Do you want to produce cannabis at home? Growing your own plant from a seedling to a mature woman may be an extremely gratifying experience.
While it’s possible to create an advanced cultivation system that will bring plants to the top of their game, there’s something to be said for beginning simple and adapting your technique as you go.
This intermediate tutorial will go through the fundamentals of indoor cannabis cultivation and provide some useful hints and techniques for making your indoor farm enjoyable and instructive.
Seed or clone?
With a lot of options to consider, choosing the ideal plant might be a difficult task. Your mind may well go straight to strains you’re familiar with and enjoy, or you may wonder which cultivars are most simple to grow. But let’s start at the beginning with your young seedling. There are two methods for getting your cannabis garden started: by propagating from seed or cutting off a section of another plant and growing it from scratch.
The simplest method is to start with a clone, which is a cannabis seedling removed from the stem of a more mature female plant.
The best course of action is to start with a clone, a cannabis seedling that has been taken from a more mature female plant. All you have to do now is buy one from a dispensary and take it home. Another benefit is that clones eliminate the hassle of sexing since they are all created from female plants.
What about seeds? While seeds take longer and require more effort than clones, they have certain advantages. When it comes to seed versus live clone purchases, you’ll almost certainly have a wider selection. There are several seed shops out there, the majority of which sell online and can be delivered to your home right away. Each of these seed sellers will most likely carry a broader range of genes than a dispensary does.
During the germination process, your germinated seed will be particularly susceptible to pests, infection, and major changes in its environment.
Because germination is a sensitive time in the plant’s growth, you’ll need to be particularly attentive to your germinated seed.
Finally, while feminized seeds are readily available, there’s always the chance that you’ll get a male or two in the mix. This implies you’ll have to figure out how to tell male and female plants apart.
What is soil, and what is soilless? That’s the question. It might be as simple as planting a seedling in some potting soil for a novice home grower. Many home growers, on the other hand, get really into all of the techniques for improving soil and making it ideal for cannabis plants, such as developing their own super soil or preparing the ideal compost tea.
Why risk failure by going against centuries of cannabis history and changing something that has worked for millennia? Cannabis originated and thrived in soil for thousands of years, so why tamper with perfection?
Why risk failure when the soil is so good? “Cleanliness is a problem if you’re growing with dirt. It’s most likely to attract insects and it seems to accumulate in my experience,” said Jimmy B Harvests, a YouTuber that documents his cannabis-growing experiences at home. Soil has been the medium through which cannabis evolved and flourished for thousands of years; therefore, why tamper with success? In his opinion, “cleanliness is definitely an issue” when growing marijuana indoors.
“This is where hydroponics shines for me. You don’t need a sophisticated hydroponic system; all you need are small plants and a bucket for bigger ones. Hydroponics are by far the most simple method to grow plants, which makes them extremely ‘set it and forget it.’ I find soil to be more difficult to water properly,” stated Jimmy.
Soil and hydroponics are two of the many alternatives for cultivating mediums, which is another preferred by home gardeners. “It’s quite enjoyable to try something new, such as coco coir. This grow medium gives you far more control over nutrients, resulting in much greater yield and quality.” said Samuel Belanger of GrowBuds.
You may make nutrients as simple or as complicated as you like, much like with other cannabis products. Cannabis has distinct nutritional needs throughout every stage of its growth cycle, and these requirements change as it progresses from a seedling to a plant to a flower.
Synthetic chemical nutrient solutions are often used to supplement hydroponic farming systems since they are less expensive and highly efficient. Since synthetic formulations are less costly and more effective, growers frequently utilize them when growing in soil. Liquid nutrients can be relatively basic or quite complicated, with a catch-all vegetative growth mix and another for bloom development.
There are alternative natural techniques to fertilize and supply nutrients for soil-based plants, such as super soil and compost teas, or by adding worm castings to the soil. Many home gardeners utilize items from their own kitchens to complement nutrients, such as banana peels for potassium or eggshells for calcium. But can you just throw these things in a pot of dirt willy nilly?
“Food items in the house may be composted and combined into the growing medium, but effective composting is crucial in order for those nutrients to become bio-available to the plant’s roots. Those who want to compost or vermicompost should conduct research on their systems to maximize food waste conversion into usable plant nutrition,” said Michael Esposito, a scientist and microbiologist at MCR Laboratories.
In the vegetation stage, seedlings and developing plants require a lot of light. These plants should have at least 12 and ideally 18 hours of direct sunshine each day, which means you’ll need to plan your growth cycle to take advantage of the increasingly lengthy summer days.
While it is possible to produce a cannabis plant in your living room without using additional lighting, adding just one grow light may provide you a lot of bang for your buck when it comes to output and yield.
