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Mom plant care: root pruning


New Member
Marijuana is an annual plant. It is designed to germinate, veg, flower, and die all during one year. Those of us who like to grow from clones sometimes want to keep a favorite mom plant around for years, continually harvesting clones from the top of the plant. Over time, the plant becomes more and more root bound, which is why I root prune my mom plants every so often.

This pictorial will show step-by-step how to root prune and re pot a mom plant.

First, here is a newly rooted clone (AK47) in a party cup. I will transplant her into a 1 gallon pot soon, then she will likely need root pruned in 6 months or so:

Here is my mom plant. She is a Cinderella 99 (C99) that was the source of the eight clones I am currently flowering.

Here she is out of the pot. I like to root prune several days after watering; you don't want to work with a soggy plant.

Here you can see the root system. She is not too root bound, I've pruned much worse. The red balls at the bottom are expanded clay pellets (hydroton) that I use for drainage.

OK, I lay the plant on her side and use a saw or sharp knife to remove about an inch from the bottom.

Here, the cut is complete. The root ball holds together nicely since the plant is root bound. If she wasn't root bound, the root ball would crumble apart.

Now, I cut about an inch off of each side. This shows the end result.

Hydroton goes into the bottom of a new pot.

A layer of worm castings (or other slow release product) is next.

The root pruned plant goes into the pot next.


Fresh soil is place on all four sides, then the pot is top dressed with worm castings.

She will now happily give me cuttings when I need them! :adore:
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New Member
The worm castings are just there to cover things in case I go too light with feeding. The bloom ferts are a good point. Also, it is important to keep the plant pretty dry right after root pruning. Some of the roots you cut are gonna die, and if you water right after pruning, you might get some root rot.


New Member
I have kill the 2 plants I have tried this on!!!!
WARNING,,, take some cuts as a back up!
not a believer. :-(


Member of the Month: Jan 2015 - Plant of the Month: Jan 2015
where do you think if went wrong slag121??? and I would for sure take some cutting before experimenting with this.

ive done this for a long time,never lost a plant.I do it to anything that needs to be-fruits veggies,weed



same container

after a week,moms are doing well



New Member
I cut off an inch all around, just like the article said.
re-potted & they both failed to thrive.
wasted weeks, so never again. far easier to take a cutting in my regular cycle & pull out the Fav for a new bonsi mom.


Member of the Month: Jan 2015 - Plant of the Month: Jan 2015
I understand what your saying,slag

hard to go through the effort,and not get the results needed/wanted

wish I had the patience to create a bonsi mom,I think they look cool as hell.

I only root prune house plants and veggies now,since switching to water growing a few years ago,I dont keep any mothers ,just take cutting as i move it into flower.


New Member
bonsi Moms are the ONLY way to grow!
it keeps a variety available to switch in & out.
Nirvinas Raspberry is an easy Clone/rooting plant.
props to them,
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