10 Things to Know Before You Grow Marijuana

Things to know before you begin to grow your own marijuana

Growing marijuana doesn’t need to be difficult or time-consuming. Producing more yield can be a bit daunting, but here are ten things to help.

1. Proper air flow is essential

Whether using soil or hydroponics, getting the right air circulation in the growing room is essential for the health of your cannabis plant. To get great air flow indoors for your plant, use exhaust fans. They will pull fresh air into the room and warm air out.

2. Light = greater yield

When it comes to growing marijuana, a great lighting setup, complete with ballast, hood, and bulb, is a top priority for a quality product.10 Things to Know Before You Grow Marijuana

3. Using mylar generates more from your lights

Mylar is a great tool for making the most of your lighting system. Since it’s great for reflecting light, putting mylar on the walls can help your grow room get the amount of light it needs.

4. Maintain ideal air temperature

To avoid stunting or killing your plants, maintain the ideal temperature of 72-76 degrees Fahrenheit. An air conditioning system may be needed for your grow room.

5. Use controls for easier growing

To avoid hurting your plants from forgetting to turn something on or off, consider controls or sensors to regulate temperature, light, and even carbon dioxide.

6. Nutrient-rich soil

If you are growing marijuana with soil, presuming it has the proper nutrients, will allow your plants to produce a high-quality product. Quality organic gardening soil mixed with compost will allow you to grow better cannabis.

7. Practice pest control

For a healthy marijuana garden, pest control is vital. Consider keeping organic soap, pest deterrents, and even lady bugs in your grow area to keep mites and mildew away.

8. Use the right containers for soil-growing

If you are growing with soil, the container you use plays a huge role in the health of your plant. Make sure that your container allows for proper drainage to keep roots from rotting. Also, consider using a large container (such as a 15 to 25 gallon bucket) to give your plants’ roots room to expand.

9. Hydroponics can yield greater results

Using hydroponics can be difficult, but utilizing them properly allows you to grow a thriving plant much faster. If you’re not the hydroponics novice yet, consider a hydroponics kit to help in the starting process.

10. Know when to harvest

Harvesting your weed at different times will produce different effects. Harvesting your marijuana buds when 50%-70% of the white hairs have darkened will retain higher THC content whereas harvesting when 70%-90% of the hairs are dark, this will produce weed with a more calming effect.

Best Fertilizers to Grow Marijuana

Organic fertilizers are becoming more popular to growing weed or Medical Marijuana

Organic fertilizers are becoming more popular

It’s necessary to feed your marijuana plants the food that will help them grow and thrive: nutrients and fertilizer. There are many types and brands on the market, from organic to chemical and everything in between. You can even make your own fertilizer at home so you know exactly what goes into it. Here we explore the types and brands of fertilizers and their price ranges to help you make a wise decision.

Germination Phase to Grow Marijuana

During this phase, avoid the use of fertilizers in soil, as they can destroy your fragile sprouts. At this time, tomato soils will work fine until it’s time to add nutrients and fertilizers, says Mary Jane’s Garden.

Vegetative Phase

It’s best to use fertilizers like NPK at this point to allow your plants to grow, thrive and mature. You’ll spend about $20 for 16 ounces. This is a milder fertilizer because using full strength at this stage will have adverse effects on your plants. As you get more experienced, you can experiment on ways to dilute your fertilizer to the perfect strength. Frequency depends on personal preference — some growers like to fertilize a little each day or in bigger amounts twice a week.

Flowering Phase

Up the ratio of phosphorus to your crop for nice, strong flowers. Just don’t add too much or you’ll burn the plant. As your plants grow, you’ll need to increase the amount of fertilizer. Make sure you’re including enough calcium, sulfur and magnesium to get the best yields. The perfect balance is necessary here and you’ll need to do your research on what’s right for your type and size of crop. Too much and you’ll kill them; too little and you’ll starve them. Proven fertilizer brands to try at this point include good ‘ole Miracle-Gro, which will set you back only about $20 for five pounds. You can try making your own fertilizer of a mixture of urine and water but make sure you dilute it plenty so as not to burn your plants with the acidic content of the urine. Composting is another great homemade, organic way to fertilize and grow your marijuana crop.

Pre-Harvest Phase

Two weeks before you expect to harvest, stop the use of fertilizers to avoid any chemical traces in the plant when ready for consumption. Use fresh water to get rid of lasting fertilizer residue on the leaves and flowers. Water your plants regularly during these two weeks to ensure the best outcome.

How to Grow Auto Flowering Cannabis Seeds

If you haven’t heard about how to grow auto flowering cannabis, the term refers to those plants which do not require a specifically timed light cycle, and will instead flower all by themselves, following a period of approximately three weeks in a vegetative state.

