Posted on

marijuana growing techniques

Marijuana growing techniques

"High rates of fertilizer were associated with lower concentrations of some of the important cannabinoids that we rely on for the medicinal effects of the plant," said Caplan.

"We found an increase in cannabinoid concentration, and especially cannabinoid yield," he said.

The key is to find the right amount of drought stress. "You can't just allow your plants to dry completely," he warned.

Tip #2: Too much fertilizer makes for feeble flowers

You might worry that cutting back on the water would limit your plant's growth. But Caplan found that a little water stress during the flowering stage doesn't affect the amount of flowers you harvest.

He advises letting the plants' leaves wilt to about 50 per cent more than its original angle.

Tip #3: Any old dirt won't do

"Drought stress is commonly associated with high quality herbs and spices," said Caplan. Evidently, this applies to cannabis as well as other herbs that find their way into your kitchen pantry.

In preparation for the legalization of recreational marijuana possession in Canada on Oct. 17, Caplan hopes to share his knowledge of bringing science and cultivation together.

Marijuana growing techniques

That led to labs being set up quickly with old equipment in unsuitable spaces, and with minimal quality control. James says that, in the past, it was not uncommon to meet people at trade shows who had bought analytical kits on the online auction site eBay and were running testing labs from their bedrooms.

And as testing becomes more widespread, its importance is also reaching users, says Marcu. “Consumers are starting to realize that there is a big difference between illicit or grey-market products and those from a licensed operator,” he says. “They can have more confidence in the products than before.”

To run these advanced facilities, cannabis companies need researchers who are experienced in plant science, microbiology, chemistry and other scientific disciplines — and they are turning to academia to find them. “Instead of underground growers, they are hiring lots of university-educated and trained people,” says Zheng.

Testing, testing

Cannabis companies are quickly adopting techniques and technologies that were pioneered by commercial agriculture and horticulturalists. Organigram, a cannabis producer in Moncton, Canada, stringently controls its growing operations, says Jeff Purcell, vice-president of operations. “The growing environment is standardized, and we have full control over the air, light, temperature and fertilizer,” he says. “It’s all highly automated and computer controlled.”

A2LA is also helping labs to attain ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation, the main international standard for testing and calibration labs. It covers all phases of lab operation, including staff training, data protection and dealing with conflicts of interest.

Nature 572, S10-S11 (2019)

A commercial medical-cannabis cultivation facility in Moncton, Canada. Credit: Organigram Inc.

Although small-scale growers of illicit cannabis can get away with vague descriptions of strains and considerable variation between batches, commercial producers have to meet the same standards as they would for other consumer products. They need to produce a reliable product and follow the stringent rules and regulations that apply to product labelling and safety in their country.

We recommend these organic fertilizers:

We also advise against using nutrients designed for indoor weed growing—they are generally composed of synthetic mineral salts and can damage soil bacteria.

Environmentally friendly

Growing marijuana outdoors is great because you won’t need to spend a ton of money on it and you can rely on the power of the sun. If you have access to a sunny spot in a private yard or even a balcony, terrace, or rooftop, you can grow weed outside. You will be tied to the sun and the seasons and local weather, but you won’t have to spend a bunch of money on equipment and utilities like indoor growers.

Growing containers

You may need to put all of your plants in containers if you don’t have great soil. Also, if you’re unable to perform the heavy labor needed to dig holes and amend soil, containers may be the only way for you to grow your own cannabis outdoors.

Big yields

For first-time growers, we recommend avoiding commercial fertilizers like long-release granular fertilizers. These can be used, but you need to have a good understanding of how they work and what your plants need.

What size pot do I need?

You can make this yourself by combining worm castings, bat guano, and other components with a good soil and letting it sit for a few weeks, or it can be purchased pre-made from a local nursery or grow shop.

Relying on the power of the sun, you won’t need to spend a ton of money on an outdoor grow. You’ll need some soil, fertilizer, seeds or clones, and maybe a small greenhouse to get them started. You won’t need to pay for electricity for lights, AC units, or dehumidifiers, and you can even collect rainwater.