How To Grow Weeds From Seeds To Harvest Pdf

Ten Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Cannabis Cannabis sativa is the scientific name of the plant that includes both hemp and marijuana. It is one of the oldest cultivated plants in All you need to get started on the road to grow your own weed at home quickly and affordably. Learn how to grow weed from the pros.

Ten Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Cannabis

Cannabis sativa is the scientific name of the plant that includes both hemp and marijuana. It is one of the oldest cultivated plants in human history and has been grown for seed, fiber, oil, and medicine. There are generally three recognized subspecies (C. sativa subsp. sativa, C. sativa subsp. indica, and C. sativa subsp. ruderalis) and hundreds of varieties within Cannabis, each with unique characteristics.

1. What is the difference between cannabis, hemp, and marijuana?

Hemp and marijuana are closely related types of Cannabis that are often referred to as high and low THC cannabis. The difference between them is similar to the difference between sweet corn and field corn. Both are Zea mays, but sweet corn makes high-sugar kernels, and field corn makes starch-filled kernels. Sweet corn and field corn differ by only a few genes. Similarly, hemp and marijuana differ by only a few genes.

Cannabis varieties of both hemp and marijuana differ in outward appearance and in the production of over a hundred compounds in the class called cannabinoids. The two most common cannabinoids are delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive compound responsible for the “high” often associated with Cannabis, and cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive sibling of THC with a unique set of characteristics and reported medical benefits (Nahler, 2019). These cannabinoids are the major difference between marijuana and hemp.

High THC Cannabis: Marijuana

Marijuana is the common name for Cannabis varieties that have been bred to have high THC levels, often containing 15–30% THC by weight. Marijuana is grown exclusively for the unpollinated female flower, where THC concentration is highest. Marijuana is classified as a Schedule 1 controlled substance by the federal government, but some states have legalized it for medical and recreational use. Where marijuana is legal, growers benefit from a remarkably high value for their crop. Recent marijuana prices range from about $750 to $1,750 per pound, depending on the quality and method of production (U.S. Cannabis Spot Index, 2018).

Figure 1. The anatomy of Cannabis sativa,
including both male and female reproductive
structures. Typically, these structures occur
on separate plants, but they can occasionally
occur on the same plant (hermaphroditic).
CBD is produced in trichomes, tiny
structures that occur in the highest density
on unpollinated female flowers. Image
used with permission from Leafly.

Low THC Cannabis: Hemp

Hemp is the common name for Cannabis varieties that have been genetically selected to have a THC content less than 0.3%. Since this THC level is low, hemp does not provide the psychoactive effect that marijuana does. Instead, hemp is grown primarily for CBD and other cannabinoids, and to a lesser extent, for its durable fiber and nutritious seed. The value of the crop varies depending on the intended use and the supply. Prior to the 2018 hemp market boom, gross returns were about $12,500, $1,300, and $750 per acre for CBD, fiber, and seed, respectively (Schluttenhofer & Yuan, 2017). Prices for CBD increased in 2018 to about $4.00 per percentage CBD per pound but then crashed to about $0.75 in 2019 to the present (personal communication with Utah hemp processors). Still, many in the industry predict that prices will stabilize in 2021. Due to this volatility, it is difficult to report current average prices. Prices vary greatly according to the intended end use, region, and specific contracts with buyers. Furthermore, state and national hemp prices are not tracked like other commodities, so it is difficult to find published reports of prices over time.

2. Why does plant gender matter?

Hemp differs from many other crops because it is primarily dioecious, meaning it has separate male and female plants. In addition, hermaphroditic plants with both male and female reproductive structures do occur. This creates unique issues for growers hoping to produce a high CBD crop because CBD is most concentrated on unpollinated female flowers (Figure 1). Pollination significantly reduces crop value, so an all-female field is important when hemp is grown for CBD. The pollination of hemp plants can reduce the essential oil yield from 2 to 0.9 gallons/acre, a 56% decrease (Meiner & Mediavilla, 1998). Male plants produce pollen that fertilize female plants, which causes seed production, lower flower counts, and decimates CBD levels (DeDecker, 2019). The distance that hemp pollen can travel is unknown, but due to cross-pollination risks, fields should be at least 3 miles apart (Small & Antle, 2003). However, some recommendations suggest up to a 15-mile isolation distance to be safe (DeDecker, 2019).

