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Secondary Nutrients (Calcium, Magnesium, Sulfur) for Cannabis

Date 2nd Aug 2013   Comments 2 Comments »

What are secondary nutrients?

Secondary nutrients are generally known as Magnesium , Sulfur and Calcium and because they are needed in smaller amounts than the main elements (N-P-K) they are called secondary nutrients but they are almost as essential to any cannabis plant growth as those three main nutrients. If you are cultivating your autoflower or regular cannabis plants you will need these secondary nutrients to get the most growth possible from your plants and because these three elements are so important many nutrients solutions have them incorporated in their nutrient mix together with the N-P-K (Nitrogen,Phosphorus, Potassium ) ones. And if you don’t have these three secondary nutrients inside your nutrient solution or organic mix then you can use things like Dolomite Lime, Gypsum and magnesium sulfate or Cal-Mag formulas that are provided by all the major nutrient suppliers to manually regulate their dosage and increase your plant strength and yield.

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Inside Vs Outside Autoflower growing

Date 26th Jul 2013   Comments No Comments »

Inside vs outside autoflower growingGrowing autoflowering plants indoors or outdoors is a question many of new growers face when they are just starting their first crops and it is not an easy question to answer because every grow room is different, every outdoor climate has its own advantages and drawbacks and any grower has some limitations or advantages. Because of this much of a variation I would have to write a post for every one of you considering your growing conditions but the main point is that Autoflowers can be grown indoors and outdoors and both environments can yield amazing amounts and grow beautiful healthy plants but both can also give you jsut a couple of grams and stunted growth.

So knowing that I cannot answer this question completely I will try to give inside and outside growing advantages and disadvantages and try to compare some statistics like yield , height ,potency and so on.

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Autoflower ScrOG (Screen Of Green)

Date 2nd Jul 2013   Comments No Comments »

T5 grow scrogWhat is ScrOG

A ScrOG refers to the term Screen of Green and can be interpreted to any method of growing plants that uses a screen of some sort. There are vertical , horizontal and even box screens but they all use a net or a wire to train cannabis in a way that is more efficient for light usage , exposure and ultimately increases your autoflower yield and maximizes the growing space.

Autoflowers and ScrOG?

AUtoflowers flower automatically so there is no way you can vegetate your plant for as long as it spreads through the screen and then start to flower it. This makes Scrogging autoflowering plants a bit more difficult and you need to pay closer attention to what you are doing. Basically there are two types of autoflowers:

And both of these types need different methods for scrogging because the fast flowering regular autoflowers have to be trained much earlier and you can start training them as early as the first or second pair of true fan leafs appear. These plants can also be trained when the flowering starts because they will still grow for a week or a bit longer and you need to maximize the bedsides by training them as fast as they can grow.

The second type the SUPER autoflowers are more longer growing and they have a longer pre-flowering period so you will be able to extend them more through the green screen and get much higher yields. These SUPER plants also can be trained at the first week of flowering but usually growers try to stop training them as soon as those first flowers appear and let the budsides grow through the screen toward the light .

So you can see that as with regular plants autoflowers can also be trained with the Screen of Green method but why is it necessary?

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Foliar Feeding your Autoflowers

Date 9th Jun 2013   Comments No Comments »

foliar feeding cannabis leafWhat is foliar feeding?

Like most gardening terms, “foliar” comes from Latin and means “leaf” (folium”) … so “foliar” is “of the leaf” and “foliar feeding” refers to giving nutrients to the plant via the leaves. Using a fine misting sprayer you gently mist the leaves of your autoflowers with a dilute nutrient solution.

How does it work?

We all know that like all other plants, autoflowers absorb nutrients and water through the roots and we know when to give autoflower nutrients in the regular way. But it is at leaf level that plants convert these elements into useable food and growth through photosynthesis. By applying nutrients direct to the leaf you are sending these straight to where they will be utilised!

In fact tests show that nutrients absorbed through the stomata (on the leaf´s underside) will be found in the roots within 60 minutes.  And a project conducted at Michigan State University, using radio­active tagged nutrients, proved that foliar feeding can be 8 to 10 times more effective than soil feeding.

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Autoflower seed germination

Date 22nd Mar 2013   Comments No Comments »

3 autoflower cannabis seedsAutoflowering cannabis seeds are just like any regular ones and the process of germination is the same, in fact the only differences are in the way you treat you seedling when it has sprouted. Some growers say that autoflower marijuana seeds can be germinated in colder temperatures but I have not tested this hypothesis myself and have not seen side by side tests that show temperature differences and autoflower seed germination rates.

