Are all cuttings cut equal?

Track

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I've been wondering about my cloning methods.

What I do is lollipop my plants and use what I trimmed as cuttings.

However, lately, I just can't catch a break. My cuttings just won't root even though I keep them moist and I have a heating mat.

So, I was wondering if maybe I'm taking the cuttings from the wrong part of the plant.

About a month ago, I accidentally damaged a large stem going all the way up to the top of the plant and had to remove it. Instead, I used its leaves as cuttings and I had great success with that (6/7 rooted in 5 days).

It could also be that the plants were flowering about 2 weeks when I took my current cuttings.. though I don't think that's the reason because the batch before that did equally poorly.

If the reason is truly that cuttings from the bottom won't work, then it means that you have to literally sacrifice a bit of your plant for a healthy clone.

Question is - are my cuttings inferior and if so, CAN they even root? Are they just incapable of rooting? If not, what can I do? I'm already doing the max I can. I even have a heating mat..

Thanks.
 

Hackerman

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Any cutting will root.

I have always heard that it is best to take cuttings from the bottom of the plant. I don't know why and I have not found a difference between cuts I take from the top and cuts I take from the bottom. But, that is what I remember.

If a cutting doesn't root, it's usually environmental.
 

MR1

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Cuttings from the bottom of the plant are supposed to be better because there is less nitrogen in the bottom leaves.
 

Track

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Any cutting will root.

I have always heard that it is best to take cuttings from the bottom of the plant. I don't know why and I have not found a difference between cuts I take from the top and cuts I take from the bottom. But, that is what I remember.

If a cutting doesn't root, it's usually environmental.
Well, what could I do better?

I keep them moist, in a humidity dome, with a heating pad.

Also, when I say bottom of the plant, I mean what people refer to as popcorn buds. Like little tiny leaves that look kind of premature.

Though, I do have some 7-leaf cuttings that aren't doing any better either.

The oddest thing is that all the cuttings are always 100% healthy. I did have one rot on me in just 4 days even though its cube was somewhat dry (very weird), but it's as if they're happy enough without roots that they don't need them..
 
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I am having problems with clones, too, track. I seem to be doing everything right, I had great cloning success for years and years. I know that it must be some little thing I am doing wrong, but for the life of me, I don't know what. Hang in there and keep trying. Cuts from the bottom should root faster and easier.
 

Track

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I am having problems with clones, too, track. I seem to be doing everything right, I had great cloning success for years and years. I know that it must be some little thing I am doing wrong, but for the life of me, I don't know what. Hang in there and keep trying. Cuts from the bottom should root faster and easier.
I just came back from moistening the Root Riot cubes.. no roots.

I'm not sure what to do with the Rockwool cubes. The RR cubes are either moist or dry.. the Rockwool cubes appear to always be somewhat moist regardless of anything I do. This is why I hate Rockwool cubes.

If you can't figure out what the issue is, what chance do I have? Darn..

This whole time, it was like I was missing the catalyst - the thing that will tell the cuttings to root. I thought it would be the heating mats.. it's not.

And yet, sometimes, I get roots in 3 days. Or, at least I did, twice.

Maybe I should increase the light? I had two 20w CFLs in there and I was told it was too much so I went back to one 20w CFL.

EDIT: I just threw away 1/4 of my cuttings because they had stem rot or a big chunk of mold on the top.. is it because I kept the humidity dome on 24/7?
 

kaotik

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i suspect that it's the babying.. if you have another tray and dome you could use (grocery store cake ones work brilliant ;) ) take a couple cuttings, and leave em alone in the corner of your area.. don't even look for a week.
no misting, no heat mat

i bet it does better..


also do you cut fan leaves in half? and what is your rooting solution?
i had mediocre success untill i lost the heat mat, stopped misting, and cut leaves in half.

wish i could help, as i'm an average (at best) grower, but i bloody rock clones, don't remember the last one i lost.
now i am different in i use peat pucks. admittedly no experience with root riot cubes.

here's my routine, maybe something will jump out at you:
i cut 45* (with sharp clean scissors only used for cloning)
then i carefully peel back the lowest node (exposing more rooting area)
dip in cup of water, then my rooting hormone, then into the peat puck
-my peat puck i soak well ahead of time, and let sit for an hour or two.. even squeeze a bit of moisture out if they're still soaked (want em moist/wet, but not soggy) i usually make a better hole with a toothpick too.
then under the dome, and left alone till it roots (i do usually add clones as i go, and will admit the added moisture of them likely helps. but i still have success when not adding more)


i dunno, wish i could help more.. i do lean to the heat mat and misting being the problem ..you say their healthy..well maybe that's just it.. they're too comfortable and lazy to bother shooting roots :D (in layman thinking ;))
 

Hackerman

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I never liked the Jiffy-Peats (If that's what you mean by peat pucks). I always thought peat was too sweet for pot.

