Grafting and Weeding

This afternoon I finally got around to grafting the Mutsu scion onto my Jonathan apple tree. Mostly because last night Noel found my grafting wax for me, after I'd searched for days and just given up on finding it.

Here's the bottom of the tree where I was going to do the grafts. I cut my scion in half and chose two branches to make whip grafts, in part because they are relatively easy and also because I have found they work better for me than budding. Just a personal preference.

Before grafting

Here I am partway through the procedure. You make the whips on both the rootstock and the scion, line them up so the bark layers touch (that's how they will connect to each other), wax them to protect them from rot, then I like to use a rubber band to hold them in place, because rubber breaks down in sunlight and will rot away before it can girdle the branch and kill it.

On top you can see a finished graft, below one that is awaiting the application of wax.


And here we are, all done. I could have cut smaller pieces from the scion and grafted more branches on, but I wanted to limit the stress on this tree because I'd rather have a tree full of Jonathan apples than more Mutsu.

Grafting completed

In the spirit of trying to whip the garden into shape, I then spent half an hour on a weeding project in the Fern Walk. Here we have the before:

Holy cow, look at all those weeds

And after. I didn't even get all the weeds out and I filled the bucket twice in just the area in the photo.

Far fewer weeds

Can you tell I am procrastinating on the sanding in the Accordion Room? It's been so nice out, and also I really hate sanding. But Noel promises me he will do some sanding tomorrow while I am off at a class.

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posted by ayse on 02/15/08