June 1, I posted a photo of a newly grafted tree surrounded by flood water (reprinted at right). Unfortunately, the water was still rising when I snapped this photo. Later that night, the graft union on this tree became completely submerged. In my previous post, I stated that a new graft will be lost if flood waters cover the union before the tree has a chance to callus in the scion. Today, I returned to this field to see what actually happened.
I grafted about a dozen trees in this field in 2013. In every case, graft unions that became submerged in the flood failed. On the other hand, I've had great grafting success on trees with graft unions placed above the flood's peak.
I'll let the trees with failed grafts grow out for a couple of years, encouraging them to grow tall and straight. With a larger tree, I can graft higher on the stem and hopefully avoid future problems with floods.