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How to Graft Your Cannabis Plant

Grafting is basically nature’s hack for growing many different strains of marijuana without having to compromise on growing space. This method is for those experienced growers out there who are looking to experiment with their plants and growing multiple strains on one tree, while maintaining the genetic integrity of the strains. Read more to find out about grafting cannabis.

Grafting cannabis, although it is not an extremely popular growing method, is one of the coolest ways to grow marijuana, because it allows you to grow several strains of the same plant, while keeping all the genetics pure. The grafting method itself is quite ancient, and it has been used in history to join two different plants together to be able to grow different fruits or flowers from what is essentially the same stick.

So what are the reasons for grafting cannabis and using cannabis cuttings?

There are real benefits to this growing method, especially if you are keen to try a lot of different strains and don’t have the room to do so. This process allows you to grow a single branch of a strain of bud before committing to growing an entire plant of it. Therefore, grafting is especially valuable when there is a strain that doesn’t have an enormous yield, and you’re looking to use cannabis cuttings to test it out before having an entire plant.

It also pays to use cannabis cuttings if you live in an area where it is illegal to have above a certain number of plants. This gives you the freedom to grow several different strains without having a high count of plants. This is also a desired way to grow for those who don’t have a lot of space, because you can try several different strains while only using the space of a single plant.

Grafting techniques are a lot like cloning

If you’re familiar with cloning techniques, then grafting is going to be relatively easy for you. The techniques for grafting marijuana are a lot like the cloning techniques used with other plants, such as cloning tomatoes. It is quite a delicate process, and your plants will need a lot of attention during this time, so be sure to have everything you need before beginning the grafting process to ensure the most stable environmental conditions.

What you’re going to need:

  • Sharp, clean scissors. Brand new ones are going to work the best for this process
  • A scalpel
  • A small-sized, lightweight, zip lock bag
  • A spray bottle that you’ve filled with a full spectrum vegetative nutrient solution, pH of 6. Having a slightly alkaline solution helps to avoid the problem of damaging your grafts with too much acidity.
  • 110 Watts of fluorescent T5 illumination for lighting. They are nice and soft.
  • A clean surface for cutting onto
  • Grafting tape

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What you’re going to do:

Firstly, make sure that all of your plants are in vegetation. You should use the most sturdy plant as the mother to your grafts. The more branches it has, the more space you are going to have for grafting. It also helps if it is a mother plant that is easy to grow, because you need to be able to see this plant right through to harvest for your project to be successful. Finally, have everything you need ready to go and have a general idea of what you have to do before you begin. This process needs to be done quickly and efficiently in order to achieve the best results. Make sure your branches don’t dry out!

Choose which branches you are going to be grafting first. That means knowing which ones you will remove from your mother plant and which ones you will be donating from other plants. Start at the bottom of the mother plant and work your way up. With your grafting clip, put it about 2 cm from the base of the first branch and secure it. From here you will cut the branch. You can use the branches you cut off as clones for other plants if you choose, or it can simply be composted for your garden. Then use your scalpel to slice the branch straight down the middle about 1.5 cm down the stem. Before and after you make any cuts or incisions to the branches, it is a good idea to spray the spot with your nutrient solution. Don’t leave too large a time frame between spraying the location and actually cutting it.

With your donor plant ready to cut, try to remove as much leafy plant material as possible from the base of the stem that you are going to be attaching to the mother plant. When you are cutting it, cut it from both sides so that you form a sharp point that is about 1.5 cm long. This is as long as the incision you made in the mother plant. Work quickly here so that neither of your plants dry out in the interim. Remember to keep spraying your plants! It also helps if you spray the scalpel and scissors before making incisions. Carefully put your clone cutting with the pointy side in the incision made on the mother plant, and move the grafting clip so that it is securing the two plants in place. For good measure, give your plant another spray.

Now what you are going to do is create a moist, warm, and consistent growing environment for your grafted plant. Spray the nutrient solution inside the zip lock bag and secure it around the branch you just grafted on. Ensure that the bag is not touching any of the branches or plant material. The purpose of this is to retain moisture and heat, therefore creating humidity. So the bag does not have to be entirely sealed, just enough to create this kind of microclimate. Remove the bag every day and reapply the spray before putting it back on, again ensuring that the bag doesn’t touch any of the leaves.

It will take about two weeks for the plant to form a knuckle where the two branches have been joined. This means you have been successful at using cannabis cuttings and grafting them onto a mother plant. This will not have any effect on the genetics of the other plant, and both will continue to grow with their own individual characteristics. You can repeat this process with as many grafts as you can successfully get onto your plant!

Knowing which strains to graft together

As a main rule of thumb, choose strains that have a similar flowering time to each other. Just like with growing any strain of marijuana, to flush the plant of nutrients with pure water is essential. In order to ensure none of the strains you have grafted together experience a nutrient deficiency, it is a good idea to ensure that they have similar flowering times. Otherwise, you will have to flush more than once, and this could potentially cause problems for the plant if they are not flowering at the same time.

