With marijuana becoming increasingly accepted, many are turning to growing pot plants at home.
While it is still illegal in some states, some passed laws legalizing it. For those who live in legalized states, here are instructions for growing your own plant.
Prep your grow space
It’s very easy to grow one cannabis plant inside your home. Its best to have your space ready before you pick up from a local dispensary or plant your seeds. Having a space open like an unused closet, or cabinet will be a good spot for growing. Planning ahead will ensure you get your plant so that you’ll be able to start the growing process.
For a quick summary, here are a couple key points you won’t want to miss:
Find a good light
If you’re growing in a small cabinet or a closet, you can get away with a cheap grow light. Some good options are a 24 W LED, or a fluorescent set up. The fluorescent is the more powerful option of the two, and the benefits of each are outlined in our closet growing guide mentioned above. Go for the 24w LED bulbs if your growing space is small. If you’re growing just one plant, invest in a full-spectrum light. Plants need different light settings during the growing cycle. Make sure you begin with a good full-spectrum light to keep you from having to change it.
Ensure proper ventilation
The lighting options don’t hear tup, so you won’t have to worry about that. You will need to keep the plant in a ventilated area to make sure to receives the right amount of CO2. Having a fan or two near the plant is helpful as it makes the plant stronger and creates a small amount of stress. Stress helps to make more terpenes and cannabinoids, so having fresh air is required.
Find a good soil mix
A local hydroponic store can help you find some good soil. FoxFarm Ocean Forest soil mixed with some perlite is a good soil. You can also throw in a little vermiculite. Perlite and vermiculite together increase water absorbency and help prevent nutrient-burn from potent soil. Aim for about 25 – 33% perlite to soil. If adding vermiculite as well, aim for about 10-15%.
If your cannabis is past the seedling stage and is ready for a big pot, a five-gallon bucket or container will do. Quick tip: If you live near a nursery or gardening store, check the recycling bins. If you’re a bit lucky, you may be find a large pot for free. If you do find one, Make sure you clean it first with warm water and soap before using it. Setting it out in the sun for a while will also work.
If you’re putting your plant in a confined space, opting for a cloth container is highly beneficial. This allows more air to enter into the soil, which makes for healthier roots and less risk of unwanted fungus or disease. Five-gallon Smart Pots are a good option. Make sure to put a plastic tray or something underneath when watering time roles around.
Add nutrients or compost teas
Supplementing with some kind of fertilizer is a must in order to grow a good cannabis plant. This helps flowers grow nice and big, as well as gives them the stamina to produce cannabinoids and terpenes. Here are a couple of different ways to fertilize your plants:
HERB’s Super Soil series guides you into all you need to know about making compost teas. Creating compost teas can be a bit tricky depending on your method. They require access to quality compost or worm castings. Some recipes require an aeration pump. You can buy compost and worm castings at your local garden store. They are packed with nutrients great for cultivating beneficial soil microbiology, and are organic. Once you have the right equipment, they’re also fairly inexpensive in comparison to other nutrient options.
If you prefer a different method, there other organic nutrient options available. Here are some popular products:
• FoxFarm nutrients: FoxFarm has many nutrients to choose from, and their products are very popular. The three basics are Big Bloom, Grow Big, and Tiger Bloom.
You won’t need to add any for a couple of weeks right after planting in high-quality soil. If you add too many nutrients you’ll get nutrient burn.
Establishing light/dark schedules
Having light and dark schedules is vital for plant growth. Before your plant begins to produce flowers, put your plant 18 full hours under the light and six hours in complete darkness. Once your plant has reached a decent size, switch them over to 12 hours under the light, and 12 hours in complete darkness.
If the water is chlorinated, you may want to consider using an air stone and aquarium pump to eliminate much of the chemical as you can. You’ll want to shake up your water well before giving it to your plants. To help prevent overwatering, only water when your soil is completely dry. Don’t water again until the soil is completely dry. You don’t need to water every day. In fact, if you do, you’ll risk excess fungal growth, like fusarium.
Items below are what is needed to get started with one indoor plant.
For growing space:
• Appropriate light socket
• Light timer
• At least one fan
• Reflective insulation, panda plastic, or mylar (optional)
• Cabinet or grow tent (if you don’t already have space)
• Fertilizers such as worm castings or bat guano, or whatever you choose
After 3-4 months you can expect a harvest. Once your plants are around two feet high, you can harvest. If you’re growing a sativa-dominant strain, your plant will outgrow a small grow room. If you begin to flower an indica at two feet, it’s likely to finish around three feet high. If your plant looks a like it doesn’t have full-grown branches, it isn’t harvest ready.
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