It feels like this is grafting season in my climate, maybe others. This is my thought about Parafilm vs. Polyethylene for wrapping Whip and Tongue grafts.
This is my first year trying Parafilm for grafting. Parafilm seems to be growing in popularity.
Today I did some apples and a plum, whip and tongue. In the past, I used polyethylene tape. All of my prior whip and tongue, using polyethylene tape, took. Just apples and pears and asian pears, nothing exotic.
I don’t know how I feel about Parafilm. It takes more force to stretch it, then seems to stretch too easily, and has more give at the end. Hard for me to describe. Polyethylene seems to stretch more evenly and uniformly, and seems, to me, makes a tighter seal. I feel like I have more control over the polyethylene. Less likely to shift the scion from it’s place while stretching the tape.
The Parafilm does not need to be tied, it sticks to itself if I stretch it right. The polyethylene does need to be tied, but a half hitch is easy even for me.
I don’t know which I like better. I have a roll of Parafilm to use up now. Polyethylene is almost free, if you cut pieces from plastic food bags. I have not tried that so I don’t know if it will work. I don’t see why not.
I thought the Parafilm might be nice to cover the end of the scion to prevent drying, instead of using asphalt emulsion. Too awkward for me. I tried melting the parafilm by holding a lit match next to it. Still didn’t work well. Maybe I can melt some wax and dip the end.
I am nostalgic about Parafilm because I used it during my grad student years in the research lab. It was nice to feel it in my hands again. Even so, I think when I use up the roll, I will go back to polyethylene tape. Probably home made from freezer bags. The shipping via Amazon makes even cheap stuff expensive.