Grafting Nishiki's

Discussion in 'Maples' started by webwolf, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. webwolf

    webwolf Active Member 10 Years

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    Hi everyone,
    When you graft any varigated maple do you have to make sure that the scion was from a varigated part of your plant?
    The reason I am asking that is that I grafted two Toyama Nishikis last year. The mother plant has one branch which does not show any varigation. One of my new plants came out plain the other beautifuly varigated.
    I wonder if the varigation can come through after some years or if I a ended up with a "non nishiki Toyama".
  2. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Actually, Toyama nishiki is the variegated form
    of the older Toyama Maple. The nishiki in this
    case refers to the fact that the variegated form
    is a more compact (shorter in length stems from
    node to node), growing tree than Toyama is.

    Most of the Toyama nishiki sold in nurseries
    are actually Dissectum variegatum, so we
    have had a problem of which Maple is which
    for a number of years (since the mid to late
    70's from photos and earlier in collections).

    It is considered prudent to take wood from
    a known variegated branch if we want to
    propagate a variegated tree via grafting.
    In some cases the non variegated growth
    can come back and show some variegation
    but generally seeing variegated growth come
    back from non variegated budwood or scionwood
    does not happen with enough regularity to "bank"
    on it happening. The standard deviation of a
    plus or minus 5% does come into play here
    in that of 100 grafts from non variegated wood
    from a variegated tree can yield 5 grafted
    offspring that may be variegated. Of course
    that percentage goes way up by taking wood
    that is variegated. Then again I like the red
    leaved Toyama Maple a lot, so making a new
    plant that shows some of the traits of the old
    Toyama Maple would interest me (had one
    years ago on its own roots and wish I had it
    again) as a collection plant.

    I've seen grafted Beni shidare variegated
    and Beni shidare tricolor not show any
    variegation for about 12-15 years with
    in ground plants and then saw some
    of these trees become variegated, so
    it is possible to see some variegation
    come back from non variegated trees.
    The main drawback is that those trees
    that did show some variegation after
    years of not being variegated were
    quite sparse in which branches did
    have some variegated leaves however.
    In other words do no expect the tree
    to have allover variegation.

    Welcome back webwolf. We need to
    know how things are going for you
    guys with Maples in Australia.


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