Think and Grow Weed - how to grow medical cannabis (assuming it's legal marijuana)
Written by St. Gloopy
Dank Master publishing 2018 ;)
5 1-4 weeks
9 first half of flower
10 second half of flower
11 checking trichomes
This post is a work in progress and has a wealth of free information to guide you, comment below if you have questions or comments.
Thank you for reading!
You probably already know where you want to grow if you have an outdoor space, or if you have a closet or room, attic, basement, etc.
If you haven’t chosen where you want to grow yet, lets talk about that here.
Indoor Grow room
If you are growing indoor, there is loads of information out there and even grow reports of other people and exactly what they are doing.
You can get good results indoors, but you need to control all of the aspects of the grow.
DO NOT SKIP this step!
The cleanliness of your ‘grow chamber’ is absolutely necessary.
Mold and bugs are a cannabis plant’s enemy.
Many strains are resistant to disease and mold, but you have to keep all dead leaves and other house plants or vegetables away from them.
If you are using dead leaves as mulch and you know what you’re doing and taking expert level care with your plants, that is fine, but if you just let stuff fall in your plants soil or all over the ground, you will attract bugs and mold.
If you see bugs, try to look at it with a magnifying glass and identify it online. I will not go into detail about every type of bugs. Often, you can find information in forums or on websites for gardening vegetables or house plants.
This book is dedicated to organic growing. DO NOT spray chemicals on your buds during flower. Information on house plants may not apply to cannabis. Keep your bud clean J
Mold can grow on the soil and on the plants.
The best way to deal with this is not to over water, and make sure your air circulation is good around all the plants including around the soil.
Your plants should not be planted so close to the soil that the bottom leaves are touching or covering the soil.
The top of the soil should have some air circulation, the soil must breathe.
Different strains do well at different temperatures, but for the most part, all cannabis plants will thrive around room temperature.
Some plants cannot stand extreme heat and some cannot withstand extended cold.
Enough heat or cold will kill the plant quickly.
The temperature should be a little cooler around the roots, which is why most pots are opaque and block out light.
As a general rule, the more light, the better.
Indoor lighting cannot equal the sunlight.
The more sunlight, especially during the flowering period, will mean much much better quality buds.
Indoors, you have to get as much light as you can without creating too much heat.
There are several types of artificial lighting with varying degrees of effectiveness. All lights are not created equal. There are many different choices depending on your budget, room size, ventilation, and so on.
LED lights tend to be very expensive but are getting more reasonable. They can emit only the necessary spectrums of light needed for vegetative growth or flowering, saving lots of energy and heat. Keep in mind you may need separate LED lights for vegging and flowering unless they have close to the full spectrum of the sun.
Incandescent lights do not work for growing plants, and they give off heat. Don’t use them.
Halogen lights also do not work for plants, and give off even more heat. Don’t use them either.
High-pressure sodium lights are absolutely the all-around best for growing but give off a lot of heat. They can be used in areas with good ventilation or air conditioning.
Metal halide is similar to HPS, but give off a different spectrum of colors. They can be used for the vegetative growth stage, but are not recommended for flowering. So either use HPS the whole time, or have a separate area for vegging using MH bulbs and ballasts.
BE CAREFUL with high-pressure bulbs. They get very very hot and will instantly burn you. They will also explode if you splash water on them!
Compact fluorescent lights give off much less heat than high-pressure bulbs above, so many people swear by them for small grows. Several need to be used and positioned as close to touching the plants as possible because they are not powerful lights and the effectiveness dissipates exponentially when you move them farther from the leaves.
Use good reflectors and get them as close to the leaves as you can without burning them. Arrange your lighting to be moveable so that you can move the lighting along with the plants' growth.
Another way to achieve this is to put shorter plants on boxes or shelves as close to the lights as possible. Move them down gradually as the plants grow. The reason for this is that if the growing plants are far from the weak CFL light source [it is weak even if it looks bright to your eyes] which causes them to stretch toward the light.
