Workshop on Hibiscus Grafting
CNN reported, a ‘tree of 40 fruits’ created by a person!
What a creation! Difficult to believe right? It’s possible, the concept behind is ‘Grafting’.
Grafting is a technique that joins two plants into one. And this super fun topic is what we had for our workshop. On 31st July 2021, we did a workshop on ‘GRAFTING OF HIBISCUS PLANT‘ with our speaker Reshma Ranjan, a passionate gardener. She has an active YouTube channel “PRAKRITI’s Garden”, where you can find beautiful greens and refreshing content with amazing gardening tips.
Grafting is a fun way to get more enjoyment from your garden. You can use grafting to create trees with several varieties or to introduce new varieties. Grafting can also be used to change varieties of trees existing in your garden.
It works beautifully on flowers, just imagine, how lovely it would be to see pink, white, red, yellow all hibiscus flowers on a single tree! Excited? Watch her teaching you this.
Hibiscus Grafting with Reshma
“She has a lot of amazing videos on Youtube and Facebook about plants. Today, she is going to show us grafting in the Hibiscus plant. You can get multiple colors of flowers on a single hibiscus plant with the help of grafting. So, we welcome you Reshma to this workshop, said Ishika”. Thank you, Ishika.I welcome everyone to this workshop. In gardening, grafting is my favorite activity because grafting has got multiple benefits. We’ll talk in detail about grafting in this workshop. Grafting is the reason for starting my youtube channel and now youtube has become my identity! A lot of people know me because of youtube.
An insight about Reshma aka Prakriti
My name is Reshma, but a lot of people know me by the name Prakriti. The channel that I started was to make everyone aware of grafting. Slowly and steadily, I started to introduce gardening concepts, gave tips regarding gardening on my social media handle. I chose grafting as the topic for this workshop because I wanted to start from the basics for my gardening community. I started gardening at a very tender age. I started gardening at the age of 5. My grandfather bought me three plants. A building had collapsed from which a few plants had fallen. So, my grandfather bought those plants for me. The plants were Bailey, Sadabahar(Madagascar Periwinkle), and Pothos(money plant). My grandfather had informed me to fertilize those plants monthly. But, he didn’t tell me anything about watering those plants. So, whenever I used to drink water, I used to water those three plants as well. So, due to over-watering, Sadabahar and bailey didn’t sustain. The money plant survived as it can tolerate over-watering. So, my grandfather bought me some more plants. Then he suggested me some more ways to care for the plants. Later, when I shifted for my studies with my parents, I learned more about gardening. My father loves to grow vegetable plants and my mother loves flowering plants. I post the collection of my mother’s flowers on social media too. So, gardening is inherited in me from my grandparents and my parents. So, the start of my channel started during my studies. A thought of inspiring people with my knowledge and acknowledging them about gardening through my channel arose in me. I have my graduation in agriculture. I had qualified for ICAR (Indian Council for Agricultural Research) and then got admission into an agricultural college. So, in my holidays or vacations, I used to communicate with farmers, attend seminars in agriculture, attend gardening workshops, organize composting sessions with my friends. So, the people named me ‘Prakriti’ in recognition of my work. I even did my job in agriculture. My duties were to explain to the farmers about agricultural technologies. I used to even teach grafting to the farmers who did fruit gardening or balcony, terrace gardening. Grafting is a very basic requirement for growing fruits or flowering plants. Grafting is essential for early fruiting. My one farmer friend had recorded one grafting video of mine and suggested uploading it on Youtube. At that time, I didn’t have any idea about Youtube. I didn’t have any idea about editing videos. But, still, I managed to do it on the basis of my computer practicals, friends, and personal experiences. Then, I started to upload a lot of videos on grafting, Polynera being my first grafted plant. I have even done three types of grafting on mango trees. As time passed by, I started to feel that gardening videos should also be uploaded on my channel. So, I started making videos on tips and tricks for gardening. Now, 900k people learn from me on social media.
Actually, first, the topic to be taken was hanging baskets, but then it was decided to be conducted on the topic ‘Grafting’. TheAffordbaleOrganicStore watched my grafting videos, they appreciated me, and then the topic decided was Grafting. In this workshop, we’ll see a lot of uses of grafting. Grafting seems to be very difficult and one might assume that it cannot be done at home or requires a lot of materials. But, this is not the case! Grafting is a very easy process.
