Worldwide, gardeners and growers are using grafts to create hardier, healthier vegetable plants.
Tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, cucumbers, and nearly all the watermelon produced in Japan, Korea, southern Spain and Italy, Turkey, and Greece are grafted.
By merging the roots and stalks of two separate vegetables into a single plant, grafting helps vegetables fight soil-borne pests and diseases, resist drought, salinity and flooding, and is especially useful where farmers have few crop rotation or soil fumigation options.
Carol Miles, professor of horticulture at Washington State University’s Northwestern Washington Research and Extension Center (NWREC) in Mount Vernon, is co-editor and contributing author on a new Vegetable Grafting Manual, written in collaboration with vegetable scientists at Ohio State, the University of Florida, Purdue University, the World Vegetable Center, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Available online, the manual covers production of grafted vegetable plants, with an emphasis on research-based information.
Miles also helped produce a new Guide for Hosting Grafting Workshops. Based on research by the vegetable horticulture program at NWREC Mount Vernon, the guide can help garden groups, Master Gardeners, and other experts host sessions and teach proper grafting techniques. Find the guide online here.
Additional vegetable grafting publications from institutions including WSU can be found on the national vegetable grafting website.