Skinny, stretched plants are undesirable for many reasons. They take up too much room for the ratio of bud, they break and tip easily, and the top buds and the bottom buds are far apart in comparison to the light which will produce varying quality from the same plant.
Good reflectors can help you get the most out of your light. Each second the lights are on is costing you money. Use up every inch of your grow room, or think about scaling down the grow room to prevent wasting light.
Use reflectors to focus the light on the plants' leaves. Reflectors used well can increase your efficiency greatly.
The walls should be matte white. Don’t bother hanging up reflective material, because matte white reflects the most light at an even level all over your plants.
Aluminum foil is not necessary or recommended. Just paint the area flat white if it isn’t white already.
Plants need CO2 to survive.
Cannabis breathes in CO2, and breathes out oxygen.
Your grow room will always have the best quality air.
Flowering plants need complete darkness to grow. If you are growing outdoors, the sun naturally takes care of this. Indoor growers need to replicate the sun and the seasons in order to make the plant begin flowering.
After several weeks of vegetative growth, which will be detailed in Chapter 6, the plants’ light cycle should be changed, forcing the plants to begin flowering within 10 days from changing the lights.
You can have two separate rooms, two closets, or flower all your plants at the same time. The light needs to be completely blocked out of the flowering area during the false night time. Do not turn on the lights to check them! It will affect the buds, and could ruin your crop! The sun doesn’t suddenly come up and then go down in nature. Once its dark, its dark for 12 hours. Also, night needs to come at the SAME TIME every night. It can gradually be changed if you need to change the time of ‘lights out.’ But make the change a few minutes at a time over some days rather than suddenly changing it a couple hours.
The vegging lights can be on from 16 to 24 hours.
KEEP WATER AWAY FROM ELECTRICITY. Do not leave any water that could be kicked over near outlets or appliances. One way is to keep outlets and extension chords mounted above ground.
Plants need quality water to survive, but not too much water, especially when they are under a month old. Sprouts need to stay constantly moist, but seedlings can die quickly if overwatered. We talk more about this in Chapter 3 and 4.
Reverse osmosis water is recommended by many growers. Some use distilled water, but then there are no minerals in it at all, which needs to be accounted for. Tap water has many chemicals that are undesirable for plants and humans both. It should be filtered at the very least for chlorine which is not good for plants and builds up in the soil over time, blocking the nutrients from absorbing into the roots.
BE CAREFUL of all the potential hazards of using a lot of electricity, especially around water – see above.
Air filter – smell
The soil is arguably the most important part of this other than the genetics, which we will talk about next chapter, Seeds.
The benefits of growing organically in soil are many. The taste, smell, and effects are much better when grown organically in soil. The recent winners of the Cannabis Cup have been grown organically in soil. Also, it is easier if you do it correctly, because the plants will be healthier and everything is already in the soil, so you don’t have to worry about when to feed it what. All it needs is water, light, and air. Nature.
The reason the soil is so important because growing organically, everything the plant needs comes from the soil, air, sun, and water. We can’t change the sun, air, or water, but we can change the soil and choose the right genetics.
The soil is an environment in and of itself. Good soil should be alive with healthy microbes.
Coco coir is the husks of coconuts shredded. It makes a great growing medium and is environmentally renewable, cheap, and abundant. It does not have any nutrients for the plants to use, so it cannot be used by itself without some kind of fertilizer or added ingradients such as worm castings.
Coco coir comes in a few different forms.
Perlite is man made. It is similar to lava rock. It keeps the growing medium from becoming too heavy and allows drainage. It is very good when combined with coco coir. Coco coir holds so much water. Adding perlite to it can help drainage because roots need oxygen. The roots cannot be swamped, the growing medium needs to be aerated.
Although a little bit heavier than perlite, lava rock serves the same purpose. It has many holes and a lot of surface area which helps the water drain, and keeps the growing medium aerated.
