Secrets of Successful Apricot Vaccination

Vaccination is the main method of propagation of apricot, which allows you to save all varietal qualities of the fruit, increase productivity and give the tree additional properties, such as frost resistance and drought tolerance. Beginners are often afraid to perform this procedure, although mastering the apricot vaccination technique on their own is quite simple. Everyone can perform the operation by examining the materials in this article.

What time frame to plant apricot

The timing of vaccination largely determines its effectiveness. In each season, the procedure has its own characteristics and depends on the stage of plant vegetation.

The optimal period for vaccination operations, according to experts, is considered to be early spring, when the movement of nutrients up the trunk begins. The specific timing of vaccination depends on the climatic conditions of the region and varies from early March to mid-April.

When choosing a day of spring vaccination, pay attention to the readings of the thermometer

You can determine the best time for spring apricot vaccination yourself. It is permissible to start the procedure if all 3 conditions are fulfilled:

  1. The threat of freezing frost has passed.
  2. The air temperature rises above 6 ° C during the day and does not fall below 0 at night.
  3. The tree has swollen buds.

A popular sign says: when the ground thaws a shovel on two bayonets, it’s just right to start grafting stone fruit crops.

Quite often, summer apricot vaccination is also practiced. It is performed during the second sap flow - from the end of July to the third decade of August. The readiness of the tree for surgery is determined by the degree of separability of the bark from the wood with an incision. If the cortex leaves well, transplantation can begin. In the summer, green cuttings serve as a vaccine, which is one of the advantages of vaccination during this period.

Apricot trees are rarely planted in autumn, and only residents of the southern regions with warm, mild winters. The deadline for completing the procedure is September 15, so that before the first frosts the cuttings manage to partially take root with the stock. Experienced gardeners additionally protect the vaccination site from freezing with a special shelter in the form of a sleeve made of wrapping paper filled with sawdust and wrapped in polyethylene.

Autumn apricot is vaccinated only in regions with warm winters.

In the middle lane and in the northern regions, apricot planting is not recommended in autumn for two reasons:

  1. During this period, all the forces of the plant are aimed at preparing for wintering. Surgical intervention will affect the life cycle of the plant, as a result of which the tree can be significantly affected due to frost.
  2. The vaccine can freeze in harsh winter conditions, and all efforts will be in vain.

Winter apricot vaccination is also possible. It is carried out, as a rule, in February at the premises and requires preliminary preparation of stock and scion. Due to its laboriousness and the need to create special conditions for storing seedlings, vaccination is practiced in winter mainly in nurseries.

What to plant apricot: choose a stock

The stock determines the further life of the plant after vaccination. For this reason, its selection and cultivation is the most important step in tinting apricot. Both wild and cultivated trees that meet the following criteria can serve as stocks:

  • compatibility with the scion (the closer the relationship between cultures, the better the survival rate);
  • adaptability to regional climatic conditions (regionalized varieties of stock for each locality should be selected);
  • developed root system (weak roots are not able to provide a scion with necessary nutrients).

It should also be remembered that trees over the age of 7–8 years are not recommended to be used as rootstock - the tissues lose their plasticity and the probability of engraftment of the scion on old wood is rather low.

When spring vaccination, be sure to examine the condition of the stock. The brown color of wood indicates their freezing, which means that it is better not to use such stock for grafting.

How to plant apricot on apricot

Grafting an apricot on an apricot is an ideal choice among all for survival. The maximum result is achieved when combining the same varieties. This procedure allows you to accelerate fruiting for several years. The grafted stalk will please the fruit for 2-3 years, while the new seedling will need 4-5 years for fruiting.

Apricot grafting on apricot works best

In addition, apricot is planted on apricot seedlings grown from seed. Everyone knows that the seed method of growing does not allow the tree to inherit the varietal qualities of the mother plant. Vaccination makes it possible to convey the stock of the properties of any apricot variety and significantly improve the taste of the fruit.

Apricot grafting on cherry

For apricot scion, cherry stock is rarely used for several reasons:

  • not all cherries are suitable for vaccination;
  • intergrowth of these crops is low;
  • if the vaccine nevertheless has taken root, then the branches grow brittle, often break off and require additional strengthening.

Experienced gardeners use the so-called grafting insert, when the apricot is grafted onto a cherry stock on which a plum or cherry plum was previously grafted.

Cherry plum as stock for apricot

Cherry plum is an excellent stock for most stone fruit crops, including apricot. Unpretentious cherry plum gives apricot scion frost resistance and endurance.

Apricot fruits on cherry plum rootstock have bright color and pleasant sweet taste.

Apricot grafting on plum

Plum stock - a frequent choice when vaccinating apricot. Firstly, good compatibility of these cultures gives a high survival rate. Secondly, frost-resistant plum transfers this property to heat-loving apricot.

Video: how to plant apricot on a plum

Turn apricot grafting

Blackthorn is often used as a stock for apricot. Gardeners are attracted by its adaptability to various climatic conditions, as well as the unique ability of the roots of this tree to find the necessary nutrients even in infertile soil. The disadvantage of this foundation is the rapid development of basal shoots, which slows the development of fresh shoots and further complicates access to fruits. Apricot cuttings take root better on hybrid varieties of thorns, in particular on thorns.

Apricot settles well on the wild blackthorn, but its main drawback as a scion is the abundant growth of the bush

Is it possible to plant apricot on apple and pear

Repeated attempts by experimental gardeners to plant apricot on an apple and pear prove the complete incompatibility of these plants. And even rare cases of apricot engraftment on such a stock are inconclusive, since the vaccine will soon die. The explanation lies in the fact that the apple tree and pear belong to pome crops, and apricot - to stone fruit. Thus, these fruit trees are not in direct, but in a cousin relationship.

Vaccine apricot vaccine

Irga is a beautiful frost-resistant stock, but not for apricot, but for apple and pear. Apricot cuttings on the irga do not take root.

Do apricots plant on mountain ash

The apricot graft does not take root on the mountain ash stock, even though these trees belong to the same botanical subfamily - Plum trees.

Rootstock Friendship for Apricot

In recent years, gardeners are increasingly using clonal stocks for apricot propagation. One of the most popular of them is the mid-sized stock of Friendship (a hybrid of Bessei cherries and common apricot).

Such a foundation has several advantages:

Table: Benefits and Drawbacks of Rootstock Friendship

  • compatible with almost all varieties of apricot;
  • tree height 30–40% lower than tree grafted on seed stock;
  • lack of basal shoots;
  • resistant to badlands and many diseases;
  • root resistance up to - 15 0С;
  • the productive age of the tree on this stock is 15–18 years.
  • the trees on this stock often bend;
  • young trees form prytambovy shoots;
  • medium drought tolerance.

Apricot on a dwarf rootstock

As you know, stocks convey many properties to scion, including determining the height of the future tree. Weak rootstocks are called dwarf stocks. Their main advantages are as follows:

  • the tree becomes more resistant to early spring frosts and many diseases;
  • the plant often begins to bear fruit already for 2 years;
  • qualitative characteristics of fruits improve: the size and intensity of coloring increase;
  • stunting makes pruning, fruit picking and pest protection easier.

VVA-1, Pumiselect, Vavit, Alab - 1 have proven themselves best as dwarf rootstocks for most apricot varieties.

You can buy seedlings of clonal stocks in specialized nurseries

Apricot semi-dwarf rootstocks

Vaccination of apricot on a semi-dwarf rootstock results in a medium-sized tree. Popular semi-dwarf rootstocks are Friendship, Persimid and Eureka-99.

Choose a stock for the region

As you know, apricot is a thermophilic plant, therefore, the stock for its vaccination should be acclimatized to local climatic conditions. If the apricot varietal tree acts as the foundation, then you should choose zoned varieties adapted to your area.

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For the south of the Black Earth Region, the Kuban, Stavropol Territory, the Rostov Region and the Caucasus, the stock, grown from the seed of the perch (semi-cultivated apricot), is suitable. It has a powerful root system and high frost resistance.

In the middle lane and in the suburbs, the apricot is well established on seedlings of common and Manchurian apricots, on seedlings or shoots of plums and thorns, cherry plum, on Bessey cherry seedlings.

In Siberia and the Urals, cultivated varieties on Manchu apricot are most often planted. It withstands frosts down to -45 degrees without damage, very yielding.

What cuttings to choose for apricot grafting

Vaccination with cuttings is the most common apricot propagation technique. At the same time, spring operations are recommended to be carried out with lignified cuttings harvested in advance, and fresh green branches are better for summer vaccination.

The graft can serve as ripe annual shoots with a diameter of at least 5-6 cm, with an apical growth bud and leafy side buds. Thin, poorly ripened branches are not suitable for vaccination, with obvious signs of a fungal infection or other diseases.

The procedure is carried out with a knife or secateurs. The main thing is that the tools are well sharpened and sterile.

It is better to take cuttings from a young, fruit-bearing tree, from the outer part of the crown, which is well lit by the sun. Growth buds on the shoot should be at least 4 and they should be pronounced. The optimal length of the handle is 30–40 cm.

How to prepare and preserve lignified cuttings

Material for spring vaccination is cut off at the end of autumn or at the beginning of December at an air temperature not lower than -10 0С.

Cuttings are bundled and await the day of vaccination surgery. You can save them in several ways:

  • put in a box with sawdust, peat or wet sand and place in the basement or cellar (periodically the substrate must be moistened);
  • wrap in polyethylene, placing a damp cloth there and store in the refrigerator at a temperature of 2-3 ° C;
  • in a snowdrift not less than 50 cm high, wrapped in polyethylene.

One edge of polyethylene does not wrap tightly so that the cuttings breathe

The main task of winter storage is to ensure that the cuttings are at rest until vaccination.

Experts recommend soaking the cuttings in water the night before vaccination. So they will be saturated with moisture and will not feel its lack until engraftment, when the stock starts to transfer nutrients.

