Slow grafts or poor success?

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
In previous years when I grafted clonal rootstock I did so early, potted them up in 3 gal RB2s and put them under lights. I had very good success rates. This year, I only planned to do a handful of apple trees. I grafted about 13 trees on March 14th. Our last frost date is typically April 15th, but the long-term forecast showed only one night close to freezing through mid-April, so I put them on my deck. While the lows were higher than normal in late March and early April, they have been cooler than normal since and we have had a lot of rain.

So far, all of my root stock is trying to leaf out, but only 5 of the 13 have any scion green buds or more. Those 5 have small leaves at this point. I've been removing the rootstock leaves so far but I think I'll stop doing that on trees with no scion progress.

One of the scions is clearly dead. There are vertical striations in the wood. I'm letting the rootstock grow out for next year. I'm concerned about the other 7. Do you think they still have a chance at this point (April 26)? I'd post a pic, but there is really nothing to see.

Thanks,

Jack
 

homerj

5 year old buck +
6 weeks after grafting, I'm going with poor success
 

Prof.Kent

5 year old buck +
When I got really sick as a kid my Dad used to say..."You'll either get better....Or you won't."
Dad didn't have the best bedside manner, but he was always right.
 
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yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Good point, time will tell. Nothing I can do now. Seems odd though. Many of the grafts were done with the same tool I had great success with in previous years. I did use a new grafting technique this year for several grafts (Z-graft) , but some of those are leafing out. I can see where they would have a lower success rate because I was using them where I had a caliper mismatch, but that does not seem to be the case.
 

Prof.Kent

5 year old buck +
Good point, time will tell. Nothing I can do now. Seems odd though. Many of the grafts were done with the same tool I had great success with in previous years. I did use a new grafting technique this year for several grafts (Z-graft) , but some of those are leafing out. I can see where they would have a lower success rate because I was using them where I had a caliper mismatch, but that does not seem to be the case.
Be careful to not touch the cambium after you cut the scion. Use only 1-year-old scion wood. Don't use desiccated scion wood.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Be careful to not touch the cambium after you cut the scion. Use only 1-year-old scion wood. Don't use desiccated scion wood.

My scion wood was probably better this year than previous years. In past years most of my scions came from GRIN. This year, I collected some scions from my own trees a week or so before grafting. When I went to by rootstock at the local orchard, they happened to be holding a grafting class and it was just ending as I arrived to by my M111. They were kind enough to give me some Black Twig and Arkansas Black scions. I took the class a few years ago and arrived early. I watched them cut and prepare the scions right before the class started, so I'm pretty sure their scions were fresh.

Thanks,

Jack
 

Apple Junkie

5 year old buck +
I am in awe of your normal success rate Jack, so my guess is most of your grafts are just taking a bit longer to kick in.
 

KylePa

5 year old buck +
I am in the same boat this year with Scion only from Grin. I have 16 grafts in my garage. Only 3 of them are showing green int the buds and they have been grafted for a month. I have followed the same process are prior year. Mine have been grafted for a month now.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I did some field grafting of a few trees in the field in March as well. I checked some last weekend and they also show no sign of taking.
 

NE PA QDM

5 year old buck +
Hang in there, Jack. I think it’s just a slow spring. Things are taking forever to wake up here and most of my grafts have shown zero sign of life but I’ve had a lot of grafts in the past that I thought were duds that turned out to surprise me when I came back a month later.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
That is certainly possible and is my hope, but what concerns me is the roostock leafing out and growing while the scion just sits there.
 

NE PA QDM

5 year old buck +
Common occurrence on my grafts in most years. It always seems my scions wake up after the rootstock. Don’t give up !!!

That is certainly possible and is my hope, but what concerns me is the roostock leafing out and growing while the scion just sits there.
 

SmallChunk

5 year old buck +
I learned a new trick this year that I will plan on implementing in years to come. I went to graft and all of my scion was drying out/looked useless. I posted on an Apple Scion Facebook group looking for scion, and one member said to just stick one end in water for a day and see if they get better. I grafted 15 before soaking and only 3-4 look to have taken. EVERY single one I soaked for at least a day that I grafted after seems to be waking up and taken. I am simply amazed at how well it revived my scion.
 

Chainsaw

5 year old buck +
I had some grafted in March that were not showing any signs of life five days ago. Checked today and had wonderful surprises. One pail of 19 that had zero above the graft growth now shows growth above the graft on all 19. Moving them from the unheated barn to the heated barn must have changed the game a bit. Yahoo!!! Not all pails have woken up yet but since the earliest ones have that is a good sign I think that the others will as well.
 
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NorthWI

A good 3 year old buck
I learned a new trick this year that I will plan on implementing in years to come. I went to graft and all of my scion was drying out/looked useless. I posted on an Apple Scion Facebook group looking for scion, and one member said to just stick one end in water for a day and see if they get better. I grafted 15 before soaking and only 3-4 look to have taken. EVERY single one I soaked for at least a day that I grafted after seems to be waking up and taken. I am simply amazed at how well it revived my scion.
Do you think this would be a good practice to soak all scions before grafting?
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Mine were very fresh. I doubt freshness is the issue.
 

NE PA QDM

5 year old buck +
I’ve never soaked my grafts (although I will soak cuttings before planting) but I seal all my scions with canning wax to keep them from drying out and this seems to help me a lot.

Do you think this would be a good practice to soak all scions before grafting?
 

Native Hunter

5 year old buck +
My trees topworked over three weeks ago were showing tiny leaves just beginning to emerge yesterday.
 

SmallChunk

5 year old buck +
Do you think this would be a good practice to soak all scions before grafting?

I sure plan on doing it in the future!
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Well things are looking up. I just checked them today. I think I'm seeing bud swell and slight green are a couple more scions.
 
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