Saturday, May 10, 2014

A little more on the grafts. And the apple trees are taking hold. 5.10.14

Triple  Variety Apple graft.  5.10.14

New Liberty graft on Honeycrisp. 5.10.14

Liberty Graft on Honeycrisp.  5.10.14
 Puttering around the apple trees in my little orchard.  The trees are all caged now.  Deer have been marauding and destroying everything that meets their fancy.  Fortunately I planned for them with the apples.

The tree cages are a hassle and cost money, but have some advantages.  The triple-variety graft is in a tree cage and I use the cage as a training tool to spread out the branches.  They'll need to be tied that way for a year.

The grafts are growing like gangbusters.  The Liberty graft on the little Honeycrisp tree has nice growth despite having had a bloom.  I removed the grafting wrap to avoid girdling the limb.  When the branch takes off and grows, it should be about equal to the Honeycrisp branch, and one can pollinate the other.

I looked and looked and looked to find patent info on Liberty.  I could not find any, so I think this was a legal graft.  Honeycrisp patent has run out.

The Jonared has good growth.  I need to get more fencing so the little branches don't reach past the circle and get eaten by deer.  The posts are in place.

Close up of whip-and-tongue of Jonagold tree start, made using sucker from rootstock and Jonagold from the scion.
Jonared.  5.10.14

Grafting democratizes gardening.  All you need is the rootstock, which can be a sucker from an existing tree; and the scion, which can be from a neighbor or relative.  The stock can also be a young tree that the gardener wants to add other varieties too.  It isn't hard.  I feel so accomplished, grafting these trees, even though millions of trees are made in nurseries, rapidly, by the same method.

Grafting also allows the gardener to build their own multiple variety tree, using proven local varieties, treasured varieties from the old homestead, and making for a self pollinating, and therefore more productive, tree.  It means you don't need 4 trees to get 4 varieties.
Whip and Tongue Apple Tree Start.  5.10.14

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