9 Basic Steps of Plant Cloning

Cloning are genetically identical individuals. The cloning of plants has many implications by itself. It allows a selection of a plant with required characteristics to be produced cheaper, quicker and on a prominent scale.

Most noteworthy reasons why growers prefer propagating plants.

  • Cloning can be done faster, easier and a cost-saving method of generating new plants. 
  • Cloning is efficient thanks to keeping the foremost effective genes because the new plants will inherit the identical qualities and characteristics of the mother plants. 
  • When starting to grow a plant, making a clone rather than germination is another widely used method of producing a new plant. 

When the cutting fragments of the plants are mature enough, they can flower faster after rooting. Cloning doesn’t really affect the mother plant’s health. You will be able to  clone as many cuttings as you would like as long as the original plants still have many branches. 

A clone, also referred to as a clipping or baby, is solely a branch cut from a plant. These cut branches are dipped in a  rooting solution and placed directly into a simple growing medium.

Step by step process of Plant Cloning,

Requirements

  • A healthy  green plant
  • Sterilized sharp scissors or knife
  • Rooting solution/ gel
  • Plastic /humor dome to enclose the cloner
  • Substrate / cloning machine

Rooting Solution/ hormones

By nature, plants can produce the rooting hormones themselves after a brief period of your time. They need an auxins hormones themselves, which aid within a primary root creation. Some plants like tomatoes are easy to clone because they possess many of natural auxin hormones while others are challenging to try to do without using an added hormone.

The root hormones promotes plant cell growth and relishes roots faster. Rooting hormones are organic (honey, willow extract) or synthetic form of powder, liquid or gel form.

Some value it more highly to let plants grow naturally and don’t prefer to use synthetic hormones which will contain chemicals. But you will only clone easily for some crops like tomatoes, mint, basil, rosemary, peppers without using rooting hormones. Other plant types like major fruiting or single harvest ones are much harder to clone without applying proper stimulant.

Selection

Select a healthy mature plant, which doesn’t indicate any sign of diseases for weeks. Identify a robust branch that comes far from the main stem. You frequently see “v” form, where you may see the new growth – new branches re-growing after the cut.

Section cutting

As new cuttings are very sensitive to microorganisms, like bacteria, fungal etc., make certain to scrub off and sterilize the scissors/knife /razor before doing. Take a cutting at a 45-degree angle near (not into) the major stem as this helps to extend the area, making it easy for the roots to sprout. Then store your cutting fragment into a glass of water soon enough. By doing soo, it will help prevent oxygen exposure because the new fragments are more vulnerable.

Tips: 
Choose the branches nearer to the underside of the plant, which possess a bigger margin of root production as they contain more natural rooting hormones.

The cutting should be minimal of 4 – 8 inches long. Then remove all branches and leaves on the cutting’ sides, aside from the highest, so as to not waste energy on photosynthesis, and let the cutting just target rooting.

If the higher part leaves are too long, you will be able to cut and reduce them to stop evaporation.

Different Substrates

Before placing the sample cut pieces into the chosen medium, dip that re-generating part into root hormone solution for about 15-30 seconds. 

If the hormone is the form of powder, be certain that the cutting's end gets a little wet before applying. Do not bother to dip the full cutting into the hormone; just cover it on the underside part of the cutting.

 

The following substrates are often accustomed to successfully plant as clones:

Rockwool 

As rockwool naturally are of high pH level, you need to soak the rockwool cubes in neutral water overnight (or several hours) to bring their pH down. Now time to place the stem into the rockwool and ensure that the stem end must come into contact with the rockwool cubes.

Coir Grow Plugs

Grow Plugs are Seed propagating media made of Coconut Peat, designed for easy cloning. Coir Grow plugs have low EC value befitting faster root development. Coconut peat mass is covered by thin fabric cloth and has excellent water holding capacity. Only simple hydration and planting the cut part into a grow plug within the depth of 2 inches will do a lot better. 

Soil Potting

Traditional cloning with soils is an easy yet efficient method. Just get a fertile soil and plant root hormone dipped cut part into the soil pot.

Water Cloning

First, fill the cup/plastic bottle with 3/4 of tap/distilled water and maintain the water at room temperature. Ensure the pH level of your water is at between 5.5 to 6.0

Cut a piece of cling-wrap or plastic to cover and wrap over the top of the cup. Use a tip of a pen, or scissors to poke a hole in the cling-wrap or plastic. Make sure the hole size is smaller than the cutting stem to keep it tight into the pot. 

Now, put the cutting into the pot, keeping its end at least 5 cm under the water. Place the cloning pot under the indirect sunlight, or low grow lights.

Cloning Machine

Cloning machines seem to be the foremost efficient and quickest way to propagate plants. It is effective for some reasons. First, your cutting is not immersed in water but is constantly misted with low-pressure water, which avoids diseases for the fragile roots. Second, there’s plenty of oxygen for the roots. Third, you can do multiple clones at one time.

The most important thing is to get a cloning machine. And all the steps are very easy to do as follows.

  • Set up the cloning machine as per the manual. 
  • Fill with the water at the indicated level.
  • Then place hormones dipped and cut into the neotypes. 
  • After that, run the cloning machines, and voila.

Humidity

If your cloning environment is close to precision, you don’t need it. If not, you should. The humidity dome does help keep the moisture and humidity for your clones. This can be handy when you don’t want to mist your cloners regularly and need to spend less time checking and maintaining it.


Temperature

Cutting does poorly in cold places, so keep it in warm areas. The optimal temperature is at about 70 – 75oF (20-24oc). If the nearby surrounding is of low temperature, you will use a heater or a heating mat to maintain the temperature intact.

Light

If you're unable to provide the cloners with enough daylight, you wish for some grow lights. Since new cloners are vulnerable, they don’t need sunlight or intense grow lights. That’s why weak CFL bulbs or fluorescent T5 tubes work great.

The cloners do not actually need any light for the initial 1-2 days, but some growers still put the clones under some soft lights for the first few days, and it poses to stay still. After that, you may turn the lights on for 18/24h each day. The remainder of 6 hours of darkness is crucial because it will be mostly the time when the roots form.

Transplantation

In about 7 –10 days, you are certain to see the rooting. But other plants can take longer time, up to 3 weeks. 
If by this point your cutting’s roots still don’t form, they are going to never show up. Then you ought to trash it, and do another cloning.

When you see that the rooting colonel has shown up enough time to try the transplantation. If making the clones inside the rockwool cubes or cloning machines, you will  be able to certainly see the roots sprouting. But it gets a bit harder when cloning with the soils because you can’t see within the pot.  You will be able to check inside the soils after ten days or a period of time. A trick or so ,is to let the soils dry a small amount for simple checking and extraction into the new growing environment.

Another tip is to use a transparent pot with the soil or cloning method. You can see what happens inside it. And it’s advised that you  will simply transplant the new cloner into the proper sized container. The new container size must not be too big since the young clone will have to adapt to a brand new environment. 

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