Heating mats are very touchy. Too much can definitely fry the roots.

I don't leave my dome on 24/7. I remove it and mist the plants and leave the dome off for at least a few hours, sometimes longer. It stays on all night, for sure.

I never had any luck with rockwool. I could never find that happy medium between wet and dry.
 

Rosebud

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Here is my set up...I mist maybe the first couple days. The are not under any direct light. You see no heating mat, you see no cover and I live in no humidity land. They are cut and recut under water, while keeping the water bubble on the plant i set it in the clonex and put it on up to the first set of leaves. I use seed starter with no nutes, well watered and drained before i add the cutting. That is it. In roses the average is 50 % success. I usually take three if I want 2. Sometimes i get all three... I guess my average would be 80 % success.
View attachment DSCF3221.jpg

View attachment DSCF3222.jpg I didn't realize how color co-ordinated my closet is...
 
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Ditch the heating mat, the dome, stop misting, and make sure they are under a single weak light, like a 26w cfl. Light that is too intense will inhibit root growth.
Things to do :
Cut the clone on a 45 degree angle with freshly sharpened scissors, the sharper the better. Then use one of the scissor blades to rough up the stem along the lower part where it will go into your medium. Dip the bottom in rooting hormone and insert into your medium. The medium should be moist but not soaking wet. Then put them under the single cfl and don't mess with them for 3-5 days. When you do check on them don't do anything other than making sure the medium is moist. Misting them and keeping them in a dome on a heating mat is most likely where your problems are. Jmo
 

Track

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i suspect that it's the babying.. if you have another tray and dome you could use (grocery store cake ones work brilliant ;) ) take a couple cuttings, and leave em alone in the corner of your area.. don't even look for a week.
no misting, no heat mat
Well, I have the cuttings in three different humidity domes, so that can't be it.

As for the heating mat - I only recently started using it, so I doubt it's that. Besides, I thought heat was the most important element.

I haven't misted in over a week.


also do you cut fan leaves in half?
Yup.

and what is your rooting solution?
Clonex.

i had mediocre success untill i lost the heat mat, stopped misting, and cut leaves in half.
I've had hit-or-miss success for the entire duration and I'm still confused about the heating mat.. everyone says warmth is crucial.


here's my routine, maybe something will jump out at you
Yeah, my routine is almost identical.
I cut 45-degrees (though, again, I haven't seen any results from doing it vs. not doing it), I shave off the edges with a scalpel and cut the stem at the bottom to allow more surface area inside the stem. Then I dip in Clonex and stick into cubes which I soaked and then half squeezes so that they're wet but not soaking wet. I re-soak the cubes every day or two, whenever they feel too dry, which is quite often even with the humidity dome on 24/7.

The only thing I do that I'm not sure about is - I take all the stems and place them on a big tray. Then, after about 10 minutes, I cut them into individual cuttings. Maybe those 10 minutes screw something up, even though I don't cut the actual cuttings until right before.

Heating mats are very touchy. Too much can definitely fry the roots.

I don't leave my dome on 24/7. I remove it and mist the plants and leave the dome off for at least a few hours, sometimes longer. It stays on all night, for sure.

I never had any luck with rockwool. I could never find that happy medium between wet and dry.
Well, I don't know if it's too hot. I'll place something between and see if that helps. How do I tell if it's too hot? What's the surface temp supposed to be? I have an infra heat reader, so I can check.

I leave the dome cracked a tiny bit, usually, 24/7. If there's a moderate amount of condensation, I'm happy. If it's too much, I shake it off and leave it off for 15 minutes.
Guess it didn't help much with the mold..

My rockwool feels like it's completely wet 24/7 without any misting. It's simply odd. I also don't like rockwool because it's harder to spot roots since it's a light color.

Here is my set up...I mist maybe the first couple days. The are not under any direct light. You see no heating mat, you see no cover and I live in no humidity land. They are cut and recut under water, while keeping the water bubble on the plant i set it in the clonex and put it on up to the first set of leaves. I use seed starter with no nutes, well watered and drained before i add the cutting. That is it. In roses the average is 50 % success. I usually take three if I want 2. Sometimes i get all three... I guess my average would be 80 % success.
The only difference, it seems, is that I don't use water prior to Clonex.

