Propagating cuttings and taking clones from your donor or mother plant is not only a rewarding experience, but an excellent way to preserve your crop and replicate your best producer. Concentrating on one certain plant that exhibits the most profound and desired genetic traits is an excellent way to insure a bountiful harvest of a preferred variety.
Once you have mastered the taking of a cutting and have successfully propagated a clone, it’s time to transplant it into its new home, most likely a container of some sort. When considering container gardening for your potted plants, it’s important to acknowledge the desired goal for the outcome of the plant. Many cuttings are produced for retail. A cutting destine for a retail shelf life â hopefully for a limited amount of time â is best suited for an inexpensive, disposable, and versatile container. Disposable drinking cups, such as the infamous red solo cup, work well. They allow for easy drainage, are available almost anywhere in bulk, and are quite suitable for a variety of mediums and propagation techniques.
If you are taking cuttings for your personal garden, consider how many times you will be transplanting your plants and how many containers you will be using. When growing indoors with containers, it is best to limit the amount of transplants that a plant will go through. During the transition from one container to another, your cutting or plant will endure a great deal of stress. This excess stress can stunt and potentially kill your cutting or plant. Limiting the stress on your plant is best achieved by limiting the number of containers or homes for your plants. If you know your cuttings is going to end up in a 7 gallon pot or container and you have the room and ability to transplant directly into that pot, then do so. This will allow for the best and fullest root structure, as it will not be disturbed by multiple transitions. If you are tight on space and unable to maintain your plants in a 7 gallon container throughout all stages of growth, then try and reduce the amount of time you will be transplanting.
Decorative containers improve my garden! While there may not be any scientific proof to this, positive energy can never hurt. If a decorative container makes you smile, then your plants will absorb that energy! Typical pots for indoor gardening include the ever-so-common plastic container pot. These pots can be purchased or created from a variety of household goods, like buckets. Plastic is a great material that is impenetrable by roots and holds in moisture quite well. Available in many shapes, sizes, colors and styles, plastic pots provide a great home for your growing plants. Another common pot is the terracotta pot. These clay based containers provide a classic look and feel to any garden. Terracotta is great for a wide variety of plants. Terracotta pots can be highly decorative and great for gifts.
The last containers we are going to discuss are the cloth pot and other aerating containers. These unique containers allow for air pruning to naturally occur. As roots lengthen and seek out moisture, they will hit the side of the container and begin circulating the container which can eventually lead to a root bound plant. A root bound plant is a plant that has out grown its current container and is in desperate need of transplanting. To help prevent against your plants from getting root bound, these aerating containers expose root tips to oxygen. This exposure air prunes the roots. Air pruning halts the growth of the root from lengthening and redirects the energy into producing secondary or lateral root growth. Cloth pots also allow your medium to dry out faster. The faster your medium dries out the sooner you can replenish with fresh nutrients. More feedings usually lead to bigger plants and in this case, bigger is better!