The inter-specific grafting has emerged as a promising tool for increasing the tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses, besides enhancing the productivity in vegetables. The dual or multiple grafting is a new technological option, wherein, two or more than two scions of the same family are grafted together to harvest more than one vegetable from a single plant.
At ICAR-Indian Institute of Vegetable Research, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh after a successful field demonstration of Grafted Pomato (Potato + Tomato), the Dual Grafting of Brinjal and Tomato (Brimato) was demonstrated in the field during 2020-21. The Brinjal Hybrid - Kashi Sandesh and improved cultivar of Tomato - Kashi Aman were successfully grafted into brinjal rootstock - IC 111056.
The Grafting Operation was carried out when Brinjal seedlings were 25 to 30 days old and Tomato 22 to 25 days old. The Brinjal Rootstock - IC 111056 has a tendency to develop two branches in around 5% seedlings. The Grafting was done by side / splice method, wherein, 5 to 7 MM slanting cuts (45° angle) were made both in the Rootstock and Scion. Soon after grafting, the seedlings were kept under a controlled atmospheric condition, where the temperature, humidity and light were kept at optimal for initial 5 to 7 days, then in partial shade for another 5 to 7 days.
The Grafted plants were transplanted in the field 15 to 18 days after the Grafting Operation. During the early growth stage, precaution was taken to maintain the balanced growth both in Brinjal and Tomato Scions. Also shoots, if any arises below the Grafting union, were removed immediately. The fertilizers were applied at 150:60:100 Kg NPK/ha, apart from 25 Tonnes of FYM. Both the Brinjal and Tomato started fruiting in 60 to 70 days after planting.
The experimental findings revealed that about 36.0 fruits with 2.383 Kg yields were harvested in Tomato / plant, while in Brinjal 2.684 Kg yields were obtained from 9.2 Fruits / plant. The Dual Grafted Brimato Technology would be very useful for the urban and suburban areas, where the limited spaces are available for accommodating vegetables in vertical garden or pot culture over the terrace and compound.
The research on commercial production of Grafted Brimato is continued at the ICAR-IIVR, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.
(Source: ICAR-Indian Institute of Vegetable Research, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh)