Guest Post: Growing Monster Cannabis Plants
Learn how to push cannabis genetics to their limit and grow XL-plants!
By Tony, Dutch Passion Seed Company, Amsterdam
For some cannabis growers, the goal is producing the best-looking harvest possible from their indoor tent. For other growers, the important thing is achieving the best possible taste. And for some growers size is all that really matters. Growing monster-sized cannabis plants is becoming more and more popular with cannabis home growers. And it's easier than you think if you can combine best quality genetics with a proven growing technique and a few basic guidelines.
There are some legal benefits to growing monsters. Why risk growing 20 plants in a sea-of-green (SOG) system when you could have the same yield from one monster plant? And its more technically satisfying to learn how to push cannabis genetics to their limit. You can learn how to become a better grower and how to master the secrets of growing elite cannabis plants.
Outdoor cannabis growers can improve the size of their plants in several ways. Preparing the ground properly is one easy way to start. There is no substitute for hard work, dig the ground well and introduce plenty of well rotted manure. Add water absorbing gel crystals to the ground to help retain moisture. Add organic fertilisers, bat guano, worm castings, dried blood/bone and some general purpose bloom fertilizer. Outdoor growers can also get a head start if they germinate their seedlings early and start them indoors before planting out. This allows the plant to be as large as possible when the spring sunshine arrives and the plant is transferred outdoors. Keeping the soil as moist as possible is important for outdoor growers to achieve maximum size. Many outdoor growers protect the base of their plants with snail/slug pellets, keeping your cannabis plants free from pests helps them to grow large. Often outdoor growers will protect their cannabis plants from goats/deer with a small wire fence.
Outdoor growers should try to find a sheltered outdoor location with all-day sunshine, and if possible a nearby source of water. Sheltering the plant from the worst of the wind always helps the plants to grow faster. Sometimes this is possible simply by digging a small earth mound around the sides and back of the plant to protect the seedling from wind. Sometimes a south-facing river bank can be an ideal place to grow cannabis, offering wind protection, water and sunshine.
Growing cannabis plants in a greenhouse or a poly tunnel is another great way of growing large plants. The greenhouse/poly-tunnel protects your cannabis plants from the worst of the weather and allows a longer growing season. In turn this allows your cannabis plants the chance to grow into large plants.
Indoor growers need to combine their experience with new techniques in order to grow larger plants. More root space is a good way of encouraging bigger plants. If you are growing in small containers of coco or soil then you should try using larger containers. Many growers find that the modern "air pots" allow larger plants to grow. This is because the air pots have many ventilation holes in the side of the containers which allows extra root oxygenation.
Growers that specialise in coco fibre are finding that an air stone at the bottom of the container allows better root growth, this allows bigger plants and better yields. Some grow shops will sell specialised "air-stones" that are designed for coco fibre growing. Using air stones in combination with coco fibre allows faster growth and therefore bigger plants, but it does make your grow room a little bit more complicated to organise.
For many years home growers have known that more light gives bigger harvests. But adding more HPS lights often means that temperatures rise to problematic levels. The arrival of modern powerful LED grow light technology is allowing growers to add more light without adding as much heat. LED does have a high initial cost price, but if you want to fill your grow room with powerful lights they are the best way to keep temperatures low and maximise light intensity.
Growing monster cannabis plants is partly about good growing technique, good conditions and good genetics. It's also important to eliminate human errors. The two most common mistakes we see are people overfeeding and overwatering their cannabis plants. Both errors damage roots and limit new root growth. If you want to grow monster cannabis plants you have to allow the plant to grow the largest possible root mass. Once a cannabis plant has been damaged by overfeeding and overwatering it can take weeks for the plant to recover. Expert cannabis growers are able to optimise growing conditions all the way from seedling to harvest. Often they do this by focussing on the basics, making sure temperature extremes are avoided, and making sure the plants receive correct feed and minimum stress.
Growers using hydroponic techniques such as deep water culture have the best chance of growing large plants at a faster rate than almost any other grow technique. But in order to master hydroponic growing techniques you often need years of experience and the skills to use the equipment. For many growers it is easier to start practising monster-plant cultivation in soil or coco fibre. Its better to be an expert soil/coco grower than a failed hydro grower.
And the final piece of advice for anyone wanting to grow monster plants is to choose plant genetics from a proven seed company that you trust. Cannabis quality is one area of your life where you should not feel bad about demanding the very best.
Guest Writer: Dutch Passion
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