To graft or not graft?

grafting hands 2 Delfland.JPG

My advice is that grafted plants are worthwhile if you are growing tomatoes in the same soil year after year (usually in a greenhouse).

grafted seedling.JPG

You are unlikely to see a benefit from the disease-resistant rootstock if you are growing in grow-bags or containers using fresh growing media. You may still benefit from the extra vigour resulting in an earlier first pick or an extended harvest period at the end of the season.  If you buy grafted seedlings, make sure the graft is above the surface of the compost when you pot them up or plant them.  If you don’t, the scion may produce adventitious roots and you will lose the benefit of the rootstock.

Commercially, tomatoes are grafted at the seedling stage, but this is very difficult to do successfully at home. It is possible to graft bigger plants – look in old text books for instructions e.g. The UK Tomato Manual (1973, H.G. Kingham (ed.), ISBN 0 901361 14 3).

Fact 12

Did You Know?

2.5 million British native bumblebees pollinate all the tomato crops in the UK. That’s 24 billion wing beats per minute in British tomato greenhouses.

Robert Farthing

Meet the grower

Robert Farthing

Just six years ago, Robert joined Norfolk-based Cornerways Nursery as a horticulture graduate. His p…

Read More