How to Grow Cannabis - 10 Easy Steps All Rookies
Posted by Danny Donchev
Let’s face it. It’s the dream of every stoner to grow their own weed. Not only is the user assured of top quality bud but an endless supply to use whenever and however. Like driving a car or piloting a plane, you need to learn the skills for growing marijuana indoors.
Yes, marijuana is a weed and can grow anywhere outdoors without a special care. When it comes to growing marijuana indoors, it is important to master the art and science behind it.
In this guide on how to grow cannabis, you will learn how to choose your strain, growing room and grow lights among other requirements.
An important point to remember. Don’t be stoned when doing this. Keep that for later.
Now, let’s begin.
Step One – Choosing your growing space:
Now that you are planning on growing weed indoors, how much space have you set aside? Many people dedicate an entire room. Which means more plants and harvest while others use growing tents.
One thing you need to know about growing space is that it is dictated by the number of marijuana plants you intend to grow. So, if you intend to grow more plants, then using an entire room is recommended.
If you have limited space, using a small container or growing tent is the best way to go. While you may have a lower yield per plant, you can still have a higher yield overall especially when you use the SCROG method.
Have two or more rooms? You can grow more plants assuring you of a continuous crop throughout the year. If you own your own home, you can dedicate a spare bedroom or two. Alternatively, you can use your garage and if need be, your basement.
Step Two – Choosing your grow lights:
Apart from your growing medium and seeds, grow lights are the number one environmental factor that determines the quality and quantity of your buds. To help you select the best, we have compiled the following mini guide for you.
When it comes to grow lights, there are 7 types. For the purposes of your experience (rookie) and budget, we will stick with three.
LED Lights – as one of the most popular grow lights, LEDs consume less energy, they are affordable and have a long lifespan. Also, they generate the full spectrum minus the heat. Suitable for rookies on a budget.
High-intensity discharge lights – as the industry standard, they produce more lumens per watt. They also generate the full spectrum of light. Two types are available – Metal Halides and High-Pressure Sodium lights. To get better yield and quality bud, we recommend HIDs with digital ballasts.
Fluorescent grow lights – much cheaper than HID. Plus they come as a single package (reflector, ballast, and bulbs). Problem is, they generate fewer lumens per watt and need a lot of space.
Step Three – Selecting your strain:
Now that you have chosen both the growing space and grow lights, its time to choose your strain. There are two types – Cannabis indica, Cannabis sativa, and hybrids. Cannabis indica or cookie is bushier and yields fatter buds during harvest time. This is the same for hybrids or kushes. For Cannabis sativa, the plants are tall and yield smaller buds.
Like any other plant, each of the strain above requires their own growing environment, training methods, and nutrition. So, before choosing your strain, take time to research. This will allow you to know their growing conditions and other benefits.
Step Four – Seeds vs. Clones- which is the best:
Seeds are perfect for rookies. How? They are easier to obtain, easier to grow and they are sources of all genetics. If you want to create your own strain, seeds are the best option.
Clones are perfect for intermediates and experienced growers. Not only will they get you up and running much faster than seeds but you will grow stronger plants. Also, you can determine the sex of the plant at this stage.
So, if you have the time to pop seeds and want to grow your own strain, then we recommend you go with seeds. For a quick turn around and less investment, we recommend you find clones.
Step Five – Choose the best ventilation system:
Cannabis plants need fresh air to grow and yield quality buds.
There are three components required for a top-notch ventilation system:
Industrial fan – designed to transport a lot of air, industrial fans can work round the clock. When shopping, you should find a 4 inch and a 6-inch fan. If you are not using a filter, a 4-inch fan will do but if you are using a filter, choose the 6-inch fan. Add a fan speed controller to save on electricity and reduce noise.
Filter – since you don’t want to bother your neighbors with the strong smell, having a filter is recommended. Filters have activated charcoal and should be installed in front of the fan. Remember, the activated charcoal should be replaced every 6 months.
