Difference between Grafting and Layering

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The vegetative propagation is the propagation which occurs through vegetative parts like root, stem and leaves of the plant. In some higher plants, vegetative propagation may be natural or artificial. The artificial vegetative propagation is done through various methods called cutting, layering, grafting.

Layering and grafting are the most used methods of artificial vegetative propagation. This article is mainly focused on communicating the differences between grafting and layering.


Grafting is a method in which two plants are joined together in such a way that two stems join and grow as a single plant. The plant which is attached to soil is called as ‘stock’ and the cut stem of another plant without the roots is called as ‘scion’. This technique is very useful in propagating improved varieties of various flowers and fruits.

Examples: mango, Apple, citrus fruits, etc.


Layering is a method in which branch of the plant with at least one node is bent towards the ground and a part of it is covered with moist soil leaving the tip of the branch exposed above the ground. after sometime, new roots develop from the part of the branch buried in the soil. The branch is then cut-off from the parent plant, The part which has developed roots grows to became a new plant.

Examples: Nerium, Jasmine, etc.


Grafting can be done in four ways, they are bud-grafting, cleft-grafting, tongue grafting, approach grafting. Layering can be done in 2 ways; they are Air-layering, Ground-layering.
Grafting is useful to get more varieties from a single plant. Layering only results in one type of offspring.
Grafting is considered as a highly feasible method in horticulture field. Layering is considered as a less useful technique when compared to grafting method.
In Grafting method, we can get highly desirable characters from parent 'stock' plant to different 'scions'. In layering method, we can get same characteristics from parent to offspring.
The plants obtained from grafting method are more resistant to diseases, pests and droughts. The plants obtained from layering method don't have more resistance, but the immunity continues without any change through the generations.
Plants like mango, lemon, oranges, Apple are produced by drafting method. Plants like rose, Jasmine are produced more by layering method.



From the above discussion, it is very clear that grafting and layering are the methods of artificial vegetative propagation. Both grafting and layering helps to preserve and perpetuate the varieties of plants.