It’s that time of the year again! All around the northern hemisphere cannabis gardeners are preparing their soil and perhaps already sowing the seeds for another year of free sun grown cannabis. In this latest edition of the Suzy’s Cannabis World Blog we help you get started with your own outdoor grow or update your knowledge if you’re an experienced grower.
Decide where you’re going to grow and when growing cannabis in a pot, pick your soil
It starts with the soil you’re going to be growing your weed in. Preferably you’re able to grow directly in the soil in your garden. But if you’re going to be growing feminized seeds, you’re better off with the biggest pot you can carry.
If you have somewhere nettles in your garden, it is possibly also a perfect spot to grow cannabis because nettles require the same building blocks as cannabis does. It’s also a good thing other plants are growing nearby, but be careful with conifers because they will cause your weed to taste and smell like hay. This should be a spot with as much as possible direct sunlight, considering there will be days of 12-16 hours of sunlight and you want to optimize their time in the sun.
But you can also opt for growing in a pot with special soil. The brand doesn’t really matter that much, but you’re best off with picking something specifically tailored for cannabis and not a random bag of soil from the grocery store. Instead, go to your local growshop or reach out to them for advice.
Choosing the right cannabis seeds
By far the easiest and fail proof is growing autoflowering seeds. These seeds have genetics specifically tailored to start flowering only a couple weeks after germination. And if you start early, you’ll be able to harvest somewhere in the beginning of the summer and you’ll be able to even go for a second round of autoflowers. Autoflowers take around 8-10 weeks to grow from seed to harvest, but it is possible it might take up to 12 weeks. Right now, we’re running an outdoor special offer for autoflowers in case this sounds something for you. The special offer lasts until the end of April.
But if you know what you’re doing, you’re better off with feminized seeds which ultimately have a better flavor and result in a better harvest. However in most of the northern countries, there’s a risk of getting mold when you’re almost ready to harvest in oktober. As such those who have the time and who want to go the extra mile, nowadays opt to go for light deprivation early on in the summer. This way you can also grow hazes outside which would otherwise take upto 17 weeks of flowering. If you’re unable to do the light deprivation, you can also choose to go for our Hollands Super Bud with Holland's Hope genetics. These genetics are specifically made to withstand the colder and wet autumns in the northern hemisphere. Another one that works great in this climate is our feminized Critical Jack (or our autoflowering Critical Jack). Flower time generally varies based on the genetics. Luckily all of our feminized collection has information on how long the flowering time generally is.
Feminized plants will only start flowering when the days are getting shorter. The longest day of the year is the 21st of June in the northern hempisphere, better known as Solstice. Instead of waiting until the days get shorter and your plants will start to flower, you’re better off taking your plants inside in the dark around 9pm and getting your plants outside early in the morning when the sun comes up. You can also decide to cover your plants in darkness, which is practical if you’re growing in a greenhouse.
Germinating your cannabis seeds of choice
Germination is rather simple. Just take a few glasses of water and drop a seed in each glass. Next day, check again if the root is showing already and otherwise leave it for the next day. Do this until there’s clearly a centimeter or more of the first root showing and while the seed is still floating.
It’s then time to put the seed (preferably never touch a seed with your hands) in the soil or in the chosen pot with soil. Make a little hole of 1,5 centimeters deep and put the seed in with the root aiming down. Cover it gracefully with soil and only spray it every day with some water. Make sure not to drown it and kill it.
Nutrients for growing your own cannabis
When you’re growing autoflowering seeds, it’s recommended to not use any nutrients. But when you’re growing feminized seeds in a pot, you can opt to choose for nutrients during the growth period and a different mix for the flowering period.
Generally plants don’t need that much and are able to do well on their own. That’s how they’ve been doing it long before humans got into the mix. You’re more likely having to chip in when there’s multiple days of drought and your plants are fully flowering already. Don’t overdo it though. Feel first if the soil is dry or not and if so, it’s high time for some watering. This is generally true for both water and nutrients by the way. It helps if the quality of the water is generally considered good, but rainwater does fine for plants. This chlorine water that you have in some countries, is obviously not good for plants.
Plants obviously love the sun and warm temperatures, but it can also be too much sun and too warm. You’re likely to overwater making the plants go all weak, so pay attention to the needs of your plants. The ideal temperature for cannabis plants is between 18 and 29 degrees celsius.
Things to look out for when growing cannabis outside
When growing outside, your cannabis plants are enjoying real full-spectrum light through the sun. But there’s some disadvantages to it as well. If you don’t watch out, a male or a hermaphrodite might pollinate your females. Luckily we have a simple guide to help you find the males. It could also come from neighbours or an industrial hemp field nearby.
Besides that, there’s also the risk of little insects that look at your plants like it’s a lovely meal. If you have many plants growing around it, it’s likely other insects will simply not shorthly move after on your cannabis plants to eat them. If they don’t, you shouldn’t reach for toxic pesticides. Instead, opt to make your own pesticide from rhubarb leaves. These leaves are not edible because they contain oxalic acid, which could be deadly for you but also for these insects.
And last but not least: the weather. It’s been mentioned a lot in this article already. Don’t take your plants outside too early, because if the temperature drops below zero Celcius your plants will die. On the other hand, the cold and rainy weather in the autumn can cause for mold to appear. If you have mold, immediately take a way and destroy the plant(s). Most people will simply harvest them instead though and cut around the moldy bits or turn the plant into hash.
That’s it! You should be ready to go. Best of luck from all of us over here at Suzy Seeds!