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grafting of middle cut - possible?

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pete666

Esteemed member
Does anone know (or have experience) whether it is possible to graft middle cut of trichocereus to another trichocereus? Let's consider both pieces of the same variety. Top cut is not problem, but how about middle cut?
 
You can literally graft any piece of Trichocereus with an areole to another Trichocereus.

However, as a general rule, the younger the cut the easier it is to graft. Which means experience becomes less important the closer you get to the tip.
 

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That makes sense. I would like to improve the probability of success, so I will ask differently :
I have about 30 various plants of trichocereus and I recognize one as the most potent one. So I would like to use it as a source for scions and the rest of the cactuses as a stock. What would be the best strategy? Using middle cuts, or grafting pups? Or is the whole idea wrong?
 
pete666 said:
That makes sense. I would like to improve the probability of success, so I will ask differently :
I have about 30 various plants of trichocereus and I recognize one as the most potent one. So I would like to use it as a source for scions and the rest of the cactuses as a stock. What would be the best strategy? Using middle cuts, or grafting pups? Or is the whole idea wrong?


There are many possibilities here depending on skill level.

The most you could make would be accomplished by making areole grafts.

However, the exact method, I would choose would be dependent on total length and girth of the specimen as well as the chosen stock.

My preferred stock for a large specimen would be a large pachanoi. The larger the better, but you can graft seedlings a few days old to a very old large pachanoi as well.

I will explain a bit further though.

If your specimen is 4 or so inches in diameter I would choose a stock that is a bit bigger in diameter to offset your graft.

Offsetting intentionally is much better than trying to get it square on just in case your growth ring happens to fit perfectly inside or outside the growth ring of your stock causing your graft to fail.

If you have a fairly large specimen, make a nice straight cut and ensure there are no ridges. Ruffles have ridges... not scions.

Now, with a woody specimen it is even more important to be fast, so I suggest you have your stock precut, but leave the top in place while you adjust fire on your scion.

Your middle piece scion, also must be cut smooth without ridges if you want to have an easier go of it. Now, you may choose to bevel the edges of both the stock and scion now if you plan on leaving your specimens outdoors unprotected from rain while they graft.

Or you may forego the beveling till your graft has taken. The older the scion bottom and the thicker it is the more I suggest beveling it even if just a smidgen as the green outer skin can become quite tough on either and actually push up and away causing the union to be imperfect. Never mind collecting water.

Now, many might use pantyhose to pull a large graft tight, string, tape, etc. I've done many of those methods. My preferred method is to use many methods however.

Let me explain, you have a very rare specimen in your eyes or at least very valuable. You don't want the union to be just barely on or to fail for any reason.

So utilize the benefit of string which allows you to pull down snuggly over each side while still allowing you to peer through your graft union with the help of a penlight. Tighten down exactly as you would tighten down a car tire (think sequence).

Now, understand string can loosen as the graft dries. What was once snug is now loose. Fix that with some self-adhesive coban. Pulling down gently, but snuggly over the graft top down to the sides in an "X" pattern will secure your graft should the string loosen. Next, add a band of self-adhesive coban around the graft union itself. This will ensure humidity is increased while still allowing the graft union to breath.

Understanding that the purpose is to create many, you may seek to graft just a small piece of the tip onto something for your own use or keepsake. This will promote pupping of your middle section.

Allow those pups to grow to 2-4 inches. Remove those pups and graft. Now, the longer you allow those pups to grow before removing them the stronger the response will be to begin pupping again. So, there is always a give and take with grafting.

I try to leave 2 areoles in height for grafts at the bare minimum with the understanding that I may have to use keiki, if I want to really expedite matters.

Now, if your specimen is very small... I might use parafilm in conjunction with self-adhesive coban.
 