There is also the option of choosing a mother plant that doesn’t flower at all, in which case flushing doesn’t really matter. You can do it as many times as necessary. This is also a good idea if you’re looking to have the same mother plant for a long time and it is not necessary for it to have flowering space or time of its own. The entire branch can be used to grow all the different strains you like.

Grafting cannabis is a great way to increase the variety in your grow room. Read this article to find out how to graft your cannabis plant.

How To Graft Cannabis And Grow Multiple Strains On 1 Plant

Grafting is a powerful gardening technique that allows you to grow multiple cannabis strains from a single mother plant. In this article, we’ll show you how it’s done.

Contents:

Grafting is an ancient horticultural practice that allows for multiple plant varieties to grow from one single mother plant. And while it is common among experienced gardeners, grafting isn’t so widespread among cannabis growers. In this article, we show you how you can graft cannabis plants, and essentially, grow multiple strains from a single set of roots.

WHAT IS GRAFTING?

Grafting involves taking the upper part of one plant (known as the scion) and attaching it to another plant (known as the rootstock).

Grafting is an asexual form of propagating plants, meaning the propagated plants will preserve all the characteristics of the plant they were taken from (just like a clone preserves the same characteristics of its mother). At the same time, they’ll usually also take on some of the characteristics of the rootstock.

Gardeners will opt to graft plants that struggle to root properly. By grafting to a plant with a strong root system in place, you’ll be able to preserve the life of the scion, which otherwise may not have survived.

Most woody plants can be grafted. However, the process of grafting is complex, labour-intensive, and usually requires a fair bit of horticultural knowledge. Hence, it’s often reserved for more experienced gardeners.

Grafting as a process can be traced back 4,000 years to ancient China and Mesopotamia. Although it isn’t so popular among cannabis growers, cannabis plants are perfectly suited for grafting.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF GRAFTING CANNABIS?

There are many benefits to grafting cannabis plants. These include:

MORE VARIETY, LESS SPACE

As long as your scions are compatible with your rootstock, you can essentially grow multiple varieties of cannabis from the same plant. This is especially convenient for marijuana gardeners working with limited amounts of space. Instead of packing several plants into a tight grow room, you’re able to grow several strains in a smaller amount of space.

OPTIMISED POLLINATION

Cannabis plants aren’t self-pollinating (unless you happen to grow hermaphrodites). This means that female plants often require a male growing nearby to be pollinated and produce seeds. Unfortunately, not all growers looking to breed their own cannabis strains are able to grow male plants close enough to their females (this can be due to a variety of reasons, but space is usually the main issue). However, by grafting a male scion onto a female plant, these breeders can ensure their female is pollinated properly, even if they’re working with very small amounts of space.

ROOTSTOCK ADVANTAGES

Some plants were almost made to be used as rootstocks. As a cannabis grower, you’ll occasionally stumble upon a phenotype that quickly develops strong roots and seems ultra-resistant to disease/mould, drought, or even pest infestations. These kinds of plants make ideal rootstocks. If you happen to grow a pheno with these characteristics, consider using it as a base for growing other, more fragile strains. Remember, your scion will still preserve the characteristics of the original plant it came from, but it’ll also take on some of the characteristics of the rootstock, too.

PERPETUATE CLONES

Cloning cannabis has all kinds of benefits. Unfortunately, cloning puts your plants under all kinds of stress, and not all phenotypes will handle that stress equally well. While some of your plants might produce great clones, others might struggle to root and will never quite recover from the stress of cloning. Others still might simply be too fragile to endure the cloning process altogether. This is where grafting really shines. Try taking scions from these hard-to-clone varieties and propagating them off a particularly strong rootstock. You’ll likely find that, with a particularly strong rootstock, your clones will have what it takes to propagate and thrive.

REPAIR DAMAGED ROOTS

If you grow outdoors, chances are you’ve had to deal with tough growing conditions at some point or another. Storms, strong winds, harsh rains, or pest infestations can damage your plants, especially just above the soil line. Luckily, a great way to help plants recover from this kind of damage is to plant seedlings around the roots of the plant and then graft them onto the older plant, just above its injuries.

TEST NEW STRAINS

One of the big benefits of grafting cannabis is that it allows you to grow multiple strains from a single tree. This comes in handy when you’re looking to experiment with new strains that you’re not completely familiar with. Rather than committing to growing an entire plant of a new strain, you can simply take a clone or seedling and graft it onto a rootstock. From there, you can let the strain grow out until harvest time and test it before you decide whether to add it to your garden for good. Again, this is really beneficial for growers working with limited amounts of space.

