Cloning marijuana can be a cost effective and quicker way to harvest marijuana indoors. The process is fairly straightforward but following our guide will make sure you get the most out of the mother plant and the clones that derive from it.
First, let’s talk about what cloning marijuana actually entails. Put simply, you are taking a part of a mother plant by cutting away a stem and then transferring it to its own growing soil. The cutoff stem will then grow into a fully mature plant with the exact same characteristics as the original mother plant. Cloning marijuana is perfect if you have found a strain you feel has the right combo of potency, taste and smell. You can pretty much guarantee that you will get the same characteristics with the cloned child when cloning marijuana.
The advantages of cloning marijuana
Since you do not need to buy new seeds for clones you can cut out that expense. This makes the cloning process essentially free! Most of the tools you need for cloning marijuana will overlap with the tools you already have for the mother plant.
The turnaround time of clones is much shorter than seedlings. They essentially skip a few steps of the process and all they need to catch up on is root growth. Once the roots start to grow the plant itself will grow rapidly. This speeds up production greatly.
How to choose a mother plant when cloning marijuana
There is really no purpose in cloning marijuana if you do not like the mother plant. Things to look for when choosing a mother plant to clone:
1 Healthy big leaves and roots
This will increase the odds of the clone surviving and creating a strong root system of its own.
2 Smell, Taste and Potency
Make sure you like the defining characteristics of the mother plant before going through all the trouble of cloning it.
You can get a good sense of the yield by taking a look at the mother plant. Many growers perfect their crop through generations of cloning the same plant as they can perfect their growing technique to maximize yield for the specific makeup of the plant. This process is made easier with cloning marijuana plants you already are familiar with.
Tools you need for Cloning Marijuana
The mother plant (Obviously!)
Ratchet Pruning Shears – They make the process much easier than regular scissors and are super durable.
Grow Lights – Note you dont want to blast them while they are forming their roots so opt for something prebuilt and designed for cloning marijuana like iPower GLT5XX2 Head Start T5 Grow Light System
EarlyGrow Humidity Dome – humidity is key for root formation!
Rapid Rooter Starter Cubes – helps with root formation and retention
The Process of Cloning Marijuana
Now that we know more about the benefits of cloning marijuana and how to choose the right candidates let’s dive into the actual process.
Disinfect all your gear before starting. You do not want any contaminants altering the cloning process.
Make sure your mother plant is ready to be cut. This requires the leaves to be alternating which put simply means the leaves are not connecting at the exact same point to the mother plant’s stem.
Soak your starter cubes for 10 minutes or whatever is suggested on the packaging. Note that the clones will be kept in a humid climate so over soaking is not needed.
Pinpoint a new growth tip on the mother plant. This tip is perfect for cloning. Just look for new branching and you will be able to spot a good tip. If possible find one as close to the bottom of the plant as possible as this area will have better root making characteristics.
Reach out and place the branch in your hand. Cut the branch as close to a 45 degree angle and about 5-7 inches in length.
Split the bottom end of the stem to expose the internal root growing system.
Dip the stem in the cloning gel.
Place the clone in the already damp starter cube and pack the soil tight to prevent air bubbles forming in the root system.
Then trim any super large leaves from the plant. Large leaves will drain the plant of energy as they require food.
Finally place the clone in the humidity dome!
How to care for your clone
Remember clones love a humid environment. The main reason being that their roots have not fully formed so they need to get water by way of the leaves. With the humid climate the leaves will have plenty of moisture. Along with moisture also make sure to keep the plants at about room temperature of above.
Most growers will take it easy on the plants the first few days and use little to no light. This allows for a smoother transition. After a few days you can begin to expose them to light at about 15/9 ratio. 15 hours on 9 hours off. Be sure to follow a similar schedule and not to leave the lights on 24 hours a day. This will lead to unhealthy rooting for your clones, not to mention a sky high electricity bill!
It is important to pay special attention to the plants in the first few days of the cloning marijuana process. This time is critical as the cuttings are transforming into plants of their own. If you pay attention to the process and follow all the steps you should be seeing rapid growth within the first few weeks!
Can you clone a clone?
Yes! Each clone is an exact an exact genetic copy of the mother plant so you can keep cloning away!