Definition - What does Cloner mean?
In hydroponics, a cloner is a device or piece of equipment that allows you to house and grow new plants (clones) more easily from the cuttings of an existing plant. Cloners are often semi-sealed small domes that allow the young cuttings to grow in a humid environment.
MaximumYield explains Cloner
There are many different types of cloner on the market today. Some of them are designed to grow one or two plant clones, while others can hold 24 or more clones as they get their start. However, all cloner machines share a few similarities. They require a growing medium (replaceable or reusable). They also require a water/nutrient solution. Some also have sprayers that will mist your cuttings with a solution.
You’ll also find that some systems include additional equipment. For instance, you might benefit from the use of an aerator/bubbler in the cloner to keep the solution turbulent and ensure that oxygen levels are optimal, and that nutrients stay distributed evenly throughout. Some cloners also come with neoprene inserts or collars that help anchor plants in the system.
Depending on the cloner you choose, you may be required to provide considerable maintenance. For instance, in a cloning station, you need to do little more than ensure the water and nutrient levels remain correct. However, in a rockwool set-up, you’ll need to guard against fungal growth due to the high humidity levels needed. The same rules apply to humidity drones (another type of cloner on the market).
There are many ways that you can grow plants. You can purchase seeds and start new plants, but this is often difficult, particularly with some specific plants that are hard to start from seeds (tomatoes, for example). You can buy already sprouted plants from a greenhouse or nursery, but this tends to be quite costly in the long run. You can also clone plants that you have already grown, which is made easier with the use of a cloner.