HOW TO GRAFT CANNABIS

Grafting is usually left to experienced gardeners. However, there is no reason new growers can’t try grafting at home and see great results. In fact, if you’ve ever tried to clone cannabis (or any other plant for that matter), you should have no problem with grafting, as the processes are quite similar.

Here’s how to graft cannabis at home. Make sure to read these instructions through a few times before getting started. Grafting is a delicate process and you’ll want to make sure you know exactly what you’re doing before you get started.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • Scalpel/razor blade
  • Gardening shears
  • Grafting or plumber’s tape
  • Plastic bags with a seal (extra large ziplock bags work good)
  • Gardening wire
  • Glass of water
  • A clean cutting board
  • A spray bottle containing a (pH 6) vegetative nutrient solution

CANNABIS GRAFTING METHOD: WHIP GRAFTING

The Whip Grafting method is arguably the most popular method for grafting cannabis plants as it’s simpler and takes less time. Here’s how it works:

  1. Start by selecting a scion from a healthy cannabis plant, as well as a spot on a healthy rootstock where you plan to grow the new graft. Make sure the width of your scion and the rootstock are similar. This is the first part of ensuring a successful outcome. Make sure to only use vegetative plants for grafting.
  2. Once you’ve selected a scion and compatible part of your rootstock to attach it to, it’s time to prepare both parts of the new limb. Start by removing most of the foliage on your scion, leaving behind only a few leaves at the tip of the limb. Do the same on the rootstock, removing most of the foliage below the grafting site. Don’t cut either your donor or rootstock yet.
  3. Now, it’s time to cut the scion from you donor plant. Start by cutting the branch from the plant with a pair of garden shears. Quickly transfer it to a clean cutting board. Now, take your razor and make a diagonal cut along the base of the scion. The idea here is to create more surface area for the scion and rootstock to bind together properly. Once you’ve made the cut, place the scion into a glass of water while you prepare the rootstock. Make sure to act quickly; the less time your scion is exposed to air, the better.
  4. Now, prepare the rootstock. You should have already removed all the foliage from the graft site. So, take your garden shears and cut the branch slightly above the graft site. Then, take your razor blade or scalpel and make a diagonal cut to match the one on your scion. Remember, you want to make sure the cuts are as identical as possible to ensure your graft is successful. Quickly move on to step 5.

  1. Once you’ve made the cut on your rootstock, you’ll want to move quickly and attach your scion. Take the scion from the glass of water and spray both the cut on the scion and rootstock with some nutrient solution. Next, match up the cuts, paying extra attention to the tissue inside the branch. You want to match up the branches as best as possible to help the two plants bond quickly. If you notice the cuts don’t match, return your scion to the water quickly, adjust the cut on the rootstock, and try attaching them again.
  2. Once you’ve got the scion and rootstock to fit, press them together firmly and tape them together using your grafting/plumber’s tape. Start with a smaller piece of tape to simply hold the branches together. Then, follow up with a larger piece of tape wrapped tightly around the cut multiple times. This will help block out both light and air from the cut and allow the scion and rootstock to bond properly, but it should be removed a couple of days after you noticed the graft has been successful.
  3. Next, take some gardening wire and run it in a criss-cross pattern across the graft site to further strengthen the bond of the scion and rootstock. You’ll want to start running the gardening wire slightly below the cut, then run it a bit above the graft site.
  4. Once your scion and rootstock are tightly bound together, spray some solution inside your plastic bag, put it over the new branch, and close the seal almost completely (make sure to leave it slightly open so the branch can breathe). This is to provide an ideal environment for propagation. Make sure the bag doesn’t come into contact with the leaves you left on the tip of your scion.

CREATING THE PERFECT ENVIRONMENT FOR GRAFTING

As you can imagine, grafting puts your rootstock and scion under a lot of stress. After all, it’s not exactly a “natural” way of propagating plants. Hence, you’ll want to make sure your environment is suited to meet the requirements of your new, fragile plants.

First of all, make sure your lights are running 24/7 until you see new vegetative growth forming on your scion. From there, you can gently bring your lights down to your preferred settings. Also, if possible, try to use gentle sources (110 watt T5s are perfect, but other soft light sources will also work).

PICKING THE RIGHT STRAINS TO GRAFT TOGETHER

Grafting can be difficult as not all species of plants are compatible with each other. Luckily, this isn’t an issue here, as all cannabis varieties stem from the same plant family, and should be able to be grafted together.

The one thing you’ll want to keep in mind when grafting cannabis strains, however, is flowering times. Make sure you graft strains with similar bloom periods. If you don’t, you might struggle with nutrient deficiencies, as those strains that flower will need different nutrients than those that are still in their vegetative phase.

Apart from that, grafting is really no big challenge. All it takes is a solid process (which we’ve outlined above), patience, and a bit of practice. So, try the method and get grafting today!

Grafting is an ancient gardening practice. In this article, we show you how to graft cannabis plants and grow multiple strains on a single mother plant. ]]>