Duct – there is not much we can say about ducts but they direct the old air from your growing room to the outside.
Step Six – Soil vs. Hydroponics vs. Coco:
Choosing the medium for your strain is very important. For starters, your marijuana plants depend on nutrients to grow and yield quality buds. Also, it helps to provide stability to your plants. The three popular growing mediums include:
Soil – as the most popular, all-purpose medium, the soil is great for rookies. It retains nutrients than other mediums and provides better support to your plants. The problem is, your plants will take longer to grow in soil and nutrients take longer to assimilate.
Coco – as a medium, it retains nutrients better than hydroponics but does not hold them long compared to soil. Also, plants take longer to grow than hydroponics but slower than in soil. Great for advanced growers. It has a few cons though. If the coco is not mixed well, you can increase the pH levels for your plants and harm them.
Hydroponics – as a soil-less way of growing cannabis, hydroponics is less messy than soil and allows plants to grow fast. This is because your cannabis plants absorb nutrients much faster. Problem is there is no buffer and you are likely to experience nutrients spikes. Recommended for advanced growers.
Step Seven – Setting up the growing room:
Now that you have all the requirements for growing your cannabis, its time to set up everything from the grow lights to the industrial fan and/or growing containers. Let’s begin with the grow lights. Depending on the growing lights, you need to install them 20 to 30 inches above your pants. This is largely influenced by the height of your room and the intensity of your lights. For your industrial fan, filter, and duct, find a suitable spot where old air flows outside and fresh air inside.
Since you are a rookie, start by growing your seeds in starter cells or grow them in your large pots which we assume are neatly arranged around the room. To ensure your seeds grow into healthy plants, water them. If your water is hard, use a reverse osmosis machine to soften it. Also, follow the manufacturer’s directions when it comes to nutrient dosages for your plant.
Step Eight – Transplanting your seedlings:
If you have grown your seeds in starter cells, transplanting them to the large pot is needed. This is the vegetative stage of growth and starts 1 to 2 weeks after planting. At this stage, your plants create vital structures required for proper growth.
To transplant your seedlings from the starter cells, make sure the medium has hardened and that your seedlings have lots of roots. It is also important to ensure that your grow lights do not overpower your plants.
To ensure transplanting is successful, prepare 1 to 2-gallon pots. Start by filling the pots with soil. Shake the pot to remove the air pockets. This also helps to create a fill line. Dig a small hole the size of your starter cell in preparation of the transplant.
Take your seedlings from the starter cell and transfer to your pot. Make sure the medium around the seedling is intact. After transplanting, water the plants.
Step Nine – Maintaining your marijuana plants:
Now that you have transplanted your cannabis plants, all that is remaining is to water the plants, add nutrients, prune the plants and check for pests. If you find any pests, the best way to get rid of them is by using natural pesticide.
If your cannabis plants start to show signs of fungal and bacterial infection, spray your plants with natural pesticide. Also, you can give your plants more vitamins to help them fight the infection on their own. If the infection is far too long, get rid of the plants by uprooting it. Do so carefully to prevent the spreading of spores.
Before using the natural pesticide or uprooting your ill cannabis plants, make sure you wear a protective outfit.
Step Ten – Harvesting your buds:
Harvesting should start 50 to 60 days since planting. To know if your marijuana plants are ready for harvesting, check the buds. If white hairs are growing and some are darkening and curling, then it's time.
To harvest your plants, chop your plants down – branch by branch or the whole plant. Remove excess fan leaves and dry them. To dry your harvest, use a drying rack. Make sure the room temperature in the drying area is 70 degrees F and 50% humidity. In your drying area, hang your plants upside down.
You can use clothes hangers or pins. Drying takes 3 to 7 days. Afterward, start curing.
There you have it. 10 easy to follow steps any rookie can use to grow their own strain. As you continue growing your own marijuana, your experience will increase. This means you will be in a position to alter your growing room, use better equipment and techniques. Also, you will be in a better position to train other interested growers.
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