“So, shall we start the process?, asked Prakriti”
“Yes, definitely. I am feeling very good after hearing your story and 900k is a really huge number. At this age, you are inspiring a lot of people, and teaching them grafting is really good! So, let’s start with the workshop”, answered Ishika.
The result of grafting will motivate you a lot. The process itself will get you more into grafting! This is one result of grafting that I have. There are two flowers on this plant. One flower is red and the other is pink & white. There is tape attached to the grafting joint. The tape that is used for providing a union of two plants shouldn’t be removed unless it doesn’t get removed on its own. The other plant is hibiscus which has variegated and green leaves as well. Six kinds of hibiscus will bloom on this plant which has three kinds of leaves on it. I’ll be telling you about grafting on a multi-petal yellow hibiscus plant. We’ll be grafting it with a multi-petal red hibiscus plant.
Let’s do Hibiscus Grafting
- Take a branch of the multi-petal red hibiscus leaf and take a long stem from the plant. Ensure that the stem is cleaned from the bottom side and all the small branches are removed from the main branch.
- Sanitization of the tool that is going to be used for cutting is also very important. We are going to cut the tissue of the plant, so it’s very important to sterilize the tool with sanitizer. If sanitizer is not available, candles can be used to heat the tool for sterilization. This process ensures that the fungus, if present, gets destroyed.
- Cut the branch which has to be grafted. It is not necessary that the cut-out of the branch must have flower or leaves on it.
- Cut the branch of the yellow-petal hibiscus plant as well. The part that is still on the plant after making a cut will be used for grafting.
- Always the bottom side of the cut-out plant should be grafted at bottom only. So, to avoid confusion, make a small scratch on the bottom side of the stem.
- The stem that is going to be attached is known as ‘Scion’ and the plant on which it is going to get attached is known as ‘stock’.
- We have to prepare the scion and stock for grafting. So, for preparing the scion, we have to make a v-cut. This can be done with the help of a surgical knife that is easily available in medical shops. A sharp kitchen knife can also be used. A knife with pointed teeth must not be used because such knife damages the tissues of the plant. If the tissues are damaged, then the flow of nutrients will stop. Make sure that the cut is a v-cut or a cut at 45 degrees. Do the same cut from other side as well. The cut in the stock plant will be just inwards that is, make a cut at the centre of the stem deep inwards.
- Surgical knives are best for making such cuts because these knives are very thin and penetrate through the stem very easily. Now, fix the Scion with the stock. Put the scion as deep as possible into the cut made in the stock. The grafting that we are following is a v- grafting.
What is Touch grafting?
There are many types of grafting like touch grafting. In touch grafting, a c-cut is made to the scion, and the stock is peeled at the site of attachment and then they are tied together.
We must have morphological knowledge about the plant in touch-grafting. Touch grafting is mostly done for the Adenium plant.
Touch grafting is mostly possible for fat stems.
Another type of grafting is T-bud grafting. This is mostly done for Rose plants. It is a difficult grafting in which a rosebud is taken and then placed into another rose plant or the stock plant. V-grafting can also be done in rose plants.
V-grafting is a type of grafting that any beginner can indulge into. Then take a tape and pull it a little bit and then fix the scion to the stock with the sticky tape.
Doubt clearing session with Reshma
- “Can any tape available in the market be used?,asked Ishika”
“There are grafting tapes available in the market, but my preference is a normal, sticky tape because it is easy to tie with a sticky tape. With grafting tape, we have to be very precise with the process of fastening of the stock and scion”, answered Prakriti.
Ensure to tighten the stem tightly with tape.
- “What should be the reach of the tape used for fastening the scion and stock?”,asked Ishika
“Generally, the tape should be till the bottom of the stock (roughly 1-1.5 cm) and till the top of the scion (roughly 1-1.5 cm) ”, answered Prakriti.
The tape has to be removed after 4 to 5 months of application. Till this time, the joint becomes strong and the plant starts adapting with the other plant used in grafting. After finishing the tape work, cover it with a cloth to ensure no passage of water into the joint. If water enters the joint, it may create a gap in the joint, swelling in tissues can occur. So, use any plastic or polybag material. Ensure that the polybags are present with few holes and then cover the joint with the polybag and again apply tape to fix the polybag with the joint. The holes ensure that the joint doesn’t suffer from humidity or any greenhouse effect.
