The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Summer grafting

Bud grafting

Grafted plumStone fruits (peaches, plums, etc.) can be dormant-season grafted just like apples. For example, the baby tree to the right is an Imperial Epineuse that I whip grafted onto purchased rootstock in early April 2015. Halfway through its second season, the young plant is thriving.

On the other hand, the other four plums that I grafted at the same time perished. So I decided to earmark my homegrown plum rootstock for a more appropriate type of stone-fruit grafting --- budding.

Less than two months after setting out the stooled rootstocks, the plants had expanded into a thicket of growth. So I whittled each one down to a single large stem, cut T-shaped incisions in the developing bark, then peeled it back enough to slide bud shields from a named variety into the hole. Since I'm just beginning to feel my way through bud grafting, I inserted two buds into each of the nine rootstocks. With even a 10% success rate, I should end up with two new plum trees --- fingers crossed!

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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