Clones Autoflowering
2 min

Is It Possible To Take Clones From An Autoflowering Strain?

2 min

To understand the process of cloning an autoflowering cannabis plant, one must first understand what an autoflowering strain is, how it works, and why it's different from other clones.


What Is An Autoflowering Strain?

Autoflowering cannabis strains are strains that automatically switch from the vegetative state to the flowering state, without requiring the grower to make changes to the environment. As the plant matures, it will automatically start producing buds, regardless of the lighting situation.

To compare, a traditional strain - also referred to as a photoperiod strain - would require over 12 hours of darkness a day to initiate flowering. When growing traditional strains outside, they would have to be planted during the spring, to work with the sun schedule and be finished before winter.

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For an autoflowering strain, all that's needed is a couple months of consistently warm weather. Timezone and season don't matter much, especially if you're somewhere with moderate weather year round. Autoflowering plants need to be exposed to direct inside lighting for 12 hours daily after budding, and they should be ready to harvest in about ten weeks.

While this is a huge benefit for any grower in a hurry, due to the different budding schedule of these plants, autoflowering strains don't clone as well as traditional plants. We will explain a bit more about that in the following paragraphs.

Autofloweringview product


How Does Cloning Work?

Essentially, to grow a clone you would just take a small cutting from your cannabis plant while it's in the vegetative state, put it in a growing medium of your choice, and grow it from there. Although it's not necessary, many people believe it's very helpful to use a rooting hormone gel or powder. After about ten days, the little cutting should start to form its own root system, and shortly after it would start growing its own plant. The clone's qualities will be virtually identical to the plant that you clipped it from.

Unless you're trying to grow an entirely different strain, it's much easier to start with a clone. Not only do you get to skip the delicate seedling phase, but you already know the plant is feminized, if you took it from a female.


There are multiple advantages to autoflowering strains like the short growth and flowering phase, multiple harvests in the same year, and easy seed production.

One disadvantage, however, is that these strains are known not to do that well when cloned. Clones share the exact same genetics as the mother plant, and that includes age. Photoperiod strains do better when cloned because the change in the environment that they require to start flowering allows them time to grow and develop properly.

Since an autoflowering clone would be the same age as its mother and have no dependence on light, it would follow the same genetic timeline as its mother. Meaning that it would have less time to grow, resulting in a small plant with minimal buds.

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Should You Try It?

The fact that there is no way to tell when exactly the plant will enter the flowering phase makes it much more difficult to clone. Some growers believe it to be an urban myth that autoflowering plants can't be cloned, and some even claim to have done it successfully themselves.

Whether this is true or not, it's highly unlikely that you will have a successful harvest from autoflowering clones, simply because it's impossible to revert the plant back to its vegetative state. It would be a difficult venture to try and begin growing from an already matured plant.

So there you have it, technically yes, you can clone autoflowering plants. But is it a good idea? Not necessarily. If the plant happens to be cloned prior to the sex showing, then it could possibly work out, but that's a very short window of opportunity. Overall, the most you can expect is a tiny plant with a couple of buds. If that's something that you're okay with, then by all means, give cloning an autoflowering plant a go!

Steven Voser
Steven Voser
Steven Voser is an independent cannabis journalist with over 6 years of experience writing about all things weed; how to grow it, how best to enjoy it, and the booming industry and murky legal landscape surrounding it.
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