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Is it really bad to use scions with growth older than one year?

 
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Hello,

I was wondering if someone might be able to tell me if using older scion wood greatly reduces my chances of having a successful graft?  By older I mean using currently and somewhat recently cut scion wood that has grown two or more years before, not scion wood that was harvested long ago.

I've been grafting for a few years now with limited success.  I'm not very good at grafting - about 20% of my grafts take. All of the scion wood that I harvest comes from older, never pruned, trees that never seem to have very much growth from the year before. The wood is thin and usually only about two or three (if I'm lucky) inches long.

Assuming that I'm totally awesome  at grafting (I'm not) how much chance is there of having a successful graft using the older scion wood?  I'm wondering if part of my grafting failure is due to the incredibly small twigs that I try to graft.  I've read countless hours of information on grafting and think that I'm doing everything by the book.   Pear trees seem to be my failure.  Apple trees are a toss up.  The pear trees that I'm trying to reproduce never have good quality scions to offer.

Thank you for any replies.  I appreciate you all.

Stay healthy.
Regards,
Tim
 
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If you are doing end on end grafting, I find it's more important to have the branches the same width than to have them the same age.

Depending on the kind of fruit, I might try a few different styles of grafting, like budding, to compensate for older or unusual scion.  

The key is to try lots of different methods.  Do it 'by the book' and do it differently.  That way you can discover what works well for your conditions.
 
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Tim Mackson wrote:Pear trees seem to be my failure.  Apple trees are a toss up.  The pear trees that I'm trying to reproduce never have good quality scions to offer.
Thank you for any replies.  I appreciate you all.Stay healthy.Regards,Tim



Try hacking back the pear tree, hard. Get rid of ~20% of the branches. That will cause it to create numerous water shoots to form that will be good grafting material for next year.
 
Tim Mackson
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r ranson wrote:If you are doing end on end grafting, I find it's more important to have the branches the same width than to have them the same age.

Depending on the kind of fruit, I might try a few different styles of grafting, like budding, to compensate for older or unusual scion.  

The key is to try lots of different methods.  Do it 'by the book' and do it differently.  That way you can discover what works well for your conditions.



Thank you for the advice.  I wish that I had collected older (larger) scions this spring.  The apple and pear trees aren't out in leaf yet and I would usually assume that it's too late to collect more scions, but maybe I'll even collect some now just to see what happens.
Regards,
Tim
 
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John Wolfram wrote:

Tim Mackson wrote:Pear trees seem to be my failure.  Apple trees are a toss up.  The pear trees that I'm trying to reproduce never have good quality scions to offer.
Thank you for any replies.  I appreciate you all.Stay healthy.Regards,Tim



Try hacking back the pear tree, hard. Get rid of ~20% of the branches. That will cause it to create numerous water shoots to form that will be good grafting material for next year.


Thank you for the advice John.

I took your advice and crudely pruned our red pear which was out of control and had started to die.  I actually cut a lot more than you suggested....I got carried away.  I had planted the tree in a bad location too close to a pine tree and it got long and spindly.  It also had dead branches.  There were no branches to prune which would have made it the proper goblet shape so I just started cutting and hope that  new and better branches might appear.  Because of the condition of the tree I figured that I had little to loose.  Quite a few years ago, when the tree was very small, we had a 17 year locust outbreak and I had covered up the tree with a net which permanently bent the branches into odd shapes.  All of this neglect pretty much ruined the tree.  The bottom picture is the pruned red pear. The top picture is our very old yellow pear which I wouldn't even know where to start pruning. It's so huge and too valuable to me to risk messing it up. Did I kill the red pear?  I'll guess that I'll find out soon.
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