is slipping again. That’s when you take advantage of that rainy weather with hopefully dry forecasts ahead to slide a bark graft in or do a 3-flap or 4-flap graft.
Hope this helps and isn’t too much information.
Make sure the root stock or tree you are grafting to is well watered a few days before grafting. That definitely helps promote slipping bark.