The auto-flowering plants are derived from cross-breeding with cannabis ruderalis, which is sub-species of cannabis renowned for its ability to auto-flower, as well as its relatively short stature. By crossing ruderalis with indica or sativa strains, you can create a plant which grows and flowers all on its own, irrespective of photoperiods.

Why grow auto-flowering plants?

The real advantage of growing auto-flowering plants is that they are not subject to any lighting requirements, and will produce buds regardless of how much sunlight they receive.

If plants get more than 12 hours of sunlight each day, it won’t be a problem, and they will still produce bigger buds than most other cannabis plants. In addition, if you have a discreet growing operation, these plants are much smaller than normal cannabis plants, and will attract far less attention from curious neighbors.

How to grow auto-flowers

These plants typically grow very quickly, so more preparation is needed upfront to be ready for that rapid maturity. While the plants are in vegetative phase, which could be as short as two weeks, you’ll need to train the plants by topping each plant after it develops at least three nodes. Alternatively, you can simply pull the plants down in a sideways direction to force new upward growth. Once plants begin to flower, no further topping should be done, and pruning should be discontinued after one week.

Ideally these plants should be grown in a greenhouse, because the best time to start them is either in March or September. At this time of year, it could still be chilly and rainy, and plants will need warmth without excess rain. Greenhouse growing will eliminate both of these potential hazards, and provide the most favorable conditions for flourishing.

Less feeding is required by auto-flowering plants, because they do not spend long in the vegetative state, and because they will mature into smaller plants anyway. This means feedings should be light, even with typically necessary components like nitrogen. Since they grow quickly, the overarching canopy is always less pronounced, and buds appear further down on the plant.

Establish a continuous growing process

This means that you should harvest in a sequential manner, taking the colas first, while allowing a little more time for the buds to develop and get denser. While you are in the harvesting process, it’s a good idea to pop the seeds from your plants, so you can begin preparing for your next crop. You can even plant these seeds immediately and in the same greenhouse room as your mature plants, since lighting requirements are not an issue for either group.

To get your initial batch of seeds, you can search online for seed banks, but make sure to pay close attention to the legal requirements for ordering, to make sure you don’t run afoul of local or interstate authorities.

Avoid These Common Mistakes When Growing Marijuana

When you’re just starting out to grow your own marijuana, there are a lot of pitfalls along the path which might prevent you from achieving the kind of success you’ve been dreaming about.

While marijuana cultivation is something that practically anyone can do successfully, there are also some very common beginner mistakes that most people are unprepared for, and which cause them to mishandle the first few attempts at home growing.

Here are some of the most common rookie mistakes, and how to avoid them.

1. Keep it to yourself

While more and more states are legalizing marijuana for medical and recreational use, it’s still illegal to grow your own cannabis throughout the majority of states in this country.

The more people you talk to about your cannabis-growing enterprise, the more likely someone will blow the whistle on you. Even if the days are over where you might get hauled into jail, when the authorities come down on you, your stash will be confiscated at the very least, and they’ll be keeping an eye on you after.

2. Window-growing doesn’t work

By far the best source of light for plants is the sun, but placing your plants by a window to catch the sunlight simply doesn’t work in the vast majority of cases.

Cannabis plants need more light than the daylight hours provide, and to even catch all that sunlight you’d have to be moving your plants from window to window to follow the path of the sun.

If you’re growing your own marijuana plants indoors, it will be well worth your while to invest in a lighting system that’s consistent and controllable.

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3. Use the right fertilizer and soil

It’s not a good idea to just grab any fertilizer and any kind of soil from your garden store, and assume that it will grow healthy marijuana plants for you.

Choose a fertilizer that’s higher in nitrogen than in phosphorus or potassium, and don’t just use ordinary outdoor soil for your plants – make sure that the soil in your pots has ample fertilizer, and test the pH balance to make sure that it’s close to the middle, at around 7.0.

4. Don’t let plant roots become smothered

Cannabis plants grow very quickly, and they shoot roots down the sides of your pot and to the bottom, a lot faster than you might think.

Once your plants have become established, they should quickly be transferred to larger pots, to give those roots room to grow and spread, otherwise the plants might die.

5. Educate yourself

One of the best things you can do to avoid beginner mistakes is to educate yourself about the cultivation of marijuana.

There’s a vast amount of literature available on the subject, and by absorbing some of this great information, you’ll be much less likely to be surprised by developments with your plants, and you’ll be much better prepared for eventualities.

The more you know about cannabis growing, the more successful you’ll be, and the greater the likelihood that you have strong, healthy cannabis plants, time after time.