Worm castings are the best! It is basically worm poop, which is dark and very fine soil. Some people swear by these as their main source of nutrients for the plants. You can never use too much worm castings, they cannot kill the plants like some fertilizers can do when used too heavily.
A super simple mix of worm castings, coco coir, and perlite, can get great results without much complication or effort.
I have seen giant outdoor plants fifteen feet tall!! These growers make raised beds in a field, and fill them with tons of worm castings.
Another good thing about worm poop is that it can be free! Because it is so useful, and can get expensive, you may want to have your own worm farm. Worm farms are basically aerated boxes with food scraps, leaves, or shredded paper. Word of warning, the worms will not eat a lot at first. Over feeding them can just result in moldy food laying there.
The type of worms to use are called red wigglers, and they can be ordered easily on the internet.
If you can get your hands on [not literally, eww] some bat guano for free, do it! This can get very expensive, and I have heard the methods in which they harvest it is not very sustainable.
Banana peels are excellent fertilizer! They are very cheap and very packed full of nutrients.
First you collect all of your banana peels and put them on a tray in the oven. You canleave them in there while you are cooking something as not to use too much feul. When the peels burn and are crispy, you can crumble them into the soil. Very simple, very effective.
Plants can tend to become deficient in magnesium, and Epsom salts are an easy fix. They are very cheap and can be found easily.
Aloe vera can help promote rapid growth of your plants. It has been shown to increase the size and speed up growth.
The aloe must be fresh, as the chemical that promotes growth is delicate and goes bad quickly. Some people use fresh gel from the aloe plant, or you can buy aloe concentrate and add it to the water.
This cannot be overdone, but too much is not necessary because only a small amount is enough. Adding more will not change the results.
Seaweed is amazing for plants, and can be free depending on where you live.
Make sure you don’t overharvest the ocean because seaweed is essential for ocean life. Wash the salt water off if you are growing indoors. Outdoors, you can just mulch it around the plants.
You can add seaweed to the soil, add it to the water and let it soak in there for days or even weeks, or even wrap the seaweed around the base of the plant on top of the soil.
Seaweed has so many minerals, and certain types of seaweed can grow at insanely rapid rates. The hormones in the seaweed can also help your plants grow faster.
Seaweed compost tea
Making a tea from the seaweed can be like steroids for your plants. If you buy this already made it can be very expensive. You can make it yourself for almost nothing, but it does take some time.
This can be done on a large or small scale. Simply add seaweed to water, and cover it. You can open it and stir it every so often, or even set up an aquarium pump to oxygenate the water from the bottom.
Over time, the seaweed will break down, and you will be left with a dark brown liquid. This liquid is super potent! It can be soaked for up to a year. The longer, the better.
When you use it, dilute it with water so that it resembles tea. You can use this every watering, it will not kill the plants. It is also safe for young plants, and all throughout the life cycle.
Compost is a big one in organic farming. In addition to worm castings, there are other types of compost you can use.
Compost is also available for sale. Make sure it is organic, and you should be good to go. Sometimes compost comes in little nuggets, and sometimes it can be from a farm or from someone you know.
Make sure the compost does not have any bugs, and is completely ready to be used. Some materials need composted for an entire year in order to be safe for use. If you are composting yourself, make sure you have all vegetable and plant matter. Meat and animal products take longer to compost and can attract disease.
Human feces can be used as compost, but needs to be composted for a long time in order to be safe to use. I haven’t tried this yet, but am not ruling it out…
Human urine can be used as fertilizer and is great for plants. It needs to be fresh, and it needs to be dilutes 20 parts water to one part urine. Urine is usually sterile unless the person has an infection.
Urine turns into ammonia in several hours, but it should be no problem to find more…
Do not use urine from the first thing in the morning because the most toxins are expelled from the body at this time after sleeping all night.
Some people argue about molasses and if it has any benefits to the plant. The best information I can find proves that it is a great addition to the soil, feeds the healthy microbes, which increases the availability of nutrients to the roots.
