Mother plants are every grower’s pride because they can duplicate various strains. From these plants, a grower can get plants having excellent traits like those of the original plant. Luckily, with the introduction of auto-flowering and feminized pot seeds, it’s possible to get stable and reliable seeds throughout the year.
There’s no doubt that mother plants have a lot of benefits. However, some growers don’t know how to choose the best mother plants. This article tells you why you need a mother plant and how to select one.
Reasons Why You Need A Mother Plant
After acquiring knowledge about cannabis cultivation and purchasing seeds from Homegrown Cannabis Co, you need to get a mother plant and begin cloning.
Here are the reasons why you need mother plants:
Quality marijuana seeds are expensive, and unless you want to grow them for seed production, you need to avoid buying them every time you start growing. Mother plants can help you achieve this.
They Speed Up The Growth Process
Marijuana grown from clones grow quickly than those produced from seeds. That’s because you don’t need to germinate seeds and wait for them to become mature.
They Give Quality Plants
It’s easy to get the best strains of marijuana from cannabis. That’s because once you identify a plant with a great phenotype, you can use it as a mother plant to develop genetically identical offspring.
The only disadvantage of using this process is that you can’t know if a plant is female or has great qualities until it has flowered. Reverting it to the vegetative stage may stress the plant. That’s why you need to know how to select the perfect mother plant.
How To Select A Mother Plant
Use Regular Seeds
Though most growers prefer using feminized seeds because they’re easier to grow, experts advise that you select your mother plants from regular seeds. Using feminized seeds as mother plants may lead to hermaphroditism. Mother plants require a long period in the vegetative stage and should be regularly pruned. That gives the plant a lot of stress that may trigger some feminized strains to produce male flowers.
It would help if you preserved mother plants that you’ve bred on your own. Most growers suggest using F1 hybrids. These plants have the best traits of both parents and can make a strong set of genetics. Apart from that, F1 hybrids also grow faster than regular seedlings.
Alternatively, you can also work with F2 hybrids. However, getting this strain may take a lot of time. It’s suitable for hobby growers who desire to do a simple breeding experiment. If you don’t have F1 hybrids, you can work with regular seeds. But, you have to study them more to come up with the best plants. Apart from that, you may also need to ensure that they grow in favorable conditions to prevent them from becoming males.
Filter Out The Males
Regardless of whether you’re working with regular seeds or F1 seeds that you bought online, the procedure of selecting a mother plant is similar. First, you have to cultivate your seeds, then harvest cuttings from your plant before they flower. It would help if you harvested cuttings during the third week of the vegetative stage. That’s because clones from these cuttings have the same age as their donors. Therefore, if they were almost flowering, they’ll continue with the process.
After making your cuts, you need to label them correctly and note the donors they’ve come from. After doing this, continue growing them under the vegetative growth light cycle. Most growers prefer 18/6. Apart from that, it would be best if you also continued flowering your donors. Ensure you do this in a separate growth space. As they grow, look at each plant attentively and eliminate any males as quickly as you can. As you do this, dispose of their corresponding clones to ensure they don’t pollinate the females.
Select Plants With Unique Characteristics
Once the donors reach the flowering stage, check the ones that have unique characteristics. There are no restrictions on selecting mother plants from donors, but you need to look at some qualities such as:
Growers look for different physical traits in their mother plants. Some indoor growers prefer smaller plants that are manageable, while others like growing big plants. Apart from this, consider other qualities like color and internodal spacing.
Because mother plants are the origin of other plants, they need to be robust plants that grow properly. A very vigorous mother can give cuttings for several years. Therefore, this is a factor you need to consider. To get vigorous plants, you need to carefully look at your plants in the vegetative phase and select the ones that appear the healthiest.
Every grower desires to get a bountiful harvest from their plants though some prefer quality instead of quantity. Whatever side of the wall you are on, ensure you closely monitor your donor plants during the flowering phase. Before harvesting them, you’ll notice some plants that give more yields than others.
Weed users love the smell of different plant strains. That’s why you need to pay attention to the aromas of every donor plant and pick the ones that have the most appealing smell. On the other hand, if you’re looking for strains that don’t attract too much attention, you can select the ones with less odor.
Potency And Flavor
To get plants with the best flavor, you may have to wait until harvest time to test them and select the winner. Potency and flavor are vital for both consumers and growers. Therefore, at harvest time, ensure you take your time to sample every donor plant based on their flavor and potency and filter through the cuttings till you have plants that are 100% perfect.
Mother plants are the origin of cannabis plants with excellent traits. Knowing how to select the best ones is important though it depends on your preference as a consumer or grower. However, the plants’ unique characteristics, filtering out the males using F1 hybrids and regular seeds, can help you develop the perfect mother plants.