February vaccinations

February vaccinations

In the last month of winter in our North-West region it is still quite cold: winds, snowfalls, and often frosts.

And most importantly, February is dangerous for overwintering fruit and berry crops with sharp temperature changes, so you need to constantly monitor that the stems and bases of the skeletal branches of fruit trees and berry bushes are under snow cover. To this end, coming to the garden in winter, work should continue to accumulate and preserve snow.

February is the best time for winter vaccination, with the help of which the gardener can grow the seedlings of the varieties he needs. To do this, in the fall, it is necessary to prepare rootstocks, that is, plants on which cuttings of the desired varieties will be grafted. You can use clonal rootstocks, wilds grown from seeds, or pencil-thick, 15-20 cm long roots, preferably with a branched bottom.

The rootstocks dug before freezing are placed in a box, bucket or plastic bag, the roots are covered with wet sand, moss or sawdust and stored in the basement at a temperature of 0-3 ° C. If the rootstocks are few, they can be kept in a plastic bag in the refrigerator under the freezer, cutting off the tops to save space and leaving 15-20 cm from the root collar. Scion cuttings, harvested in the fall, can be stored in a bag along with the rootstocks or cut them just before grafting, if there was no winter damage.

The day before vaccination, the rootstocks are brought into a warm room. Immediately before grafting, they are thoroughly washed and the damaged parts of the roots are cut to a healthy place. The grafting is done closer to the root collar, and on root scraps - in their upper part.

Improved copulation:
a - preparation of the stock;
b - preparation of the scion cuttings;
c - a ready-made scion stalk;
d - adjusted vaccination;
d - completed vaccination

The inoculation can be done in different ways, but the most reliable fusion provides a way of improved copulation (in the butt with the tongue). This method is quite simple and can be done by any gardener. For this purpose, a stalk with three buds is taken, with a sharp grafting knife, equal oblique cuts of the same length (about 3 cm) are made on it and on the rootstock. Then, on both cuts, at a distance of one third of the length of the cut from its upper end, longitudinal cuts are made and carefully split them with a knife so that tongues are formed.

The sections of the grafting components are combined in such a way that the tongue of the cutting fits into the gap on the rootstock cut (see Fig.). If the stock is thicker than the cutting, the grafting components are combined on one side so that the bark of the lower end of the cutting coincides with the bark of the stock, and the protruding part of the stock is cut off. The vaccination site is tied. For winter grafting, it is best to use a readily biodegradable material such as paper twine, which then breaks down without crashing into a rapidly thickening plant. It must first be untwisted in the form of a narrow tape. When tying, the stock is held with the left hand, and the graft is tightly wrapped with the right hand, securing the strapping with a knot.

The place of inoculation and all sections, including the top of the cutting, are covered with garden pitch. Then the grafts are placed in a box, the bottom and walls of which are lined with a film cut in several places to drain excess moisture.

In a box, grafts are sprinkled with wet sand, pre-steamed sawdust, peeled from pieces of bark, or sphagnum moss and kept at a temperature of 20-25 ° C (not lower than + 18 ° C) for 8-10 days. This time is enough for the formation of callus (influx in the place of fusion) on the sections. Sawdust or moss must be constantly moistened.

After that, the box with vaccinations is transferred to a cold basement or placed in a snow pile before the spring landing on the site. This is done in order to prevent premature germination of buds on cuttings when the temperature rises.

To speed up the cultivation of seedlings, they are planted in plastic bags about 30x20 cm in size with cut corners to drain excess water. The bags are stuffed with sod-humus earth or a mixture of peat and sand (1: 1) and add 20 g of superphosphate to each bag.

Vaccinations (after the formation of an influx) are planted in packages vertically, leaving only the upper bud of the cutting on the surface, and the packages are placed in a bright warm room or greenhouse.

Further care of the plants is reduced to regular watering, and after the start of growth - to weekly feeding with nitrogen-potassium fertilizers. They can be planted in a permanent place in May-June, preferably in rainy weather.

If the cuttings for winter grafting were harvested in the fall, it is necessary to systematically check their condition: it is impossible to prevent the appearance of mold on them, as well as their drying out or bud germination. The safest way is to store the cuttings in the refrigerator, after wrapping them in a damp cloth and plastic wrap, or in a snow pile at least 0.8 m high, protected from mice and covered with sawdust on top to prevent spring snow melting.

Cuttings of apple trees and other tree species for grafting can also be prepared in the winter months, provided that they have not been damaged by frost or sudden temperature changes. To check this, cut off several cuttings and put them on growing in water at room temperature, covering them with plastic wrap on top to prevent them from drying out.

After 2-3 weeks, you can assess the degree of damage to the shoots by making longitudinal cuts on them with a sharp razor in several places. If the color of all tissues is light green, then the cuttings are not damaged and are suitable for grafting. In damaged cuttings, the wood, bark and cambium turn brown, the buds, when cut longitudinally, also have a brown color. Such cuttings cannot be used for grafting.

In February, seeds of those breeds are laid for stratification (certain conditions of the preparatory period of dormancy - ripening), the duration of stratification of which is about three months. Gardeners can use seeds to propagate remontant beardless strawberries, Japanese quince, black chokeberry, etc.

To this end, keep the seeds for about an hour in a manganese solution to protect them from mold and decay. Then they are mixed with washed moistened sand and put into bags made of non-degradable but breathable fabric (for example, from a nylon stocking). The seed bags are placed in a wooden box or flower pot and placed in a dark room (basement) at a temperature of 3-5 ° C.

