Why should I build a laminar flow hood

Many growers will be a little be confused why we built a laminar flow hood although the steam method works fine for us. In the list below you can find the adavantages and disadvantages of both sterile methods.

Steam method


  • you can do it in almost every kitchen
  • does not require a lot of space
  • low costs


  • limited space in the sterile area
  • limited view because of the steam
  • plant material can not stay in the sterile area because they become too hot
  • the contamination rate increases rapidly when using flasks with wide lids because of limited space in the sterile area

Laminar flow hood


  • enough space in the sterile area
  • plant material can stay for longer time in the sterile area because it does not become hot
  • it´s easier to use bigger flasks with wide lids


  • more expensive
  • the laminar flow hood needs more space than a pot

We practiced both methods and now we can say that the steam method is good enough if you want to propagate your own plants. If you are interested in producing a high number of plants or if you want to do special tissue culture (e.g. cutting meristems) we recommend you build a laminar flow hood.

Author: Thomas Ederer