How to: Demonstrating 3-Flap / 4-Flap Grafting aka Banana Graft

It’s tough to say other than “it/ this isn’t a science.” In an ideal world I would like to have a sliver of bark on all four sides separating each cut. But, I tell ya, these hitch up real easy.


Good we’re on the same page. Even if the bottom were nothing but wood there would be some cambium higher up.

I was just trying to clarify things. Beginners have a hard time telling just where the cambium is located. Cutting it all off isn’t a good strategy. It’s different but the same for scion buds when T budding. The bud could be cut too shallow and never reach the cambium except right around the bud. That won’t be good either. A deeper cut that reaches cambium improves success. Too deep and the bud may be too thick to fit under the bark flaps of the stock.


That’s correct. I don’t mind seeing a bit of green showing on any cut. On bud cuts I would much rather be closer to the bud than having my cut further into the wood and away from the bud. Like I say, a little bit of green is okay.

As I noted above though and this should be understood by any grafter, it’s the cortex which is colorless where the cells fuse together. It’s directly under the green (cambium). Being between the cambium and the pith.

It’s a feeling, Steve. I know it and so do you, very well. We just know when we’ve gone too far so, we throw the stick on the ground.

My regards,


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This is an excellent conversation. In all my hobbies that I end up getting serious about there is science and there is art. Very kule…thanks !!

Sure thing. You’re very welcome.


Dax, I have a couple of questions:

  1. How much of difference between scion and stock diameters can you tolerate with this method?

  2. What tape do you use for covering the graft? Do you need to remove the tape at some point and how long should it stay on the graft?


You can set smaller scions on larger stock. They can’t be real small compared to the stock, but they can be a few bits smaller. You know… something like this is completely tolerable:

I use cheap electrical tape you can get in rolls from Menards. I take the tape off three months later, typically. If you wait until the following year the bark under the tape looks like the bottom of a mature watermelon. That’s okay, not what I prefer, but if you live in an exposed location with a lot of wind you should keep the tape on so the grafts don’t blow out during winter.

If you’ve ever kept a bandage on a finger for too long you know what the skin looks like when you remove it. Typically there are insects like gnats under there. And if you were to forget about it and leave it on for years and years, the tree will push it off. You wouldn’t have killed the tree. In that case maybe you were on a ladder and put it up 8’ off the ground. That scenario.

Best regards,


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;-)insects like gnats under my bandaids? I’m for sure not going to leave them on too long if that’s the case!


What does the wax do?

That looks really cool, but where does the cambium contact?

Is the cambium along the entire length of both of the stripped wood of the scion, and the “flap” of bark, or is the cambium connection only right at the very top of the flap?

I’m glad to see this thread again- one of the most interesting grafts, great explanation and discussion.

@parkerstnc wax or parafilm tape stops desiccation.

@BG1977 the connection is all exposed areas.


what wax do u use. i often brace my grafts with bamboo chopsticks i grab from Chinese food places.

I think it’s this stuff. I don’t know. I go to a little grocer 5 miles from my house to get it.


For greenhouse/bench grafting/hot callus pipe grafting use only the paraffin wax alone. I have a deep fryer I fill with water and add wax.

For outdoor grafting I add beeswax.

Search the forum for deep fryer walmart and I’m sure you’ll find my recipes including temperature to work at.

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Old thread, but I have some questions as I haven’t tried this particular graft. What type trees will this work well on? I’ve only seen it referenced before on nut trees, specifically pecans or similar, on somewhat larger wood. Would it work well on apple/pear/plum? on standard first-year rootstock? I had a few with very dis-simmilar stock to scion size, looking for other options in the future.

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I wouldn’t do little stuff, no. This is a graft for larger trees in the 3/8ths plus caliper. You may certainly use it for any deciduous tree application.


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