Top Work 200 apple trees

I’m looking for an experienced person to rework 200 apple trees next spring in the Greensboro NC area. David Vernon at Century Farm is very close but he can’t do it. I had a high failure rate with 20 cleft grafts last year so I don’t want to try 200!

I made an inquiry through Extension but no results yet.


What are the apples and what type are you top working them to? I got skunked on red delicios one year but other apples top worked easy for me. I had 100% failure on red delicious to a seedling and of course it was a friends tree. The ones you don’t care about all take. I bet it had little to do with your technique.

Not sure about the varieties at this time but most likely a combination of Fuji, Granny, Pink Lady and Old Fashion Winesap since I have those trees for the scions and they get ripe when lots of folks show up to pick apples.

I’m going to remove a lot of the mid season varieties that get ripe when customer traffic is very low or varieties customers don’t like or ones that don’t grow well. Williams Pride, Summer Banana, Va Gold, Roxberry Russet, Albemarle Pippin, Redfree, Grimes, Gala, Va Winesap, Crimson Crisp, Pristine. I already removed Lodi, Bevens, Rambo and a few others

Williams Pride - bad bitter pit
Summer Banana - good apple but wrong time.
Va Gold - drops early
R Russet - does not sell
Pippin - not productive
Redfee - OK apple but wrong time
Grimes - great apple but very small tree on B9 at wrong time
Gala - great apple but wrong time remove 1 row keep others
Va Winesap - small apple on small tree on B9
Crimson Crisp - Good apple but bad bitter pit in storage and wrong time
Pristine- remove worst looking row keep other 50 trees


Give me the details of how you went about your grafting last year. PM if you like. I feel pretty confident that we can get your success much higher. Timing and distance wont work for me, but if it did I would be interested.


Thank you Turkey Creek! I sent a PM. I know it should be an easy and the failures surprised me.


Update on Top Working Trees.

I bark grafted about 100 and almost all of the grafts took. Then the Ambrosia beetles moved in and killed all the trees.

The trees were cut to about 2 feet for the grafting, some with nurse branches and some without. I could not tell the nurse branch improve the graft take.

The Apple PHD who is researching SAD or RAD in my state explained that trees under stress attract the beetles.

I will not be grafting any more trees!

Ambrosia beetles are the worst! I hate them so much.