How To Take Care Of Clones In Rockwool In 4 Steps

You have four steps to go through to learn how to take care of clones in rockwool. We all know how useful rockwool is for starting seeds, but this medium is also excellent for clones or cuttings. Clones are relatively easy to root under moist and stable growing conditions, making Rockwool useful for them. 

If you want to encourage rooting on your clones, you also want to know how to maintain them in rockwool. Below are four steps to ensure that you’re making the most out of this medium to end up with vigorous plants. This way, you will be ready to transplant outdoors without many drawbacks.  

 

 

How To Take Care Of Clones In Rockwool In 4 Steps

How To Grow And Maintain Clones In Rockwool

 

Step #1. Preparation

Before anything else, you want to ensure that your tray, dome, and environment are all ready. You can set your tray and dome in the greenhouse because they will do best under 50% humidity and 75°F. It would be ideal to put the tray on cardboard to prevent the starter cubes from sitting on a cold surface as well. 

Since you’ll be growing and caring clones or cuttings, you want to have a light above your dome to encourage root development. Then, soak the starter cubes for half an hour at 5.5 pH to adjust their pH level. You should be ready to place the rockwool cubes in the tray while making sure you have shaken off the excess liquid, and you’ve used a paper towel to soak any leftover water on the tray. 

 

Step #2. Taking cuttings

Before you can adequately care for clones in rockwool, the clones or cuttings themselves should be under the best conditions. You want to use the new growths of your plant as your clones for optimal development. More so, enlarge the surface area of the cutting by cutting at a 45-degree angle. 

This way, it’ll be easier for them to take in moisture and nutrients for root development. You also need to remove any leaf or flower on the section except some leaves at the top. Doing so will prevent roots from having competition for nutrients. 

Lastly, dip the end of the clone in rooting hormone to encourage faster root formation. You can also check out different ingredients that will work best for your plant. Just always practice cleanliness when dipping the clones in rooting hormone to avoid the transmission of disease. 

 

Step #3. Growing clones

You should be ready to push the clones into the rockwool cubes after dipping them in the rooting hormone. Just make sure that they are stable and not loose afterward. Fill your cubes accordingly, and you can have as many as 40 pieces of cubes per tray. 

Please put on the dome and place your clones under your light with an inch of distance between them. It’s recommended to use low-intensity fluorescent lights because they won’t risk damaging the clones. Instead, the warmth from the light will help evaporate the moisture on your cubes to encourage rooting. 

After you have done the first three steps, you should be ready to care for clones without many drawbacks. Remember that adequately doing the previous actions is necessary to avoid problems in the maintenance and care of cuttings. Once done, maintenance is relatively simple, where you must remove any standing water on the tray. 

 

Step #4. Maintenance

Maintenance and care for clones in rockwool are as simple as shaking off the condensation on the dome once a day and securing the environment’s conditions. Remember that because you’re growing clones in rockwool, the best setting is at 50% humidity and 75°F. Be mindful that there are no vents or direct heat sources that prevent condensation. 

After some time, you can check the rockwool cubes’ weight to know if they need watering. You can also check for roots under the cubes. This will indicate if you can open the vents gradually on the dome for optimal growth. 

Once all of the vents are opened, you can remove the dome entirely for some hours to help the clones get used to the outdoor conditions. This is similar to acclimatizing cuttings to prepare them for transplanting later on. 

 

Top Consideration When Rooting In Rockwool

Remember the importance of treating rockwool before using it. While it isn’t particularly laborious to soak the cubes in pH-treated water, it is still a necessary step that you must never overlook. You want to ensure that you’re providing the ideal pH level for the root development, so vigilance is required in checking your pH levels.

 

Conclusion

Growing cuttings in rockwool can be advantageous, given that you have maintained the ideal conditions and practices. Therefore, learning how to take care of clones in rockwool is not limited to only maintenance. You also need to ensure the proper procedure, from preparation to growing the clones themselves. 

Once you have secured the proper techniques for the first three steps, caring for clones in rockwool is as simple as opening the dome once a day to remove the condensation. You can also wipe off any standing water on the tray until the clones grow roots. Over time, you can gradually remove the vents until you can take the dome off completely.

Let your cuttings get used to the outdoor conditions, and they should be ready for transplanting. 

 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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