3. How and when can I detect plant gender?

Both male and female plants can be identified at the pre-flowering stage. Female flowers have two white fuzzy hair-like structures protruding from them, differentiating them from males early on. Male flowers are round, lack the white hairs, and generally occur in dense clusters (Figure 2). Cannabis is a short-day plant (requires longer periods of darkness than daylight to flower), so they will start to flower when day and night lengths are approximately equal. Male plants will produce pollen for a span of two to four weeks (DeDecker, 2019). If a male is identified in a hemp field grown for CBD, it should be removed and buried, burned, or carefully stored to prevent pollination of the females.

Figure 2. Sexually mature female plants produce “pre-flowers” (left). The white hair-like structures can distinguish females from males, which produce dense oval-shaped clusters (right). Photos by Mitchell Westmoreland.

4. Should I purchase seed or clones?

There are two ways to produce a cohort of all females in hemp: clonal propagation and feminized seed. Clonal propagation involves taking a cutting from a mother plant and allowing it to establish roots. This method results in genetically identical, all-female plants with excellent vigor and predictable traits.

Feminized seeds are produced by treating female plants with chemicals such as silver thiosulfate, which can cause a female plant to develop male flowers that produce genetically female pollen (Lubell & Brand, 2018). The female pollen is used to pollinate a female flower, resulting in seeds that can be over 99% female. Feminized seeds are less expensive than clones but result in genetically different plants. They have a greater chance of producing male and hermaphroditic plants. Hemp grown from feminized seed requires careful and repeated scouting to remove male plants, increasing the total cost of production. This scouting should begin at the pre-flower stage when males can be distinguished (Figure 2) and continue throughout the entire flowering period. Plants grown from seed have the added benefit of potentially producing a stronger taproot if sown directly into the field, while plants grown from clones develop a more fibrous root system (Horner et al., 2019). This is generally true for many types of seed vs. clones and is not specific to feminized seed. However, germination rates in the field can be poor, and often seeds are germinated in trays and transplanted into the field. When this happens, the taproot may not get a chance to penetrate deep into the soil early on and negate the potential agronomic benefits of using seed.

In summary, both feminized seed and female clones have advantages and disadvantages that should be considered before growing hemp. It is critical that growers use extreme caution when purchasing feminized seed because there is currently no certification program for feminized seed in the United States.

5. Which varieties for cannabinoid production do best in Utah?

Figure 3. Frequency of help cultivars produced in 2019
in Utah.
Data provided by the Utah Department of
Agriculture and Food Industrial Hemp Program.

When selecting varieties to plant, consider the number of frost-free days, labeled cannabinoid production, and other factors of interest such as plant size, vigor, and growth habits. Several varieties grow well in Utah, but CBD and THC levels are highly variable among them (Figure 3). There is little testing of varieties, so evaluate information about a preferred option before selection, and consider planting several varieties. In general, focus on varieties that have a high CBD concentration and a low THC concentration. Avoid varieties that are prone to “going hot,” or exceeding the 0.3% THC limit. The field containing plants that are tested above this level by the state’s agriculture department must be destroyed.

In 2019, the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) tracked all varieties that were registered by licensed growers that year (Figure 3). ‘Cherry Wine’ and ‘Cherry Blossom’ were the most planted, and ‘Sour Space Candy’ and ‘Tokyo’ were among the least. Of the samples collected and tested, 10% exceeded the legal THC level of 0.3% and had to be destroyed. The varieties that most frequently went hot were ‘Abacus,’ ‘Lifter,’ and ‘Wife.’