You should use the unsulfured molasses. Simply add a spoonful to a gallon of water every week or so. It smells pleasant unlike some other farming products.
All seeds are not created equal.
To grow plants that will produce buds, the plants must be female. You can buy seeds that are guaranteed female, or you can grow about twice as many plants as you want to keep, and throw out the male plants as soon as you can identify them.
We will talk more about how to identify a male in a later chapter.
If you are using random seeds from a bag, you will get random plants. This can be fine, you can luck out and get some really good results, but it will be luck. In order to choose, you can buy specific seeds or even clones. This way, you will know exactly what you are getting.
The benefits of choosing the strains are worth knowing about. Each strain tastes different, smokes differently, and can have some varying effects. There are some types of cannabis that do not make me feel very good in comparison to others. And there are others that make me feel amazing. This depends on your personality, medical conditions, body type, mood, and so on.
Leafly.com is a good website for finding out the effects of all kinds of different strains. There are some reputable seed companies on the internet. Some of them ship all around the world and have discreet packaging. Don’t do anything illegal on account of us. We are not responsible for you, the laws in each country, state, region, are totally different. I am just providing information for research and for people who are aware of their local legal system.
Indica / sativa
When choosing a strain, you will notice Indica, Sativa, Hybrids, and Autoflower.
This can be confusing. The different types look different, take different amounts of time to flower, and have differing effects.
Indica is a shorter plant, which is one reason it is bred with sativa to make the sativa plants shorter to take up less room indoors. Indica has wider leaves, and just has a different personality to it. The buds take less time to develop, and they have different percentages of cannabinoids than Sativa and Auto.
Sativa is taller, skinnier, and has thinner leaves. They can get very, very tall outdoors, and also indoors they are sometimes hard to manage in a small space. The high is very psychedelic, sometimes manic, energized, and visual. They can take up to several weeks longer to finish flowering.
Hybrids are all around, and have varying percentages of different strains mixed. Consider your personality, health conditions, and schedule when choosing a strain. Read people’s reviews online about the effects of each strain you are interested in. Then go for it. After a lot of experience you will know what strains suit you well.
Autoflowering plants are short and quick. They are meant to save space and time. Some people say they are worth growing, but one important factor is that they cannot be cloned well. Cloning is a process of duplicating up to infinity plants using cuttings from healthy living plants. We will go over all the details of cloning later, because it is one of my favorite topics.
There are a few ways to germinate a seed.
Most people have one way that they are comfortable with and they do it every time.
I personally like to plant the seed right into the growing medium, in this case, soil or soilless mix. All you do is water the soil so that it is wet but not completely waterlogged. Then you poke a hole about a half inch deep. If you are using your hands, make sure your hands are clean beforehand or use clean gloves.
Seeds are fragile. They need to be stored well and handled carefully. Once they get wet, they need to stay damp until the taproot is fairly established. It is very important not to drown the seed though. Damp, and water-logged are far from similar. So when you put the seed carefully in the half-inch deep hole, cover it with soil gently, you don’t need to pack it down hard because the seed needs to pop back through the surface. Water a tad just over the seed to make sure its wet, and then leave it for a few days. If the top of the soil starts drying out, keep it damp, but don’t completely water it again yet. Just make sure if there is any tiny root down there that it doesn’t dry out in the first few days.
One major problem people have is overwatering. It kills the seedlings and is hard to reverse once it has been done. When you over water a seedling, it usually turns yellow and then curls over. Once the seedling has popped out of the soil, it will start growing rapidly toward the light. The root will be growing even more underneath the soil. The roots will grow straight down, so the very top of the soil does not need to be wet. You will get the hang of this eventually. Depending on the size of the pot you are using, and how many leaves the plant has, it will use more or less water faster.
One way to know if it needs water is by the weight of the pot. If the leaves are drooping and looking dry, but the soil is still wet, you have probably over watered. Another way to check is actually stuck your clean finger about two inches down around the sides of the pot so as not to disturb the roots. If it is dry for two inches down, it needs water.
