Ahhh...the question which has no wrong answer.
Some suggest that mothers are the only way to go and others (like me)...have discovered you can get across the finish line without them.
I am perpetual grower with half dozen different strains and pull a harvest every 7-10 days...and have zero mothers. Two reasons: Real estate and quality.
First, not having 6 mothers allows me to have about 10 production plants in the same footprint/space...and having an extra 10 plants in veg at all times is a good thing; sometimes that extra few weeks in veg is all it takes for a skinny girl to get fat.
Second, the quality of the clone will vary depending on where the cutting is snipped from the donor plant. Clone candidates sourced from the bottom branches usually have narrow/thinner stems but excel in root development (both in speed and quantity). Now, snip the top 5-6" of a plant and that clone candidate has a fatter stem, newer growth (bottom branches are older growth), more nodes per vertical inch (usually), and broader leafs. Admittedly, the root development for clones from the top seem to lag a bit, but are productive just the same.
This process of sourcing your clones from the top--works great once you have a good quantity of plants in progress. So when I have 5 plants and need 10 cuttings, I take 5 tops, and another 10 or so from the lower/side branches...keeping the best 5 for a total of 10.
I have observed cuttings usually will take on certain attributes from the source plant. Example, if you take a cutting from a super cropped plant, that cutting is more prone to super crop structure. Take a cutting from a wispy weak branch, that cutting will be weaker than normal. Take a cutting from a branch that is prone to have nodes every inch with heavy leaf development, that cutting will probably become your treasured plant.
Last edited by DocTim420; 05-10-2017 at 08:16 PM..