6. What yield and CBD/THC ratio might I expect?

According to UDAF records, there were over 3 million industrial hemp plants grown in Utah in 2019 when hemp was first legalized. Growers harvested an estimated 800,000 pounds of biomass that year. The dry flower yield of the plants typically ranged from 0.75 to 1.5 pounds per plant. State tests determined an average CBD content of 5.3% and average THC content of 0.28%. This means the average CBD/THC ratio was about 20 to 1. Most varieties that have been studied in controlled environments have a similar ratio.

7. How much fertilizer and other inputs should I apply to my hemp?

Hemp can be grown in a wide range of environments and soils. In general, growers have found success growing hemp under field conditions favored by grain crops such as wheat and corn (Kaiser et al., 2015). Like many crops, hemp does best in soils with a pH ranging from about 6.0–7.0 (Harper et al., 2018). Most Utah soils have pH levels above this ideal range, but hemp produced in 2019 and 2020 tolerated higher pH levels. Well-drained soils are preferred, and due to its high sensitivity to compaction, avoid growing hemp in soils with high clay contents (Baxter & Scheifele, 2009).

The suggested fertilizer recommendations vary depending on region and initial soil fertility. Perform a soil test in the prior fall or early spring before planting to determine fertilizer needs. Fertilizer recommendations for corn or winter wheat (Cardon et al., 2008) provide a good baseline for fertilizer amounts that will help maximize hemp yield.

For pest management, there are currently few pesticides labeled for industrial hemp, so control weeds, insects, and diseases through careful planning and preventive practices. When hemp is grown in the same field year after year, pest pressure can increase, so crop rotation is the centerpiece of any pest management strategy. Only grow hemp in fields where weeds have been actively and successfully managed in previous years so the amount of weed seed in the soil seedbank is minimal. A stale seedbed technique for weed management is common, where the soil is prepared for planting and pre-irrigated, allowing weeds to germinate and be removed before planting hemp. After hemp plants are established and actively growing, limited pesticide options may necessitate hand-weeding or between-row cultivation. The hemp canopy closes quickly, helping reduce weed growth, but is dependent on row spacing and planting method.

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8. How does frost affect CBD and THC levels?

Once mature, hemp is a relatively hardy plant and can withstand frost well. A study at the University of Vermont in 2018 tracked the difference in temperatures and resulting CBD levels of hemp plants between those with fabric row covers and those left uncovered. They found that though the uncovered hemp plants experienced below freezing temperatures several times throughout the study, the overall CBD concentration was unaffected. They also found that frost and cold weather can cause the plants to change color, but this has little to no impact on CBD or THC levels (Darby, 2019). Some have found that frost’s ability to change the color of hemp plants also varies depending on the cultivar or variety of the plant (Bolt, 2020). Like almost every other annual crop, hard frosts will stop plant growth and cause hemp plants to begin senescence.

9. How do I harvest hemp?

The harvesting methods for industrial hemp vary greatly depending on the intended uses for the plants. The major uses include oil, seed, and fiber.

Because no equipment exists on the market specifically to harvest CBD hemp, most of the harvesting process must be done by hand or by retrofitting existing equipment. The hemp is ready for harvest when the trichomes on the hemp buds shift from white to milky white. It is important to routinely monitor and test the plants to avoid exceeding the 0.3% THC limit while still maximizing the CBD content.

When harvesting hemp for oil, plants are commonly cut down at the base using a machete or blade of some kind (Figure 4).

After they are cut, hang the plants upside down to air or heat dry (Figure 5). Breaking the plants down and separating them into individual branches will allow for better airflow and quicker drying. Ideal drying temperatures reported by some growers are between 60–70°F with humidity levels around 45–55%. Higher temperatures, as well as light and oxygen, can degrade cannabinoids and reduce flower quality. Therefore, maintain a cool and dark storage environment.

After the plants dry, growers strip the buds and leaves from the stems, either by hand or custom-built equipment (Figure 6). Bag the dried flowers and leaves and send them to a processor to have the oil extracted and dispose of the remaining plant.

