Tuesday, March 25, 2014

T Graft

As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.

This is one of the posts which I enjoy in it involves things which I enjoy, and that is fruit trees. Everything now is so expensive that it is a shame how nothing is affordable.
I have mentioned this, that my Grandfather one winter was so poor, that all he had to eat were apples off of his tree. As a I child I remember him planting apple trees for that hedge against starvation. I also remember him pruning a tree with his knife and slitting his wrist which was immensely bloody.
Gram poured a bottle of mathyalate into that open wound and Grandpa almost fainted from the pain. I do not think that was doctor recommended.

For those with Wifi, Youtube is one of the best college courses there is for knowledge and part of that knowledge is about grafting trees.

I will not go into great detail, but you get an apple tree by two methods. One you plant a seed and it takes 5 to 10 years to maybe get an apple you can eat. This method is to put apple or other seeds into a moist paper towel, place it in a plastic or glass container you can seal, inside a fridge at 40 to 50 degrees and you can sprout the seedlings in 2 weeks to two months.
When the roots are about 1/2 inch long, you put them into a potting container with damp soil in warm sunny location, and it should with patience show you a two leaf tree in time. The light is all important as without it, the plant will get leggy and die. Leggy meaning it will grow too high and fall over.

The second method is to obtain some rootstock. Rootstocks are various genus of plants which will grow an apple from dwarf, semi dwarf to standard apples. My first attempt at grafting was a complete failure. The point is never giving up as you will succeed.
I will not deal with the inline graft as that requires a slanted cut in the two woods to be grafted, then a notch cut to anchor it in, with the grafted plant in cool covered storage to heal the cut for 30 days, and then planting it.

The market gardeners in my community I was talking to about grafting as they do it. I got a lecture about not grafting proprietary fruit trees, which as I was not going to be selling them, I paid no attention to, as my focus was on my two God planted trees which I want to propigate.

The method they used is the T graft and it is done not in spring, but in August. What you do is shop for some root stock which will live in your climate zone, and produce the size tree you are looking for. I like semi dwarf trees as they produce a little sooner and live quite long and fit in almost every space.

So once you decide on your bare root stock, you plant it like you would your tree, where you want it to grow. I tend to dig a hole, make it so it has a six inch hole I can water in, as there really is no such thing in over watering a tree. The more moisture it receives, the quicker it will deal with being transplanted.

You leave your rootstock grow and depending on the following months or the following year, you show up in a place with living apple trees which you can take cuttings from, and you take cuttings from this current season's growth which are woody. You do not want recent growth.
You trim off the leaf stem to about 1/3rd of an inch, leaving the bud unharmed as this is going to be your tree.

In trimming off the recent growth, you carefully take your knife and cut a triangular wedge, the wide part on top of the leave bud and tapering to a peak about 2 inches long. You then pop off this living bark triangle and put it into a plastic bag.

Next in not allowing this to dry out or bake in a summer sun, you approach your root stock and make T cut into the base of the rootstock. Carefully you peal back this bark and then insert the triangle wedge into this, making the broad base fit into the top of the T of your cut on the rootstock.
Carefully you bind this up with plastic tape or parrafin type sealer tape, and you are finished.

It it takes, it should turn into a sucker the following year, and the after the leaves are off, and the tree is dormant, you cut off the rootstock stem, and just leave your grafted tree sucker to be your tree.

This T method is easier and you can practice on noxious shrubs or trees you care nothing of, to gain skill at it.

If you want to be clever you can on existing trees find a new growth branch and T graft another variety onto that tree for pollination.

You will have to watch growth though with the wound cover tape wrapped around the stem, as some years the trees grow quickly and the tape will constrict growth. Just have to pay attention, but the wrap should come off when you trim the rootstock the following autumn as it should have definitely healed by then.

If it does not work you can try again as nothing is lost.

As stated Youtube has enough digitals up to walk you through things if the above explanation is not sufficient.

I think I am going to go rest and pray some, as was up early again and hope for lands and fruit tree adventures. I do though advise each of you, as instead of your weekly porn or crash mind music videos to set aside 15 minutes a week to just watch some Youtube video, through twice, make some notes on it to secure it into your mind, as when the Great Tribulation comes, it is the kind of cottage knowledge which is going to be vital in making your way.
Most of what you will have need of will be produced within 20 miles of where you are as the global becomes local. You will have to be self sufficient as your immigrant ancestors were.
You have access to hundreds of hours of tinkerers who put videos online showing you how to do things. This is better than any votech school or university.
Go to the library as I do and take advantage of the information and just shake your heads at the myriads of children playing video games as their babysitters.

The T Graft is one of many things you need to know.