Though, the two times I had good clones I didn't use water either..

I honestly can't account for the difference during those two times.

Ditch the heating mat, the dome, stop misting, and make sure they are under a single weak light, like a 26w cfl. Light that is too intense will inhibit root growth.
I have 20w CFLs in a 60x60cm area with now 25 cuttings. Should I keep it at 20w or increase it to 40w?

Also, there is a small bit of light bleed from my 600w HPS (currently at 50% so 300w of light). It's a very small amount, though. They're basically in darkness without the 20w CFL.. though, not quite.

Things to do :
Cut the clone on a 45 degree angle with freshly sharpened scissors, the sharper the better. Then use one of the scissor blades to rough up the stem along the lower part where it will go into your medium. Dip the bottom in rooting hormone and insert into your medium. The medium should be moist but not soaking wet. Then put them under the single cfl and don't mess with them for 3-5 days. When you do check on them don't do anything other than making sure the medium is moist. Misting them and keeping them in a dome on a heating mat is most likely where your problems are. Jmo
This is precisely what I do to a tee, besides the humidity dome.

I'm assuming it's the reason for the mold, or perhaps it's the fact that it already started flowering (?), but should I really do away with it altogether?

I suppose what I'm asking is - if the cuttings aren't wilting, I don't need the dome?
 
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Yes if the cuttings are not wilting then there is no reason for a dome. The dome and the misting are causing your rot /mold problems. As for light, 20w should be fine and as long as they are not in the direct light of the HPS you should be good.
 

Track

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Yes if the cuttings are not wilting then there is no reason for a dome. The dome and the misting are causing your rot /mold problems. As for light, 20w should be fine and as long as they are not in the direct light of the HPS you should be good.
About two hours after I took the domes off, they started wilting. I watered the cubes.. we'll see if they survive.

Perhaps they were retaining so much water from the humidity that they simply didn't need roots?
 
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I wonder if your blade/scissors are not sharp enough? If you cut wrong and get an embolism they are doomed. I notice that when I let my clippers get a bit dull and try and take clones they wilt and fall over. When I make them really sharp my results are the opposite.
 

kaotik

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i DO use a dome myself.

whats with the watering of the cubes though? is this a common practice with them? -i've never used them, so have no experience. but that sounds like it would be my suspect for your problem.. daily?!? are they that dry?
sounds like you do quite a few clones, so if adding them every few days (like i do) it shouldn't dry out in there.. if you'd leave the dome on.


and it is best to clone ASAP IMO and not leave sitting around for a bit.. but you're not the first to do this, and they are doable.. i've found them already starting to wilt a bit in the past though (i do this OD sometimes)
 

Rosebud

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You can get an air bubble in the stem. That is why i cut again under water and leave the drop on the stem...I learned that from cloning roses. The water i use is almost hot. Another rose thing. YOu can do that with roses that are wilted. Cut them and put them in the hottest water you have, most times they will revive, if not old roses.. Sorry, a little stoned.
 

Track

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I wonder if your blade/scissors are not sharp enough? If you cut wrong and get an embolism they are doomed. I notice that when I let my clippers get a bit dull and try and take clones they wilt and fall over. When I make them really sharp my results are the opposite.
No, I was using the scalpel that came with the kit. Brand new.

i DO use a dome myself.

whats with the watering of the cubes though? is this a common practice with them? -i've never used them, so have no experience. but that sounds like it would be my suspect for your problem.. daily?!? are they that dry?
sounds like you do quite a few clones, so if adding them every few days (like i do) it shouldn't dry out in there.. if you'd leave the dome on.
I left the dome off overnight and I think I killed a few. The cubes had dried to the extent that the leaves are now hard.

I put two of the domes back. The third one.. the cuttings didn't fall over overnight. Maybe they have rooted but it's not yet visible on the outside of the Rockwool cube?

This is why I prefer aeroponic cloners - you get to see the roots as soon as they come out.

You can get an air bubble in the stem. That is why i cut again under water and leave the drop on the stem...I learned that from cloning roses. The water i use is almost hot. Another rose thing. YOu can do that with roses that are wilted. Cut them and put them in the hottest water you have, most times they will revive, if not old roses.. Sorry, a little stoned.
Alright, I will definitely use water next time.
 

Track

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Well, it seems the cuttings in the Root Riot cubes did not make it.

Watering it and putting back the dome only caused more mold.

The rockwool is all I have left. Sigh.
 

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