Multi-Grafted Apple Tree
Luther Burbank was an avid grafter. He grafted everything from fruit and nut trees to tomatoes and potatoes. One of the advantages to grafting is to reduce the time until a tree fruits by 2-7 years!!! In most cases, new grafts will fruit in less than two seasons, and in some exceptional cases, fruit will bear on the same season that the graft was made. His most popular contribution to grafting was the 20,000 prune trees where he used the technique of “June Budding” to deliver a seemingly impossible order to a local businessman (Mr. Dutton) within one season, earning him his nickname of “The Wizard.” To learn more about how Mr. Burbank set about grafting just about everything, check out his chapter on Grafting and Budding located in volume 3 of his 12-volume set online at: http://uwdc.library.wisc.edu/collections/HistSciTech/LutherBurbank.
On March 18th, 2014, our diseased, multi-grafted cherry tree was replaced by a multi-grafted apple tree. This tree had 3 grafts on it: Fuji, Bisbee Red Delicious, and Golden Delicious. This year I added 3 more varieties of apple and 3 varieties of pear to that tree. Below you see an image of what the fruit from all these grafts will look like, provided all of them take. From left to right, the varieties are Golden Delicious, Bisbee Red Delicious, Fuji, Braeburn, Pink Lady, Grime’s Golden, HoSui Asian Pear, Comice European Pear, and Shipova – a bizarre cross between a European Pear and a Sorb Apple. You may be asking yourself, what is a sorb apple? Other common names for Sorb Apples are Mountain Ash and Medlar. Still confused? We have a Mountain Ash tree growing right behind the Medicinal Garden, and I will be happy to point it out to anyone interested in knowing more about it.