Cherry grafting: summer, spring

Cherry grafting: summer, spring

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Cherry grafting is a fairly common way of propagating this stone fruit tree. It is widely used by gardeners for a variety of purposes, from preserving the species to increasing yields.

However, this is a rather complicated matter, and one cannot do without a detailed study of the issue.

Cherry propagation methods

There are several ways to propagate cherries. The most common of these is grafting it onto another tree. In addition, you can use the seed method or vegetative, using cuttings. Some varieties of cherries can be propagated by root shoots.

The seed method is the longest and most unreliable. When grown from seeds, cherries often lose their varietal characteristics, growing wild. However, there is still a chance of getting a varietal tree. To do this, you need to very carefully select the planting material, using the seeds of only the largest and most delicious fruits.

It is very important that the seeds are taken from cherries that grow in the same region. Sowing material taken from fruits grown in more southern regions (even if they are sweeter and more tasty) cannot be used. Seedlings from such seeds, of course, will sprout, but with a high degree of probability they will die in the very first winter.

Before planting, the seeds must go through a stratification procedure. This is usually done in winter by placing the bones in a box of wet sand and placing it in a cold place (you can just bury it in the snow). In the spring, the seeds are sown in prepared soil.

The propagation method by cuttings is not suitable for all varieties. The average percentage of rooting of cuttings does not exceed 10, and only in rare varieties can it reach 50%, which is a very good indicator.

Grafting is the simplest and most effective method for propagating cherries. Its essence is to graft the shoot of the desired cherry variety to a wild seedling of another fruit tree.

For reproduction by root shoots, two-year-old shoots are suitable, at least a quarter of a meter from the main trunk. They are carefully dug out together with a part of the maternal root and transplanted to a new place.

Propagation of cherries by cuttings

Cherry propagated by cuttings will retain all the varietal characteristics of the mother tree. Its berries will be just as tasty, and they will have to wait no longer than five years.

When can you root cherry cuttings

For harvesting cuttings, reddened and hardened layers from the bottom of the tree are suitable. They are cut in early June. The length of each should be about 30–35 cm. The procedure should be carried out with a sharp, clean knife, in the morning or in the evening, while it is cool outside. Cut cuttings are immediately placed in water.

Preparing the soil for planting cherries with cuttings

The soil for planting cuttings must be specially prepared. Qualitatively prepared soil should be different:

  • breathability;
  • moisture capacity;
  • the absence of any worms, larvae;
  • lack of roots of other plants;
  • the absence of infections.

Most often, a mixture of peat, river sand and sod land in a ratio of 1: 1: 2 is used as a nutrient mixture for planting cuttings.

Reproduction of cherries by cuttings at home

For cuttings, apricots that have recently come into fruiting are best suited. The cut is made from below at an angle of 45 °, from above at a right angle. The cut stalk should have 3 full-fledged leaves, the distance from the lowest to the beginning of the cut should be at least 3 cm.

How to plant cherry cuttings

Before rooting cherry cuttings, they are placed for 16–20 hours in a solution of a root stimulator (heteroauxin), dipping them 2 cm. Then the cuttings are planted vertically in prepared containers with nutritious soil or in a greenhouse under a film.

Rooting cherry cuttings

After planting the cuttings, it is important to ensure that the soil does not dry out. Watering should be abundant and timely. The first adventitious roots should appear in cuttings after 3 weeks, and complete rooting will occur in 1.5 months.

To increase the rooting rate of cuttings, you can use the following method. Future cuttings 10 days before cutting are wrapped with several turns of cloth tape at the site of the future cut. During this time, the cambium of the tree bark becomes discolored without access to sunlight, which increases root formation in this place by about 30%.

Will a cherry branch give roots in water

Sweet cherries, like most other stone fruit trees, are unlikely to be forced to take root in this way. However, there are exceptions. In order for the cherry to take root in the water, you need to carry out a number of manipulations:

  • In autumn, pick some good 1-2 year old side branches.
  • Break them without damaging the bark at intervals of 15–20 cm.
  • Fix the branch in a state of fracture by tying it to a straight branch-tire.
  • In the spring, cut the branch at the break points and put it in the water.

A dark plastic bottle with a cut-off neck works well for cuttings. It needs to be filled with rainwater, add two tablets of activated carbon, put the cuttings in it and put them on the windowsill. After about 3 weeks, root formation will begin. After the length of the roots is 5–7 cm, the cuttings can be planted in a nutritious soil.

