We're Busy in the Field Grafting Away...

Budding & Grafting Our Trees

Grafting is a horticultural technique used to propagate fruit trees by joining a cutting of one plant (the scion) to the rootstock of another plant. The rootstock provides the root system and anchorage, while the scion provides the fruit-bearing branches and the desired fruit characteristics.

There are several types of grafting methods, but the most common include budding and whip grafting. Budding involves removing a single bud from the scion and inserting it into a T-shaped cut on the rootstock. Whip grafting involves removing a section of the scion with a single bud and inserting it into a similar-sized cut on the rootstock.

Grafting fruit trees has several benefits, including:

  • Faster fruit production: Grafted trees can produce fruit in a fraction of the time it would take for seed-grown trees.
  • Improved disease resistance: Grafting allows the rootstock to provide disease resistance to the grafted scion.
  • Consistent fruit quality: By selecting specific scion varieties, grafting can ensure consistent fruit quality and size.
  • Increased hardiness: Grafting can provide a hardy rootstock to support a less-hardy scion.
  • Overall, grafting is a useful technique for propagating fruit trees and improving their overall performance and quality.

Summer and Fall is the time of the year when we are grafting the majority of our trees. Our primary grafting technique is referred to as budding, specifically chip budding. Budding is a type of grafting. Budding is our primary method used to make new fruit trees that resemble their “parents.” Most all fruit trees do not breed anywhere near true from seed, and to get the exact characteristics of a fruit variety, you need to graft. To propagate a fruit tree of a desired variety, one grafts scion wood of the desired variety onto rootstock. Scion wood is first year growth from a tree with known (and typically, desirable) fruit characteristics. While any wood from the above-ground portion of a tree will carry the genetic identity of the tree, young wood with healthy buds has the best chance of making a successful graft.