Who we are:
EZ-CLONE Enterprises Inc. was established in 2000 by Billy Blackburn and Brad Mickelsen. These Gentlemen have been Horticulture Growers for two decades. EZ-CLONE is honored to be one of the top, A-List brands in the Hydroponic and Indoor Gardening Industry. They understand your demand for superior products and can thoroughly fulfill your Plant Cloning and Propagation needs.
EZ-CLONES’ goal has been to focus specifically on simplifying the plant cloning process, using the art of Aeroponics, while creating a high integrity product that works “for you” and guarantees results. They pride themselves on becoming the utmost authority on Horticultural Aeroponic Cloning. Their many years of expertise and friendly customer service has garnered them great respect and solidified an exemplary reputation throughout the rapidly expanding Hydroponic Industry.
Pioneering the “Cloning Machine Niche”, EZ-CLONE has become the Industry Leader, winning growers’ praise and multiple industry accolades, including “Best Aeroponic Cloning Machine” and “Best New Horticulture Product”.
EZ-CLONE can proudly say they have maintained a less than 1% return rate. Their products are made with the strictest standards, highest quality parts available and are assembled and packaged right here in the USA. Their Systems come with a Lifetime Warranty.
As told through an interview with Erik Biksa, of Grozine Magazine andEZ-CLONE Product Creator, Billy Blackburn
1. What inspired the Company Founders to start EZ-CLONE?
In 1999, my best friend, Brad Mickelsen and I, ended up back home in Sacramento after a four year stint in the Air Force. We became roommates and started growing in our garage, basically just for fun to begin with. Brad was going to Sac State University for a bachelor’s degree in psychology and was also bartending. I was working on writing songs, recording music and starting the endeavor of becoming a musical artist.Growing became addicting very quickly and was also a very creative outlet. However, from the beginning, we both had nothing but trouble with the conventional methods of plant cloning. I became fascinated with new ways to grow and became engulfed in the art of Hydroponics and Aeroponics. Reading everything I could get my hands on, I began making homemade Hydro and Aero systems. The creation of the first EZ-CLONE was simply just to help solve a problem for Brad and I. It was never even initially thought of as a product.
Around that time, Brad and I shopped regularly at a Hydroponic Store called Greenfire. Back then, it was only one of two Hydroponic Stores in the entire county of Sacramento. I remember going into the shop one day, and there was a little old lady named Margaret working behind counter. After politely voicing my dismay over the lack of mechanical connectivity of some plastic pieces I was looking for, she looked up, smiled and asked me if I wanted a job. I initially laughed and said “No thank you”, but after a week, I came back to ask if it was still available. I thought…what a great place just to learn how to become a better grower. I took the job.
After months of standing behind the counter, listening to people come in and voice their problems, I learned that plant cloning was one of the most difficult aspects of growing for the majority of the customers. This became the “light bulb” moment, and soon there after, Brad and I decided to start a Company.
2. What were some of the earliest challenges you faced?
The earliest challenges were learning to work together and the production of the units. We quickly discovered that being friends and being business partners were two totally different things. Brad and I literally moved into a warehouse in the middle of winter to start the business. We moved all of our furniture and two dogs out of a house we were renting, and into an eleven hundred square foot, freezing cold warehouse. We lived in it for several months and began to build the systems by hand. There were tempers flaring and butting heads, but we figured it out. We each have strengths in different areas, and learning how to let the other person do what they are best at, was quite the learning process. It took a while and a lot of hard communication. Each of us now knows very well the skills of the other. Sweat equity baby…
3. What do you consider to be your biggest successes?
First and foremost, being in business as long as we have is our biggest success. Owning a business is non-stop problem solving. I believe so many people think there is this connotation associated with the word Entrepreneur, as being totally glamorous. That is the furthest thing from the truth. Sure, it’s amazing working for yourself and having the freedom to call your own shots, but I always tell people, “Don’t be mistaken…becoming an Entrepreneur is grueling and filled with constant ups and downs”. It takes a very unique mindset and an unwillingness to stop to become successful at anything, but you also have to love what you do. That passion is hands down the most important factor. We had this unshakable drive when we first started and were probably too dumb to know any better, but we just kept pushing and didn’t allow anything to stop us. Dedication, perseverance and passion is what got us to where we are today.
Secondly, one of our biggest successes has got to be the release of our new Commercial Pro Cloning System. This is something that we have been working on for years, and it has finally come to fruition. We are firm believers in the quote “Build it and they will come”. Also, the one major thing that we do constantly, is Research and Development. We are always cloning some type of plant at all times. Innovation plays the biggest part in maintaining a positive and current stature in all businesses and is what will keep you ahead of your competition. Competition is truly a good thing and a necessary evil. If we didn’t have it, we would become complacent.
4. What advice do you have for new young and dynamic companies starting up today in the Hydro Biz?
Offer amazing products and even better service. That is one thing that EZ-CLONE hugely prides itself on. We connect with our customers because WE ARE our customers. We have been in and still are in their shoes. We know how important it is for our Systems to give them success. We get immense satisfaction when we make our customers satisfied, and you should always make sure to listen to your customers feedback. The best focus group you can never buy, is your customers telling you what they think.