Have a favorite tomato? What if I told you, you could have your favorite tomato, but made better? No, not in a lab, but through an old-time tried and true method called grafting. Grafting, by definition, means to be or to become joined. This practice of propagating has been going on for a long, long time. If you have a fruit tree or roses in your yard, chances are they’ve been grafted.
Grafting is when you take the positive traits of two different plants and bring them together. Tomatoes are new to the world of grafting. Rootstock and scion (the top part), are both chosen for their superior traits that give these new grafted tomatoes the right to be called Mighty ‘Matos.
Here’s what we’re to expect from grafted tomatoes:
1. Dramatically more fruit
2. Produce earlier and longer
3. Resistant to diseases, including verticillium wilt, fusarium wilt, rootknot nematodes and tomato mosaic virus. Because grafting produced vigorous, healthier plants, it likely will help ward off three of the other big tomato problems: early blight, late blight and blossom-end rot.
4. Need less fertilizer and water
5. Grow in poor soil
6. Tolerant of swings in temperature
Still hesitant to stray from your regular tomatoes? Why not add a grafted tomato to the mix this year and let’s put them to the test!
One important note, grafted tomatoes must not be planted above the graft. If this happens, the scion will root.