What's happening today - 2018 edition


It looks like my Magnolia Jane.


As Van Morrison would say . . . ‘Tulip Magnolia’. We have one in our yard, here in VA. They are so pretty - and hardy, too.


Reliance may not be reliable this year in Raleigh.


Every third year or so, the blooms get froze here

Everybody still seems to plant them, tho

I have a pink and a yellow


I worked at the Post office and it was always fun in the spring when the chick orders were in. But they were noisy.


I ordered bees through the post office and they sure were glad when I picked them up, like they were killer bees , lol


Bug ID? Seeing a lot of these lately.


Holy smokers I cut scion wood yesterday, it was 38 degrees and the wind was blowing 20 with 40 mph gusts, not my brightest idea I’ve had!


That looks like some kind of a Cricket. Brady


Yesterday I practiced W&T grafting on my apple and pear cuttings in preparation for the real thing in a few weeks (my first attempt bench grafting). After using a Stanley box cutter, I can see how one would choose a good grafting knife. I found that my cuts often were concave and sometimes slightly spiraled (although I do not know if I can pin the latter problem on the blade). If I were doing more grafts that I am, I would certainly purchase a grafting knife.

I was surprised how quickly a stick can go from high resistance to practically no resistance when cutting the tongue- even when I was gently “rocking” the blade. Fortunately I did not draw blood.

I also came to the realization that toilet ring wax does not easily melt. I thought I would be dipping my scions in wax, but it looks like I will be smearing them with wax.

It was a good experience and I’ll probably practice again next week. I think my woodworking is good enough for an apple graft, but I need more work before attempting grafting an apricot.


Well, the red fleshed apples I grafted over two weeks ago have swelling buds…so grafts must have taken.

The box cutter works great…unless grafting 50 or 100, I don’t see a need for a special tool.


Me, grafting with a box cutter/utility knife:



You are probably right but don’t count yours chickens before they hatch. Swollen buds do not gaurentee a take. Scions typically have enough residual energy to imply growth when even without a good grafting union


There’s discussion of melting in “tip of the day” topic.
[What is your Tip OF The Day?]

Also in warm weather I’ve found toilet bowl wax too soft so I add some candle wax to the mix when melting it.


That’s so. But, I have 50 rootstocks I am still waiting on…so will be doing many more, including a second copy on a different rootstock of all the ones I did earlier. I have purchased a few scions, and have had
a few gifts that I appreciate.


Yes, they can grow leaves even and last weeks, then fail.
Yeah I don’t like razor blades, box cutters, whatever you want to call them. Once you try a grafting knife you’re hooked, they are as sharp and with the weight easier to cut with than any box cutter. I have used both and their is no comparison.If you can cut good with razors I can’t imagine how good a cut you would get with a one sided knife, probably 100% takes.


I placed the toilet bowl wax into a recycled salad dressing bottle (glass). I put it in in the microwave and heated it in 30 second intervals. After 2 minutes with absolutely no melting, I gave up. The wax was hot to the touch but it’s viscosity did not change. I can only assume that not all toilet bowl waxes are created equal. I cannot imagine my wax melting or weathering off a scion prematurely.

By the way, it was that “tip of the day” that inspired my approach to waxing the grafts. Thanks!


I’m wary using wax worried it will get in the way of good contact by being where it is not supposed to be. Just being on your hands you can cause issues.


Good point, Drew. After first grafting repetition where I cut, taped, and waxed in sequence; I realized that the wax part was going to be problematic for me because it was all over my fingers and did not easily come off. With the current arrangement I will plan on cutting and taping in sequence followed by waxing the grafts en masse.


Yes, I do have wax and when I’m all done grafting I might use it in some spots.This worked well for me. Often tips of scion even with parafilm can be a point of exposure so I like to dab them in wax.
I’m trying some different techniques this year like instead of wrapping graft in aluminum foil to keep it from getting too warm, I’m using glad press and seal. It’s white which reflect light, thus heat and it seals grafting area well and should keep it humid around the graft. I might have to watch for mold if it rains a lot.