Bud Grafting Citrus & Apple Trees – Budding

Budding- Best grafting technique

Budding, T-Budding, or Shield Budding is a type of grafting that consists of inserting a single bud into a plant, root stock, or young tree. This type of grafting is done in mid July to late August.

Bud Grafting is the fast way to reproduce a plant or fruit tree. The resulting plants/trees are clones (genetically identical). The plant being propagated (represented by the bud) is referred to as the scion, while the plant being grafted to is referred to as the root-stock.

Why The Bud Graft

Budding, particularly “T” budding, is faster than any other grafting technique (Cleft, Bark, Whip, etc) and the percentage of successful unions is usually greater. T-budding will also form a much stronger union with your tree.

Budding Technique

The T-Bud graft is not that hard to learn, but you will want to practice on the bench before trying this on you plants or root stock. To start the graft, remove the bud from the plant or fruit tree you want to clone. Next select another tree of the same type of fruit or a root stock (apple to apple, pear to pear) and place the bud into it. Now take your tape and wrap above and below your bud, leaving the bud exposed. In the Spring, when the bud begins to grow remove the rest of the root stock or branch (just above the Bud Graft). You now have produced the exact clone of the fruit your bud came from. Note the exact fruit, not the exact tree as that is dependent on the root stock that you grafted to.

*When wrapping your tree tape around the Bud Graft there is one tape you can use and make one wrap over the bud, this is called grafting parafilm tape.

When To Use The Bud Graft

Budding is best use for young trees or root stock. On large trees or branches the healing is more difficult as the bark will tend to pull away more from your bud graft then what a young root stock would do.

*Tip- When making your cuts try to limit their lengths as much as possible. On the straight cut try to lift the bark up beyond the end of the cut and have the lower part of the bud-bark sample (single bud scion) pushed under the bark of your branch or root stock. This will required a small thin tool, like a very small standard screw driver. By doing this you will increase the success of your budding. On the T-Cut try to minimize this length as well.