Fiber

When growing hemp for the fiber, harvest plants between early bloom and seed-set or when about 20% of the male plants are flowering (William & Mundell, n.d.). Large parts of this process can occur using traditional hay-harvesting equipment, making it much simpler than other hemp harvesting methods.

The hemp is windrowed with a swather when mature, leaving about 4–6 inches of stubble in the field, where the hemp will then need to go through the retting process. Retting consists of leaving the cut hemp out in the field to dry for anywhere from two to five weeks. Retting helps break the bonds between the two types of hemp plant fibers: the bast (long outer fibers) and the hurds (short inner fibers). Rake the hemp two to three times throughout retting to keep the plants from rotting and remove leaves, making it easier to transport.

When the plants reach a moisture content of 15%, bale them using traditional baling equipment. The bales should have a moisture content of about 10%. Bale the hemp into either round or square bales, but round bales are less compact and therefore less susceptible to rotting.

Hemp Seed or Grain

Conventional grain harvesting equipment also accommodates harvesting hemp grain or seed. Use a combine to cut and chop the hemp plants. The hemp plants must be at 70–80% grain maturity at harvest to avoid seed shattering. The combine settings will be similar to those for grain sorghum, with the cutter bar raised about 40 inches off the ground. This decreases the amount of plant material going through the combine, thus reducing the risk for plants getting wrapped up in the machinery.

When harvest-ready, the hemp plants’ moisture will most likely be in the 15–30% range, making the seed or grain very susceptible to spoilage soon after harvest. It is best to clean the seed and dry it down to 7–10% shortly after harvest.

10. Who can process my hemp and where can I sell it?

This is a difficult question to answer as it varies greatly from place to place. Many growers have recently reported difficulty in finding places to sell and market hemp grown for oil. Hemp prices plummeted in 2020, and many frustrated growers could not process or sell their product. Some growers turned to specialty or direct marketing for income. Many lost large investments. Like any other specialty crop, it is wise to consult with an attorney to develop legal and binding contracts with hemp processors and buyers prior to investing in and growing hemp to guarantee that markets exist for harvested hemp. We recommended starting small to ensure that you do not lose more investment than you or your farm can afford. Unfortunately, we have received reports of farm failures due to large investments in unprofitable hemp acres. Thus, we suggest that growers use extreme caution when investing in production of hemp for CBD oil.

