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What tricks gardeners do not go to to get a high yield on their home plot! They seek out highly productive varieties of tomatoes, treat them with various preparations, and constantly feed them with a variety of fertilizers.
Some decide to take a serious and responsible step - growing 1 plant on 2 roots, which is obtained as a result of grafting. In the article, we will talk about the advantages and disadvantages of this method, as well as how to properly plant and care for tomatoes.
The 2-root method of growing tomatoes helps to solve a number of problems. Thus, you can give more vitality to those seedlings that did not have enough light, and therefore they grew thin, long and weak (read about the methods of growing seedlings and the rules of caring for them here). Or there are too many seedlings, and with this method you can use all the young plants, planting them in a relatively small area.
The essence of this method is to combine two plants into a single organism, which will have a beneficial effect on the condition of the tomato bush and on its yield, because two root systems will feed one aboveground part.
Advantages and disadvantages
This method of growing tomatoes has several advantages:
- helps to increase yields by 30 - 40%;
- favors the acceleration of the filling of fruits, their ripening;
- increases the size of fruits (you can find out about the difficulties and features of growing large tomatoes here);
- improves the resistance of tomatoes to various diseases;
- prolongs the growing season.
There are much fewer disadvantages: the main ones are the significant time spent by the vegetable grower, the presence of certain skills in plant grafting. If ablactation is carried out on seedlings, then due to the fragility of the stems, a large amount of planting material can be spoiled.
Ablactation is one of the methods of grafting, in which nearby shoots are fused into a single whole. Rootstock - a plant to be inoculated; scion - a part that is grafted into the stock to give it new properties.
Experienced gardeners use strips of non-woven material 0.5 mm wide as a strapping. If there is no such material, then it can be replaced with gauze strips, clothespins for fixing the orchid peduncle, soft foil, just a linen rope or twine. Some growers use stretch film or electrical tape, but they have opponents who believe that a greenhouse effect occurs under the film, contributing to the formation of rudimentary roots at the grafting site.
It is better to ablate low-growing varieties of tomatoes (Astrakhan, Zagadka, Raja, Khlebosolny and others): heavy stems of indeterminate varieties at the splice can break.
Also you can grow tomatoes of different varieties, one of which has excellent taste (Gina, Appetizing, Waterfall, Family, Izobilny, Aphrodite and others), and the other is resistant to diseases (Alaska, Firebird, Bohemia, Blitz, Sensei and others).
Before sowing, the seeds are pre-soaked in a 1% solution of potassium permanganate, in a solution of aloe juice (1: 1 with water), in a solution of Fitosporin. This will allow the seeds to strengthen the immune system, become more resistant to diseases, and give a bountiful harvest later.
Read more about how to process tomato seeds before sowing in a separate article.
Diving seedlings will require a large number of seedling containers. For these purposes, you can use milk cartons, cut plastic bottles, flower pots with a diameter of 11 - 12 cm, etc. For ablactation, you will also need a sharp blade, cotton wool, salicylic alcohol.
Planting and ablating
- Tomatoes that have already been planted in open ground can be spliced, but it is better to ablate when the seedlings are dived.
- Some gardeners who follow the lunar calendar perform such manipulations only during the waxing moon.
- The vaccination time is evening, it is even better to carry out a similar procedure in cloudy weather.
- The fragility of the seedlings can be reduced by avoiding watering for a few days before ablating.
- The grafting site should be 10 - 12 cm from the soil.
- As the stems grow and thicken, the harness should be gradually loosened.
Tomato seeds should be sown in mid February - early March. After 2 - 3 weeks, the seedlings are dived (you can learn how to grow tomato seedlings from seeds without diving at home here). A month before planting seedlings in open ground (approximately in the middle - end of April), ablation is performed. Splicing usually occurs within 10 to 15 days.
How to grow tomatoes with double roots: step by step instructions
- Sowing and growing tomato seedlings is done in the usual way.
- After the appearance of the second true leaf on the seedlings, the tomatoes should be dived into separate containers. Plants are planted in pairs at an angle to each other at a distance of 2 - 3 cm.
- When the tomato stems have reached a thickness of 4 - 5 mm, the ablating process can begin. First, you should wipe your hands and the tool with a cotton swab dipped in salicylic alcohol.
- On each plant, the skin is carefully cut off with a blade (about 1.5 - 2 cm) in the place where the splicing will take place.
- Further, with a blade, incisions are made at an angle of 45 degrees in those places from which the skin was removed. On the rootstock, the incision is made from top to bottom, and on the scion - from the bottom up. The depth of the cut is 1/3 of each stem, its length is 6 - 7 mm.
- The incisions should be crossed, hooked one after the other.
- The crossing point must be tightly fixed with a strapping, connecting the two plants together.
- After the tomatoes have grown together, the rootstock must be removed by cutting it off with a blade slightly higher from the grafting site.
- The place of the cut is again fixed with a strapping, which can be removed after the plant is finally strong (after about a week).
Immediately after vaccination, seedlings should be shaded for 4 - 5 days. The temperature regime during splicing must be maintained within + 20C - + 22C. You can put plastic bags on grafted tomatoes for 2 days to create favorable greenhouse conditions. Watering is done with warm water under the root as the soil dries out. The grafted plant is transplanted into open ground or a greenhouse, while 1 - 2 lower leaves are removed (we talked about the nuances of growing tomatoes in open ground here).
When planting, both root systems must be slightly stretched in different directions, thereby increasing the feeding area. Caring for him is the same as for a regular tomato. It is imperative that the bush be tied to a peg: in order not to damage the splice, the stem is tied twice - above and below the graft site. Also, do not forget about feeding: it is better to do it once every 10 days. You can apply both organic and inorganic fertilizers.
What result should be expected?
A successful splicing can be determined visually: the stem of one of the plants will gradually thicken, become stronger and stronger due to the additional inflow of juice from another plant.
Reference. Some experimental gardeners spliced tomato with pepper or potatoes in a similar way. You can also experiment by grafting shoots of different varieties of tomatoes to each other, for example, with pink (Pink honey, De Barao, Abakan pink, etc.) and yellow fruits (Honey Spas, Persimmon, Orange, etc.).
- It is advisable to graft with young plants: their stem is still rounded, and as it grows, it becomes flat, and then the plants will not grow together.
- Shoots will not be grafted to each other even if the strapping was not made tightly.
The method of growing a tomato on 2 roots requires some effort of the grower. But with the correct vaccination, the results will exceed all expectations: there will be enough tomatoes for the table, and for harvesting, and for all relatives and friends.
Growing any vegetable crop in a region with a harsh climate is not an easy task. Therefore, you need to make a lot of effort and time to achieve high yields. On our Internet portal you will find detailed information about planting tomatoes in Siberia and the Urals, as well as find out if it is possible to plant peppers and cucumbers next to tomatoes.
We offer you to watch a video about growing tomatoes in two roots: