Eek! Mice (or rabbits)! Not the animals but the damage they have wrought. The bark on virtually all my pear grafts of last year has been nibbled off enough to kill the grafts.
Once I calmed down, I realized that all was not lost. All the chewing was above ground level, leaving a small amount of intact bark still in place. The plants aren’t dead, just their portions above the chewing. The near-ground portions could be grafted again.
Daisy showered with petals (more on this later)
(Most fruit trees neither come true from seed nor root readily from cuttings, so are propagated by grafting a scion — a short length of one-year-old stem — of the desired variety onto a rootstock. The rootstock is the same kind of plant as the scion variety and could be a seedling or a variety developed for special rootstock purposes. My …
I take a few cells (actually, short lengths of stem) from some pear trees for cloning into whole new trees. And then, on the other side of the farmden. Arnold’s Promise surprises me with blossoms — again!
PRUNING NUT TREES lecture and demonstration, April 26th, at New York Nut Growers meeting. http://www.nynga.org for more information.
GRAFTING WORKSHOP, here at the farmden, on May 3rd. Theory, demonstration, and graft and take home your own pear tree. Contact me for more information.
Pest problems, due mostly to having a poor site and living east of the Rocky Mountains, have made me give up on growing apples — almost. Last year’s cicadas and this winter’s deer took their toll also. One problem, I realized, is that my trees are super-efficient, super-dwarfs that I made by grafting chosen varieties on special rootstocks. The problem is that super-efficient, super-dwarfs are also super-finicky about growing conditions. So I decided, instead, to try semi-dwarf trees that would be more tolerant of a less than perfect environment.
Long story short: I’m going to replant with five …
My friend Sara had a question about graft, which made me immediately think of a recent news item stating that, for the first time, more than half of the members of Congress are millionaires. You rarely hear about graft these days, perhaps because dollars are so ubiquitous a lubricant for our political machinery. No need anymore to elevate the practice with a special word.
But Sara was talking about grafting, not graft, and it was for tomatoes. Apples, peaches, and other fruit trees have been grafted for centuries. Tomato grafting is relatively recent, at least in this country. Sara wanted to know my thoughts about grafting tomatoes and whether we should pool our resources to get some plants.
Grafted tomatoes might grow more vigorously, might be resistant to soil-borne diseases, and/or might be more tolerant of salty, wet, or cold soils. A grafted plant has a specially …