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Tropical Fruits: How I Graft - success with my Multi-Apple Project

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diamondjfarms
Needville, TX
(Zone 9a)

April 5, 2012
5:42 PM

Post #9071166

I bought this Mollie's Delicious apple at the local grocery store. It had pretty good angles to the limbs, so I chose it to be a grafting project. I went to the Tx rare fruit growers scion exchange and picked out some apple scions. I grafted 5 varieties Ginger Gold, Mutsu/Crispin, Tompkins County King, King David and Calville Blanc. I am so surprised that all 5 seem to have taken. I give all the credit to my great little grafting tool from Lee Valley.
http://www.leevalley.com/en/garden/page.aspx?cat=2,47236&p=6...

I also created a webpage showing how I do my grafts.
http://www.diamondjfarms.com/Trees/graft.html

(cross posted to "beginner fruit" and "fruits and nuts" forums)

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jujubetexas
San Marcos, TX
(Zone 8b)

April 5, 2012
6:42 PM

Post #9071239

You need to get that sucker in the ground or a larger pot.
Excellent job!!!!
bettydee
La Grange, TX
(Zone 8b)

April 5, 2012
9:30 PM

Post #9071458

diamondjfarms,

Your area probably averages 400 or fewer chill hours. If the chill hour requirement isn't met, the tree won't come out of dormancy properly, blooms may be incomplete resulting in no fruit, the tree stresses out leading to a decline and possibly death. I wasn't able to find the chill hour requirement for King David nor for Ginger Gold although I did read good things about them. Here are the chill hour requirements for the others you listed. Even Mollie's Delicious is not recommended for your area.
Mutsu - 600 hrs
Tompkins King - 800 to 1000 hrs
Calvin Blanc - 800 to 1000 hrs
http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/extension/homefruit/apple/apple.html

Consult with your local country AgriLife agent for a list of apples recommended for your area. Apples are considered high maintenance trees in Texas. Going through all that trouble only to lose the tree to lack of chill hours would hurt. I learned the hard way with some apple trees I brought from California when we moved to Texas. I had them in pots and didn't want to lose the trees nor the large expensive pots they were in. So I took a chance and brought them with me. All required more chill hours than the 600+ hours my area could provide. All were dead within 3 years.
diamondjfarms
Needville, TX
(Zone 9a)

April 10, 2012
3:15 PM

Post #9077415

The apple variety info has really changed due to a Southern California grower choosing to try out many varieties of apples, long believed to be too high chill for their area.
More info here:
http://www.kuffelcreek.com/applelist.htm
another great page for info:
http://www.kuffelcreek.com/chillinghours.htm

From the applelist page above:

*Tompkins County King New York, 1804 Large apple that is ribbed at the eye and on the body. The yellow skin is flushed a pale-red with darker red stripes and white or russet dots. The stem cavity is also russeted. The yellow flesh is coarse, crisp, and tender, with a subacid, sweet and aromatic flavor. The skin has a greasy finish especially after storage. Vigorous and spreading, the tree grows naturally small, and the shiny leaves are highly folded with sharp, closely set serrations. The limbs grow nearly horizontal with many crossing branches. A pollen sterile triploid, it will not pollinate other trees but is partially self-fertile. it has a tendency to watercore, where the flesh becomes translucent and very sweet. Ripens in November; hangs on the tree until it's past its prime, so keep an eye on it. Very nice here, with a crisp zesty flavor. Probably would do much better if the borers would leave it alone; tested good for Southern California.

Mollie's Delicious New York, 1966 An excellent apple for mild winter climates, a cross between Golden Delicious and Red Gravenstein. Sweet, firm, crisp, and aromatic but with not much acid. Has a beautiful red blush over yellow. Pollinator required: Fuji, Granny Smith, or Yellow Delicious, ripens late August to early September, stays crisp in the heat, keeps rather well, supposedly improves after a month in storage. Tested very good for Southern California.

**King David Arkansas, 1893 We've floundered about a bit on this one, as we had two trees of it here, one of which was mislabeled. As it turns out it is one of our favorite apples, and for good reason; it was Stark Bros. Nursery's biggest producer for years and considered tops in flavor in warm climates. It turns deep purple, almost black in our climate and hangs late on the tree and should be picked when full color develops. Yellow flesh, firm, crisp and juicy with a deep, dark, rich winey flavor that matches the color, a favorite with most people who try it. Would be handsome espaliered. Ripens around Thanksgiving for us, tested superior for Southern California.

Mutsu (Crispin) Japan 1948 A favorite of connoisseurs: very large, crisp and flavorful. Late September/October harvest. Pick when green or wait until partly yellow. Large, vigorous tree. Pollen-sterile; pollinated by Red Delicious, Granny Smith, Fuji, or Gala. We got one apple this year, and it was decent.

Calville Blanc d'Hiver France, 1600's The ugly exterior of the mis-shapen Calville Blanc belies a sublime interior - at least for fans of French pastries. This is the definitive apple for making the classic French "tarte aux pommes". Unlike the famous English Bramley cooking apple, Calville Blanc keeps its shape when cooked. The green apple resembles a Klingon apple with vertical ridges running down the sides. Untested in our climate so far.

There were not a large number apple scions available at the exchange, so I knew I was taking a bit of a gamble with the Ginger Gold and probably the Calville Blanc, but in light of the new info about apple chill hours I'll see what happens. Maybe my 6N1 will end up a 3N1. I'll still be pleased with my project. I already own a 4N1 (Anna, Fuji, Dorsett Golden and Gordon) purchased at a local nursery.

jujubetexas - I up-sized the pot. Thank you, for pointing that out to me. It will go in the ground in the Fall.

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