This species of cannabis starts her flowering cycle when she starts receiving equal hours of sunlight and darkness. This means if you are growing this type of pot indoors, the plant needs to consistently receive 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness to release the necessary hormones to begin flowering. This is why many people that grow photoperiod cannabis indoors opt for grow tents or dedicated grow rooms.
Commercially – grown marijuana or those grown by seasoned growers are typically regular flowering marijuanas plants. More specifically, they are photoperiod cannabis. These, under the right growing conditions, are the giants of the pot world– with the potential to grow 16 feet (or taller) and harvest 10 pounds of dried pot off a single plant.
Once the cannabis plant is a few feet tall, or about 30 days after she pops out of the dirt, she starts her flowering cycle. Autoflowering cannabis is typically ready to harvest in 80 days from seed— regardless of her light schedule. This means the autoflowering cannabis growing season is year-round! Autoflowering cannabis seamlessly integrates into your home and plant family. Make it easy on yourself and go this route.
Step 1 – Pick the Best Marijuana Seeds for You
Before flowering, these plants savor what is known as the vegetative stage. This is when the plant enjoys more hours of light than darkness. Indoors, this is typically 18 hours of light and 6 hours of darkness. During this phase and light cycle, a photoperiod plant will continue to grow in size without flowering.
Cannabis genetics are important to consider when planning your grow. Most cannabis consumers are familiar with the idea of Cannabis indica vs. Cannabis sativa . They understand how an indica -dominant strain is typically more relaxing and that sativa -dominant strains are known for their abilities to energize the mind and aid your creativity superpowers.
Growing marijuana outdoors, this specific lighting need is why photoperiod plants flower in the fall and can grow to such staggering heights. They grow all summer long in a vegetative stage until the start of fall, when there is less light, which triggers them into flowering. Indoors, a grower needs to control this light cycle to avoid confusing the plants. Addling light when the plant thinks it is nighttime can ruin a whole crop. Light leaks are a common mistake. If it’s your first time growing cannabis, this will be a bit more of a challenge to keep up. It’s also going to be a bigger investment to start growing, as well as a lot more work.
Steps to Growing Your Own Pot
And there are grow kits that make it easy and accessible. The truth is that there are more ways to cultivate cannabis than there are names for the plant. And every method can grow great, healthy plants. For example, hydroponics might yield more , while soil will grow stronger buds, aeroponics will grow the fastest, and there’s no replacement for growing marijuana outdoors. It’s as easy to overload yourself with options as it is to add too much fertilizer to your nutrient mix. Below, we describe how to do it naturally and with little work on the grower’s part.
This guide was written for marijuana enthusiasts who want a cheap way of growing cannabis plants without the tents, timing, and grow lights . It’s a small step towards greater accessibility for marijuana home growing. So, flip a middle finger to big corporations, break up with your dispensary, and step into the world of DIY weed growing at home– OG style. Growing sticky, smelly cannabis buds is easier and way more rewarding than you think!
A small grow doesn’t necessarily mean small returns, but, you do want to be growing as efficiently as possible. Here are some tips to maximize your tiny space to get the best and biggest returns.
What Your Space Needs
This spreads out the plant’s branches, allowing all nodes to receive more light and also opening up the plant so that middle and lower branches can receive more light. This will give you a level canopy that will fill out with big colas.
Train Your Plants
Be sure to include enough soil in your pots to prevent roots from getting bound. Frequently check to see if roots are exposed. If you see them coming out of the drainage holes at the bottom of the pot, it’s time to transplant it to a bigger pot.
The last step involves curing the bud. “Curing is just as important as the growing process,” Lipton added. “We do a slow cure, which means that it takes anywhere from three to six weeks depending on variety.” Temperature and humidity play a large role during cure and must be maintained to ensure a great final product. “Our actual cure process is somewhat of a secret, so I cannot share the fine details,” Lipton said. “But it’s an art form and extremely crucial to our success.” The reason growers cure bud after harvesting is that it creates a smoother smoke and increases its potency. Detailed recommendations for proper curing can be found online, here and here.
Though the 12-hour interval is fairly universal, knowing exactly when to induce flowering is less clear. For the home grower, it usually comes down to space; the longer one waits to trigger the flowering cycle, the taller their plant will be. A good rule of thumb: cannabis will only continue to grow 30 to 50 percent once the light source is reduced. If the plant is growing in a closet, growers should trigger the flowering cycle, understanding that there must be more than two feet of space between the canopy of the plant throughout the entirety of its life.
Even in our most progressive states, however, the law is far from simple. “In Colorado, it’s now county-specific,” Lipton said. “When the amendment first passed, they said you could grow six plants per person. But now, certain counties and municipalities have come out and said it’s just six per house — there’s no combining plant counts. That means you can have three vegetating and three flowering at any given time.”
Space: 3 x 3 x 5 feet, minimum. “The bigger the space, the better. With all the lights, closets get hot,” Lipton said. That said, closets help growers control light pollution when the plant is in its flowering cycle — one of the main reasons home growers favor them over larger spaces, such as living rooms. “If you have a spare bedroom, or a basement even, you can just use that and close the door,” Lipton said.
Harvest and cure.
Temperature: 68 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit. “A tool you should always have is a little temperature gauge,” Lipton said. “They call them hygrometers. They’re cheap and tell you both the temperature and the humidity.”
To harvest, many growers begin by removing the leaves of the cannabis plant with trim scissors, followed by the buds (using pruners). “We call this bucking,” Lipton said. “Gloves are also extremely important for sanitation reasons as well as to keep your hands from becoming sticky with the resin from the plant.”
Even with a healthy clone, however, cultivating cannabis can be a long and arduous process — especially in tight indoor spaces. “A lot of people think growing is easy, but it’s not,” Lipton said. “You have to be really on it. Not everyone has success, obviously.”
Trigger the flowering cycle.
Cannabis plants yield the highest-quality (and quantity) flowers after maturing. This usually takes about a month to happen. “I recommend planting in a five-gallon Home Depot bucket,” Lipton said. “It’s really important to have proper drainage, so you want to drill some holes in the bottom. The biggest mistake people make is that they overwater and suffocate the roots. Cannabis likes to be watered and dried out before it’s watered again.” During the vegetative cycle, the plant should be exposed to a minimum of 18 hours of light. Remember to open the closet door while the lights are on to prevent the space from heading north of 78 degrees Fahrenheit.
pH of Water: 6.3 to 6.7. “You’ll need a meter that you can stick into your water and tell you the pH,” Lipton said. “You want something between 6.3 to 6.7 pH for watering your plants. That sounds like pretty sophisticated stuff but it’s really not. A lot of times your tap water will be 7.8. You can use what they call pH down. That’s a crucial step.”