Growing cherries by cuttings

It is best to keep planted cuttings in a mini greenhouse. It is important to provide future seedlings with an optimal microclimate, maintaining a temperature of about + 25 ° C even at night and high humidity. Watering should be done frequently, 5-6 times a day. If rot occurs, you need to reduce the amount of water, but not the number of waterings.

How to root a cherry branch outdoors

Not every branch can always be rooted. So growing a cherry from a twig, simply breaking it off from a neighbor's tree and sticking it into the ground, is unlikely to work. Even specially prepared cuttings taken at a certain period do not always take root. If the timing and parameters are suitable, you can try to make a stalk out of it and root a cherry twig in this way.

Cherry propagation by green cuttings

Cuttings harvested from non-lignified shoots of the current year are called green. This method is widely used for the propagation of many trees and shrubs, including cherries. The advantages of this method are that green cuttings take root much better.

All varietal characteristics of the mother plant with this method of reproduction are preserved in full.

Is it possible to grow cherries from a green cutting

Green cuttings are considered not particularly effective for cherries. However, you can try to propagate it this way.

When to carry out green cuttings of cherries

Cutting of green cuttings is done in June, and in regions with short summers in July. Cutting cuttings is best done in the early morning, while it is still cool. You can do this even in cloudy weather.

How to propagate cherries with green cuttings

For green cuttings, young side shoots of the current year, growing at the bottom of the crown on the sunny side of the tree, are best suited. They should not show signs of fungus or other diseases. For harvesting cuttings, you need to choose branches with a length of at least 30 cm with large, well-developed buds.

Cuttings are cut with a sharp knife, the pruner is not suitable for this purpose, as it crushes the cut site. Cut shoots are cut into cuttings 8–12 cm in size and placed in water or in a container with damp moss. After the end of the harvesting procedure, the cuttings are prepared for planting in a greenhouse. Before that, the lower cut is kept in a solution of a root formation stimulator (Kornevin, Heteroauxin) for 15–20 hours, and then planted in a nutrient soil under a film.

Rooted cuttings care

Care consists in regular moistening of the soil, as well as maintaining the temperature at the level of +25 .. + 27 ° С. A greenhouse with cuttings should be regularly ventilated. Do not allow direct sunlight to fall on the cuttings. If all the rules of planting and care are observed, rooting occurs in 3-4 weeks.

Cherry propagation by layering

The method of propagation by layering is used mainly on fruit bushes. Fruit trees are propagated by air layers. For apple and other fruit trees, this method is widely used, but for cherries it is extremely rare.

Advantages and disadvantages of this method

The advantage of this method is that a ready-made adult seedling can be grown in one season. The disadvantage is that it does not always work on cherries.

How to propagate cherries by layering

The essence of the air layering method is to surround the growing branch with earth. A shrub shoot can simply be bent to the ground and covered with soil, but this will not work with a fruit tree. Therefore, a container with earth is placed directly in the crown of a tree, placing a growing branch of a fruit tree in it.

The process of obtaining air layering is as follows. The shoot chosen for reproduction is ringed, removing a strip of bark 1.5–2 cm wide from it. Then the cut is treated with a root formation stimulator, covered with a moist soil substrate and wrapped in plastic wrap. The edges of the film are rigidly fixed with tape.

In such a moist soil environment, the root system develops. In autumn, the entire shoot is cut off from the mother tree and placed in a greenhouse for growing, after the formation of a full-fledged root system, it is transferred to open ground to a permanent place.

Cherry grafting is the best way to propagate

Grafting is the fastest way to harvest. This method allows you to preserve all varietal characteristics, and due to the greater winter hardiness of the rootstocks, increase the resistance to frost of the plant itself.

What is the difference between grafted cherries and unvaccinated ones?

Ungrafted cherries have no trace of grafting on the stem. Such trees are usually grown from seeds. At the same time, they retain all species characteristics, but not varietal ones. The grafted cherries have a clearly visible grafting mark just above the root collar.

What can you plant cherries on?

Plants are best grafted to related or belonging to the same species. Sweet cherry belongs to the Plum genus, and also cherries, plums and cherry plums. Therefore, the best stock for cherries should be chosen from this group of plants.

Is it possible to graft cherries on cherries

You can graft a sweet cherry onto another variety and grow several varieties of a sweet cherry on the same tree. The method is widely used to save space in the garden, since there is no need to plant pollinating trees. Two or more varieties are on the same tree and cross-pollinate each other.

