Rootstock growth and development for increased graft success of mango (Mangifera indica) in the nursery
The graft success of seedlings depends on rootstock size and the skills of grafters. A study was carried out to evaluate the effects of rootstock diameter (at root collar), skills and experience of grafters on mango seedling thinning and grafting. Skilled and unskilled grafters were involved in grafting mango plants for at least three consecutive months. Different rootstock sizes based on root collar diameter of mango seedlings were assessed. The results showed significant differences in graft-take among three groups of nurserymen. The skills and experience of grafters had a significant effect on graft success. The late emerging seedlings showed higher increase in height and diameter after thinning. A higher survival (> 75%) and reduced time to graft-take (19 days) were achieved with thicker rootstocks (0.7 cm) than thinner rootstocks (0.3 cm). The early emerging plants produced more leaves than late emerging plants after grafted. It was concluded that a higher graft-take can best be achieved with skilled grafters and thicker rootstocks.