In the future, they are viewed from time to time and moistened. As soon as most of the seeds "naklyuyutsya" (white sprouts appear a little), they must be transferred to a colder place (about 0 ° C) in order to prevent premature germination before sowing.

G. Alexandrova,
candidate of agricultural sciences

Read also:
• The use of grafting in ornamental gardening. Create weeping tree shapes
• Budding is an effective type of grafting of trees and shrubs
• Little tricks that increase the effect of vaccination
• Reasons for incompatibility of scion and rootstock of fruit trees

General concepts

A typical way to rejuvenate an old tree

There are two different types of biological material involved in vaccination: scion and stock.

  • Graft - This is a stalk or branch that is grafted onto an already formed root system or tree.
  • Rootstock - this is the part of the plant to which the required variety is grafted.

  • a young tree of a variety or species well adapted to the area
  • old tree requiring renovation
  • adult plant used as a "donor"
  • damaged or injured plant that would not want to uproot

Despite the fact that the scion after the end of the procedure will determine the varietal characteristics of the plant, it does not have its own roots and receives all the necessary elements from the rootstock.

This means that it is the stock that will determine the yield, the duration of the growing season and flowering, resistance to bad weather, the life of the plant and many other factors.

Growing walnut rootstocks

Therefore, in order for the future garden tree to develop correctly and evenly, it is necessary that the rootstock has the following qualities:

  • was well adapted to the climatic conditions of the growing region
  • was compatible with the scion
  • had a reliable and extensive root system

Scion cuttings should be collected in early spring, as soon as the snow melts. The collection procedure must be completed before the first vegetative buds open.

Vaccination technology in different ways

Inoculation by budding

can be used when the gardener has a limited amount of grafting material. However, it must be borne in mind that this method is used, in most cases, for the production of seedlings or the restoration of damaged young trees. When grafted into the crown of an adult tree, budding is not as effective as grafting with a cuttings.


If the vaccination is by eye do in spring, for the success of the operation, it is necessary to wait for active sap flow in the rootstock. During this period, the bark easily and without damage is separated from the wood. A T-shaped incision is made on the stem of the stock, the length of which should be at least 3 cm. The eye is cut off of a deliberately greater length so that you can hold it by the upper tip of the bark above the kidney. Try to cut so that the wood from the cutting is just under the bud. Next, carefully insert the peephole into the T-shaped incision behind the bark (like a pocket). The part that you were holding should remain outside the incision - you will carefully cut it off with a knife along the line of the horizontal part of the incision on the bark.

Make the winding so that the kidney remains in the air. Now everything that is above the inoculation - cut it off. There will be only a stump on which there is a winding. Cover the cut with var.

Summer vaccination

With summer vaccination (late July - early August) the flap is cut in the same way as described above. However, for convenience, a petiole is left from the leaf above the bud, which can be held by when you insert the peephole into the T-shaped incision. With summer grafting, the upper part of the rootstock is not cut off until the eye is completely engrafted.

Read more about grafting an apple tree in summer:

Improved capulation method

Improved copulation method with a "tongue" is used when the thickness of the scion and rootstock are commensurate with each other. In this method, an oblique even cut is made on the stem and rootstock, approximately equal to three diameters of the stem. Then, parallel to the axes of the stock and the scion at a height of 1/3 of the cut, cuts are made, which are inserted into each other. The connection must be made so that the overlap of the cambium on the cuttings and the stock occurs on at least one side of the cut. After that, 3 buds are left on the handle. Then the entire length of the joint is wrapped. With such a grafting, the joint of the rootstock with the scion is so strong that even with sufficient effort it is difficult to break the unity of the wrapped plant. This guarantees a good survival rate of the graft.

Inoculation in the cleft or behind the bark

When the rootstock diameter is much larger than the scion cuttings, they are used cleft inoculationsor per bark... These methods allow transplanting mature trees, grafting into the crown on a thick skeletal branch, or repairing young trees that have been broken or damaged by hares.

Bridge grafting

Another grafting method that will help cope with tree spoilage by mice is bridging... For this operation, cuttings are taken from winter-hardy varieties of trees. So cuttings are best for an apple tree Antonovka or Anisov... The method of grafting with a bridge is a special case of grafting for the bark, only in this situation, both the upper and lower parts of the cutting are filled for the bark. Thus, a bridge is formed across the site damaged by the mice.

When to plant trees

The best time for grafting is spring or the first half of summer, when there is active sap flow in the plants. Experienced gardeners have some subtleties that allow them to determine the right time. The lunar calendar is also taken into account, indicating the phase of the moon and location in the signs of the zodiac, as well as the temperature outside. It is best to vaccinate on a cool, cloudy day, on favorable days according to the lunar calendar.

The best period for vaccinations is the moment when the sap flow has just begun, but the buds have not yet blossomed. Until the moment of vaccination, the graft (grafting stalk) must be stored in the cold. They are best preserved in a snowdrift. If the stalk has grown or turned black, moldy, it is not suitable for the scion.

It is undesirable to use an adult tree as a rootstock if its age exceeds 10 years, since the risk of unsuccessful vaccinations is too great, because sap flow in such trees is weakened. The most popular grafting methods are budding (kidney grafting) and grafting.

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