There are basically two methods of germinating autoflower seeds and they are natural seed germination and germination without growing medium. In nature autoflowering cannabis seeds  usually drop down in the autumn, then they survive the winter and in the spring when the temperature reaches optimal level and the surrounding area gets moist they start to germinate. Autoflowering marijuana seeds don’t like overly wet conditions and if the seeds drop into a puddle or any other water reservoir or even a swamp then they usually start rotting and die. Looking from the other extreme when a cannabis seeds germinate it looks for a wet environment and if the tap root encounters a dry environment ir shivers and dies. From the environments that these seeds encounter in nature we can see that they need to be really strong to survive different conditions and that is why autoflower growers in perfect conditions can achieve more than 99% seed germination.

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Autoflower Cannabis and Potassium

Date 18th Mar 2013   Comments 2 Comments »

potassiumPotassium (K) is also one of those “main” elements that any cannabis plant needs. It is the main element because cannabis plants require large amount of potassium and it is only surpassed by Nitrogen in the quantities required by a cannabis plant. Autoflowering Marijuana plants take up Potassium in its ironic form (K+) but in fertilizers this elements is usually in the K20 form. Cannabis use potassium for a variety of different processes and functions and you need to supply adequate amount of Potassium throughout the entire plants life cycle. Potassium is directly linked to cannabis plants resistance from pests and diseases. It also plays a big role in the photosynthesis function as well as stomata development control and carbohydrate, sugar, starch movement and production. Potassium is found in the entire cannabis plant so it is responsible not only for green growth but it also helps vigorous root development and it is also associated with all the processes that have anything to do with water transplantation and intake.

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Autoflower Tie-Down LST method

Date 13th Mar 2013   Comments 15 Comments »

autoflower_lst_stringAutoflower Tie Down LST method

In the previous post we found out what is low stress training , how it works and looked at some methods how to perform LST on autos. Now I will explain everything there is to know about the Tie down LST method.

What is Tie down LST method?

Tie down autoflower LST method is a training method where cannabis plants are trained with a string or some other material that can pull down a branch  and let other branches take its place. There are multiple variations of this low stress training method but basically they all do the same thing – trick marijuana into thinking that the main shoot is gone. That makes it gather more auxins at the tops of other nearby shoots and in a sense makes them the main target for the most vigorous growth.

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Autoflower LST(low stress training)

Date 24th Feb 2013   Comments No Comments »

lst autoflower pre floweringSo what is LST?

LST or Low stress training(light stress training) is a way to grow your autoflower plants and maximize their output yield while simultaneously decreasing the vertical space required to grow and maximizing light usage.
LST stands for Low Stress Training and which means that you are training your plants with the least amount of stress. There are also High Stress Training methods like Topping and Pruning but they are not for autoflowers as they tend to stunt the plants growth for a while and for autos you can’t take that risk as you have a set time period when you plant will finish its life cycle with or without that stunning.
If you perform LST you can get many top buds from one auto plant and all of them will be of the same size and density and you will get much more grams per plant as when you let the cannabis grow one big main bud and small side colas. Usually Autoflowering cannabis produces one main cola at the very top of the plant, all the side branches have weak light penetration and they stay small producing small flowers. There are also some autos that can produce one big cola and almost no flowers and resin on side branches.

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Cannabis and Phosphorus

Date 25th Sep 2011   Comments No Comments »

Phosphorus (P) is one of the three main elements that any plant requires to grow and produce flowers. This element is a macro nutrient and it is mobile. Phosphorus can be found in cannabis anywhere from 0.1% to 0.5% of the overall weight.  Phosphorus (P) is a big part of cannabis growth cycle and plants use phosphorus the most at the seedling and flowering stages of its growth. This element is used in such processes as photosynthesis and energy transfer. Phosphorus is also a part of the DNA molecules and plays a big part of the reproduction system. Cannabis plants need large amounts of phosphorus to produce seeds and transfer their genetic information to the next generation. Phosphorus is also used in storing carbohydrates and cell division as well as cell membranes.  The largest amounts of phosphorus can be found in cannabis seeds, growing root tips and new shoots.

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Autoflowers and Nitrogen

Date 17th Sep 2011   Comments 1 Comment »

Nitrogen (N) is one of the three main elements that also include Phosphorus(P)and Potassium(K) that cannabis plants require to grow and produce leafs, stems and flowers. Nitrogen is maybe the most important element that any plant requires because it is mainly responsible for stem, leaf growth, chlorophyll production, and it is also a big compound of amino acids. Nitrogen is also a part of the DNA nucleic acid which contains all the vital information about the plant and allows it to grow and reproduce.

Nitrogen can be found in almost any part of the plant but it is most abundant in the young leafs and early flowers. This essential nutrient can be up to 4 % of the above ground plant tissue and that is the most abundant nutrient if we don’t count carbon, oxygen and hydrogen. Nitrogen is the largest mobile element that cannabis requires and that means that it can travel anywhere in the plant from leafs to stems and even in roots.

