End of blooming period
The last weeks of the blooming period
After weeks of increasing tension and enthusiasm, the long awaited moment of the harvest has finally come. Your plants should look magnificent now. You probably have a hard time waiting to smoke your first home grown joint but have a little more patience. You only have to wait a little while now and then your time and energy will be greatly rewarded. The plants have grown a lot in the first weeks of the flowering period and underwent a real transformation, after which the formation of the buds began. More and more white hairs were growing and the separate little buds steadily grew inwards to form one big bud. After about five weeks of flowering, there will now be hard, crystal-rich buds on your plants. They should still be beautifully green and the buds should still be growing, even though the major part of their development has already been completed. Production of THC is now at full speed. The leaves around the buds will become increasingly sticky because of the many THC-rich resin glands that are growing.
Now the harvest is getting closer, it's time to remove the leaves around the buds and the bigger leaves that contain THC. This can also be done later on, but if you do it now, you save time and more light will fall on the lower buds, which allows them to grow a bit more at the last moment. You can dry these leaves to make kief, hash, hash oil or ice hash from it.
Because blooming plants need more phosphorus and potassium, you can give them PK 13/14 as an additional stimulant for their growth and flowering. It will make the buds harder and more compact. You can also administer additional products such as blooming stimulators, blooming boosters and enzymes. If you are a beginning grower, these products are probably superfluous because they are only of use if everything went well during the growth period. There's a fair chance that you will have made some mistakes if you are a beginning grower. If you are an experienced grower, these products will enhance your harvest.
In the last two weeks, the buds will mainly mature and grow no more in size. The white trichomes (small resin-secreting stalks/hairs) on the buds will now slowly turn brown.
Because there are still a lot of nutrients in the medium (the precise amount depends on the medium you used) and because the leaves also contain a fair amount of nutrients, you can stop administering them in the last 1.5 to 2 weeks (depending on the medium you use). Depending on the cannabis strain you grow and the climate of the growing area, the maturing takes some time to complete.
Try to make sure that the humidity stays below 50% in the last few weeks of the flowering period. If the humidity is too high, this can lead to stone hard buds, which might develop mould in the last weeks of their growth phase.
If you have discovered mould in a bud, it is as good as lost. Once 80% of the hairs have turned brown, it's time to prepare for the harvest. You can influence the type of high you get from smoking your cannabis by harvesting the buds a bit sooner or later. The longer you wait, the stronger the 'stone' of the cannabis will be. If you harvest a bit sooner, you get more of a 'high' effect. The harvesting time therefore depends on your personal preference.
A bud that died or has been infected by a mould will also develop brown hairs. You can start harvesting when 80% of the hairs are brown. If most of the buds have brown hairs but a couple of the lower buds still have white hairs, you can still start harvesting. In order to try out the different highs you can also harvest in phased intervals.