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Cloning might have accumulated a bit of a mystique over the years thanks to Hollywood sci-fi blockbusters and battles in galaxies far, far away, but in reality, it is a common practice in the world of horticulture that simply means to make an exact replica of an already living plant. So what is cloning? The technical term is "vegetative propagation." And while the cloning of humans could be central to a twisted plot of a science fiction film, plant cloning has been done safely and successfully for well over one 1,000 years. Common foods like carrots, mint, tomatoes, apples, garlic and blueberries are regularly cloned; in fact, most of the fruit and vegetables that are available in grocery stores come from clones!
In the world of cannabis, cloning is a fast and cheap way for growers to make new cannabis plants. The fact that the clone will have the same genetics as the parent, and therefore identical characteristics like taste, smell and strength, is a boon for growers who want to maintain strong harvests with plants that maintain the same properties and traits. Cannabis clones make it simple (and practically free) to expand your collection of psychoactive flora. So, if you've got a green thumb and want to attempt cloning your own plants, continue reading to find out how!
To clone a marijuana plant, you will need the following supplies:
The first step in learning how to clone cannabis is to determine if your cannabis plant is ready to be cloned! The easiest way to tell is when the branches on the plant begin to alternate as they grow. The plant will be ready when branches are growing from different spots on the stem.
Clean and disinfect your tools and workspace with the alcohol. Fresh cuts are very sensitive to microorganisms, dirt and bacteria and especially prone to infection and disease.
Take your rockwool cubes (or other plant starter grow plugs) and soak in water for up to two hours to bring the pH level down to a more approachable spot for your cuttings. A pH of around 5.5 is preferable.
Take a cutting from new branching that has a new topping of small leaves. Slice the growth at a 45-degree angle. The cutting should be at least four inches long. Note that growth from the lower half of the mother plant will grow roots faster than cuttings taken from the top. Put the new clone cutting in a glass of water to prevent air bubbles from getting into the stem.
Remove any large fan leaves from the lower part of the stem to allow the cutting to focus its energy on establishing new roots instead of wasting energy on established growth.
Dip the area of the stem where the cut was originally made in the cloning gel to seal it off. Dip enough of the clone in the gel so that all of the clone that will be planted in the starter cube will be covered with gel. If you are also using powder, apply it after applying the gel.
Carefully place the clone into the starter cube. Slightly press the bottom of the cube to make sure that everything is packed tightly and well-sealed.
Place the clone inside your storage area. This can be something as fancy as a humidity dome or mini greenhouse, but it can also be something as simple as a large sandwich bag. Whatever you use, make sure it keeps the moisture trapped around the clones. The moisture in the air is essential for root growth.
Try to maintain a temperature around the clones of between 70Â°F and 78Â°F and a humidity over 90%. Roots should begin to appear in about a week.
Do you have any experience cloning cannabis or working with cannabis clones? Leave a note in the comments section below about your involvement with cannabis cloning and any ups or downs you may have encountered along the way.