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What can I cut from my apple tree now for grafting?

Posted by alisande Zone 4b (My Page) on
Sat, Oct 27, 12 at 15:41

I was told earlier this year that February is the best time to cut a scion (?) and put it in the freezer, to be grafted in spring. But I'm afraid the last of my King apple tree is going to come down in the storm we're forecast to get next week, and I'd like to do at least try to save some of it for grafting.

I have no idea what to cut! I hope you can help, thanks!!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: What can I cut from my apple tree now for grafting?

  • Posted by murky z8f pnw Portlan (My Page) on
    Sat, Oct 27, 12 at 16:07

They should go into your fridge, not freezer.

The reason February is a good time is because the tree should be fully dormant and that's about the latest you can count on that.

Too early and they spend more time in storage during which they can mold or dry out. With good storage conditions though both are manageable.

You want relatively straight new growth that is hardened off and dormant. Maybe pencil diameter in lengths perhaps 6-12" long. Store them in a ziplock bag wrapped in a barely damp paper towel.

Put them in the fridge. Every month or so, check and verify that there is still some moisture in the bag and they aren't molding.

In the early spring graft them onto another tree or rootstock.

Or just buy another King apple tree. It will be the same effect.

RE: What can I cut from my apple tree now for grafting?

Cut scion about a month before growing season starts, in your zone it would be around April, if so, cut in March.
You can also cut when just the start of swelling bud appears and graft on the same day. Too long in storage in not a good idea.
Cut the last year's growth's...which is the very end of branch.

RE: What can I cut from my apple tree now for grafting?

I'm sorry for not replying to this thread. Thank you both for your advice! The tree didn't come down after all (whew!), and I'm in the process of doing the cutting now. In addition to the King, we're going to try to graft an old Russet.

Thanks again!

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