- “What should be the thickness of the scion that will be used fir grafting? ”, asked Ishika
“Pencil thickness or a thickness greater than pencil thickness should be used. In such thicknesses, the grafting is very simple. Even in very wide thicknesses, grafting flourishes, but it is difficult to do.”, answered Prakriti.
- “Can we do rose and hibiscus grafting together?”
When we graft the same species of plants, it is easy because the morphology and the anatomy of the plants will be the same. But, in inter-species grafting, the meristematic structure is different. We have to ensure the tissue of the hibiscus and rose match or intersect one another. It is difficult for beginners. This is possible in a laboratory. But, for beginners, it is not recommended.
- “Is the plant supposed to be kept in partial or full shade after grafting?”
For example, hibiscus is an outdoor plant, so it should be kept outdoor after grafting. The location of the plant before and after grafting should be retained. The joint should be protected from water or humidity for 4 to 5 months.
- “Why does grafting done in monsoon for hibiscus fails?”
In monsoon, ensure that water doesn’t enter into the plant or the pot shouldn’t contain excess water in it. The main grafting season of Hibiscus is February and March because hibiscus comes out of its dormancy stage and starts budding new flowers. The success rate of grafting in these months is greater. So, try doing grafting of hibiscus in these months.
- “What mistakes do beginners make while grafting?”
Beginners usually used rugged knives and generally do not cut the stems properly. They do not use sanitizers for sterilization of the tools. This possesses a threat for fungal infection. They do not generally tighten the joint enough. So, the joint doesn’t tighten properly and is prone to moisture.
- “What is the best insecticide for hibiscus plant?”
Neem oil is the best insect repellent. Neem oil also ensures that the good insects are saved. Neem seed kernel extract (NSKE) which is a mixture of crushed, ground neem kernels in a detergent solution can also be used. This was taught to me by my grandparents. This same thing was present in research papers and after reading it, I felt really happy! And ensure to spray the whole plant with insecticides, not just the area which is infected with mealy bugs.
- “What is the normal life span of Hibiscus and the life span after grafting?”
After four months of completing grafting, the life span remains the same as that of an ordinary hibiscus plant.
- “Does temperature play any role in grafting?”
If the plant is in the growing stage, then grafting results are very good. Never do grafting when the plant is in a dormant stage. For roses, grafting should be done in September, October. Hibiscus grafting should be done in February and March.
- “Can you suggest any inter species grafting that can be tried at home?”
- “What are the overall requirements for a hibiscus plant?”
In solid fertilizers, organic fertilizers should be used every 45-60 days. Hibiscus is an outdoor plant.
Keep the plant inadequate lighting and in open areas.
Watering should be done only when the soil is dry. The drainage in the hibiscus pot must be well maintained.
- “Is there any difference in the time for flower grating and fruit grafting?”
The grafting time is dependant on the plant and not on the type. Every plant takes its own time for grafting. Moss plants take only one week for successful grafting. Depends on the growth rate of plants.
Mango grafting is season-specific and should be done in the months of August and September. For mango, the stem should not be taken immediately but the stem should be kept on the tree for a week by removing its sub-branches and leaves and then taking it after a week.
“I suggest everyone protect the plant from moisture, give it adequate fertilizers, sanitize the tools properly, provide it with optimal nutrition, and fasten the joint of grafting properly”, added Ishika.
Adenium experiences the rotting of roots very easily. A little bit of increase in humidity can result in the rotting of roots or Adenium. The plant above the soil remains good, but the roots start decaying. The rot starts spreading slowly in the upper side of the plant and the plant dies.
Early fruiting is also an advantage of grafting. Take a branch from a big fruiting tree and graft it with another fruiting plant‘.
“There is a lot to learn in Grafting. I would suggest everyone to visit Reshma’s channel Prakriti’s garden because Reshma has made a lot of videos on her channel. If you have any doubts regarding grafting, ask Reshma through Instagram, Youtube, Facebook so that you can get her help and be successful in grafting. Sanitize the tools properly, use appropriate knives.”, added Ishika
“Anything else that you want to add Reshma?”, asked Ishika
Always sterilize the tools used for cutting with sanitizers. Make proper cuts wherever required and take proper care of the plants.
“We are now at the end of the workshop. I would like to thank all the viewers for giving their time and listening calmly to the workshop. Thank you, Reshma for conducting this workshop. You really provided us with all the details of grafting and I will personally try grafting of Hibiscus plant.”, thanked Ishika.