How to plant cherries on plums

Grafting of cherries on plums is done to get tastier fruits and increase yields. It can be done in several ways, the most effective of which is splitting. However, such grafting is rarely done, since cherries take a long time to take root on the plum.

Is it possible to plant cherries on a pear

Pear and cherry belong to different families (pome and stone fruits, respectively), so such experiments are likely to end in failure. With enough time and seed, you can experiment, but the result will take a lot of time and money.

Cherry grafting on bird cherry

Again, this is an experiment with an unknown end, since it is not known what will result from such a hybrid. Even if the scion takes root on a bird cherry rootstock, you will have to follow it throughout your life.

In Soviet times, such a hybrid was considered possible for the following reason. Sweet cherries were often grafted onto antipka - wild cherries. Previously, this plant was qualified as a bird cherry, and only not very long ago it was attributed to a different species.

Is it possible to plant cherries on cherry plums

Cherry grafting on cherry plum takes root well and is carried out quite often. It improves the plant's hardiness and helps it grow normally in areas with high groundwater levels.

The nuances of grafting cherries on thorns

The blackthorn is a distant relative of the plum, so grafting may well be successful. However, few people will use the rootstock for planting on the site, since it forms a large amount of root growth, which will constantly have to be dealt with.

Is it possible to plant cherries on an apple tree

For the apple tree, everything that has already been said about the pear above is true. This vaccination should only be done as an experiment that is likely to be unsuccessful.

Grafting cherries on mountain ash

Pome fruits (apple, pear) are often grafted onto mountain ash, but stone fruits, as a rule, do not take root on it. It is hardly advisable to use rowan rootstock for cherries.

Scion preparation

For scion, you need to use ripe lignified cuttings of the first year of life. They must meet the following conditions:

  • About 7–8 mm thick, about the same as a pencil.
  • Short internodes.
  • The number of developed growth buds is at least 5 pcs.
  • Length from 30 to 40 cm.

Cuttings are best taken from trees no older than 10 years. Cuttings are harvested in late autumn or early winter, after the first significant frosts. At this time, the cold temperature has already killed most of the fungi on the bark, and the cuttings themselves have hardened.

Cut cuttings are stored, as a rule, collected in bunches and tied. Any container is used for storage. The storage location itself may be different, the main requirement for it is not to wake up the buds of the tree until spring. Many people simply store the container outside, burying it in the snow. To prevent damage by rodents, the container is wrapped in nylon or covered with fiberglass.

If the deadlines are missed, they can be prepared in early spring, while the plant is still in a "dormant" state. At this time, the cuttings are harvested with a margin, since some of them may be frozen.

If the grafting is done in the summer, the stalk is not stored. At this time, delay is highly undesirable, so the vaccination is done immediately.

Terms of grafting cherries

Spring vaccination is the most reliable. At this time, sap flow near the tree is the most active, therefore, the scion survival rate is the best. You can plant trees all summer until September. A later vaccination will simply not have time to take root.

Cherry grafting methods

There are quite a few methods for grafting a stalk into a stock. It is better for a novice gardener to use the simplest ones, gradually moving on to more complex and requiring considerable preparation methods.

Grafting of cherries with a kidney

This method is pretty straightforward. A T-shaped incision is made on the rootstock, the bark is slightly bent. A small part containing the bud is cut out of the scion using the angular method. This piece is inserted behind the bark, the bark is returned to its place and wrapped with tape.

Cherry grafting under the bark

This is a very simple method used for grafting many trees, including it is performed in the spring, during the period of intensive sap flow. At other times, it is quite difficult to bend the bark on the rootstock trunk. For this method, the thickness of the rootstock should be significantly greater than the thickness of the grafted cutting.

For the grafting, the stock is cut at right angles. Then, with a sharp knife, an incision is made in the bark and unbend. The scion stalk is cut with an oblique cut at an acute angle and inserted behind the bark. The graft is fixed, and the entire cut is covered with garden varnish.If the stock is rather thick, several scion cuttings can be grafted onto one stump.

Cherry budding

Eye grafting is called budding and is usually done in June. This procedure is done as follows:

  • A part of the stem containing the bud, along with a piece of bark, is cut from the scion cuttings.
  • An incision is made on the stem of the stock, repeating the shape of the cut piece of the scion.
  • The graft is placed in the groove of the rootstock and securely fixed with tape.

