Grafting is a process of attaching a living branch, called a scion, onto a new tree. A scion is removed from a peach tree, which is called the understock. Grafting is performed on peach trees to bring two tree varieties together into the same tree without breeding. The scion is attached to a tree that has a strong root system. This is called the rootstock. The scion produces the exact same fruit that it did when it was attached to the understock. This allows you to match tree roots that are resistant to cold or adapted to poor soils to a fruit-producing tree that is not.
Cut a branch off the parent tree, or understock, using a sharp knife. Cut off a branch that is at least 1 foot in length and has several buds. Make a straight, even cut and wrap the branch on the cut side with a wet paper towel until the grafting point is ready on the rootstock.
Make a cut just above the top bud on the branch to remove the wood and make another cut an inch below the bottom bud. Create a sloping cut that is about 1 and a half inches long to create a wedge shape. Do not touch the exposed inner wood to prevent contamination. Prepare two scions in this manner for thick branches.
Cut the rootstock so that it is an exposed stub. Split the rootstock down the middle using a wedge.
Open the wound using a screwdriver and insert the two scions toward the edge with the exposed wood of the scion touching the exposed wood of the rootstock.
Cover the grafting surface with grafting wax and leave it to heal. Place a paper bag over the grafting area to protect the graft from the elements and to prevent drying out. Check the scions in a few weeks to determine whether the graft takes. Healthy scions will be moist. Dry scions are dead.