Advanced Grafting of Figs: Part 3

  By Jerry Meislik

4. Aerial roots can be placed accurately and directly with an approach graft. A small seedling is planted under the branch to be the recipient. Its mid section is approach grafted to the host branch where an aerial root is required. After 90-120 days the top of the seedling above the graft point is removed and the "aerial root" is in the exact place it is required.

5. In a demonstration for the BCI Bonsai Cruise in 2001 Master bonsaiist and grafter Chiu-Chang Chiang from Taiwan grafts a large fig with its own root to add a large branch to this Ficus retusa. This adds a large branch of 2 inch diameter to the host fig.


Carving bed of inlay graft Chiseling out the host trunk to receive the branch.

Graft inserted into bed To the left of the red line is the inserted graft.

6. Branches may be fused together to form even larger branches. Scars are left to indicate how tightly the branches were bound to help the branches fuse-graft together.

Branch fuse graftedThe top of the red bar is on a branch that was formed from fuse-grafting two branches together.

 Apex and branch fuse grafted The upper red bar shows multiple branches brought from lower on this tree, wrapped tightly to allow fusion and over time the formation of the upper trunk.

The fusion technique allow movement to be brought into a trunk or branch that could not be done by trying to wire a thick branch to shape. The lower red bar shows small branches being fused to form a thicker branch.


In conclusion grafting is a valuable tool to improve many faults of a fig tree. Since it is time consuming graft only when other techniques do not work for your tree.


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