Warning paint on new grafts

I was just starting to spray some of last years grafts with some marking paint when I began to worry a bit whether the paint might be phytotoxic. I’m guessing that standard spray paints that contain xylene and acetone are OK, but don’t want to rely on a guess. Anyone have some clarification?

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Alan,
I don’t know a lot about it but have read paint can be phytoxic. Here is an article that should help Tree Wound Paints | Pacific Northwest Pest Management Handbooks “Studies have shown that wound dressings can be phytotoxic or non-beneficial to trees. They focused on the use of wound dressings to prevent the entry of decay fungi into trees. Petrolatum, latex paint, shellac, and asphalt compounds did not promote wound closure. Wound treatments did not inhibit wood discoloration and some wound dressings harmed trees. Cankers have also been associated with petroleum-based tree marking paints where solvents kill cambium tissue.”
I have used paints before plenty of times over fresh wounds because I typically prune then paint the trunk. I’ve not caused harm with that as far as I know through the years. I use latex paint for trunks. As noted in the article Solvents in marking paints kill cambium tissue.

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I use fluorescent orange spray paint to mark grafts so I know where they are and don’t prune away the branch by mistake. I usually mark them about a year after making the graft, when I’m confident the graft is successful. No problems, no toxicity.

Thanks both of you, although I was aware of the issue of painting wounds. Don, that is exactly what I’m doing here- 2nd season grafts so you’ve brought me comfort from your knowledge.

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