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Thread: Grafting from a pear tree

  1. #1
    rabbit is offline Sprouter
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    Default Grafting from a pear tree

    We have a conference pear tree,espalier to a garage wall. The garage is being demolished and the tree was very scabby last year when we moved. It was however planted as a wedding present of the previous owners. It's probably 60 odd years old, but due to the limited location not very big or thick. Maybe a mans arm us the thickness of the trunk. I pruned it and covered the cuts with abrex in November as it was neglected and unruly
    but we do have to have it removed before the build starts. Location means it will be very hard to save the rootball so I'm wondering if its too late to try and graft it or save it in sme sense because it was nurtured and loved by an old couple it seems a shame to destroy it completely.

    Any advice ???

  2. #2
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    I would think that the best way of 'saving' this tree, given that it's too large too dig out and replant, is to graft it, either onto rootstock (Quince A or C), or onto a neighbouring pear tree. The former is probably a better bet as obviously you get an entirely new young tree that can be planted anywhere you like. I only graft apples, but pears are similar with respect to procedure. So if I were doing it, I'd be grafting it sometime during the next 3-4 weeks. Also, I'd do it three times, just in case of failure, so I'd beg, borrow or steal three bare-root rootstocks ( a couple of quid each, available from several nurseries), and get them in the ground/large pots as soon as possible. Technically, it's best to let rootstocks establish for a year before grafting them - you get much better growth once grafted. But you probably haven't time to do this. In my experience though you can usually get away with grafting almost immediately after planting new rootstock.

    I use very freshly cut scions for grafting, but you could cut off nine inch lengths of healthy 2012 growth from the threatened pear tree now and store them in the fridge for several weeks if necessary. Then, if you haven't grafted before, I'd really study the 3-4 min videos made by Stephen Hayes posted on you-tube (search for Apple grafting e.g. whip and tongue and saddle grafting). He makes it look easy, and it is, provided you practise the cuts several times on some prunings before actually doing it for real. Most people use the whip and tongue method, as it's simplest. If you have three rootstocks, you have three chances of success. And even if they fail, you can use the rootstocks again for grafting in feb/march 2014, or consider 'budding' them this summer.
    rabbit likes this.

  3. #3
    rabbit is offline Sprouter
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    Quote Originally Posted by boundtothesoil View Post
    I would think that the best way of 'saving' this tree, given that it's too large too dig out and replant, is to graft it, either onto rootstock (Quince A or C), or onto a neighbouring pear tree. The former is probably a better bet as obviously you get an entirely new young tree that can be planted anywhere you like. I only graft apples, but pears are similar with respect to procedure. So if I were doing it, I'd be grafting it sometime during the next 3-4 weeks. Also, I'd do it three times, just in case of failure, so I'd beg, borrow or steal three bare-root rootstocks ( a couple of quid each, available from several nurseries), and get them in the ground/large pots as soon as possible. Technically, it's best to let rootstocks establish for a year before grafting them - you get much better growth once grafted. But you probably haven't time to do this. In my experience though you can usually get away with grafting almost immediately after planting new rootstock.

    I use very freshly cut scions for grafting, but you could cut off nine inch lengths of healthy 2012 growth from the threatened pear tree now and store them in the fridge for several weeks if necessary. Then, if you haven't grafted before, I'd really study the 3-4 min videos made by Stephen Hayes posted on you-tube (search for Apple grafting e.g. whip and tongue and saddle grafting). He makes it look easy, and it is, provided you practise the cuts several times on some prunings before actually doing it for real. Most people use the whip and tongue method, as it's simplest. If you have three rootstocks, you have three chances of success. And even if they fail, you can use the rootstocks again for grafting in feb/march 2014, or consider 'budding' them this summer.
    Okay brilliant. We actually have a number of small apple trees that could also be grafted to so I might prefer that method. I will be checking out that YouTube video. Brilliant advice thanks

  4. #4
    FB.'s Avatar
    FB.
    FB. is offline Early Fruiter
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    I think that if you're careful and excavate as wide area as possible (use a fork; not a shovel), you might be able to dig out enough of the roots that it will survive if it's well-cared for during 2013 and if it's deblossomed in order to save its strength for regrowing new roots.
    .

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