This step-by-step guide to grafting lemon trees shows how to graft a tree using T-budding, a grafting technique that is easy and that gives a high success rate. In T-budding a single bud from a desired variety is grafted onto a rootstock. The T-bud is one of the most common methods used by nurseries to graft fruit trees. In addition to its use in grafting citrus trees, T-budding is also used for grafting fruit trees of many kinds.
In order for the T-bud to work, it must be performed during a time of the year when the tree is actively growing and thus the bark is slipping and can be peeled back easily. In my California climate, the T-bud can be used for grafting citrus in summer and in late spring. In times of the year when the bark is not slipping, the chip bud can be used instead. T-budding is commonly used to propagate new trees. Some people use the T-bud to topwork trees or to make multi-fruit trees, but for these grafts I prefer the patch bud, the cleft graft, or the bark graft.