Some gardeners prefer not to bore themselves with the advance preparation of cuttings, cutting them off in the spring immediately before vaccination. However, in this case, there is a risk of choosing a scion that has been frozen over the winter, which simply will not take root.

Video: how to prepare and store cuttings for spring vaccination

Harvesting green cuttings for vaccination

Summer vaccination is done with fresh green cuttings, cut just before the operation. If there is a need for longer storage of the material or its transportation, you can wrap them with a damp cloth and store in a plastic bag in a cool place. In this way, you can save the cuttings for up to two weeks, but this will reduce the survival rate.

Cut off the branches in the early morning, before the onset of heat. In rainy weather, it is not recommended to procure material and perform an operation. From the cut branch, you must immediately remove the leaves, because moisture quickly evaporates through them.

How to plant apricot: methods and methods of vaccination

There are over 130 ways to plant fruit trees. The choice depends on the season and the skill of the gardener. For apricot tinting, copulation and budding are considered optimal, as well as grafting into the split and behind the bark.

Where to plant apricot

The choice of a specific vaccination site depends on the goals of transplantation. If the task is to cultivate a wild game or basal shoots, then the vaccine can be done in the root neck. If on the site there is a ready two-three-year stump, then it is better to plant it at a height of 60–70 cm from the soil, so as not to wait until the stump grows from a varietal tree.

In a young tree with a crown, a vaccination is made at the base of skeletal branches, 5-10 cm backward from the point where the branch leaves the trunk.

The oldest tree can be grafted in several places away from the trunk, in the branching of the second order on skeletal branches.

Apricot grafting by copulation method

It is carried out when the diameter of the scion and stock are the same. This method is suitable for grafting apricot in any season and involves the following steps:

  1. At the ends of the cuttings and stock, an oblique cut of 3-4 cm is made.
  2. Slices overlap each other so that their cambial layers coincide.
  3. The junction is tightly tied with a film, and the upper section of the scion is smeared with garden var.

A stronger connection between the scion and stock is provided by improved copulation, which involves the formation of a “tongue” on each cut. The cutlery is applied to the stock so that their tongues go into each other's cuts with the coincidence of cambial layers.

Video: spring apricot vaccination using improved copying method

Split apricot grafting

This method of vaccination is used when the scion and stock are significantly different in radius. Apricot is recommended to be grafted in a split when the tree is still at the very beginning of the growing season, i.e. in the last decade of March - the first days of April.

The operation is carried out as follows:

  1. The base of the handle, harvested since the fall, is cut with a sharp knife on a double wedge.
  2. The stock is sawn to the required height and carefully cleaned.
  3. In the center of the stock with a knife or hatchet (depending on its thickness), a splitting is made, with a depth of not more than 10 cm.
  4. A stalk is inserted into the splitting site so that the bark and cambial layers of the scion and rootstock coincide. If the thickness of the stock allows, you can start several cuttings at once.
  5. The place of operation is tightly wrapped with rope or tape and processed by garden var.

Scheme of vaccination in the split: 1 - split on the stock, 2 - sections on the scion; 3 - cuttings inserted in the cleavage

Specifics of apricot vaccination for bark

Vaccination for the bark is done in the spring at the very beginning of sap flow. This method is used in cases where the stock width is significantly greater than the scion width. The vaccination technology for bark is as follows:

  1. Lignified cuttings are prepared (from 2 to 4 pieces, depending on the thickness of the stock): the base is cut with a transverse wedge.
  2. The stock is sawn off with a hacksaw and cleaned with a knife.
  3. Cross sections are made on the rootstock bark, with a depth of not more than 5 cm.
  4. The shutters of the cut open, the cuttings are deepened into it so that their cut fits snugly against the rootstock wood.
  5. The vaccination site is tightly wrapped and coated with var.

Video: bark vaccination technique

How to plant apricot bud

Inoculating an apricot with a kidney or eye is called budding. The axillary bud is transferred from one tree to another, while maintaining varietal characteristics. The budding procedure is usually carried out at the end of summer and includes the following actions:

  1. The eyes are harvested immediately before vaccination and await the procedure on clean, moist gauze: the kidney is cut out from the central part of the green annual shoot with a piece of bark 1.5–2 cm long. Leaves are cut from the kidney first.
  2. A T-shaped incision is made on the rootstock bark (trunk or on a young branch).
  3. The shutters of the cut neatly move apart, a peephole with a shield is inserted into it.
  4. The bark is clamped so that only the kidney remains outside.
  5. The transplant site is wrapped with the reverse side of the electrical tape so that the kidney remains in the air.

The effectiveness of the vaccination can be judged after 15-20 days: if the petiole turned yellow and fell off, then the vaccination was a success. The apricot bud will begin to grow next spring.

Video: apricot budding

Apricot vaccination is an exciting and creative activity, akin to surgery for organ transplantation. Do not be afraid to experiment - you will not harm the tree. Do not despair if the first attempt at engraftment was unsuccessful. Try to carry out the procedure in a different season or apply a different way of vaccination and after a few years enjoy the results of your experiments - large, juicy and aromatic apricot fruits.


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