Advantages and disadvantages of grafting

A graft hybrid carries with it a combination of desirable characteristics consisting of new shoots, which are extracted from a plant called “graft variety.” The root is provided by a plant called “pattern” or “rootstocks” and grants special radicular characteristics to the graft.

Japan, Korea and Spain are the main producers of grafted plants, with 750, 540 and 154 million plants per year, respectively, with watermelon and tomato being the main grafted crops.

Through this article you will be informed about the advantages and disadvantages of grafting

Advantages of the grafting

  • Propagation. It is the only method to preserve desirable characteristics of seedless hybrids.
  • Resistance to pests and soil diseases. It is the most important advantage of the graft, because it gives resistance to bacteria, viruses and soil nematodes, being a clean alternative in the control of diseases such as fungal and bacterial wilt, tobacco mosaic virus, root nodules produced by nematodes , and corked root or red root among others.
  • Genetic improvement. Grafting creates a new plant being a technology of improvement faster than conventional methods.
  • Physiological improvement. Root vigor granted by the rootstock, as well as an increase in quality, number and size of fruits.
  • Retrench of space. The density per hectare can be reduced by half, because the vigor of a grafted plant allows it to be handled on two stems and replaces crops with one stem, being optimal especially for greenhouses.
  • Increased productivity. It improves the tolerance to adverse factors (salinity, lack or excess of humidity), propitiating the efficient use of water and nutrients as well as delaying cellular aging due to root vigor, acceleration of reproductive maturity of seedlings, and resistance to drought.
  • Perpetuates clones that do not produce seed or reproduce by stakes.
  • Allows establishment in a short time of a plantation for commercial purposes.
  • It allows to renew old trees.
  • It allows to standardize or homogenize the period of fruit production. It facilitates the propagation of varieties that are not well adapted to soil conditions or have weak root systems by grafting them into vigorous patterns.
  • It allows to unite a plant (pattern), another variety or different species, each one contributing its own characteristics.
  • Shorten the juvenile period of the plant and enter into production before the non-grafted ones.
  •  Facilitates cultural tasks, such as pruning, phytosanitary applications and harvesting of fruits Disadvantages Incompatibility: which occurs in various stages of the graft.

Disadvantages of the grafting

  • Costs Increase in the cost of using double seed, more greenhouse space for double seedling in transplant, use of certified seed, skilled labor or extra training, use of indeterminate varieties instead of specific ones, since less production time is required to recover the investment.
  • Incompatibility. A bad execution of the graft can affect the development of the plant, presenting physiological disorders.Incompatibility which occurs in various stages of the graft. This problem is manifested at the level of the union point of the graft-pattern being the main manifestation a bottleneck known as bottleneck, which is caused by obstruction of the xylem and phloem reducing the normal circulation of soil nutrients. The incompatibility is one of the main problems of the grafts since it negatively influences the genetic composition of each individual
  • The manifestations of incompatibility are the following:-

    -When there is no success in the union of the volk and the pattern When premature deaths occur.

    -When there is poor development of the graft or the expected development does not occur.

    -When the difference between the growth of the pattern and the graft or graft with respect to the pattern is markedly disproportionate.

    -When the bottleneck manifests itself.

    -When there is a separation of diameter smaller than the diameter of both the pattern and the yolk.

  • Experience the biggest obstacle to grafting is that education and experience are required. “He simply can not decide to grow two batches of plants to graft them and then just let them grow.

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