Cannabis Clones in South Africa
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What is a cannabis “clone?” What are the advantages of taking cannabis/marijuana/dagga clones?
Cloning is one of the easiest and fastest ways for cannabis growers to make many new (and basically free) cannabis plants at once.
The knowledge and ability to make cannabis clones is an added bonus for any successful grower. Cloning is a reliable way to have a better harvest and yield without risking certain important factors such as potency.
As long as you know which of your plants are the healthiest and most successful, as well as which are males and females, you will be able to clone correctly. Did you know that one mother plant can easliy produce over 50 clones per week?
You might even have a specific favorite plant already, which will make the decision process quite easy when it comes to cloning. Cloning is about as close to a guarantee as you can get in the medical cannabis growing business, so proceed with confidence because it has a very high success rate.
There are two ways that you can go about breeding cannabis. The first is through sexual reproduction, where you cross a male plant with a female through pollination in order to create seeds. Those seeds can then be planted to create genetic hybrids of the two parent plants.
The second method is through cloning, otherwise known as asexual reproduction. Clones are rooted cuttings that are genetically identical to the plant they were taken from. There are many benefits to cloning that contribute to its popularity among both commercial and home growers. If executed properly, not only can cloning your cannabis be cost-saving, it has the potential to offer your garden a whole new level of stability and sustainability.
Through cloning, you can create a new harvest with exact replicas of your best performing plants. Because the genetics are identical, you’re getting a plant with the same characteristics, so if you come across a bud you really, really like, you might want to clone the plant it came from so you can produce more buds with the same effects. Consider taking clones from your garden if you are looking to select and replicate plants with desirable features such as flavor, cannabinoid profile, yield, grow time, etc.
What Supplies Do I Need for Cloning?
Cloning cannabis is the process of making a smaller copy a specific cannabis plant. Basically a clone is a little piece of plant that has been cut off (a “cutting”) from a parent plant and then given the opportunity to make roots of its own.
What’s Great About Growing Cannabis Clones?
- a clone is an exact copy of a specific cannabis plant, which means clones share the same genes and will grow very similarly to each other and their mother plant
- you know a lot about a cannabis clone already, since you know what their parent plant was like. While there’s a lot of variation between plants grown from seed, even if they’re the same strain, with clones you’ll have inside information on how the clone will grow, what yields to expect, and the bud potency (plus other characteristics that can vary in a strain like bud color, smell, etc)
- you can easily take many clones at once from a single cannabis plant, for dozens of brand new plants that will be available in about a week
- low cost – besides cloning supplies (which can be as simple as scissors and a glass of water), making clones is basically free
- you can take clone at most points of a cannabis plant’s life – although clones may root a little faster in the vegetative stage, you can take clones up until 2-3 weeks before harvest in order to save your favorite plant for the next grow (though make sure to pinch off any buds and expect some weird looking growth for the first week or two on cannabis clones taken from flowering plants)
- clones get a head-start compared to seedlings – Unlike a seedling, each clone is the same “age” as the parent and therefore is completely mature. As a result clones grow much faster for the first few weeks compared to seed-grown plants, especially for a larger clone. A newly rooted clone will grow faster than a similarly sized plant grown from seed!
Preparing your mother plants for cutting will require a few steps:
- Make sure you withhold from fertilizing your plant within the days leading up to taking your cuttings. This will allow the nitrogen to work its way out of the leaves of your plant. When you take cuttings, an excess of nitrogen in the leaves and stems will trick your clones into attempting to grow vegetation instead of diverting energy to rooting.
- Work in a sterile environment. Do everything you can to avoid over-agitation of both your mother plants and new cuttings.
- Look for lower branches that are sturdy and healthy. If you are transplanting into rockwool, match the stem with the rooting hole of your cubes to get a proper fit. Otherwise, look to take cuttings between 8-10 inches with several nodes present.
- Cut as close to the main stem as possible with your razor at a 45 degree angle to the branch. This will increase the surface area of your rooting space, promoting faster growth.
- Place your fresh cutting immediately into water to prevent air bubbles from forming in the stem. Bubbles will prevent water from absorbing into your stem and can kill a new clone. Many growers choose to make additional incisions in the stem before this step, arguing that it helps increase rooting potential. Take this time to do that before transferring your cuttings to water.
When it comes to rooting mediums, there are three predominant schools of thought:
- Use rockwool cubes or a non-soil equivalent. Rockwell provides a great environment for clone rooting due to its terrific airflow and moisture retention. You can find these cubes at most any grow store or online.
- Transport your clone into soil. When using soil, don’t choose one with an abundance of nutrients, and make sure you don’t over or underwater your soil when attempting to root your clones.
- Root in water. Water cloning requires no use of rooting hormones or mediums. You just drop your cutting in water and keep it there until roots and new growth begin to develop.
You will know when your roots are ready to be transplanted when you start to see new vegetative growth on your clones. At this point, you may need to consider transplanting your clones to larger containers. This process will require the same care and sanitation that cloning consisted of, as you do not want to further agitate a plant into transplant shock. Transplant shock is common when cloning, so make sure you take the time to stay sanitary and do not overexert your plants during the process.
Facilitating a successful cloning regiment can do wonders for you cannabis garden by saving you time and money and ensuring a consistent crop and reproducible plant material. You don’t need much to get started, and if done correctly, you can ensure an indefinite perpetual harvest that will produce the most desirable plants for you all year-round.
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