While it is conceivable to grow a cannabis plant in your living room without additional lighting, adding even just one grow light can increase growth yield.
“It’s a go-between for pesticides. It’s so important that we don’t just add to the pollution problem but also address why it is there in the first place,” says David. “As far as any equipment to help you grow better, it will almost certainly be grow lights. Everything else is gravy as you move forward and attempt to take it to the next level, but it isn’t necessary. There’d be no point in investing in anything other than a light as your initial piece of equipment.” Jimmy added.
How do you go about selecting which grow lights to use if you add artificial illumination to your space? There are several alternatives for amateur growers these days, such as compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) and light-emitting diodes (LEDs). Because of their different costs, features, and benefits, each has advantages and disadvantages in terms of initial investment, useful life, energy efficiency, and ease of use. Do some research to figure out which is the best option for your needs and cultivation area; a tiny timer to plug the light into and turn it off at night would be an excellent addition.”
While light is quite crucial to the success of your indoor marijuana garden, we’d be derelict if we didn’t mention dark as well. Photoperiod cannabis plants require 12 hours of continuous darkness to progress from vegetative growth into flower development, so if you can’t eliminate overnight lighting in your grow room, consider choosing an autoflower variety.
Many new plant parents have difficulty with watering. Are you delivering too much, too little, or just enough? Is it best to use reverse osmosis or filtered water? Novice cannabis cultivators should start basic.
For the most part, using tap water should be sufficient for home growers. However, it’s essential to have a clear image of what’s in your water in order to be confident.
A water analysis kit from your local hardware store would be useful, according to cannabis cultivation equipment firm Plan C Design’s Bryan Mitchel. “Be sure to check the chloramine and chlorine section. Chloramine is harmful to a plant’s roots and must be filtered out of the water before it can be utilized with a KDF (kinetic discharge flux) filter. If your chlorine levels are more than 30 ppm (parts per million), leave the water to stand overnight with an airstone in it,” he added.
You may also need to change the pH since it has a significant impact on your plant’s overall health. Cannabis plants require a pH of 5.8 to 6.2, so investing in an inexpensive pH solution and a testing kit is crucial for maintaining their happiness.
What about frequency? Stick your finger into the soil to approximately your first knuckle if you’re growing in dirt. If it’s moist, don’t water yet. Wait until it’s completely dry. Other grow mediums, such as coco coir, are a bit more difficult because to their frequency and effort requirements. Coco necessitates “fertigation,” which is fertilization plus irrigation. Because coco doesn’t retain nutrients the way soil or hydroponic solution does, you must feed your plant every time you water it. Even when wet, coco requires frequent watering due to its low nutrient retention capacity.
Hydroponic plants have access to water whenever they need it, but you should peek at them every now and then for mold or a graying root structure, which might indicate that it’s time to empty your reservoir, clean your pot, and give a fresh supply of water and nutrients.
Temperature and humidity
Plants, like you, want to be at ease. What does it mean to be “comfortable” for a cannabis plant? In general, your home’s environment will be pleasant enough; however, there are a few issues to consider.
Cannabis plants can withstand a temperature range of approximately 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 29 Celsius) during the day and 55 to 75 Fahrenheit (13 to 24 Celsius) at night. However, optimal temperature requirements will vary depending on the strain and genetics.
Remember, too, that additional grow lights can raise the temperature around your plants. This is especially critical in a confined environment like a grow tent that doesn’t get much ventilation. In these circumstances, you may require an exhaust fan to ensure adequate ventilation.
Humidity requirements differ with each plant’s life cycle. Seedlings and juvenile plants require humidity levels of approximately 70%. Plants in the vegetative state can tolerate humidity levels of 40% to 70%, although experts feel that 55% is a reasonable happy medium. It’s critical to maintain a low humidity level of around 40 percent during the flowering period.
Remember to take things slowly when you’re adding a humidifier, dehumidifier, air conditioner, or heater to adjust humidity. We require consistent temperature and humidity in order for the plant’s environment to be stable. The plant may be affected by rapid changes in temperature or humidity, and this can lead to stress.
Another way to make things more comfortable for your plants is with good air circulation.
“Airflow is also an important component of producing healthy, robust cannabis plants, because it resembles natural conditions and helps mold ward off indoor plants, as well as keeping indoor crops resilient,” Bill Campbell, the director of cultivation for CAMP.
The bottom line
If you’re new to growing marijuana indoors, it doesn’t have to be frightening or complex. You may start simple and lean into the learning curve while still achieving great results by building an advanced indoor system that will maximize yields and improve quality. With a little effort and plenty of care, your abilities and outcomes will advance with each plant you cultivate.