References

  • Baxter, W. J., & Scheifele, G. (2009). Growing industrial hemp in Ontario. Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/facts/00-067.htm
  • Bolt, M. (2020). Frost and hemp, should growers worry? [Fact sheet]. Purdue University Extension. https://extension.entm.purdue.edu/newsletters/pestandcrop/article/frost-and-hemp-should-growers-worry/
  • Cardon, G. E., Kotuby-Amacher, J., Hole, P., & Koenig, R. (2008). Understanding your soil test report [Fact sheet]. Utah State University Extension. https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1825&context=extension_curall
  • Darby, H. (2019). 2018 Cannabidiol cold tolerance trial [Fact sheet]. University of Vermont Extension. https://www.uvm.edu/sites/default/files/media/2018_Hemp_Cold_Tolerance_Trial.pdf
  • DeDecker, J. (2019). Weighing the risk of cannabis cross-pollination [Fact sheet]. Michigan State University Extension. https://www.canr.msu.edu/news/weighing-the-risk-of-cannabis-cross-pollination
  • Harper, J. K., Collins, A., Kime, L., Roth, G. W., & Manzo, H. E. (2018). Industrial hemp production [Fact sheet]. Penn State University Extension. https://extension.psu.edu/industrial-hemp-production
  • Horner, J., Ohmes, A., Massey, R., Luce, G., Bissonnette, K., Milhollin, R., Lim, T., Roach, A., Morrison, C., & Schneider, R. (2019). Missouri industrial hemp production [Fact sheet]. University of Missouri Extension. https://extension.missouri.edu/publications/mx73
  • Kaiser, C., Cassady, C., & Ernst, M. (2015). Industrial hemp production [Fact sheet]. University of Kentucky Extension. https://www.uky.edu/ccd/sites/www.uky.edu.ccd/files/hempproduction.pdf
  • Lubell, J. D., & Brand, H. M. (2018). Foliar sprays of silver thiosulfate produce male flowers on female hemp plants. American Society for Horticultural Technology, HortTechnology, 28(6), 743–747. https://journals.ashs.org/horttech/view/journals/horttech/28/6/article-p743.xml
  • Meiner, C.H. & Mediavilla, V. (1998). Factors influencing the yield and quality of hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) essential oil. Journal of the International Hemp Association, 5(1) pp. 16–20.
  • Nahler, G. (2019). Cannabidiol and contributions of major hemp phytocompounds to the “entourage effect;” possible mechanisms. Journal of Alternative, Complementary & Integrative Medicine, 5(2), 1–16. https://doi.org/10.24966/ACIM-7562/100066
  • Schluttenhofer, C., & Yuan, L. (2017). Challenges towards revitalizing hemp: A multifaceted crop. Trends in Plant Science, 22(11), 917–929. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tplants.2017.08.004
  • Small, E. & Antle, T. (2003). A preliminary study of pollen dispersal in cannabis sativa in relation to wind direction. Journal of Industrial Hemp, 8(2). https://www.votehemp.com/PDF/Small2003JIH.pdf
  • U.S. Cannabis Spot Index. (2018). Cannabis benchmarks. Retrieved October 11, 2019, from https://reports.cannabisbenchmarks.com/
  • Williams, D.W., & Mundell, R. (n.d.). An introduction to industrial hemp, hemp agronomy, and UK agronomic hemp research [Fact sheet]. University of Kentucky Extension. https://hemp.ca.uky.edu/sites/hemp.ca.uky.edu/files/uk_ih_information_for_agents3.pdf

Published June 2021
Utah State University Extension
Peer-reviewed fact sheet

Authors

Matt Yost, Megan Baker, Mitch Westmoreland, Tina Sullivan, Jody Gale, Cody Zesiger, Earl Creech, and Bruce Bugbee

How To Grow Weed: A Step-by-Step Guide For Beginners

Looking for the basics of how to grow marijuana? Here are the tools and information on how to grow weed affordably and effectively. All you need is a small discreet space and a little bit of a budget to get started on your indoor pot production.

Grow Tools

The first thing you’ll need is a place to grow. I recommend getting yourself a decent grow tent. They’re cheap, made to grow inside of and can be put up and taken down quickly by one person. Some tents come with packages that include all kind of complicated hydroponic equipment. Your best bet is to purchase only what you need inside the tent and to learn how to grow weed without the expensive plastic. Some even have separate chambers for vegetative growth and cloning, making them perfect for people living in one-bedroom apartments or studios with limited room to grow.

First, you’ll need a growlight. I like HID (High-Intensity Discharge) lighting – HPS (High-Pressure Sodium) or MH (Metal Halide) systems with ballasts, bulbs and reflectors. If heat from these lights will be an issue, there are also LED (Light-Emitting Diode) and CFL (Compact Fluorescent) systems you can employ. Be sure to get a light that covers your tent’s footprint and invest in a decent timer to control when your light turns on and off.

You’ll also need an exhaust fan and activated carbon filter to reduce heat and eliminate odors. Be sure to get one that’s rated for your tent’s size with the proper ducting size. A clip-on circulating fan will keep air moving and stop it from being stagnant. A thermometer/hygrometer is also a must for keeping track of temperature and humidity.

If you don’t have access to marijuana seeds or clones from a dispensary or friend, you’ll need to get some cannabis seeds mailed to you. Don’t have them mailed to the same place you plan to grow if you’re not growing legally. Don’t just learn how to grow weed, learn how to be discreet and not brag or bring attention to yourself.

