Use a grow journal. Tracking the details of your grow efforts, from germination to final cure, will help you become a better cannabis-plant parent. When it’s time for a new season, reviewing the successes and failures from the last crop will make your thumb greener — not to mention improve the quality and quantity of your final harvest. There are lots of ready-made cannabis grow journals out there, but really all you need is a pad of paper and an eye for detail.
Summer to early fall: vegetative stage Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
There are also cannabis plants that aren’t light-sensitive, called autoflower varieties, that will automatically flower on their own at a particular point of their maturity independent of how much light they’re getting. These plants tend to have much shorter life cycles, which is appealing to some gardeners.
If you aren’t working with exclusively female plants, you’ll need to get rid of the males before they have a chance to pollinate the females (and wreck your harvest). “Even feminized seeds can have up to 10% males in the mix so it’s important to inspect your plants every day as they start to show their sex. Also important to note is that a stressed female plant can produce male branches or ‘hermaphrodites’, so even if you know she’s a girl, you have to check daily,” advised Sara Rotman, a veteran grower and founder of Wellfounded Botanicals.
Mid-to-late fall: harvest season
If you’re growing from seed, the first step in the life of your cannabis plant is germination. Once the seed has sprouted, it will immediately grow two little round leaves, called cotyledon leaves, that will be responsible for delivering energy to the seedling until it starts to grow the more familiar fan leaves we all know and love.
Choose a strain for your region or microclimate. Some strains do better in some climates than others, and strain genetics will have a big impact on the growing season. In the northern half of the US where the season is cooler and shorter, growers might want to grow indica-dominant strains, whereas sativas will do well in the more hot and humid southern states that have longer growing seasons. Type of soil, volume of rain, and abundance of sun versus shade are other microclimate variables in your microclimate to consider when choosing a strain.
As far as timing when to sprout your seeds, a general rule of thumb is on or around the Spring Equinox. If you’re not growing from seed but instead buying clones, they’ll already be in the seedling stage when you get them so you don’t have to worry about germination.
Seedlings are baby plants. Whether you’ve sprouted your own seed or bought a clone, during this first stage of life the plants are delicate and sensitive.
Folks in cooler climates often elect to start plants indoors to keep them safe and warm, waiting to plant outdoors until they’re somewhere between 6 inches and a foot tall and strong enough to handle the environment outside. Even in warm climates, many growers like to start their plants indoors to give them a leg up since seedlings are susceptible to pests, disease, and mold.
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Grow with the Sun
While California isn’t known for its torrential rainstorms, on the occasion that it does rain, it’s a good idea to bring in your plants if possible (such as if they are planted in a pot). If they are planted in the ground, you can use a plant umbrella or else a black trash bag to protect them. While it might seem like rain would be a good thing for plants, in fact, it can make your plants get far too damp, and take a long time to dry. That would then encourage mildew or mold to develop. Check out our kits if you’re ready to get started.
Of course, how much sun your plants are getting determines how much water they should get as well. If they are getting tons of direct sunlight and the weather is quite warm, you’re probably going to water them more frequently. However, it’s important not to overwater marijuana plants, as that can lead to problems with mildew or mold development.
ive been wondering the same thing. only answer everyone agrees upon is after the last frost.
You could build a coldframe and keep some lights above to keep the light cycle correct. Cheap pvc coldframes would be an affordable idea.
Seeds your good to go were at a litte over 13hours of sunlight in California atm. As for clones probly best to wait tell your closer to 14 hours of day light