Seedlings will first have two little round leaves that come out of the seed. They will soon grow two tiny and jagged leaves. When the leaves start growing faster, the growth becomes faster and faster because the leaves can make more and more energy using energy from the light.
The seedlings should be as close to the light as possible if you are using CFL lights, but not too close to the light if you are using HPS bulbs. Seedlings are weak and cannot withstand any accidents or high heat. They can have light sixteen to twenty-four hours a day. The light should not be less than sixteen hours because in the natural seasons, the spring and summer have long days. You want the seedling growing as much as it can, so it needs to ‘think’ that it’s spring.
When the seedling starts growing more leaves, the leaves will change from single leaves to maybe three leaves, and eventually five or seven leaves. The more leaves, the more it will grow, so you want to keep the leaves healthy.
After the plant has grown four different sets of leaves, which will all grow symmetrically at the beginning, you can do some interesting things. There are some techniques that people use to keep their plants the same size or keep them maintained in a certain shape. Some of the techniques are good, and some are unnecessary. There is one particular technique that I have learned that works very well and can serve multiple purposes.
This is referred to as Uncle Ben’s topping technique. There are many variations to this, but this is the best one. Also, many people are screwing this up, and I care deeply about my plants, so I suggest only harming the plant if it serves a good purpose, and also not repeating this too many times because it can stretch out the time it takes from seed to harvest.
The Uncle Ben’s technique is performed when the plant has four sets of true leaves. That does not count those two little round leaves, but only the pointy jagged leaves. Also, only do this if the plants are healthy. They will recover well if they have good root systems starting and healthy leaves.
Everything must remain sterile during this procedure, plants can get infected, too.
Prepare everything you will need for this in a clean area and have it ready so that the cuttings you will take can survive.
You will need:
filtered, reverse osmosis, or distilled water
soil or soilless mix
rooting powder or gel [optional]
As the plants start to grow leaves rapidly, you will be watering them more, and may need to transplant them depending on the size of your pots. When the plants are small, you can grow them in small pots to save space, but if the roots become too large for the container, the plant will not reach its potential, and could even die depending on how rootbound it becomes.
If you transplant your plants into new containers, you should be careful not to damage the plant. Any stress to the plant will slow down the growth. You can become very good at transplanting, or you can plant the seeds in larger pots. Keep in mind not to overwater the plants.
If you followed the Uncle Ben’s topping technique, your plants should be recovering and have four main branches.
You want to veg the plant until it is about one half or one-third of the final desired height. In the first few weeks of flowering, some plants can get very tall very quickly. If you have the proper environment for the roots, and proper ventilation and water, the plants should be a healthy green. If the leaves are yellowish or even dark, dark green, you may have a nutrient problem.
With organic nutrients, it’s hard to overpower the plants, especially good genetic seeds. Good quality strains will need a lot of nutrients to grow to its full potential. If the leaves are showing strange spots or drooping, you may have a nutrient problem. Make sure the temperature around the tops of the plants is not over 83 degrees. If they aren’t overwatered, and not too hot or cold, odds are it’s a nutrient or bug problem.
Bat guano or very strong compost could overpower the plants, but worm castings would not. The mix you made before you planted the seed should be feeding the plant for it’s entire life. The other additives we have mentioned can be added to the watering to help encourage the plant to grow rapidly with all the minerals it needs.
During vegetative growth, you can clone healthy plants in order to grow more plants without using more seeds. This is desirable if you have a female plant that looks very healthy, or if you already know the strain is one you want a lot of. One seed, if it is female, could turn into thousands of plants. You can successfully clone a clone endlessly as long as the plants are healthy, they will still be the original plant.
Are you ready to clone the plants? We talked about Uncle Bens topping, which involves cutting the plant. You can use this top as a clone, instead of just throwing it away, and make an entirely new plant from it!
With a sterile razor blade, carefully take the cutting you want. If you are doing the topping technique, cut the stem above the second real set of leaves –not the round leaves that came out of the seed.