Wakinyan, really thanks for this info. I am just starting with grafting, so I understand those tips will help me to avoid a lot of problems and will increase the propability of success.
I will have to read it all few more times and search more information to help me understand what and why you are suggesting.
For me this (grafting) is maybe year or two year project, so I won't be doing that this year, maybe next year or the year later. So there is time to grab it properly. I see you are really experienced grafter and I hope you still will be here when I have some questions!
 
pete666 said:
Wakinyan, really thanks for this info. I am just starting with grafting, so I understand those tips will help me to avoid a lot of problems and will increase the propability of success.
I will have to read it all few more times and search more information to help me understand what and why you are suggesting.
For me this (grafting) is maybe year or two year project, so I won't be doing that this year, maybe next year or the year later. So there is time to grab it properly. I see you are really experienced grafter and I hope you still will be here when I have some questions!

A picture would help.

No cacti is too small to graft.

A year gone is a year that you could have had an extra foot of growth from a single graft even with a small piece.
 
This should show a middle graft:

resource.ashx


This post.
 
Any graft you might make can be a middle cut.

Simply graft your specimen tip and all onto a cacti.

Leave it to grow for a few weeks.

Remove the top leaving just a few areoles at the bottom and repeat until you have just the tip left.
 
Thank you guys, I am just reading the posts here about grafting and I am astonished by the possibilities. I think I will join you with your grafting passion soon!
I thought I will just graft my mature cactuses, but after seeing some pereskiopsis grafting videos, I am really considering going this way as well.
 
If you need any help, I'm here for you.

Just remember, grafting is easy so long as you aren't too hard on yourself.

My general recommendation is to grow out more seedlings than you want and have more stock than you need.

Graft a few each day and learn from your mistakes.

Don't do all your grafts in one day and find out you did something wrong and none took.
 
Wakinyan said:
Any graft you might make can be a middle cut.

Simply graft your specimen tip and all onto a cacti.

Leave it to grow for a few weeks.

Remove the top leaving just a few areoles at the bottom and repeat until you have just the tip left.

You mean cutting for example 20cm scion, grafting, waiting to join the stock and some grow, cut 5 cm above the join and repeat with 15cm(+new growth) scion?
I can imagine it working, but fixing such large scion would be problematic, no?
 
A large scion will have a heavier weight to better hold itself down.

However, for large scions 20 cm or 8 inches in length I personally prefer to use self-adhesive coban to hold them snugly in place. In addition to being able to hold very large specimens in place, self-adhesive coban will hold in a little moisture while still allowing the surface to breath a little.

You will indeed find it easy to graft the entire specimen and then come back later and leave just a few areoles in place. If the cut surface you leave is too thin, this method has the added advantage of allowing one side to heal independent of the other side that will already have healed. Thus, helping to prevent your scion from drying out completely which can happen with excessively thinly cut scions of large diameter specimens.

If you decide to go this route and leave very little tissue behind after your second cut a few weeks later, I would recommend a protective coating such as sulfur followed by a layer protective layer of co-ban, parafilm, or saran wrap to keep the scion from drying out too fast or even completely as can happen with excessively thinly cut grafts.
 
Clear, thanks Wakinyan. Just few other unclarities...
1. I wait for cactuses to start growing in the spring. Then I take the scion and graft it onto the stock. I guess it is more likely to suceed while the scion and stock are actively growing. Right?
2. I suppose I can't leave fresh graft on the sun, so it goes to the shade. Or partial sun?
3. The graft is there for week or two. Or longer?
4. Then it goes directly under sun. Or should it go to partial sun first for some time?
5. When I see it growing for two weeks, I can repeat with taking next scion and repeat. OK?
6. So one round should take about a month. My season is 6 months, so with scion of length 20cm and some additional growth through the grafting cycles I could make about 5 grafts per year. Correct?
 
I don't seem to get an answer, nevermind, I have time to read enough about this subject and get answers before I start.

I will go the way Wakinyan suggested. Once I begin I will make some pictures and report here.
 
pete666 said:
Clear, thanks Wakinyan. Just few other unclarities...
1. I wait for cactuses to start growing in the spring. Then I take the scion and graft it onto the stock. I guess it is more likely to suceed while the scion and stock are actively growing. Right?
2. I suppose I can't leave fresh graft on the sun, so it goes to the shade. Or partial sun?
3. The graft is there for week or two. Or longer?
4. Then it goes directly under sun. Or should it go to partial sun first for some time?
5. When I see it growing for two weeks, I can repeat with taking next scion and repeat. OK?
6. So one round should take about a month. My season is 6 months, so with scion of length 20cm and some additional growth through the grafting cycles I could make about 5 grafts per year. Correct?

