Cannabis plants go through a series of stages as they grow and mature, and those different growth stages call for different amounts of light, nutrients, and water.
If you need to determine the sex of your plants (to discard the males), they will start showing sex organs a few weeks into the veg stage. It’s imperative to separate males so they don’t pollinate the females.
How long does it take to grow a marijuana plant?
The growth stages of marijuana can be broken down into four primary stages from seed to harvest:
If you’re growing weed indoors, you can grow whenever you like. Keep in mind that the outside environment will affect your grow space—you may need to add heaters in the winter or fans and ACs in the summer. Other than that, you can start seeds whenever you like and flip them into flower whenever you like, depending on how big you want the plants.
Even if growing outdoors, a lot of growers will start their seeds inside under an artificial light to help them through this delicate stage of marijuana growth.
To properly feed your plants once they start to flower and to initiate the first signs of growing buds, you should check your nutrient manufacturer’s schedule. It is normally around this time at week 2 where you will have to increase flowering nutrients to help your plants reach their maximum yield potential.
In week 5 of flowering, you can observe the buds all over your plant becoming thicker. You may also spot new buds growing in new places such as along the main cola. With buds abounding, your cannabis plants will get fatter every day. This is a surefire sign you are in full flowering mode. At this point, your plant will have a very intensive odour. Ensure that you have a good ventilation system in place if you grow indoors or in a region that doesn’t allow for legal cultivation.
WEEKS 6, 7 AND 8 (LATE FLOWERING STAGE, RIGHT BEFORE HARVEST)
Some of your cannabis plants’ previously white pistil hairs may now be turning darker into a brownish or amber colour. At the same time, when you check the trichomes of your plant, you may spot some of them becoming opaque. The trichomes becoming milky white and the hairs turning darker are all signs of your plants not being too far from harvest.
Depending on the flowering time of your particular strain, the time for flushing your cannabis plant is normally two weeks before harvest. When you “flush,” you stop administering nutrients and give the plant only plain, pH-balanced water in these final weeks. This will get rid of (flush out) salts and minerals in the soil which will make for a better and more pure-tasting bud. Otherwise, your smoke will be quite harsh and can have an unpleasant, chemical taste.
Also, remember to always trim yellow or dead foliage during flowering. While your plants should stay lush and green up until about week four, some of their foliage will stop thriving as they devote more energy to bud production. This is completely normal, and you can safely remove any leaves that turn yellow or dry out completely.
After flowering for around five weeks, there are now solid cannabinoid-dripping buds found on your plants, which are still growing and expanding—but the biggest part of their development is already behind them. Your flowering plants should still be lovely and green as your ladies are firing up their THC production on all cylinders. The leaves around the buds are also becoming stickier, and the many THC-rich trichomes produced on them will later be used for making a nice lump of hash.
With these basic products, you will be able to grow yourself a great harvest. If plants are healthy, then you can apply a number of additional products like a bloom stimulator and/or boosters and enzymes. If your plants are struggling, however, it doesn’t make much sense to add these often-expensive products as they can only help as long as everything else is going smoothly. As newcomers tend to make mistakes, these products will in all likelihood be overkill and are not really necessary.
USING BLOOM BOOSTERS
After weeks of mounting excitement, the long-awaited moment for harvest is finally within arm’s reach. Plants have moved quickly through their first three weeks of flowering, undergoing a real transformation. White pistils have emerged, forming the foundation for the buds over which you have been drooling in anticipation.
Flowering cannabis plants have additional demands for phosphorus and potassium, so it’s worth giving them PK 13/14 as extra stimulation for flower development. These substances are found in every basic nutrient mix, but in lower volumes. With some additional PK 13/14, you can get denser and more compact buds. If you are new to growing, it can be best to start with basic cannabis nutrients with NPK (nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium), plus a PK 13/14 additive for flowering and a root stimulator.
As long as you have taken good care of your plants, watering them well and not administering too many nutes, the very sight of your garden should be enough to get your mouth watering. No matter if you’re growing indoors under a grow light or outside under the sun, the many resin glands all over your plant sparkle as they dance in the light.