A Batch of Clones in Rockwool

Discussion in 'Hydroponics / Aeroponics' started by Al B. Fuct, May 25, 2007.

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    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    I've run the rotohoe through it and it does mix into soil amazingly well.

    After the first couple of waterings and about a week in the soil, a couple pebble sized chunks (from about 20L of material turned into the soil) surfaced and they are still stark white, but smaller bits have incorporated into the soil very well. It has yet to fully change to soil colour, but you'd never know there was 20-odd litres of waste Fytocell incorporated in this soil.

    If for stealth reasons you're looking for a way to make the stuff totally disappear, soil incorporation may not be the way. I suspect there always will be a bit or two of it popping up now and again, we'll see.

    However, it does work in very well and definitely has improved the water retention of some sandy/silty loam soil, at least as well as an equivalent volume of compost. The water holding quality will continue with Fytocell until it breaks down, said by the maker to be about 10 years until it is fully biodegraded. Compost won't last quite that long as a soil conditioner.

    grandpabear3 New Member

    i have decided to do a three way side by side comparison of cloning techniques. one will be the aerocloner, the next will be rapid rooters in a humidome on a heat mat and the third will be albfuct style rw cubes on a heat mat. i'm gonna settle it once and for all for me personally. i'll start a cloning journal and post pics like crazy. it'll be a hoot:weed:
    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    It'll be a fair comparison if you've mastered all three techniques. :D Ambitious, though!

    Will be very interesting. :)

    Phinxter Well-Known Member

    Al B. i have noticed my clones not talking root for about day 12 this last round and i belive the cause to be too cool on the temps of the rooting zone.
    i dont / didny have a heat pad .. it was warm and i didnt need one.
    winter is starting now and temps are 15.5C . so i bought the hot pad and thermometer for it.
    what temp should the pad be set to ?
    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named



    LostInSpace... Well-Known Member

    Hey Al howz things mate?

    I'm still struggling to get my clones to take root, I'm following your photo essay as close as I can but still no luck... heres a photo of one thats 10 days old and no sign of roots at all, any insight?

    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    Can't see a lot of detail in the pic, but it looks like the media has been kept too wet. Is the stem tip rotted?

    Are you using a heat mat? H2O2 in watering soln?

    LostInSpace... Well-Known Member

    I don't think its rotted, it was still firm where I made the cut. I'm using your watering method ie "dip" in a bucket when its lost more than 50% of its weight. 5.8pH water, 1m/L 50% h202.

    Got a heatmat set to 30C, thermo controlled clonebox set at 29, and everything is sterile when I make the cuts and the rockwool is pre-soaked and shaken out(i will be investing in a salad spinner lol).

    The only thing that I use which is different to you is the rooting powder, I got a packet from Bunnings for soft wood, reckon this could be it?

    I'm not really sure what I'm missing but I'll keep trying. I'm gonna make this work!

    Cheers mate

    davidgrimm Active Member

    As always, thank you very much for taking the time to address everyone's questions here.

    I am starting on my cloning activity. I have an area (approx 3' X 5' ) that is unused (old veg area now no longer needed) that I would prefer not to section off smaller (physical reason of the area but also because I am lazy and not prone to do any work that is not really necessary).

    I had thought to light the entire area with a 400W MH set-up (over the mothers but also the freshly cut clones). Is this gonna be a major problem with the clones? The light will be hung at the height for the mothers and I assume the clones will be at least several inches further away. Any thoughts ??

    Also the guy at the hydro store (minimum wage, I know) said that metal halides don't give off much heat (nothing like HPS'ers) and therefore do NOT need to have cool tubes installed. I am skeptical but have never used a MH before. Do you have any insights to offer?

    The store wants me to buy a Sunleaves Pioneer VIII Bloom SPB10 for about $ 300 US (which appears to be about 2 times the cost for a 400W MH). Costs aside, will this fluor work as well as the MH? [tech specs are here http://www.sunleaves.com/senddoc.asp?id={744CFF94-4C19-401D-A03A-D629D5434497} ] Sorry that link doesn't work :-( Wish I knew more about computers etc. Anyway, you can see the specs at Sunleaves :: Indoor and Outdoor Gardening Products, Light Systems, Hydroponics Systems, Organic Fertilizers, Growing Media and more. look at their fluors and then click for that particular light.

    Again, thank you.

    David Grimm
    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    goddammit, will you PLEASE quit doing everything right so these probs are easier to sort out? :lol:

    If you have got all your conds right and it's still not working, I'm more than a bit mystified.

    How long after cutting is the clone pictured?

    I know you're letting the cube weight drop by 50% before watering again. How long does this take?

