It is July 18 and I have just finished doing some maintenance in my backyard 120 Plant NFT Hydroponic system. I was pruning the lower branches off of some plants. I do this because the lower branches do not produce many chiles and this also encourages the plant to grow taller and larger. So what do I do with all these branches I cut off?? Well last year I just threw them away. Now I clone them into new plants! Here is one of the Naga Morich cuttings I start with.
Cloning is a way to make more plants out of a few plants. And it's fun too! Now that I have an Aeroponic Hydro Propagator from Greenhouse Sensation U.K. I can really clone. But don't let not having this equipment stop you. Because you can always clone in soil or even in Rockwool. So lets start at the beginning. This next pic is a group of Naga Morich cuttings. Notice ends of stems have diagonal cuts. Use a sharp knife or razor blade knife to do this first step. Notice also that some leaves on plant cutting have sections cut out of them. This allows more energy to go to root development instead of sustaining lots of leaves.
The next step is to dip the end of the cutting into a rooting powder or cloning root stimulant gel like "Clonex". Gels stay on better so thats what I use. Pic below shows cutting with cloning gel on it.
Now I gently place cutting in foam holder which holds it in place so Aeroponic spray can mist it to encourage root growth. This foam holder will go into plastic net pot which will then be placed into system. Now if you clone in soil or rockwool make small hole in center or dirt or rockwool. Then try and place end of cutting into that hole without removing root gel. Once cutting is in place press soil or rockwool gently around cutting and keep it moist.
This next pic is a group of Trinidad Scorpion cuttings ready to go into system.
And finally we place prepared cutting into Aeroponic Propagator. This evening we set up 12 Naga Morich plants, 16 Trinindad Scorpion plants, 1o Red Dominica Habanero plants and 4 Bhut Jolokia plants. Will post pics to a later blog so you can see the cuttings develop their new roots!