It is important for every grower to get a good harvest. Of course, in order to achieve high performance, you need to understand your own business. One of the important requirements is to be well-versed in the growth stages of cannabis. Without knowing these stages and their distinctive features for each type of cannabis, you can simply ruin the yield.
The main stages of growth of marijuana – from germination to harvest
Experts distinguish 5 stages of cannabis growth:
Germination and shoots;
Vegetative stage (vega);
For different cannabis strains and hybrids, the timing and characteristics of these stages of cannabis growth can be quite different. Therefore, it is necessary to dwell in more detail on each of the stages.
Germination and shoots
The cannabis seed is a whole small world from which a strong and sturdy plant is born. Seed germination is the appearance of the first rudiments of the root system. And in order for the seed to “come to life”, that is, to sprout, it is necessary that the following conditions are met:
The air temperature should be between 21 and 32 degrees Celsius;
Seeds must be kept in a humid environment at all times;
The light intensity should be low enough. It is recommended to store containers away from natural and artificial light.
No professional grower will just plant seeds in the ground. Many people pre-soak them in mineral solution or filtered water. Sometimes seeds germinate in a hydrogel. And in general, there are a lot of germination methods. The main goal at this stage is to achieve a large percentage of seed germination. No fertilization is applied at this stage of cannabis growth.
Vegetative growth stage of marijuana
Vegetation is the period in the development of feminized and regular cannabis from the moment the first shoots emerge until the beginning of flowering. At this time, the plants grow and develop most actively, the bushes become noticeably larger, acquire shoots and lush foliage. It is very important to provide cannabis during the veg stage with good feeding, as well as to ensure that the temperature, humidity and degree of aeration are within the normal range.
The average duration is 2 to 4 weeks. Under natural conditions, plants switch to flowering mode when the daylight hours are reduced to 12 hours. The recommended air temperature at this time for Indica cannabis is 18 to 28 degrees. Plus, high humidity and complex fertilizers are recommended.
In natural conditions, it can last for months. But indoors, the Sativa subspecies can be transformed into flowering almost immediately after germination. The fact is that, in fact, even during the flowering period, active vegetative growth of cannabis continues. For Sativa at the vega stage, a stable temperature without drops is recommended – 20-28 degrees. It is best to use potash, nitrogen or complex fertilizers as fertilizers.
The average growing season is two weeks. It does not depend on the light period and other factors. In different conditions, plants go through the same growing season. For autoflowers during the vega period, it is recommended to adhere to high humidity, air temperatures from 18 to 28 degrees, and also use fertilizers based on potassium and nitrogen.
This is one of the longest life stages of cannabis. Autoflowers bloom faster than others. The slowest are the sativa varieties of marijuana. Like the rest of the developmental stages of marijuana, flowering is an essential part of growth. Photoperiodic varieties should be transferred to flowering when the bushes reach the desired size (different values for each variety). With the transition to 12-hour daylight hours, the ganja begins to bloom.
The flowering stage itself is divided into three stages:
Pre-flowering – the appearance of the first buds;
Flowering – the most active formation of inflorescences, the appearance of trichomes;
Ripening is the final stage of flowering, at the end of which it is time for harvesting.
Sativa and Indica bloom differently. Indica is highly dependent on the amount of light. The indica fades faster – in 8-10 weeks. And some hybrids can even ripen faster for a couple of weeks. The inflorescences of the indica are heavy but compact. During this time, it is very important to avoid high humidity, as indica plants are prone to mold and mildew growth.
Sativa varieties bloom slowly, but they are less dependent on photoperiod due to their tropical origin. For a Sativa, the average flowering time is around 11 weeks. Light mode should be 12/12. But many growers recommend a couple of hours longer daylight hours. Statistically, the yield becomes slightly higher. When flowering, Sativa requires more phosphorus fertilizers and less nitrogen fertilizers. It is also recommended to use special fertilizers designed specifically for the flowering phase.
It is worth noting that it is at this time that cannabis emits the strongest characteristic aroma. In other stages of the growth of marijuana, it is not so noticeable.
The last stage of cannabis development before harvest is maturation. At this time, the buds turn into dense buds with a lot of trichomes. And it is during ripening that cannabis acquires a large amount of THC, for which a high-quality harvest is valued. When ripe, it is recommended to exclude all fertilizers and water the bushes with exclusively clean water.
Harvest or harvest
All the stages discussed above are stages in the development of marijuana. Harvest is the logical conclusion to all the grower’s work. It is the shortest but most enjoyable phase of the cannabis work. It is recommended to harvest early in the morning as THC is highest during this time. But this is where some growers differ.