When making the cut, be careful not to follow through and cut extra parts with the sharp razor blade. The plant needs all of its leaves to grow back rapidly. Once you have carefully taken the cutting, immediately put it into the water so that an air bubble doesn’t form at the ‘open wound.’ Get it into clean water in a sterile container.
You can plant this cutting directly into the wet soil, or you can use rooting powder, rooting gel, fresh aloe vera, or some people have different natural rooting hormones they make from willow. A small bit of the seaweed tea can work. The cutting will root without any help, but rooting gel or powder works magic.
If you use rooting powder, don’t cake too much on, make sure that water can soak into the stem. Also, don’t contaminate the rooting powder or gel. Always put a little in a small container and then dip the stem into it. Don’t dip the stem into the container of powder or gel.
Also, be careful of this, and don’t get any in your mouth or anything. Be careful with this process because being messy can harm the plants chance of rooting. Everything must be free of mold or disease.
Put the cut stem directly from the water into the rooting material and then into the wet soil. It’s best to use a tiny container for the clone because at first when the cutting has no roots, the soil will just be wet for an extended period of time, which can promote mold. Keep a close eye on the cuttings and make sure they get some oxygen each day. Cover them with something to keep in the moisture, but check them often.
When you check them, don’t play with them. Just make sure they are not molding or drying out. They should stay wet so that the roots can grow and the plants don’t dry out first. To keep them from drying out too fast, you can clip the leaves so that the leaves don’t ‘breathe’ out all the moisture. Since roots are not soaking in moisture yet, they need to be trimmed in some cases. If the leaves are not very big, they can stay on. They do need some leaves so that they can start growing as soon as there are roots established.
You can also spray the leaves with water to help keep them wet. As long as you are checking them often for mold, misting them with water is good. They should start developing roots anywhere from 5 to ten days, depending on your method. You will get very good at this to the point where almost one hundred percent of your cutting will root successfully.
Once it has rooted, carefully, with clean hands or gloves, transplant the clone into a larger pot without harming the leaves. Plant it as deep as you can without buying any bottom branches, because if you plant them too close to the surface, they can tip over. Another way to aid this is to have stakes or something to hold them up established in the pot before the plant grows and needs them, this way, you won't have to jam an object into the pot breaking the root systems later on.
Now, just grow the clone until it is half or one-third of the size you want it before sending it into flower. You can also grow this clone out, and take cuttings and clone them before you put it into flower. Make sure after taking any cuttings, give the plant some time to recover before putting it in flower. Each stressor on the plant will hamper its potential unless it has recovery time and an ideal environment. Minor cuttings will not ruin your crop. Just treat the plant well so that it can deliver fantastic results.
Health of the plant
Like I mentioned several times, the health of the plant will determine the quality of the end results.
All weed is not created equal. Good genetics will be the easiest and best to grow because they are chosen based on growing them in the conditions you are in, either indoor or outdoor. Some can be grown in either or.
If your plants do not have enough light, the buds will be weak. If they don’t have enough nutrients, the leaves will be weak, which slows down, and lessens the quality of the buds.
If the plants have parasites, the nutrients will be taken from the plant and the quality will suffer.
On the other hand, if your plant is grown well and has everything it needs, it will astonish you if you let it completely flower and harvest it at the peak time! You will be amazed at what some plants can bounce back from and still produce amazing results. And when the plant is healthy from the very beginning, it will be so easy to take care of it, because it just matures exactly how it should and you get to witness it.
Health of the buds
As I mentioned, the flowering stage of the plants' life begins when the plant notices the light cycle change in the natural environment, or indoors when you deliberately change them.
In preparation for this, the plants should be as big as you want them, and also healthy.
Once the flowering starts, you have to see it to completion or you can risk stressing out the plants to the point where they grow both male and female parts.
This happens when the plants are stressed because, in their last attempt to survive, they grow male parts to pollinate themselves to make seeds.
