Do I Grow From Seeds or Clones? Find out Which is Best For You
Do I grow from seeds or clones?
As a cannabis grower, one of the first decisions is whether to grow our plants from seeds or clones. Both cannabis seeds and clones have advantages and disadvantages. The best way to see which you prefer is to try both. Seeds take more time, while clones can be more sensitive at the beginning of the growing process after being transplanted.
Pros of Growing From Clones
- When growing from clones, the growing cycle is shortened by about a month.
- Guaranteed plant sex, strain, yield and potency. With a clone you are getting an exact genetic replica of the mother plant.
- Clones can be grown into a “mother plant” quickly, and then re-cloned, for a constant source of new plants.
Pros of Growing From Seeds
- A clone is an exact genetic image of the mother plant, It carries the same genetic strengths and weaknesses of that mother plant, like disease and susceptibility to pests.
- Clones, and particularly certain strains of cannabis, may not be readily available in your area. Seeds are more readily available.
- Yields from plants grown by seeds are greater than yields from a clone, when grown under identical conditions.
- Seeds create deeper and more hearty tap root systems that are necessary for outdoor grows, ensuring stability in wind and weather.
- Newly planted clones are more sensitive to light and nutrients after transplanting versus young plants which have been grown from seeds.
“Clones shorten the entire growing cycle by a month or more.”
A little more about clones…
A clone is a cutting from a mature cannabis plant which can be replanted and raised to produce buds. A clone is the exact genetic image of the mother plant. Cloning is convenient and allows growers to keep desirable phenotypic traits alive. Unfortunately, cloning can perpetuate any virus or disease the mother plant has. Cannabis plants are considered an “annual” plant and have not naturally adapted to live for more than one season.
Desirable traits such as potency and aroma may become weaker after several generations. Many medical marijuana dispensaries sell clones as a service to their patients. There are advantages to this. You know what strain it is, and what you can expect for yield and strength. Clones shorten the entire growing cycle by a month or more.Cannabis plants grown from seed produce a tap root, while cloned plants produce a fibrous root system only. A tap root is necessary for outdoor growth – anchoring the plant down for better support in any weather condition. The strength of the tap root system of cannabis plants gronw from seeds ensures stability in wind and weather. Tap roots are capable of driving downward to great depths in search of water and nutrients. Clones are rarely used for outdoor grows, as their root system is not as vertical and hardy.
A little more about seeds…
There are three common types of cannabis seeds: Regular Seeds, Feminized Seeds, and Autoflowering Seeds.
It is safe to assume that 50% of regular seeds will end up female. Male plants must be removed from a grow space so female plants produce flowers to harvest.
Feminized Cannabis Seeds:
Feminized seeds are seeds bred to eliminate male chromosomes and only produce female strains. By modifying the genetic makeup, every seed can produce a female plant which will produce flowers to harvest.
Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds:
Autoflowering cannabis species are Indica or Sativa plants which have been crossbred with Ruderalis. These varieties automatically switch from vegetative growth to the flowering stage with age and require no change in light to dark ratios. Whereas non-autoflowering varieties require a change in light to dark hours to trigger flowering.
Many autoflowering plants will be ready to harvest in less than 10 weeks from seed. This type of a seed is often used outdoors, where the light ratio is harder to control.
“The strength of the tap root systems of cannabis plants grown from seeds ensures stability in wind and weather.”