MILC (or “Mother I’d Like to Clone) choice is a key element for successful cloning. Choosing a poor mother plant will kill you chances of success before you even plug in your aeroponic system.

When MILC hunting, there are several characteristics that separate an attractive mother plant from the rest. Because her sole purpose is to provide cuttings, she should remain in a vegetative state and never flower. And you, her dutiful owner, should treat her with the utmost care and never, ever neglect your MILC (as some certainly do) by sticking her in a corner. As the commandments note – mind you, this is just an observation€“ we should €œhonor thy mother.€

Several factors should be considered before committing to a MILC, as you’ll want replicas that everyone else will want a piece of:

Age: At least two months old, the plant should be mature enough to provide clippings that will grow roots evenly and quickly. Clippings taken from plants younger than two months old may take longer to develop.

Body: Your MILC should have good posture, be healthier than most and be a size that’s conducive to its environmental surroundings. In other words, if she can grow to the ceiling, by all means let her grow. And if she has a limited space to thrive, let her bush out keep her top trimmed.

Health: Because clones are exact copies of their mother, any diseases or defects will be passed on through the cloning process. As a rule, you always want a clean, pest- and disease-resistant MILC.

Smell/Taste: She should exhibit flavors and aromas you find pleasing, because if you like them, chances are others will too.

As a recap, treat your MILC as you would your own mother — don’t kill or neglect her! Pick one that resembles what you like most in a plant, because your mother will only clone plants with qualities it already possesses.

Many of these desireable traits are based on personal preference so do what’s right for you, and as always, keep it green and growing!