1.You can graft year round if you can supply adequate light. Heat, water, and fertilizer help of course as well. I graft year round.

However, if you let your cacti go dormant or have less than ideal growing conditions it is best to wait till you have active signs of growth.

2. You can indeed graft fresh cut scions and stock in full sun as I have done it many times.

However, as a general rule, it is generally better to move to at least partial sun if one is not using parafilm with small seedlings as the tendency of the stock and scion to dry out faster under full sun is worse when not protected by something such as parafilm or coban. Humidity domes also help if not using parafilm or coban. Again, the purpose of shade and humidity domes is to decrease the amount of shrinkage as well as the speed of the shrinking of tissues while the tissues are trying to heal together or form a graft union.

3. The graft is there until you remove it. Not sure exactly what you mean, but a graft is often secure after 1-2 weeks of healing time. If one is using parafilm... the grafted scion will simply grow through the parafilm and there is no need to remove it. Parafilm being best for small seedlings.

If you have a larger cacti, self-adhesive coban acts very much like parafilm, but the cacti can not grow through it. It is recommended to remove the coban after 2-3 weeks depending on growing conditions. I.e. faster growth and you can remove at 2 weeks. Slow growth and you will want to wait 3 weeks. When removing any dressing such as this... be slow and meticulous as it is often in the removing of a dressing that one may pull a graft union apart.

4. If your scion was grown in full sun and your stock was also in full sun it does not need to be removed from full sun if grafted with parafilm or self-adhesive coban. However, if coban is used, you will want to remove the graft from full sun to partial sun and slowly acclimate it back to full sun after the removal of the coban. If you used a humidity dome and no dressing... you will also want to slowly acclimate your graft back to full sun.

5. When and if you see tip growth after two weeks you have to make a judgment call as to whether you think your able to cut a bit of tissue safely out or not. Each graft is different. You may have a very strong secure graft as indicated by shining a pen light under and around all sides of the graft and not seeing any appreciable light coming through. Still, if there is no growth up top you might want to consider letting it grow for another 2 weeks before cutting.

Be warned, there is no replacing experience and good tools. The sharper your blade and the cleaner you can make the cut the better. 1 slice versus two is always better. Rather than try to saw through an areole... cut the areole out of the other side with a new blade when you are working with a newly grafted specimen. You don't want to push the graft loose as you attempt to saw through a woody areole.

Patience is key.

6. Given the size of your scion... you could indeed be done grafting 5-6 specimens in 6 months from your initial stock. It would be slower this way, but safer in the long run as well as potentially forcing more pupping out faster. I would still think about investing in some keiko to help expedite matters.
 
Many thanks Wakinyan, this completely answered all unclear spots in this technique. I think that now I have the information necessary to go ahead once I identify my most potent specimen.

Honestly it takes some time to get to the stage I can proceed with the grafting this way and I feel I would like to start some project right now, not having to wait year or so. I have 6 month summer/sun season in my country, so my cactuses will be for next 6 months in dormancy and I can't imagine waiting for such long to see them growing again and even more to do some grafts.
So I decided I will try parallel approach and try to find some potent specimen by another strategy - growing from seeds and grafting to pereskiopsis. I have neither warm winter nor greenhouse, so it will have to be purely indoor growing.
Anyway this deservers another topic. I will create a new one shortly, including some pictures once I feel there should be some, so there is some inspiration for others that would like to find their own potent piece of sacred cactus.
You Wakinyan and others will be more than welcome to help me with this quest. I understand that myself I would have to undertake many trials and errors and with your help the path can be much more straightforward!
 
One more bit of help for you my friend... I have it in picture format a bit further down... step by step

And if you want more than picture frame instructions... let me know how I can be of help and I'm there for you. There is nothing you can't do my friend.

All you need is a little help from your friends. That is all any of us really need.
 
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