Novice marijuana gardeners may be new to the whole idea of grafting. This powerful gardening technique allows growers to grow different cannabis strains from one mother plant. It’s a horticultural practice done by veteran cannabis cultivators throughout the ages. Despite its widespread origins, this procedure isn’t popular among many marijuana communities.
Reports indicate that the process of grafting plants dates back to 4,000 years. The Ancient Chinese and Mesopotamians were said to be the first groups of people to graft plants. In this page, we’ll give you the information you seek for grafting marijuana strains. We’ll also find out if its possible to graft the best indoor cannabis strains.
What is Grafting Marijuana?
Grafting is an asexual process of breeding plants. This technique isn’t limited to marijuana strains but farmers also use this technique for cultivating certain vegetables like tomatoes. It involves removing the upper portion of one plant and attaching it to another. The plant with the upper part taken is called scion whereas the other plant where growers attach it to is the rootstock.
This technique allows plants to maintain all characteristics from both strains. It’s similar to cloning because the new plant preserves all the traits from the mother strain. Marijuana gardeners who opt to graft their plants find it useful for strains that struggle to properly take root. With the help of grafting, growers build a strong root system. Furthermore, it preserves the life of the scion which may be a difficult endeavor when trying certain cannabis cultivating techniques like cloning.
You can graft most woody cannabis plants. Despite existing in the world of marijuana for centuries, grafting is still known as a complicated process. It’s labor-intensive, and it tends to require an intermediate level of horticultural knowledge and understanding at the very least. Novice marijuana growers may find it an even more daunting task than veteran gardeners. Hence, it’s best to gain a suitable amount of experience first before attempting this breeding technique.
What are the Benefits of Grafting Marijuana Plants?
There is a good number of advantages attainable from grafting cannabis plants. Some of these incentives include the following:
Less Space Consumed With More Variety
Before you attempt to do any grafting, ensure your scions are well-suited with your rootstocks. Once there’s a definite compatibility, you can begin to grow multiple varieties of the same strain. Creating different varieties of strains is ideal for many cannabis users and especially for retailers. Marijuana sellers can offer different varieties of traits for the same strain to their customers.
Also, since there are more varieties created with this breeding method, marijuana gardeners working with limited space can make the most out of their growing area. Instead of trying to bunch many plants into a tight space, all you need to do is grow multiple variations of the same strain in a smaller area.
Most cannabis plants are self-pollinating unless your harvest happens to have hermaphrodites. Since marijuana strains are self-pollinating, it means female plants require the pollen of a nearby male plant to produce seeds. When space is concerned, growers find it difficult to grow cannabis strains within an effective range of each other.
However, if a female rootstock acquires a part from a male scion through the process of grafting, breeders can assure proper pollination without worry of pollen loss. Even if growers are working with a limited amount of space, growers can ensure efficient pollination for all female plants in their growing area.
Heal Damaged Roots
Marijuana plants are no exceptions to the harsh realities of indoor and outdoor environments. Pests, weather conditions, and diseases may negatively affect your strains, especially its roots. One great way to recover the harm done is to plant seedlings around the damaged area. Graft the roots to the older plant right above its injuries to start the healing process.
Create and Test New Strains
If you want to create new hybrids, then grafting is a great way of accomplishing that goal. Since you can grow multiple strains in a single growing area, you can experiment by connecting scions to different rootstocks. Some growers prefer grafting over cloning since the latter tends to require more knowledge and understanding of growing marijuana plants compared to the former.
Creating and experimenting with strains simply require growers to take a clone or seedling and then graft it to a rootstock. From here, you can continue to do regular cultivation techniques to the “new” strain until harvest time. Decide if you want to add the plant to your garden for good if you deem it a suitable choice as part of your regular crop.
Grafting the Best Indoor Cannabis Strains
With plenty of indoor cannabis strains to choose from, there are some buds that do stand out from the rest. Strains like Critical, Royal Cookies, and Amnesia Haze are quite famous in different marijuana communities. These plants can produce a suitable amount of yields in indoor environments.
Indoor grafting is a possibility since the main requirement of this breeding technique is for scions to be compatible with their rootstocks. Just ensure that the grow area has a suitable medium to help in the production of a healthy harvest.
How to Pick the Right Strains to Graft?
As mentioned in a previous section, grafting marijuana strains may require a suitable level of experience, knowledge, and understanding of growing cannabis. Take note that not all cannabis strains are fully compatible with each other. Still, it’s not much of an issue since all cannabis varieties fall under the same plant family. Growers can graft different strains together but there are plants that are more compatible together than with other buds.
There is one thing to keep in mind when grafting marijuana strains together – flowering times. It’s essential to graft cannabis plants with similar bloom periods. Randomly grafting marijuana plants together without checking their flowering dates might induce additional challenges to growers. For instance, it can bring about nutrient deficiencies for both strains.
Create the Right Environment for Grafting Marijuana Plants
Just like traditional marijuana growing, grafting requires the right setup for your plants to grow the way you want. If you think about it, to graft one plant to another isn’t exactly what many would call a “natural” way of cultivating cannabis. Therefore, you need to ensure your grow room is suited to meet the perfect conditions for your new yet fragile strains.
To start, you need to ensure your grow lights are running on a 24/7 clock. Your lighting fixtures should be on non-stop until there’s new vegetative growth coming out of your Scion. Once you see the formation of new stalks, stems, or leaves, you can then begin to bring the intensity of your lights down to more preferable settings.
Keep in mind you’re not limited to one scion connected to one rootstock if you’re planning to graft different strains together. Take for example a tree developed by artist Sam Van Aken as the plant bears 40 different types of fruit. Just keep in mind that fragility of the strains when grafting the best indoor cannabis strains together. Ensure that your cannabis plants are always kept healthy during the entire process for you to enjoy an optimal number of yields by harvest time.