Grafting a plant is a way of forcing asexual propagation, joining two plants together so that they grow as one new plant. Some varieties of trees are only grown through grafting and propagation techniques. A scion, or cutting, is grafted to another tree's branch or root system to create a whole new hybrid.
Cleft grafting is a method of changing the top growth of a plant by collecting small scion wood, 3/8- to 5/8-inch diameter and attaching it to to top of a plant through a vertical incision. The bottom of the scion wood is cut into a wedge shape, while propagating area is cut vertically. The two pieces are then placed together like a puzzle.
Whip grafting is the simplest method and recommended for grafting beginners. This graft is done in the early spring before a tree or plant begins to bud. A scion is prepared from a donor plant, which is attached to a piece of rootstock. The scion and the rootstock are generally the same diameter, but the scion can be slightly smaller than the rootstock, but not vice versus. A 1/2 inch sloping cut is made into the rootstock, with an identical cut made into the root stock. The pieces are fitted together and attached with wax or grafting tape.
Budding is the process of uniting one bud of a tree, with a small piece of bark attached from a scion to a rootstock piece. Budding is faster than other grafting methods and makes a stronger bond once it heals onto the new plant. Budding is usually attached to a wound on a rootstock, where bark has been cut away.