Can You Clone Autoflower Strains?
The more copies you make of the original, the duller it becomes.
Anyone who cultivates cannabis at home has likely heard of cloning. However, the question becomes, while cloning photoperiods is tried-and-done, can you clone autoflower strains successfully?
Although the process is the same, some growers find their clones degrade with time. The more copies you make of the original, the duller it becomes.
It could mean that autoflowering plants aren't ideally suited for the job. Or it could be that the grower lacks enough experience to manage it.
That doesn't mean that it's impossible or that you shouldn't try. Let's review some helpful tips for cloning your favorite autoflowering strains.
What is Cloning, and Is It Difficult?
For the uninitiated, cloning a plant means cutting a sample of the main plant and letting it root. This portion, if healthy enough, will become a separate plant of its own.
You receive the same genetics because cuttings get taken from an existing plant. That becomes especially helpful when you find a particular strain you enjoy.
The most challenging part of cloning is not harming the mother plant. Some eager cultivators cut too deeply or too often, hurting it instead.
The result of the process is a second plant recreated from the first. When done correctly, it can offer substantial cost and time savings for your growing operation.
Can You Clone Autoflower Strains?
Where things become complicated is cloning autoflower strains of cannabis. These unique types don't change their growth behaviors based on light. Because they switch automatically from vegetation to flowering, they can seem tricky. Newer cultivators may want to allow nature to take its course rather than experiment.
Those who know how to clone should do so during the vegetative stage. However, that window can prove short-lived with these unique plants. Although it's difficult, it isn't impossible to clone plants from auto flower seeds. Continue reading to learn tips and tricks to get the most from your cuttings.
How to Clone an Autoflower Plant
With a typical cannabis plant, you wait about two months before cutting. Unfortunately, with an autoflowering strain, you can't go off time alone.
Instead, carefully watch for your plant to develop several mature branches first. That will help minimize the risk of harming it and see clones take root.
Before planting your cutting, make sure to dip the bottom in a hormone solution. That assists the plant in returning to its initial phase to grow the root system.
Finally, try and mimic the growing environment of the mother plant. Changes could lead to significant differences in your clone and not the ones you want.
Do Cloned Plants Weaken Over Time?
The jury is still out on if clones will weaken with time. Theoretically, it shouldn't seem frailer than the mother because it's a cutting.
One way to prevent degradation is to buy seeds from a reputable bank. Online stores, like Herbies Seeds or Highway420, offer quality products at affordable prices.
However, those familiar with plant genetics suggest that the cells will break down. Because clones are the same age as their mother, they may perform like older plants.
Since the clone's DNA doesn't change, focus on maintaining its environment. Treat it like you would a new seedling, and see it reach its highest potential.
How Many Times Can I Clone a Plant?
At first, it seems like cloning offers potentially free weed for life. Unfortunately, you must know what you are doing to see such results.
Many people wonder if you can indefinitely clone from a single plant. While possible, you may not see replicants with the same potency level as mothers.
That may get attributed to a lack of a taproot or even genetic mutations. More research is still needed, but cells can change under stress.
Finally, removing too many branches at once can also strain the mother plant. Carefully remove mature branches sparingly to keep your primary one alive.
Are Autoflowering Plants Good for Cloning?
Another challenge offered by autoflowering strains is keeping them from withering. You need to make sure to take a cutting in the right moment, so the plant still has time in the vegetative stage to bounce back from the stress of cloning. Because of this, those new to cloning may want to try photoperiod strains first.
However, you see growth quickly thanks to their shorter vegetative and flowering stages. That can give these seeds an advantage over other types. Autoflowering plants also don't require different lighting schedules, making it easier to grow for amateur growers. All in all, make sure to research what your strains need before trying to clone them.
Should I Clone My Autoflower Strains?
Cloning an autoflower plant is possible, but it may prove disappointing. The process is challenging for these seeds, especially compared to photoperiod ones.
You may wind up with smaller flowers or even weaker levels of THC. Even experienced at-home cultivators may struggle with the process.
If you have the patience and the resources, attempt cloning these strains. Otherwise, you may want to wait until you have more experience first.
Remember to start with quality seeds, and don't overwater them. Improve your odds of successful cloning with the right resources and setup.