best tomatoes for cloning?

purple1701(5B Chicago)April 16, 2013

Sorry if this is out there already... I've read quite a few posts about cloning and several posters have mentioned that some varieties take to it better, but as far as I can tell no one has said which do and which don't.

Anyone care to tell me about varieties that did really well with cloning, vs others that did not?

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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

All tomatoes should be easy to propagate by cloning.. People normally clone the suckers.

Joe

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 5:26PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Indeterminates, any variety. There are no "suckers" on determinate varieties.

Dave

This post was edited by digdirt on Tue, Apr 16, 13 at 19:11

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 6:58PM
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mule

Determinates do have suckers.

I know. I've pruned acres of them.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 10:58PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Aw come on Mule, you know those aren't suckers. They are lateral branches. Fact there ain't no such thing as "suckers" anyway.;)

Dave

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 11:01PM
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purple1701(5B Chicago)

Well that's encouraging, as indeterminate varieties are the ones I wanted anyway :-) I'm looking forward to (hopefully) never having to buy plants or seeds again after this first round!

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 5:29PM
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sandy0225(z5 Indiana)

expensive ones! then you don't have to buy as many seeds
lol

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 6:22PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

You could still clone determinates as well, use a branch, or a "sucker",whatever you would like to call it.. You can clone almost any plant...

Look into "air layering", pretty neat, and almost sure proof way to clone..

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 7:20PM
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pasco(7)

best tomatoes for cloning?...The one that clones well, grows well, produces well and tastes great...other than that i wouldn't waste my time cloning a tomato.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2013 at 7:53PM
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purple1701(5B Chicago)

I'm sorry, but the circular logic of this is funny to me:
"best tomatoes for cloning?...The one that clones well"
If I knew that already I wouldn't be asking now would I?? LOL

At any rate, I guess it seems there isn't a specific variety that works best for this, so hopefully I'll grow lots of healthy plants and can clone any of them!

Thanks for all your comments :-)

    Bookmark   April 23, 2013 at 10:54AM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

If you step back and look at the whole of things, tomatoes are tomatoes,, plants are plants.. Any tomato should do fine.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2013 at 10:59AM
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pasco(7)

"I'm sorry, but the circular logic of this is funny to me:
"best tomatoes for cloning?...The one that clones well"
If I knew that already I wouldn't be asking now would I?? LOL "

Well if you had done some research you would of found that some plants clone better than others even in the same plant families. Some blow roots out like crazy in day's other's take what seems like forever.
So why don't you clone a couple of thousand different plants and then you'll know what i mean. LOL

    Bookmark   April 23, 2013 at 11:24AM
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purple1701(5B Chicago)

So what you're saying is before I ask for accounts of personal experience, I should read everything I can about it, and then grow a few thousand plants myself? If I had done that I wouldn't be here asking for advice.

It's not that I'm lazy, or unwilling to research, I have done plenty of research. But often, the combination of anecdotal and empirical evidence can be far more compelling than statistical evidence. At least to me.

It was my understanding that this forum is a place for people to discuss what works and what doesn't, and to share experiences.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 10:43AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

I guess I am missing what the problem is. Sure there were some humorous comments thrown in but the basic info and answer to the original question is all there.

1) there is no such thing as suckers. It is an old uninformed label that needs to be discouraged. What are called "suckers" are actually fruit producing lateral branches.

2) you can clone plants? Yes although "clone" isn't accurate since you are just rooting a cutting not actually cloning.

3) you can root cuttings off any indeterminate variety by rooting a lateral branch with a growth tip on it. Some varieties may be easier to work with but they all work. How to do it is a whole other discussion and many how-to posts are already available here.

4) is doing it a waste of time? Maybe for some. No for many others. it is a fairly common practice for many of us for a wide variety of reasons.

5) Does the ability to clone plants mean you will never have to buy seeds or plants again? No that goal isn't realistic. For many reasons, getting through the winter is one, stress another, genetic generational decline another.

6) can you root cuttings off determinates? Yes but the size and timing is crucial and the results not as good so is it commonly recommended? No. Unlike indeterminates, each lateral branch on a determinate is a terminal branch. Once it has bloomed it will grow no more. To root it and get any growth/production it has be harvested while still quite young and small and is consequently more difficult to root and you will lose the production it would have produced off the Mother plant.

Make sense?

Dave

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 1:01PM
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purple1701(5B Chicago)

Perhaps I'm being overly sensitive. I apologize. Thanks for all the great info here guys.

Incidentally, I have read the FAQ section, and done several searches about cloning tomatoes. I honestly thought that someone might say "hey you know what, my purple cherokee beefsteak did great with cloning, but the honeybunch grape tomatoes didn't, here's why I think that is so".

I guess the general consensus is that variety doesn't matter, so that's good to know :-)

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 5:09PM
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kathyb912_in (5a/5b, Central IN)(5a/5b)

What are the advantages to cloning over saving seed to avoid making future purchases? Living in the Great Lakes area myself, I know our winters are too cold to keep a tomato plant alive, even if I were to root a branch partway through the season. Plus my indeterminate tomatoes fruit straight until a hard freeze so I don't need to stagger plantings to extend my harvest. So why would one (say, Purple in Chicago :)) prefer to clone plants vs. just saving seed to start the following spring?

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 10:58PM
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purple1701(5B Chicago)

Hmm that's a good point Kathy. I was thinking that it would be an inexpensive way to get more plants and thus more fruit during the time that they would grow, but I guess that depends on how long it takes them to get to the fruiting stage after having been cloned. I certainly wouldn't want to slow the progress of the mother plant, but if the cloned plant would set at least some fruit before the first frost, or hard freeze if that is the case, that would be more than I would have if I hadn't done it right?

I definitely plant to save seed as well, but I'm just looking at how to get the most out of the few plants I will be able to buy.

I was also thinking I might be able to over-winter the pants in the basement, which has a fairly cool and consistent temperature, if not much light. Haven't looked into that yet, I figured I need to get through the planting, tending and harvesting part first!

Also, the issue with starting from seed is that I don't have the room for that. Although, if the in-laws are ok with using the basement for storing plants over the winter, they might be ok with using it for seedlings... but then there's the issue of buying lamps and bulbs and what not... which is more $$ *sigh*

This gardening thing is turning out to be far more expensive than I thought it would be lol But I'm not discouraged, if anything, I'm more motivated. I like finding ways to do things unconventionally on the cheap :-) sure my results might not be as good as if I had done it the "right" way, but at least I get results just the same. Hopefully gardening can be approached this way as well as everything else I've had success with.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 10:09AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

So why would one (say, Purple in Chicago :)) prefer to clone plants vs. just saving seed to start the following spring?

No reason far as I can see. Unless one has a heated greenhouse to grow or at least over-winter plants. trying to keep a rooted cutting alive till spring planting is a waste of time and effort IMO.

The main reason for rooting cuttings is to quickly have more plants at the proper planting times or to have some for a fall garden.

Dave

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 10:16AM
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purple1701(5B Chicago)

So that leaves me at determining how long it will take for a rooted cutting to set fruit, and see if I have enough time to get more out of them to even make it worth it. I'll do some research. Thanks for all the great tips and advice guys!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 5:46PM
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