Starting a Frankentree

Many here are quite experienced with adding different varieties and fruit types to an existing tree, even if they didn’t intend to when the tree was originally planted.

If you were to want a frankentree from the start, would you grow out the rootstock and get scaffolding first, then side work the scaffolds in the next few years to add the other fruit and varieties? A few years after you would work further down each lateral branch to add even more, thus making, say, a 4 lateral scaffold tree from 4 new varieties to 8 or more the next year.

Originally I had thought chip bud grafting to create the different fruit laterals directly onto the trunk would be the way to go, but I’m reading there probably would be issues with bud dominance and getting all the grafted buds to grow?

Forgive if there is a better thread somewhere. I didn’t see one.

I will get some Lovell rootstock this winter and want to build a tree with several varieties of peach, nectarine, interspecifics, and plums.


Well, this could end up being a good one too. There are several experienced folks on board here.

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Let your root stock grow a little. Grafts take much better on an established tree. After it grows a little you will be able to see what you can do with it. Usually when you do franken trees some varieties are going to grow much faster and suck resources from weaker varieties. So you will have to fight with it a little to keep those varieties from taking over.


I am quite sure it will be a more than once a year battle to make them play well together.

For single grafted trees I know people put them on as soon as possible since there will be no competition.

I am planning on growing out the Lovell and seeing what kind of success I have in creating the scaffolds that will allow me to add varieties the following year.

I’ll order 5 rootstocks and probably grow bag grow them then pick the best 2 and have a go at it the next year. I’ll know where in my yard I want them by then.

I’ll buy the scion I can for what I want to grow and host them on other trees this coming year so I am in control of everything the next year.

That’s my plan for now that is.

Perhaps this is a thread others can use for their existing or planned frankentrees.

Sounds like a good plan. If you knew were they are to go you could plant them in pairs and cut away the bad one later. That’s what I did with pear root stock this year. It was also pitiful root stock though.

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Hi Phil,
In my region insects that attach plums are different than what attacks peaches and nectarines, for that reason my peach/nectarine trees are separated from my plum/pluot/aprium/Plumcot trees. I spray my peaches with surround but do not have to treat my other stonefruit with anything other than dormant fungicides. If you have to spray an insect iced on your peaches, it’s worth considering keeping your trees separated from your other stonefruit that may not need it.
Food for thought
Kent, wa


I have multiple frankentree but the biggest two i have is a peach mother tree and plum mother tree. They are the only fruit tree when I bought my property so they are big. Both have 40-50 varieties each. The advantage on the peach tree as a franken tree is you can graft a lot of varieties and the chance of it taking is high compare to a plum tree.

Another advice i could give you is when you graft cherry-plum scion expect it to go crazy. Never graft it on the top because it is harder to manage. Graft it low and it will spread, then you can manage to cut it and graft more varieties on its new growth.

Another easier way to do a fast jump start if you have extra funds is to buy the 4-5 in 1 tree “fruit cocktail” from raintreenursery. If you are lucky enough they will send you 5 in 1 tree. I got lucky with mine they sent a 5 in 1 tree then on its first year because i was topping the top on a summer an adara wood came up it is now 6 in 1 tree with adara growing and i can use it for scion or add multiple varieties on it. I can now graft almost all stone fruit scion on the tree.

Here is the link Fruit Cocktail (4 Varieties) — Raintree Nursery

Just want to note that I’m not related to raintree nursery because I always mention them but I did had a good buying experience from them particularly the 4 in 1 mirabelle plum and fruit cocktail.

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Good points @DennisD and @John_P

I’ve only had a few pluerries and a few plums produced in my young trees. The only issue I seemed to have were birds, so I haven’t gone through all the issues that will come.

I do understand the statement about different insect / disease pressure on the peach /nectarine versus prunus, though is it just a convenience for spraying chemical and timing that makes it difficult?

I’ve just discovered the existence of Surround and it’s benefits, though I’d imagine peeling a peach would be difficult assuming the coasting remains and isn’t easily washed off.

As I mentioned my few small Arctic Star Nectarine grafts, as I was leaving the house this AM I see a bloom has popped on one.

A summer of heat and dry followed by several nice rains has mimicked dormancy and spring.

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