As a continuation of my previous blog post on “Best Practices for your Indoor Cannabis Garden”, we discussed some tips to help you get your personal cannabis grow up and running. If you haven’t read Part 1 of this series, you can check this link for further details.
6. LET THERE BE LIGHT!
Let me take you back to 5th-grade biology where we discussed the process of Photosynthesis. This is when light converts into energy which allows the plant to survive, strengthen and produce buds.
When light hits the leaves, the green pigment chlorophyll becomes active and converts the energy into sugars. These sugars provide food for the plants. The more they consume, the larger and more vibrant they become.
To ensure that your plant is obtaining the correct amount of light, it is necessary to understand that there are different intensities of light sources. If you do not provide your plants with adequate light they will wilt and weaken. When growing indoors, most growers opt for HID (High-Intensity Discharge) lights or LED lights. Implementing these types of lights will result in larger yields and improved potency.
7. BREATHE AND EXHALE – AIR
Just like the elements of the earth, air plays a very important part in growth and strengthening of the plant. If an environment has stagnant air or lacks adequate air flow, this could invite mold and or mildew into the grow room which can potentially eliminate your crop. Most indoor growers opt for oscillating fans to provide a boost to the airflow within their grow space.
8. TEMPERATURE’S RISING
Cannabis likes a comfortable room temperature or a little warmer environment. Generally, cannabis plants prefer temperatures between 18 – 26 degrees Celsius. When it comes to night temperatures, plants seem to thrive at a range of between 20-24°C.
Low temperatures can cause slow growth and in extreme situations can shock or even kill the plant. Alternatively, cannabis can endure hot temperatures (over 30+ degrees) but will cause the plant to grow slowly, lose potency and decrease the smell of your buds.
A useful tool is a digital temperature reader which will help control and monitor growth.
One need of growing cannabis that is normally overlooked is Humidity. Humidity simply refers to the amount of water vapor present in the air and helps determine your plant’s resilience against mold and mildew.
During the seedling and vegetative stages of growth, plants prefer a high humidity environment around 70% – 50%. The flowering stage allows the plants to need less humidity with optimal levels being 40%.
Humidity can be manipulated in the grow space using humidifiers and dehumidifiers. Humidity can be measured using a hygrometer or digital reader.
10. DRYING AND CURING
Implementing drying and curing to the growing process is a very important step in achieving quality cannabis. Skipping this process will result in the buds not reaching their peak potency, minimized taste and diminished quality attributes.
Drying can be achieved by using drying racks or stems and buds being hung on clothing hangers in an environment with good air flow.
Once dry, it’s time to begin curing. Place buds in airtight mason or glass jars. “Burp” or open the jars daily to ensure that fresh air is being exchanged. There is no set time for the curing process but, the longer you cure the better the smoke and quality of your cannabis.