Seeds are a no-no in flowering unless you want more seeds of that particular plant. If you can clone plants and you have a decently small operation, you won't need tons of seeds. Most people don’t want any seeds because they take away from the potency of the buds, and they are annoying to pick out.
What we want are sensimilla buds, or buds which have not been pollinated and have no seeds. This ensures a high level of THC and other cannabinoids because all the plants' energy during the flowering phase is to produce these chemicals in order to become pollinated. When they are not pollinated, they secrete much more of these cannabinoids up until harvest. This is what makes them so amazing.
Flowering can take a long time, and usually is measured from the time the light cycle is changed or they are put in another room with a shorter light cycle. Usually, this light cycle is twelve hours off, twelve hours on, but I have heard people who do eleven hours on and thirteen hours off to save money on electricity, and some claim they do well with less light.
First half of flower
The important thing is that they have at least twelve hours of UNINTERRUPTED darkness every day at the same time. The plant will not flower right away, but within about ten days, you will start to notice little white ‘hairs’ coming out of the buds. These hairs will start to multiply, and the plant will grow at a rapid rate in the beginning of the light cycle change.
Once they stop growing taller, they will just produce more and more buds for several weeks until it becomes the perfect time for you to harvest them.
Some plants take around eight weeks to flower, and some can take around fourteen weeks. Usually, sativa take longer, up to fourteen weeks, and Indica can be shorter around seven or eight weeks.
Still, some growers do not believe in flowering in that short of a time, and swear by checking the trichomes on the plant rather than count days on the calender.
If you have a microscope or a powerful magnifier, you can actually see the tiny THC crystals on the leaves and buds of the plants. These are called trichomes, and they look like hair or sparkling crystals with the naked eye. With a magnifier, they look like slightly bent spikes with little balls at the end.
These change colors depending on their peak THC content. They go from clear at first, to milky white, and then start to turn orange or amber before decaying.
The key is to harvest the plant as late as you can patiently wait, but without waiting too long to where the THC starts degrading. So when the trichomes start turning amber, like the turning color of the trees in the autumn, they should be harvested.
It is important to check several places on the plant first, because maybe only one spot has some amber trichomes. You want to wait until about thirty percent of the trichomes are turning amber to get them at the perfect time.
You can also harvest when they are still milky, and you will have more of a head high. If you wait until more and more are amber, you will get more of a body buzz, if you know the difference. The different cannabinoids have different effects on the brain and body, and the time you harvest should also be determined by your taste in high, and if you have any medical conditions that would make you seek out more of a stoned feel, or more of an energetic feel.
The genetics of the plant has the largest role in determining this, but harvesting at the right time can ensure that you are getting the best quality buds possible. This is important if it is being used for medicine.
Harvest is definitely the most fun for me, however, it is a lot of work depending on how many plants you have. If you want to have the best quality results, you need to take some time for harvesting and curing the buds. Once you have done this, there is plenty of time to talk about making butter, hash, and all kinds of things!
If you have already determined that it is the ideal time to harvest, you should not water the plant. It will take days to dry properly so get a head start. Some people let their plants dry out and start to die, so that the plant spends all its remaining energy juicing out tricomes.
The THC content is highest in the “morning” or, when your lights turn on. Plan your harvest date and be prepares with time and the necessary tools. You will need a clean area or a dropcloth and clippers. This is a good time to trim all the leaves off.
Wear gloves because hand oils destroy TCH, and because the buds should be sticky-icky-icky by now if you have treated your plant properly and waited until it was at its peak maturity.
You should use sharp clippers preferably with a spring that spring back open because the sticky-icky gets like superglue on clippers.
Start by cutting the plant at the base as if you were chopping down a Christmas tree. There is a technique where you do not cut down the entire plant, and force the plant to re-veg. This works only if the plants it super healthy and there is any nitrogen left in the soil. If you try this, boost the soil by adding a top layer of earthworm castings as deep as you can. Also if you are trying this, do not dry the plant out extremely before harvesting.