Don’s Expert Answers: Grafting Lilly Pillys

Question From:
Jon Paul Winson in Somerton Park, Adelaide South Australia

Nature of problem:
Grafting Lilly Pillys

Type of Plant (if known):
Bush Christmas Lilly Pilly

Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself):

Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type:

How often do you water the plant:
Summer – everyday. Winter when soil dries out

How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:
Morning sun, midday green shade cloth.

How long since you planted it:
3 years

Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:
Indoor plant fertiliser and Seasol

Is the plant indoors or outdoors:

Is the plant in a pot or in the ground:
Glazed pot

What other treatments have you given the plant:

Upload photo if available:

Other Comments:
I was wondering if grafting two Bush Christmas Lilly Pillys together is possible? And if so do they have to be the same verity?

Hi Jon, I am unaware of any testing to see which lillypillies can be grafted. This is the case since there is no need to graft them: they are all hardy plants that are easy to propagate. I suspect that they would be easy to graft, and from my experience of extensive test-grafting of grevilleas, there is unlikely to be any compatibility problems. I would graft in periods of strong growth in the understock, maybe January. Ideally the scion should be selected from relatively dormant sections of the scion plant. Cut off the understock plant and do a top cleft graft. Or do an approach graft, which does not necessitate any cutting back. Don