Rootstocks for Vegetable Grafting

Rootstocks for vegetable grafting

In this post we will know about the different rootstocks for vegetable grafting.

What is a rootstock?

A rootstock is a plant which is used in plant propagation such as grafting and budding. Basically it is the stem portion in a graftage or budded plant. For example, in a grafted tomato plant stem is rootstock and growing portion is scion.

Best rootstock for vegetable grafting

Required characteristics: Best rootstock for vegetable grafting

Vigorous: A RS should be vigorous. A healthy and vigorous rootstock provide greater support to growing portion. It makes strong plant.

Resistant to plant diseases: It should be resistant to some well known soil borne plant diseases. Due to the resistant rootstock, plant becomes invulnerable against some lethal soil borne plant diseases.

Perennial: A RS should be perennial. We need a perennial RS in vegetable grafting. Perennial RS increases the overall commercial production period of a grafted plant.

Compatibility: It should show compatibility with scion. Less compatible RS may cause failure of grafting. A compatible RS gives more sucess in grafting.

Importance of using rootstock in vegetable grafting

More number of branches: There are more numbers of branches. A plant will produce more number of branches with a better rootstock.
Number of flower is more: Due to more branches, the number of flower is more.
Total number of fruits: More branches means more flowers, and more flowers means more fruits.
Length of production period: The length of commercial production period is 2-4 month more than a non-grafted plant when we use a perennial RS.
Overall production: It is more than usual. A grafted plant with a better rootstock gives 10-40% more yield than a normal plant.

Rootstocks for tomato

  • Solanum torvum
  • Solanum melongena
  • Solanum nigrum

Rootstocks for brinjal

Also read: Best wild brinjal plant species for grafting

  • Solanum melongena
  • S. torvum
  • S. viarum
  • S. Macrocarpon
  • S. indicum
  • S. sisymbriifolium
  • S. xanthocarpum
  • S. incanum
  • S. aethiopicum

Rootstock for chilli

  • S. torvum
  • S. melongena

Description of the different rootstocks

(01). Turkey berry: Solanum torvum
(02). Cherry tomato: Solanum lycopersicum var. cerasiforme
(03). Cultivated brinjal: Solanum melongena
(04). Black nightshade: Solanum nigrum
(05). Tropical soda apple: Solanum viarum
(06). African eggplant: Solanum macrocarpon
(07). European black nightshade: Solanum indicum
(08). Sticky nightshade
(09). Bhatkataiya
(10). Bitter apple
(11). Bitter tomato (nakati)

01: Turkey berry

Common name: Turkey berry
Scientific name: Solanum torvum
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: Native to Americas


  • The plant is perennial. It can live for several years without any problem.
  • It has extensive and deep root system.
  • An individual plant can grow up to 7-12 feet.
  • It has strong stem. Sharp thorns are present on stem.
  • S. torvum produces more numbers of branches. Branches has sharp spines.

Flowering and fruiting

Plant takes up to 3-4 months to bear first flower. Flowering is continuous.
After fruit set, it take up to 3 months to ripe.


Seeds of S. torvum show high degree of dormancy which is very difficult to break. Natural germination occurs during onset of monsoon. Off season germination requires special treat to break the dormancy.

02: Cherry tomato

Common name: Cherry tomato
Scientific name: Solanum lycopersicum var. cerasiforme
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: Native to the Peru–Ecuador area


  • Cherry tomato is an annual plant. It has indeterminate growth habit.
  • Fruit: Fruits are small.
  • Seeds have no dormancy.

Flowering and fruiting

Plants take 1 to 1.5 to bear flowers. Flowering is continuous. Fruits appear in clusters.

03: Cultivated brinjal

Common name: Brinjal or eggplant
Scientific name: Solanum melongena
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: Old world


S. melongena is perennial in nature.
Stem is semi-woody. It is often spiny.
Height is 1-3 feet. Some hybrid varieties grow up to 4 feet. Fruit is a berry.

Flowering and fruiting

Plants produce first flower after 30 to 45 days of transplanting. The single fruits are borne on axillary buds.

04: Black nightshade

Common name: Black nightshade
Scientific name: Solanum nigrum
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: Eurasia


It is a herb. Plant is perennial or annual herb. Plant height is 30 to 120 cm. It produces extensive branching system. Stem is semi-woody, it very soft during its initial stage. Berries are very small. It turns into purple colour after ripening. Fruits appear in bunches.

05. Tropical soda apple

Common name: Tropical soda apple
Scientific name: Solanum viarum
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: Argentina and Brazil


Plant is a perennial shrub. The height of plant is 3-6 feet. Plant is very spiny. Leaves are also spiny. Fruits are rounded and small. These fruits have white strips on surface. Fruit turns yellow after ripening.

06. African eggplant

Common name: African eggplant
Scientific name: Solanum macrocarpon
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: West Africa


S. macrocarpon is a perennial plant. It is closely related to S. melongena. The height of plant is 3 to 4.5 feet. The lower portion of the flowers are bisexual flowers while the upper portion are male flowers. Fruits are covered by the calyx lobes. Some cultivars are resistant to drought.

07. Kateri

Common name: Kateri
Scientific name: Solanum indicum
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: NA


It is a stiff prickly shrub. The plant grows up to 0.3 to 1.5 m. Prickles are sharp and slightly recurved. Stem has more branches.

08. Sticky nightshade

Common name: Sticky nightshade
Scientific name: S. sisymbriifolium
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: South America

09. Bhatkataiya

Also read: Bhejari or Bhatkatiya Plant

Common name: Bhatkataiya
Scientific name: S. xanthocarpum
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: South Asia

10. Bitter apple

Common name: Bitter apple
Scientific name: S. incanum
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East

11: Bitter tomato (nakati)

Common name: Bitter tomato
Scientific name: S. aethiopicum
Family: Solanaceae
Origin: Native to Asia and Africa

Frequently Asked Questions

Question 01: Which rootstock is best for tomato?

Answer: The best rootstock for tomato is local or semi-wild species of brinjal.

Question 02. Which rootstock is best for brinjal?

Answer: The best rootstock for brinjal is S. torvum.

Question 03. Which rootstock is best for chilli?

Answer: The best rootstock for chilli is wild species of chilli.


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