Our horticultural expert Sue Sanderson runs a fortnightly question and answer session - so if there is something that has been eluding you in your garden, post your question on our facebook page and she will get back to you during her next Q&A; session.
View the answers to our previous sessions.
" I also have brought a Yellow Gooseberry from T&M; how do I plant it as I have never had one before. Thank you"
Sue - T&M
Hi Ann. Planting bareroot gooseberries is fairly straightforward. Here is a short video to help you.
"What is the most reliable form of grafting on fruit trees?"
Sue - T&M
Hi Dave. It really depends on what you are trying to achieve and what kind of plant material (age, size etc.) that you are working with.
One of the most commonly seen methods is the whip graft which is used when grafting root stocks and scions together. This basically joins a selected variety onto a rootstock with specific attributes such as improved vigour, dwarfism etc. It is most effective when the plant material used (both scion and rootstock) are no more than ½ inch in diameter. Many young grafted plants that you buy will have been grafted in this manner, although sometimes a modified cleft graft is used.
If you are top working a mature fruit tree to add a new variety to the crown then it is preferable to use a cleft graft. This is better suited to branches no larger than 2 inches in diameter.
Budding is another method to consider. This is particularly useful for plum, cherry, apricots, and peach which are not so easily whip grafted or cleft grafted.
If you are hoping to have a go at grafting then the spring is the time to do it, just as the buds of the rootstock are beginning to open. Let us know how you get on.