Cutting is the most commonly used technique for cloning plants in hydroponic systems. Plants cloning perhaps sound like terribly scary task, but it is actually a very simple method of obtaining a wide variety of plants without the use of seeds. For high yielding hydroponics, gardeners prefer to use cutting method of cloning plants. When cloning, make sure that the mother plant is healthy because any infections on the source of plant will likely be passed to the new plants. Cut the stem off at a 45-degree angle with a sterile, clean razor so that no damage occurs to the plants. At this point you need to work quickly to get the cutting into the cup of rooting solution. Let your cutting soak in the hormone solution for a minute. You should use a good quality gel, liquid or powered rooting hormone for your plants.
The clone should then be placed into the growing medium that will hold the cutting in place and provide it with a substrate for rooting. You need to soak the growing medium in a rooting solution that has 5.5 pH levels and leave it overnight in the solution. You can use any sterile growing medium such as rockwool, vermiculite or sand. Among them rockwool cubes or plugs are the most commonly used propagation media. Coconut fiber pots are also popular and hold their shape nicely. Clone should always be placed about 1/2 inch deep in the growing medium. Remember that, the excess water in the growing medium can be harmful to the clone’s growth. The growing medium should always be moist but not wet. You need to take proper care of your clone as it grows. Try to place them on a heating pad of about 70 to 80 degrees to accelerate the plants growth.
Once you have placed your cuttings in the growing medium properly, mist them with the water spray and place your cuttings in the tray. Proper supply of light and humidity is very essential for plants healthy growth. Cover the plants with a plastic dome to conserve humidity. Remove the dome for 2 to 3 times a day to spray the cuttings. This will keep your cuttings from drying out and also change the air level under the dome. Clones always require adequate light for proper growth. You need to expose your plant to natural or artificial sunlight for up to 18 hours per day. Keep the hydroponic clones in a well-ventilated, cool location with temperatures around 72-80 degrees F. Too hot or too cold will stall root growth. Try to keep the humidity level around 90% until roots appear on the cuttings. You can use a hygrometer to keep tabs on the temperature and humidity level. Usually, plants take as long as 2 to 4 weeks to root properly. At this stage, you need to remove the humidity dome carefully and move them into your hydroponics system.
Cloning is easy to do. You just need to remember that every step must be done properly. So, if you have a plant that is just what you want it to be, you can take cuttings and have as many perfect clones as you want.