Producing More in A Smaller Space with "RETIPPING"

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Update time : 2023-04-11 08:54:43

According to a new study, led by researchers at the University of Northern California, a new “picking” method produces more high-quality cannabis plants in a smaller space.

According to a recent study published in HortScience by the University of Northern California, a new method of producing new cannabis plants has the same effect in a confined space as the traditional method. This new method is called "retipping" and involves taking cuttings from strong and disease-free "mother" plants that have been propagated in a controlled laboratory environment.

"Compared to traditional stem cuttings, tillage can potentially produce nine times more plants in the same space," said Jessica Lubell-Brand, Professor of Horticulture at the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources at the University of Northern California Agriculture, the project's lead researcher. "This method can help growing facilities produce more in a smaller space while maintaining the quality of their final product."

The research team also included doctoral student Lauren Kurtz, who studied plant growth in the greenhouse to determine if there were any differences between the three methods: microcutting, stem-cutting, and root-cutting.

The results showed that all three methods produced similar sized plants, with identical chemical characteristics. The final product, in this case cannabis flowers, showed no difference between the three methods.

Despite similar yields, transplanting is the least space-demanding method, allowing growers to plant more starting plants within their facilities.

Nowadays, most cannabis cultivation businesses rely on large, traditionally-grown mother plants and cuttings to produce new, identical plants. The problem is that mother plants take up a lot of growing space, accumulating diseases and losing vigour over time.

The micropropagation mother plants used in this study were grown in the laboratory, producing identical, disease-free and vigorous plants. They grow in small containers under sterile conditions, taking up less space than traditional cultivation.

Researchers are harvesting cuttings from plants already adapted to conditions outside the laboratory by using a newly re-tilted technique called micropropagation. By using plants as mothers instead of using them as producers to propagate ornamental plants, yields of the micropropagation process can be improved.

"Not every facility can afford to build labs and grow micro-propagated plants," said Lubell-Brand. "However, there are nurseries with labs that can intervene and provide them, especially as more states are legalizing the cultivation of cannabis." This supply chain strategy is often used for ornamental nursery trade.

The research team explained that although decades of cannabis prohibition is coming to an end across the country, there is still a lot to learn.
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