    How much does the cube weigh after watering? 40mm cubes weigh 5g dry and 20-25g when properly 'damp' as opposed to 'saturated.'

    You probably have the very same thing I do. The stuff I get is called 'Rootex-P', your ordinary average butyric acid rooting powder.

    All very curious. :?

    LostInSpace... Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the reply Al,

    That pic was taken 10 days after I cut it, I didnt see any roots so I just broke the rockwool away, presto... nothing.

    About 12 to 18 hours, but I'm doing it by 'feel', this answers the next question too i spose.

    I have got a set of scales but I'm not sure if I need to calculate the cuttings weight into the equation or should I weigh the rockwool with the cutting in it and just add 20-25 grams(mils) of water?

    LostInSpace... Well-Known Member

    I almost forgot the rooting powder I have is INDOLE ACETIC ACID / NAPTHALENE ACETIC ACID, it's Yates brand, in a 15g packet.

    I can post a pic if you need it...
    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    Hmm... acetic acid based? The stuff I use is butyric acid based. Indole-3 acetic acid is a phytohormone, I guess it's just another way to get round the block.

    Yes, you'd have to subtract an estimation of the cutting weight from the cube, water & cutting weight measurement. 40mm wrapped cubes (5g dry) are indeed properly 'damp' when they weight 20-25g (15-20ml water + 5g dry cube weight).

    thegoods217 Active Member


    Is it necessary to pre-soak in tapwater for this method of cloning? I don't have a salad spinner so I wouldn't have a way of getting the excess water out.

    Could I just use your dipping method of the cube w/ the h202 and 5.8 ph balanced water?

    I am trying to make 4 clones off my blue rhino mothers (2). I am going to be using a DWC setup w/ hydroton as the medium.

    Thanks AL!
    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    Yes. RW cubes have a small amt of limestone dust remaining from manufacturing. The cubes must be soaked in water which has been adjusted to a fairly acidic pH5.0 for 24h to react with the Ca dust and neutralise it. Adding H2O2 50% grade @ 1ml/L to the pre-soak soln assures the cubes are sterile.

    You can shake the 5.0 water out of the cube by hand with several sharp snaps of the wrist (like flicking a yoyo), but this can cause muscle strains and doesn't remove all of the soaking soln, so I suggest using a salad spinner. You can get salad spinners at most any grocery store or dollar shop, I think I paid $5-6 for mine.
    Use that technique for subsequent watering of cubes, once the stems have been plugged in them.

    When learning cloning techniques, cut far more clones than you need. It's better to have spares to compost than not as many plants as you need to flower or turn into replacement mums.

    When nesting your cubes in the pellets, make sure there's at least an inch of pellets between the cube and the mist from your DWC. The RW cube must not be allowed to be saturated by the DWC mist. it may be necessary to handwater the pellets around the cube (but not the cube) for the first week they are in the pellets.

    thegoods217 Active Member

    Thanks AL, I'm going to get a salad spinner right now along w/ some h202.

    Would I be better off cutting the clones, putting them in rockwool and waiting until they grow roots before I put it in the DWC? This way I wouldnt have to worry about getting the rockwools wet or the roots not finding the water.

    I was going to put the clones in a small tray and water twice daily w/ your dipping method. The lights I would be using are fluros for the clones then switching over to a 400w MH for the DWC.

    Thanks again for the wealth of knowledge AL!
    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    cool, just make sure taht whatever nutes you select are standard, inorganic type. Organic nutes are not compatible with H2O2.

    Not sure what you mean; standard practise is to start the clones in RW cubes and once they have roots, nesting them in whatever main media you plan to raise them to harvest in.

    If using pellets in a flood sys, it looks like this:


    Will be similar in a DWC, except the pot is smaller. There must be about an inch of pellets between the RW cube and the mist. RW can not be directly exposed to mist or it will saturate- this will kill the plant.

    ok, just make sure the RW cubes don't sit in a puddle.

    yep, they can go under the 400MH as soon as they have their 2nd set of true leaves.
    no worries. :)

    grandpabear3 New Member

    dammit al i gotta say that kindergarten art of yours is pretty darn good
    Al B. Fuct

    Al B. Fuct once had a dog named

    we aim to please!

    thegoods217 Active Member

    Thanks AL, I just made 8 cuttings today, 6 blue rhino and 2 off my bagseed. I immediately put them under the light, forgetting about your 6 hr period of darkness.

    I have a heat pad from a pet store that is for lizard tanks, I will be using it temporarily until I get a horticulture grade heat pad. A thermometer is on the tray to measure the heat coming off the pad. The pad is placed underneath the tray. When I get the horticulture heat pad, do I place the clones directly on the pad or underneath the tray?

    Hopefully I'll be seeing roots in the next 7-14 days!
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