Why I like grafting rubbers and parafilm

Here’s a shot of a cleft graft I made just over a month ago. After placing the scions I wrapped the graft with parafilm (the scions were already wrapped before grafting) and pulled it as tight as I could without breaking the parafilm. Then I overwrapped with the rubber because I knew my scions wouldn’t fit the graft well enough without some help!

As you can see the rubber is already degrading. It’ll hang on some but in another few weeks it’ll be pretty well gone, and the parafilm will remain maybe throughout the winter. But I don’t have to go back and slice it or anything; forgetting it or overlooking it is harmless, and if nobody notices it there’s no urgent need to deal with it at all.

It’s much the same with Temflex, but the temflex holds on longer. Plus, if I use Temflex I put it on first, and then overwrap with parafilm.


I too prefer to use grafting rubber and parafilm/buddy tape. I however wrap first and then parafilm later. They degrade within 1 season.


I got some grafting rubbers but they seemed too weak, so am using rubber bands that you can buy at Staples, etc. Are grafting bands what I should be using?

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I also use the heavy rubber bands wrapped with parafilm. This lasts for 3-4 wks. before the sun destroys them. If I’ve done a proper graft, they have sprouted and are off to the races with the rubber band and parafilm rotting under the tree.


Mark your grafts look good. I try to remove my tape before it damages the new grafts but I have missed a few through the years.

How well does the rubber bands work? I have two bags.

I use the heavy duty rubber bands and they work well, although I sometimes have to cut them off after the scion has leafed out.

If it’s working you’re doing it right! I’ve used rubber bands from office supply store, for example, or off of produce. Some the bands are nice and wide, which I liked.

But I particularly like the ones specifically made for the job because they are very extensible, kind of soft, and have a dusting of talc (?) or some such that makes them nice to handle.

I bought these several years ago and am still working on them. I bought the 6" long, 1/4" wide, .020 thick rubbers. Midwest Vineyard Supply

I’ve mentioned these guys several times, just because I’ve done a little business with them, and they seem fine. But there are plenty of other good sources, I’m sure.


For years I’ve been using #64 rubber bands. I usually buy them at Walmart so they are cheap and low quality…but they work very well. If you’ve stored them for a few years, they deteriorate and sometimes will snap when you’re wrapping around the graft. But that’s rare, and it’s actually good that they deteriorate because in the sunshine they will come apart in months. I sometimes forget to remove them and have never seen this to be a problem. I wrap with parafilm after I apply the rubber band…I like to see how well the rubber band pulls the graft together and also so I can check and adjust the alignment.


My source for the red grafting/budding rubbers went out of business years ago, and I started using #64 rubber bands, usually purchased from Office Depot; they’d photodegrade over the course of th he summer and mostly have fallen off by end of growing season.
I was running low on them this spring, and my wife ordered some from WalMart…free shipping, no need to go into town…but these ‘feel’ different, and I’m finding that they are disintegrating in less than a week!
Grafted some persimmon scions two weeks ago…wrapped with Parafilm, graft union then overwrapped with masking tape, then overwrapped with a rubber band…one week later, most of the rubbers were degraded, with a lot of them dropped off and totally gone. Glad that I’d added the masking tape!
Looked at the packages…the OD bands were made in USA, the WM bands in Thailand(I was expecting China). Won’t be getting those again.


Yes, all rubbers are not equal .
Some will be useless after a year stored in a drawer inside .
Others will last too long out in the sun and must be cut loose.
And others … Like lucky said brake down too fast I the sun.
A covering of al.foil will keep the sun from deteriorating them.
These from the dollar store seem to work ok…
Your luck may vary .?


Yep; I’ve routinely covered pecan/hickory grafts, done from mid-April on with foil, or a layer or two of masking tape over the rubbers to delay photodegradation, but I’ve never had ‘unprotected’ rubbers break down and be gone in less than a week before

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Where can I get grafting rubber bands

I believe OESCO carries them, and you’ll find them on Ebay and Amazon. They are often listed as “budding rubbers”.

How can I see it a post is out on the site.
I put two new ones out last week and can not find them.
Thanks for the website on rubber bands.
Thanks again

Dave, are you able to read this thread? Evidently you must be, so I am confused as to the problems you seem to be having. I wonder if there are some settings in your profile that you could enable that would guarantee that you can find your posts.

Anyhow, if you can read this thread you can find this link above: Midwest Vineyard Supply

Of course there are others, but this is one I’ve bought from before and I find them good to do business with.

Good luck,


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Good information here. I am going to TRY to graft some this next year. All the great helpful information and tips here.



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Thanks for the info and pics! My grafts are so simplistic compared to yours. I think I will try slicing and leaving them on if they dont come off easily. I will say, though, that I left quite a few grafts on multiple months even though there was no evidence they took and some of them did come to life eventually. For those, I hesitated to touch them at all for several months.
Also, quite a few looked great, started branching, and then just stopped growing suddently, and turned dark. Ideas on what the main cause could be? It was an emotional roller coaster!

I like Stan’s idea of using the splicing tape on top of parafilm. With rubber bands, you need to fiddle with tying the ends with a knot which for a beginner takes time to get it right and I sometimes move the grafts while doing that. The splicing tape sticks onto itself (like parafilm), so you just wrap and you are done. The downside is, it won’t degrade by itself, so you have to open it after some time, which does work out for me as after opening, I add (soda can) labels to the grafts that took.