 

 

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Nutrients for autoflowering cannabis

Date 12th Sep 2011   Comments 19 Comments »

All autoflowering cannabis plants like any other living things need food to stay alive and grow. But unlike animals or humans plants use nutrients for this matter. Automatic Cannabis plants use large quantities of Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P) and Potassium (K) but that is not the end of it because cannabis also needs some “secondary” elements like Magnesium (Mg), Calcium (Ca) and Sulfur (S) but they are used in much smaller amounts than the first three elements. There are also some trace elements that ruderalis plants require to grow to it’s full potential and they are: Copper (Cu) , Boron (B) , Zinc (Zn) , Chlorine (Cl), Iron (Fe) , Manganese (Mn) and Molybdenum (Mo). These trace elements are required in very small amounts and they usually are mixed in the fertilizer or pre-maid soil.
Autoflowering cannabis plants use large amounts of nutrients and you need to supply the plant with all the necessary “foods”. If you use a pre-made potting soil then usually it has a mixed in nutrients that will be more than enough to nurture your autoflower plant for the first two to three weeks of its growth.

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Cannabis male pollen collection, storage

Date 4th Sep 2011   Comments 3 Comments »

autoflower-cannabis-male-flower-sackIn the last post we found out how to pollinate a female cannabis plant but if we want to use the controlled pollination method at first we need to collect the male pollen. This male pollen collection can be done in a number of different ways but I will explain just some of them.

 

Simple shaking method

The easiest way to collect male pollen is to just take a matured male cannabis plant and shake it on a peace of paper or any other flat surface. If you are shaking the plant and nothing happens you can let the plant grow a little more and then shake it again. When you have a good amount of pollen collected on this surface you can just pour it in some jar or other container. This method is the easiest but many growers can’t apply this method because their grow room is small and they don’t want to grow male plant in the grow area where the females are also growing. If you let the male grow out till it is ready for pollen collection then all of your female cannabis plants will also be pollinated and in case you don’t want that to happen you should apply other methods.

Another version of this method is to cut of a branch of the male autoflower plant and put it between two newspapers and let is dry out. Pollen sacks will burst open and you will be able to collect the pollen from the peace of paper that was beneath the plant.

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How to pollinate Autoflowers?

Date 2nd Sep 2011   Comments 11 Comments »

Pollination (action when cannabis male pollen lands on female pistils) is usually a tricky thing to do and new growers usually just let the male and female plants grow in the same room and do nothing but that is not the best step to take.

What is pollination?

Pollination is the process when male pollen grain gets on to a female calyx (the pistils of the female flower) and slides in the base of the calyx starting the fertilization of the female flower. In nature pollination happens when a male plant matures and releases its pollen into the wind and this pollen lands on close by females. When a female calyx has been pollinated the two white hairs turn brown and wilt but the calyx starts slowly swelling and producing the seed.

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Cannabis ventilation, odor controll

Date 21st Aug 2011   Comments 4 Comments »

In nature autoflowering cannabis plants get fresh air full with Co2 all the time.  The wind blows and supplys cannabis with all the necessary Co2 and it also circulates the air around the leaves, dispersing heat and destroying insects. Outside air circulation also increases plant strength and helps male pollen to land on female cannabis flowers to produce seeds. Inside however growers need to supply all this artificially and the air circulation must be very close to what the plant would get outside so you need to install fans and produce the wind yourself.

 

Why is ventilation necessary?

Fast growing autoflowering cannabis will need a lot of water and light, but both of these aspects can generate negative things if the auto plant is grown indoors. First of all the light emits heat but cannabis plants don’t like temperatures above 30C (86F) and if the air is not vented out of the growing area then the temperatures will raise fast! Second thing is the water that we use for watering the plants. Autoflower cannabis plants evaporate almost 99% of the absorbed water in the air and the humidity rises quickly. If the humidity gets too high the plant will struggle to grow and insect, mold and fungus risk will increase dramatically.

Final thing why air circulation is so crucial is the Co2 amount that is in the air. Ruderalis leafs will use all the Co2 around them really fast and if the air doesn’t circulate in the room they will struggle to produce their food from photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is the process where plant uses water, Co2 and energy from light to produce sugars and oxygen and if the Co2 is not available to cannabis plant then this process is slowed down or even stopped and plant struggles to survive.

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Why Autoflowers stretch and how to avoid it?

Date 18th Aug 2011   Comments 14 Comments »

In nature plants tend to stretch in order to outgrow other plants and get more light to survive but indoors especially growing autoflowering plants stretching can be a bad thing. Most grower that are using day neutral cannabis tend to have some kind of limitations like grow space or not enough light, ventilation and if a plants stretches too much then these limitations become very obvious and you wont be able to get as much dope as you expected.

What is stretching?

Cannabis stretching basically is the vertical growth of the plant and if it gets out of control the plant can stretch so much that it won’t be able to hold itself and will fall to the ground from its own weight.

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