The time of year is near, and the cannabis gods are ringing in our ears. When the question arises on where to start with your springtime cannabis grow, which genetics you choose will play in your environmental favor.
Many questions will arise, and hopefully after a little read you will feel a lot more confident in your decision in growing this magical cannabis plant, or at least refresh your seasoned growing skills. For everyone from commercial
The First Steps to Growing a Cannabis Plant
Cannabis seeds, clones, feminized, auto, regular – as you can see, for some novice growers even just getting your feet wet can feel a little overwhelming. Depending on your growing education level and location the options may become a lot clearer through the haze.
Your first decision to make when you set out to grow marijuana is to choose from already rooted clones or going
Many larger capacity growers choose the rooted clone route as it cuts down a lot of man hours in germination prep time alone. After you have decided, you now dabble into what type of cannabis seed or clone would work best for you.
Choosing Your Cannabis Seeds and Clones
Regular Seeds – Your typical cannabis seeds will consist of both male and female plants. More common preferred by more advanced growers and breeders alike. More caution must be taken while plants mature as this is the time the plants will reveal their gender either male or female, and it’s pretty common knowledge that female cannabis plants are typically the end goal here. If breeding isn’t in your future, this is when would carefully bag and remove all male plants. Flower will begin with increased hours of darkness most beginning around the 12-hour mark.
Feminized Seeds – Taking the guessing work out of it for you as these seeds are already genetically identified as producing female plants. Many novice growers will tend to choose this type as you plant the amount of total plants you want eliminating wasted time and space. Overall price for feminized seeds is greater then regular seeds even when dealing with the same strain.
Automatic Seeds – Auto seed plants will never be purchased as a clone. This type of cannabis plant has a predetermined life cycle. Meaning flower will initiate from a set point from germination, eliminating the benefits of snipping clones. If growing outdoors, your local climate and local weather will be important to take into consideration. Many northern climate growers will reek the benefits of choosing this option as flowering happens well before mother nature takes a turn. If started early enough it is very possible to have two successful harvests in one outdoor season.
Cannabis Strains to Plant this Spring
Now it is best to not rush out and buy the flashiest strain name you see, or even your favorite strain without putting some thought into it. I know the urge can be plenty. With a little background information on the traits of each specific strain you can and will save yourself some major headaches.
Depending on where in the world you live or plan on growing, specifics attributes for example mold resistant or cold weather resistance could play a major role in having a successful harvest or a complete loss of a season. Below I will include a list of known troopers that seem to handle what most strains cannot.
From sativa strains to indica strains and hybrids, there are plenty of options out there for which cannabis plants you want to grow.
Afghan Kush – A hearty landrace strain that has proven to be adaptive to many different climate conditions.
Strawberry Cough – A flavorful strain with the ability to battle high levels of heat and humidity. Common strain grown by many first time growers.
Frisian Duck – An absolute machine when it comes to defending against pathogens and molds. Not your typical leaf structure making having the appearance of a ducks foot.
Critical – Overall strong and easy to grow cannabis plant. Resistant to cooler temperatures with a shortened flowering time making it appealing to most growers.
Blue Cheese – Built for the cooler days and nights. This plant can handle basically anything mother nature can toss at it. It isn’t just a tough plant, but it also can provide a powerful blast of terpenes for its users.
Northern Lights – A common breeder’s strain as its traits are very welcoming. It handles the cooler temperatures with ease and higher humidity levels without so much worry of the enemy to both indoor growers and outdoor growers alike – mold.
Springtime Cannabis: Planting Seeds & Germination
After you have chosen your top strain or strains you wish to run this springtime season, you are now ready to germinate those magical beans. There are several different methods each having there own pros and cons. You simply have to pick one and roll with it, and you’ll be on your way to successfully growing cannabis.
Direct Sow – Many people will choose to direct sow in there growing medium for simplicity reasons as well as minimizing the risk of shock to the newly grown tap root. This method is as simple as watering your growing medium, poking a small indent into dirt and dropping your seed in, lightly covering. For many growers this may be the easiest choice but if you tend to have a heavy hand when watering you may want to try this next method.
Planting Up – This is a method where you gradually over time increase the size of your growing container. You can direct sow again or use the next method I will speak of for initial germination. As a general best practice, I like to stick to upsizing the pot once the leaves hit the outer edge of current growing container. Doing this gives the grower a lot more wiggle room when it comes to watering. Seeing how the pot is smaller it holds less medium therefore if overwatering does happen in beginning the growing medium will dry out a lot faster, aiding in this very easy mistake.
Paper Towel Method – I see more and more growers choosing this option. The benefits are daily if not hourly updates on tap root growth as well eating up a lot less grow space in the beginning when germinating several seeds. Many growers will add a sprinkle of mycorrhizae to aid in root development and transplant shock when the time comes. There are several risks to this method as the fragile tap root is exposed and must be handled with extreme care. Ideally tweezers should be used to handle the seed not touching the tap root at all.
Floating Method – This method is exactly as it sounds. You simply drop your seeds in a cup of non chlorinated water in a warm dark location. The seeds will float on top the water allowing the tap root to crack the seed shell and start its life. Many growers will combine this method for 24 hrs then followed by the paper towel method. The Results are speeding up the germination time when compared to paper towel method alone.
In addition to cannabis, several different plants flowers or herbs can play a large role in a happy (and if needed, a concealed environment). Especially for outdoor growers, companion plants will be a great addition to your cannabis garden.
Alfalfa – If working with a more compact soil, alfalfa’s long deep roots can help loosen aiding in proper aeration of soil.
Basil – Special ability to repel insects by releasing a natural insecticide from its foliage.
Corn – great for giving you that natural fence keeping prying eyes from you hard work.
Marigolds – colourful and scent full flower which can help attract bugs like aphids away from your cannabis plants.
At the end of the day, growing a springtime cannabis plant can be as easy or as challenging as you like. I truly believe all skill levels of gardeners can have a blast growing this plant. The fast growth and explosive colors make for an eye dropping experience.