Air layering

CrealCritter

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I've air layered rose bushes before with success. Using rooting hormone, peat moss and shrink wrap. I used a torch to heat up the shrink wrap quickly without harming the branch. This technique worked very well for me.

However this spring I'm going to go all out on our orchard. I ordered reusable rooting balls to make air layering easier.
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Our orchard needs some serious help. The apple trees are in bad shape. I want to see if I can clone them. One peach tree broke with the wind but even though, it's laying down on the ground, it still fruited. so I'm going to try and clone that also. Our pears are in great shape but I still would like to clone them to expand the orchard. I also have so other trees I would like to clone also. Hopefully these rooting balls will help.

Quick high-level how to on air layering.

Any experience with air layering? Or just feel free to chime in anyways.
 
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Mini Horses

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Some of the older varieties are hard to come by. Hope it works for you! I'm babying a couple young apple trees.... Goat killed another...my now gone houdini/fence busting buck. If weather doesn't warm too early, followed by cold or noreaster, the blooms may stay this year!!!!! It's a crap shoot! I'd love a crop of plums from that tree again. Weather, again.
 

CrealCritter

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Some of the older varieties are hard to come by. Hope it works for you! I'm babying a couple young apple trees.... Goat killed another...my now gone houdini/fence busting buck. If weather doesn't warm too early, followed by cold or noreaster, the blooms may stay this year!!!!! It's a crap shoot! I'd love a crop of plums from that tree again. Weather, again.
Our Golden Delicious apple tree is in the worst shape. I could order a new tree but want to see if I can clone the existing one first.
 

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I've had good success with grafting. Have grafted pear, and apple. One apple was done on a seedling grown from a grocery store apple. I've also grafted some branches onto my existing apple trees. You can buy root stock from Fedco Trees, and other mail order nurseries. They sell common root stock varieties, as well as seedling stock, and scion wood. I f I had more room, I'd scour the countryside, looking for hardy wild trees, then take some seedlings from the base of them, and use them as my root stock. Grafting is super easy, and you will always find neighbors and friends who have a good tree that you can get some scion wood from. Needed tools: sharp knife or razor knife, electrical tape, and wax. I splurged and bought a new wax toilet ring. Nice soft wax, and that one ring will provide a life time of grafting for me.
 

CrealCritter

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I've had good success with grafting. Have grafted pear, and apple. One apple was done on a seedling grown from a grocery store apple. I've also grafted some branches onto my existing apple trees. You can buy root stock from Fedco Trees, and other mail order nurseries. They sell common root stock varieties, as well as seedling stock, and scion wood. I f I had more room, I'd scour the countryside, looking for hardy wild trees, then take some seedlings from the base of them, and use them as my root stock. Grafting is super easy, and you will always find neighbors and friends who have a good tree that you can get some scion wood from. Needed tools: sharp knife or razor knife, electrical tape, and wax. I splurged and bought a new wax toilet ring. Nice soft wax, and that one ring will provide a life time of grafting for me.

Little woodworkers trick... That wax from the toilet ring is also great for driving screws and nails.
 

CrealCritter

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I promised a mini air-laying how to. I could have picked a better day because my hands kept freezing up due to the cold and wind, but here goes...

How this peach tree is still alive and bearing peaches is beyond me, but it is. The main thing to remember most fruit trees have a weak center lead, this is why you cut them low to branch out. Obviously this one was not cut. It grew to tall and snapped in the wind. But there is still live branches to air-layer.
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The first thing to do is find a good live branch, that would make a good sapling and that the rooting ball will fit around. Then take a good sharp pocket knife and cut around the branch twice about an inch and half apart and peel the bark off in-between the two cuts.
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Take rooting hormone powder and coat the wound well.
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Then pack both half's of the rooting ball with damp peat moss. I used pond water to soak the peat moss in since I know it doesn't contain any chorine. Then close the root ball around the wound.
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Now hopefully in a 6 to 8 weeks, I'll have roots forming and I can cut the branch off and put it in a nursery pot to care for and plant next spring.
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I managed to get 6 air-layers off this fallen peach tree. I'm praying they all take root.
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Jesus is Lord and Christ 🙏❤️🇺🇸
 
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Lazy Gardener

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I may try air layering my apple trees, and my elderberry. The apple trees are infected with tree borers. I may try fishing in the holes for the grubs, as well as squirting some Neem or similar product in the holes. But... I don't hold much hope for saving the trees. One tree has about 5 holes that are each about 1/3" diameter, the other tree has 3 holes. The elderberry has never thrived in it's location. Just kind of "hanging on". A fair amount of die back each year. I do believe they are fairly easy to root. I could always order some trees from a nursery, but I relish the challenge of starting my own.
 
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