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Buy scion / bud wood for grafting

Order wood from a selection of fruit tree varieties growing in our North Canterbury forest garden

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Useful and related information, common questions etc.

Spring grafting season for fruit and nut trees August - October

Spring grafting season for fruit and nut trees August - October

Wood is cut and graded in June for dispatch in July – August. On receipt, scion wood will need to be stored refrigerated until the appropriate local grafting time.

Length: 150 – 170mm with 3 - 4 buds

Diameter: 5 – 12mm

Grafting is the process of adding part of a known, desirable tree onto existing, growing roots of a similar species. This process offers many benefits such as having many types of apple on a single tree or influencing the characteristics of the tree such as size, soil requirements and disease resistance.
  June   July   August   September   October  
  graft  fruit  trees 
Summer budding season January - March

Summer budding season January - March

Done during summer, budding can be used to add wood from a desirable tree onto a different root stock much like grafting.

Length: 150 – 170mm with 3 - 4 buds

Diameter: 5 – 12mm

Orders will be cut and dispatched for prompt budding.

  January   February   March  
Collecting, storing and posting scion wood

Collecting, storing and posting scion wood

Scion wood is collected during the dormant season from shoots that grew the previous year. In North Canterbury that is June - July. Vigorous growth of at least a 30 centimetres make the best scions. Water sprouts from up in the tree usually make good straight scions. Do not collect scion wood while it is frozen, and avoid wood that has been damaged by cold.

After cutting, scions should be tied in bundles, labelled, and stored under moist conditions in a temperature range of 4 to 7c. Bundles wrapped with damp paper towelling, sealed in plastic bags, and placed in a refrigerator store well providing it does not contain apples, pears, or other ethylene gas-generating fruit, as this is reputed to ruin the scion wood. However, wood sealed in plastic bags may not be affected?

Grafting time
Choosing when to graft can be tricky. What you want to be doing is performing the graft when the host tree or rootstock is waking up in the spring and the sap is rising and buds starting to swell, prior to blossom or leaf burst. Generally the grafting proceeds in the same order the trees flower and fruit, but earlier. Starting in mid to late august with almond followed by cherry, plum, peach & nectarine, nashi, pear and finally apple in late September.

At grafting time, cut off and discard the tip and base of the scion. Buds near the tip are often flower buds, and those near the base are often weak buds. The remaining portion of the stem is used to make scions each containing three to five buds.

Direct or Green Grafting
Scions of apple and pear (possibly others?) can be collected and grafted immediately in early spring. Mid August to mid October in North Canterbury

When we send scions they are bundled and labelled, sealed in a resealable bag with a wad of damp paper.

Rootstock compatibility for different types of tree

Scions of desirable species must be grafted onto a suitable, compatible root system or ultimately the graft with be rejected by the host tree.
The roots determine to size, growth rate and suitable soil conditions for the tree while the scion controls the flowers and fruit type and timing.
Most are only self compatible and so apple must be grafted to apple but as usual there are exceptions such as almonds onto peach.
Multi grafted fruit trees - Combine your favourite varieties on a single tree

Multi grafted fruit trees - Combine your favourite varieties on a single tree

Imagine a single tree with apples of many flavours, ripening from March to June, or combining apricots, plums and peaches.

A great way to save space and spread the yield over a longer harvest time.

While there is no limit to the number of different cultivars that can be supported from a single root system there are several considerations or complications that arise:
  • Differing growth rates can result in one type becoming overly dominant
  • Each additional variety increases the complexity of pruning
If you'd like extra flavours added to your existing fruit trees you can teach yourself to graft or talk to us and we may be able to help.
Quince root stock for grafting dwarf pear and loquat

Quince root stock for grafting dwarf pear and loquat

Botanical name   Cydonia oblonga
Details   Quinces are used as a root stock for producing dwarf pears, loquat and other quinces.

Root stocks can be created from root suckers, stool bed or seeds from overripe fruit planted in late autumn.
Flowers   White
Fruit / berries  
Tags     graft  dwarf  fruit tree  pear 
Benefits   The primary benefits are smaller trees that fruit sooner
Negatives   Many cultivars of pear are not directly compatible with quince and require double grafting with a compatible interstock
Pears grafted on quince have shorter lifespan than on seedling grown root stocks
Quince trees are prone to suckering, sending up growth from around the base of the tree and near damaged roots. These can be used as rootstocks.

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