Last year, I posted photos of a graft that froze back during the winter of 2013-2014. Rather than re-grafting the tree right away, I decided to let the tree recover and sprout out a new shoot during the summer of 2014. The photo at right shows how the tree looked this spring (2015) with the dead 2013 graft still attached and a stump sprout that developed in 2014 growing out and around the old graft union.
In this post, I'm going to show you how I re-grafted this tree while giving a few grafting tips along the way.
Sure, I could have cut the tree off below the stump sprout but grafting on a trunk with thick bark takes a little more time to prepare. With a thick-barked stem, I recommend shaving down the bark with a wood rasp to make the bark more flexible for grafting.
One detail to notice at this point is that the scion has a uniform thickness but the tongue of the scion has a slight curve to it. We will find that this curve will reappear as a slight problem when we staple the scion into the stock.
After inserting the scion, I had a tight fit along the bottom portion of the graft. However, the yellow arrow points to an air gap between scion and stock caused by the scion's curvature. To close that gap, I used my staple gun. I always start by placing a staple at the bottom of the graft and work my upward. When I got to the air gap, I pressed the scion firmly against the stock and put in an extra staple to hold the scion in place.
I might have a crooked looking tree for a few years, but eventually the trunk will straighten out and I'll be harvesting bucket loads of Kanza pecans.