So for those of you that follow the things we do, I had an earlier post on damage from rabbits in our backyard this winter. It was a first for me here. They have typically ended up as cat or dog food as soon as they showed themselves. Apparently the cats and dog slacked this last winter. Or perhaps we have a population spike.
They ate this one damn near down to the ground, but the trunk is still green and alive.
So, first step, I removed the tops to just below the lowest damage with a pruner.
Then I split it down the center with a grafting knife.
To make the connection, you are using the pressure of the trunk like a vice to hold the wood you are grafting to it.
It is the green cambium later, just below the bark, that has to be touching so it can grow together. I shaved the scion wood (the variety I want the new tree to be, one year old wood) so that it can be wedged in.
That is what it looks like after you insert it. I used the grafting knife to hold the cleft open in order to push the piece in.
That is just a shot of another one.
So once wrapped in parafilm, and the tip sealed with pruning sealer, that is what it looks like.
Ten new grafts. Six Kleffman and 4 Cortland. We will see how they do, and hopefully we are digging them up next spring to move up north to the orchard.