PISCATAQUIS CO., Maine — Are you interested in learning how to graft your own fruit trees for a home orchard? Do you have older fruit trees at home that you would like to graft onto new rootstock? The Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District (PCSWCD) in partnership with the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA) and Dover-Dexter Area in Transition are providing a hands-on Fruit Tree Grafting Workshop on Saturday, April 8th at the Abbot Town Office from 10:00AM to 2:30PM.
The Fruit Tree Grafting Workshop is the 3rd workshop in the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District’s Orcharding Series. C.J. Walke, MOFGA’s Orchard Specialist and Farm Manager at College of the Atlantic, will be returning to Piscataquis County for this hands-on workshop focused on the propagation of fruit trees by the age-old tradition of grafting. Workshop participants will primarily work with apple rootstock and scionwood, practicing the whip and tongue technique, with examples of other grafting methods. At the end of the workshop, participants will take home 5 young apple trees grafted by their own hands. Care of these young trees will also be discussed.
C.J. Walke has years of experience teaching and mastering organic orcharding practices, and has worked alongside many orcharding experts such as John Bunker of FEDCO Trees and Michael Phillips, author of The Holistic Orchard. Walke has taught orcharding workshops covering topics such as grafting, pruning, pest management, renovating old trees and much more.
More and more, people are expanding what they grow at home and becoming curious about different options for fruit trees, including propagating and reproducing favorite varieties of fruit trees. Grafting is useful for more than reproduction of an original cultivar. It is also used to repair injured fruit trees or for topworking an established tree to one or more different cultivars.
Pre-registration is required and space is limited to 30 participants. Workshop participants must bring a grafting knife to the workshop to graft the young trees onto the rootstock. The PCSWCD can make recommendations for you on where to purchase a grafting knife in advance of the workshop.
There is a registration fee of $35.00, which includes the cost of grafting materials. Snacks and beverages will be provided, however workshop participants should bring a bagged lunch with them. For more information and to register, please contact the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District by calling(207) 564-2321 ext. 3, by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visiting our office in the USDA Service Center at 42 Engdahl Drive in Dover-Foxcroft, ME. Pre-registration is required to ensure adequate materials for all workshop participants.
Fruit trees are a great addition to any home garden or market farm. We encourage folks interested in learning more about grafting fruit trees to join the PCSWCD for this exciting workshop!
—Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry
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