Cloning Cannabis is a must for any serious grower.
Cloning cannabis is a process of clipping off sections of a healthy cannabis plant and letting them set out their roots so they can become brand new cannabis plants. Cloning enables you to turn one cannabis plant into a bunch of other cannabis plants.
This process is called cloning because when you take a clipping from one plant and turn it into a new one, they will both have the same DNA.
That’s why cloning is an especially good idea if you’ve found that perfect cannabis plant. When you grow a plant that’s strong, healthy, and produces the exact kind of flowers you’re looking for, you might want to make a few clones so you can keep it going.
This guide will walk through the entire process. If you follow these basic steps, you’ll become a master at cloning cannabis plants. And when you reach that status, you’ll have access to an infinite number of super productive plants.
What You Need
- A brand new razor blade
- A piece of styrofoam, wood, or plastic to use as a cutting board
- A small cup or container—a shot glass usually works well
- Growing medium (something like rockwool, oasis cubes, pro-mix, coconut fiber, or any hydroponic growing medium—just don’t use straight soil or dirt)
- Seed tray with humidity dome (you can buy a commercial one or make your own)
- Rooting hormone
- Spray bottle
- Rubbing alcohol
- The “mother” cannabis plant (pick a robust and healthy plant that you know gives you the exact kind of buds you’re looking for)
How to Clone: A Step-by-Step Guide
Step 1: Prep your materials
Before starting, get all your materials together and have them ready at hand.
You want to move through the cutting process as quickly as you can. But don’t rush it. You don’t want to cut yourself or injure your plant.
Once you’ve got everything together, use the rubbing alcohol to sanitize your hands, the cutting board, the razor, and anything else that will come into contact with the plant.
Fill your shot glass or small container with rooting hormone.
Have your growing medium all set up and ready to go. Be sure there’s a hole in the medium that will let you quickly and gently slide the cutting into it. The medium should also be moist.
Step 2: Cutting
Examine your mother cannabis plant. Look for a healthy shoot that has at least two sets of leaves coming out of it.
Use your razor very carefully and cleanly to cut off one or two of the lowest leaves of the shoot.
Now use the blade to cut the shoot about 1/4 inch below the leaves you just removed. Make the cut at a 45 to 60-degree angle. Be sure you make a clean cut—you don’t want to smash or damage the shoot.
Step 3: Rooting
As soon as you’ve got your cutting, get it into the rooting hormone. If it’s a gel hormone, just a quick dip is good enough. If it’s a liquid hormone, let the cutting soak for 30 to 60 seconds. And if it’s a powder hormone, be sure the cutting gets a good coating.
Be sure the nodes from the leaves you cut off get covered in the rooting hormone.
Step 4: Growing Medium
Now it’s time to position your cutting gently in the growing medium. Be careful so you don’t disturb the cutting.
Be sure that the nodes from the leaves you cut off are below the surface of the medium, since this will ensure that the cutting sends out strong roots.
Step 5: Grow Cutting
After the cutting is secure in the growing medium, give it a little bit of water and place it in your growing tray.
Use the spray bottle to mist the cutting. Then mist the humidity dome and place it on the tray. Repeat this process 2 to 3 times a day.
Place the growing tray and dome in a place that gets good, but not overly intense, lighting. Dappled sunlight is ideal.
Along with misting the cuttings and the humidity dome 2 or 3 times every day, water the cuttings directly every two days. Be sure the growing medium never dries out. But don’t saturate it either, as this could drown the baby cutting.
Throughout this process, you want the dome to maintain somewhere around 90% humidity. It should also be between 72 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 6: Test Roots
After a week of misting and watering, it’s time to check for roots.
To test for roots, take the humidity dome off the growing tray and leave the baby plants out in the open for an hour or so. If the plant shows no signs of wilting, it’s probably got some good roots growing.
If it does show signs of wilting, mist it, put it back in the humidity tray, and keep going with Step 5.
Step 7: Transplant
When the cuttings have sent out good roots, you can go ahead and transplant them to your growing system. Of course, be careful and gentle with these little babies.
After transplanting, you might see some of the first leaves turn yellow and die off. This is OK. It’s part of the natural growing process. Let them do their thing, and don’t remove the yellow leaves until they’ve completely died off on their own.
Step 8: Take care of your new plant
Feed, water, and maintain your transplanted cuttings the way you do any other cannabis plant.
If you did a good job with the above steps, your new cutting will start growing quickly and should soon give you the final product you’re looking for.
And once this new plant is well established and healthy, you can take a new cutting from it and start the entire thing all over again.