anyone this newb, needs help with this
if i create a mother plant and take cuttings and put it in a groclone machine. how long can they survive in that machine before i have to plant them?
anyone this newb, needs help with this
how long do clones survive in that machine?
never heard of a groclone machine but I would assume you would leave them in until you have good roots
Where are we going & what am I doing in a handbasket?
One Becomes Two or More
If you have a plant you really like you can make copies of it by taking cuttings. If you want to fill a grow space with plants uniform in height and finishing times you can use cuttings. If you just want to increase your stock of plants you can use cuttings. As well as having the same characteristics as the plant it came from a cutting (clone) will have the same genetic age. This means you don`t have to wait a couple of months for the plant to become mature before flowering it. Once rooted you can start flowering at a height to suit you instead. If you grow a cutting for a while on a vegetative light cycle you can then take cuttings from it and start the cycle again.
You can take cuttings from any part of the plant but some bits root better than others. Growing tips with firm stems are ideal. Use a sterile razor blade to remove a growing tip with about 10 cm of stem. Make the cut at a 45 degree angle half way between two leaf joints (nodes). Immediately place the cutting in p.h balanced water making sure the cut section is under water. Doing this prevents an air bubble forming in the stem which might block fluid uptake later.
As the cutting will be unable to support much foliage remove all but the top set of leaves. Dip cuttings in hormone rooting gel or powder and insert into your chosen medium so that at least one old leaf joint (node) goes under the surface. Make sure you don`t kink the stem as it gets pushed in. To ensure a perfect fit use a pencil or skewer to make a hole.
Heat and Humidity
As cuttings have lost most of their ability to process water a humid environment is vital to ensure they don`t dry out. Warm air holds more moisture so aim for a temperature of 80 degrees around your cuttings and try to keep humidity levels at 70% plus. A heated covered germination box or propagator is ideal but you can use clear plastic bags over pots, just use a stick or two inserted in the medium to hold the bag away from the leaves of the cutting.
Oxygen is important to help cuttings root. Choose a loose growing medium that lets in plenty of air and spray clones daily with shaken p.h balanced water. Ideally hydroponic clones should have their water changed daily if it`s not being moved or aerated.
Place new cuttings in moderate light such as a north facing window or under fluorescent lamps. Coloured plastic bags placed over propagators make good shades from strong sunlight or HID Lamps. Once well rooted gradually increase light intensities until normal growing levels are reached. Test show that clones root best when lit for only 16 hours a day, this is due to root formation taking place during the dark period. If you want to keep your clones away from darkness however don`t worry they will still root well even under constant light.
As a cutting can`t process nutrients until its root cells have formed all you need to give them at first is p.h balanced water. A slightly more acidic mix than normal growing of around 5.2 - 5.8 is supposed to the best for root formation. After about 2 or 3 weeks or when you see the cuttings begin to grow or show roots they will need feeding. Start giving a weak nutrient solution of about 1/4 normal strength and increase it as the cuttings develop.
Cuttings should root in 14 to 28 days depending on their level of care and their genetics. Once the roots start to show, or the clones begin to grow start removing any covering for short, gradually increasing periods. After a few days to a week the cuttings will be able to endure life outside their cover or propagator without wilting.
Mother plants are grown specifically to take cuttings from. They are normal plants (seed or clone) but their job is to produce as many growing shoots as possible and then have them chopped off. Due to this they require care of a slightly different nature. Nitrogen inhibits root growth so feed mothers after taking cuttings rather than before to give the clones a head start. When you harvest clones from a mother plant finish off by giving it a flat top trim like a hedge to encourage as many new growing tips as possible ready for the next time. Sadly heavy cloning of a mother plant will eventually take its toll on it and the quality of its cuttings, it`s a good idea to introduce new seed stock every few years to avoid problems.
Sexing a Mother
If you want to grow using cuttings then a good unstressed female to use as a mother is a must. But how do you find a plants sex without causing it stress by flowering it and then reverting it back to vegetative growth? Simple, take a few cuttings from the plant and put them straight into a flowering cycle instead. They are only to tell you the sex of the parent plant so you don`t have to look after them too much.
Seed Vs Cuttings
Cuttings are particularly great for indoor growing where plants are best kept short, manageable and uniform. Many indoor growers would never bother with the uncertain results you get from growing with seed and wonder why anyone should bother with the hassle of sexing and grading every crop they grow. The fact is though seed grown plants are usually more robust and vigorous than cuttings, if you intend to grow outdoors and let your plants battle with the elements this extra edge can make all the difference.