Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Cannabis

22 Dec 2017
In this article, I shall answer many questions often associated with the different stages of growing cannabis. Many of the topics covered may be very relevant to you as a grower, whilst some of the questions may have been the same one you were asking yourself last night..


What is the difference between feminized, regular and autoflowering seeds and what is best for me?

The real difference is the customer and what type of grower they are. Regular seeds were the old school originals and many growers nowadays still choose to pheno find from regular seeds and work from there. Feminized seeds are for superb convenience in your grow room, meaning there is no need to sex between males and females resulting in an all female garden. Auto flowering cannabis are popular worldwide and can be grown under any light regime as long as there is at least 6 hours of lighting and the temperatures are not too cold. Otherwise these miracle seeds allow growers indoors and outdoors to grow a miniature version of an existing strain in around 12 weeks, from seed to harvest. Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Cannabis

Why do the seeds I have bought not germinate?

There could a number of variables as to why the seeds you have paid good money for have not germinated. To ensure that you are not at fault, simply drop the seeds in a small glass of water and allow them to sink to the bottom within a 24 hour time frame. If the seeds show signs of opening slightly in the water, it means the seed is now opening. If on the other hand the seeds are duds, then do not get angry and think the seed company are ripping growers off. In many cases you can often contact the company and express your concerns over the quality of the seeds. Good seed banks will take time to respond and find a solution.

If my seeds look undeveloped and a yellow color, should I be concerned?

This is not really a good sign as you often expect seeds to be quite chunky with a detailed pattern printed all over. As a breeder myself, I have produced seeds that have finished a pale yellow color with no patterns or coloring and were smaller than all the other seeds I have ever produced. Again if you are in doubt simply pop the seeds into the glass of water and keep an eye on them.

Can I plant autoflowering seeds when it is not Spring time?

The answer is that you can plant automatic strains anytime of the year, granted you have reasonable conditions, there is no reason you cannot achieve a small bumper harvest even during the most challenging of months. Of course, if you live in Southern Europe, you have a better result than those in Northern Europe.


Why are tops of my freshly rooted clones crisping up and becoming dry?

The reason why your freshly rooted clones are crisping and turning brown, is because the plant did not have chance to harden off properly. Often the clone if struggling to adapt to life outside of the propagator can turn all of the new growth to a dry crisp. The way to void this is to ensure that your clones have a good set of roots jamming out of the sides, before even considering to remove from the warm wet environment they have just climatised to. Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Cannabis

My clones have not rooted after 10 days, why not?

Clones can usually take between 7 to 14 days before showing any tell tale signs of rooting. Cloning cannabis is all about patience and learning what sized clones root quickest and what methods of cloning work best. For example when I take clones, I use a double dip method which means dipping the cut branch into powdered hormone and then covering with a layer of liquid gel hormone. This will guarantee roots every single time, however too much hormone can cause a delay on forming roots, as I have learnt through many experiments of my own. If you are really skeptical and want to check, simply loosen the jiffy and check to see if there is an white bumps forming as the stem becomes a yellow white and grows thick. If your clones are taking a long time, then dipping again into hormone root solution can speed up the process.

Is it a good idea to let the jiffys dry out when the clones are trying to root?

You must ensure that the grow medium the jiffys are in are kept warm and wet. A clone must form root cells and needs darkness and a moist environment to do so. Some propagators come with an added heat mat below to keep the clones warm. These are great especially if the surface the propagator is sat on is cold, however be careful not to dry out the jiffys.

Why do my clones keep on growing mould around the stem and turning to mush?

This can happen when there is too much humidity in the dome and no fresh air has entered or managed to circulate inside. Growers can attend their clone room after leaving them alone to find the stems have grown fluffy white mould and have spread to all parts of the plant, reducing it to a slimy dying plant. Make sure that you check for mould as often as you can if it has happened once. It can be an environmental issue but it could also be a case of human error.


Why is it a good idea to remove all the lower growth below the top nodes?

The main reason is to promote as much growth energy into the parts of the plant, which will be closest to the light once flowering has commenced. in fact the Jungle Boys in America have made this technique famous and is practiced by growers world wide. By removing all growth below the top 2 nodes, then leaving to flower under 12/12 the upper growth is all top bud with no lower waste. Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Cannabis

How much Nitrogen do the plants really need?

During the growing phase, cannabis plants need Nitrogen as well as many other nutritional elements, yet they need Nitrogen to promote healthy leaf sets. Too much Nitrogen can cause Nitrogen toxicity, which will only stunt your growth and become counter productive. I personally use worm castings and seaweed to ensure safe amounts of nitrogen is available in different forms.

Why have my plants turned to a sick yellow and brown colour after a chemical fertiliser was used?

When growing cannabis organically, there is a natural buffering system that occurs within the soil. This can dictate which nutrients are available over a 3-5 day buffering period, which is where the phrase ' Don't Panic It Is Organic ' originates from. If you have become impatient and added a heavy chemical fertiliser, that natural buffering zone will not function and the plant will immediately attempt to balance out the smaller chelated salts. If this happens then a total flush of the medium is required until your root zone is able to buffer and utilise the slow breaking down nutrients again.

How beneficial is it to train and prune plants during veg?

All of the plant training techniques you have heard of, will help strengthen plants, increase flowering sites, produce bigger buds, support buds and increase light uptake efficiency. As Long as you understand how your plant will grow will allow you to decide which technique will work best for you in your grow room.


What is transition feeding and should I completely stop all Nitrogen to the plant?

Transition feeding simply means the point of the light cycle changing to 12/12 and the time frame before switching to blooming nutrients. Many nutrient companies promote low Nitrogen and high Phosphorus and Potassium feeds, yet during the flowering cycle, cannabis plants use more Nitrogen than any other element. So supplying plenty of available Nitrogen is always a good thing in my opinion. Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Cannabis

What is the difference between feeding plain water and flushing?

There is no difference as the whole purpose of flushing your plant is to remove it of all remaining salts. The way to look at flushing is to assume there are built up salts and to allow them to breakdown and totally dissolve, whilst the plant carefully absorbs the last available nutrients. The plants will make a final push and recognise that the end of season is close. This explains why using iced water and ice cubes will shock the plant into turning purple and fully ripen.

How do I get my buds to become dense with good bio mass?

Not having dense hard buds like everyone else can be very frustrating and your confidence in your growing game is so low, all you do is hunt for alleged big yielding strains. You need to feed carbohydrates to your plants which will in turn feed the microbial colony. Adding high doses of P and K will increase flower production but adding a mix of unsulphured molasses will add that thickness hard to touch quality you have always been working towards. Good luck with taking your grow game to the next level. Peace Out! By Stoney Tark Photos courtesy of Dinafem