Cherry grafting into cleft

Inoculation into the cleft is done in much the same way as under the bark. The sawn stock is split in half with a garden knife. Scion cuttings are inserted into it along the edges, sharpened with a wedge, so that the outer layers of the cambium coincide. The cut itself cannot be touched with your hands, this is important. Otherwise, the scion will not take root.

After the end of all procedures, the open parts of the vaccination site are covered with garden varnish.

Cherry grafting by copulation

When grafting by copulation, the thickness of the rootstock and the scion must be the same. On both parts, an oblique cut is made with a sharp knife, its length should be at least three times the thickness of the cutting itself. The stock and the scion are folded so that the cambium layers coincide as accurately as possible. After that, the vaccination site is wrapped with tape.

In addition to the usual one, they also use improved copulation. In this case, in the middle of the cut of both the rootstock and the scion, an additional split is made, which allows the scion to be more tightly fixed. This method greatly increases the number of points of contact between the cambium layers, and the grafts take root faster and more reliably.

Grafting of cherries with a "bridge"

This method is used in emergency cases to save the tree. Often, after winter, fruit trees have annular destruction of the bark (from frost, burns or damage from hares). If you do not take any measures, the tree is guaranteed to die, since nutrients from the root system cannot reach the crown.

In this case, the bridge is used. The area of ​​absence of bark is simply blocked by a kind of bridges made of cuttings, along which the movement of juices will go. The vaccination itself is performed as follows. Above and below the damaged area, two T-shaped cuts are made strictly vertically (straight below, inverted on top).

Cuttings are cut on an oblique symmetrical cut and are wound up behind the bark of the rootstock. The stalk should stand upright, in the direction of natural growth. There may be several such bridges. After this, the contact points are fixed with tape, and the vaccination site itself is wrapped in film to create a greenhouse effect.

Cherry grafting in corner and side cut

The lateral cut method allows not only grafting a different variety to the tree, but also turning it in the right direction. To carry out the vaccination, it is necessary that the diameters of the rootstock and the scion coincide. This is done like this:

  • An oblique cut is made on the rootstock, while both the bark and the wood are cut.
  • The end of the scion is cut in the form of a sharp wedge.
  • The graft is inserted into the cut on the rootstock, the cambium layers are maximally aligned with each other.

After that, the vaccination site is wrapped with tape.

For grafting using the angle notch method, the thickness of the rootstock must be significantly greater than the thickness of the scion. As in the methods of grafting "behind the bark" or "in the split", the stock is sawed perpendicular to the trunk. At the edge of the saw cut, an angular cut is made of the same depth as the thickness of the scion. The bottom of the scion cutting is cut at the same angle.

The graft is inserted into the corner cut. Layers of cambium are combined as much as possible, pruning if necessary. After that, the scion is tightly wrapped with tape, and the saw cut is covered with garden var.

Care of grafted seedlings

The vaccination site should be checked regularly. Any growth below the grafting site should be removed so that it does not take up nutrients. After 1.5-2 months after vaccination, a splint should be applied to the junction. This will give the shoot the necessary rigidity and protect it from strong winds or damage by birds. They can be removed after the end of the leaf fall.

How to properly plant grafted cherries

The grafted cherries are planted in a permanent place in the usual way. 2-3 year old seedlings are planted in the spring, when the tree is still dormant. It is better to prepare a pit for planting in the fall.

Sweet cherries are planted in pits along with a clod of earth on the roots. In this case, the root collar should be at a level of 3-5 cm above ground level. The pit is covered with soil mixture, tamped and spilled with several buckets of water. For better preservation of moisture in the soil, the trunk circle is mulched with peat or humus. A young seedling must be tied to a support in order to protect it from wind damage in the first years of life.

Whether to deepen the graft in cherries

The grafting site is always above the root collar, and it should be above ground level. Violation of this condition can lead to the fact that the cherry simply will not bloom and bear fruit.

All about grafting cherries - in the video at the link below.


Cherry grafting has many useful functions. With its help, you can propagate trees, improve the quality of fruits and increase winter hardiness. Grafting on dwarf rootstocks can significantly reduce the growth of cherries, thereby making it easier to care for them and the subsequent harvest.

And grafting is the only way to grow several varieties of this tasty and healthy berry on one tree at once.

Watch the video: EarthWise: Episode Ten - Grafting 101, How to Graft a Pear Tree (September 2022).


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