A simple loose and airy soil mix in 3-5 gallon buckets are great for beginners and much more forgiving than any hydroponic system. Be sure to cut holes in the bottom of the buckets and use saucers under them to catch any overflow. You’ll need to purchase nutrients to feed to your plants as they grow and a watering can as well.

How To Grow Weed

After you’ve planted your seeds or rooted your clones, it’s time to get them growing. Lower your reflector so that it’s closer to the plants rather than making them stretch to reach for light. Raise the lighting system as your plants grow. Set your light timer to be on for 18 hours per day and off for 6 hours. During this vegetative stage, the plant will grow leaves and branches but no flowers (unless it’s an auto-flowering plant).

Avoid overfeeding and overwatering your plants at all costs. Err on the side of caution as it’s always easier to add more nutrients or water than it is to take them away. Marijuana roots prefer a wet/dry cycle so lift up your buckets and you’ll get a better idea for if they need watering or not by the weight. The first sign of overfed plants is burnt leaf tips. The first rule of how to grow weed is to learn to stay off of its way sometimes.

Anytime space is limited for growing, some basic rules apply: Since square footage is at a premium, plans must take full advantage of each available inch. This means choosing between growing indica-dominant strains such as Hashplant, Afghani #1 or planning on using drastic trellising and training techniques if growing out sativas such as Super Silver Haze, Jack Herer or Kali Mist.

See also  Grow Butterfly Weed From Seed

Pruning For Higher Yield

When pruning, start early and often. Cut or pinch branches just above the node where two new shoots will emerge. If you stay on top of this process, you’ll have plants that look like bonsai bushes, with plenty of bud sites but not a lot of stretching out and big gaps between nodes. This is the efficient way to get bigger yields out of small spaces but your vegetating time will increase so factor that into your schedule.

Don’t prune or pinch plants at all once they’ve begun flowering – you’ll only be decreasing your harvest at that point. If the branches are threatening to reach the light, bend them or tie them down to keep them from burning. A trellis system constructed from chicken wire at canopy level (aka the ScrOG or Screen of Green system), will further spread out bud sites and increase your yields considerably. Simply train growing shoots to grow horizontally along the bottom of the screen to fill empty spots.

Flower Power

Indoors, The decision of when to induce flowering in your plants is entirely up to you. If you want to learn how to grow weed, it’s important to determine how much space you have and to factor in the fact that your plants will stretch for at least a few weeks after flowering is induced. I usually recommend one week per gallon of container, so a plant in a five-gallon bucket should get approximately five weeks of vegetative time.

When you’re ready to begin the flowering stage, switch your timer to a 12 hour on/12 hour off light cycle. Be sure never to interrupt the 12-hour dark period with any light. This confuses your plant and can cause serious problems.

Change your feeding regimen to one suited for flowering. Plant nutrients generally come in vegetative or flowering formulations so switch over to a “blooming” solution. Depending on the flowering time of your strain, determine when you have two weeks or so left and begin the flushing process. If you’re growing a 60-day flowering strain, start to flush your grow medium with only plain water around day 46.

Harvesting, Drying and Curing

Knowing when and how to harvest your buds is as important as knowing how to grow weed.

Use a loupe or a strong magnifying scope to take a very close look at the trichomes; the tiny glandular stalk and head sometimes referred to as “crystals”. Up close, they resemble little glass mushrooms with a stem that forms a bulbous round clear top. Inside that gland head resides the psychoactive compounds (THC, CBD etc). Harvest when the majority of the gland heads begin to go cloudy white and before they’ve gone completely amber. Harvest when they’re mostly amber if you desire a more lethargic stone.

Post-harvest, you will trim and hang up your buds to dry. This process should take about a week or two depending on the humidity and heat in your area. It’s always best to keep this process slower than 3-4 days in order to ensure you aren’t locking in that “green” chlorophyll taste. Add a humidifier to your drying room if you think your nuggets are drying out too quickly. Never leave a fan blowing directly onto your drying colas but make sure air is circulating to avoid mold and bud-rot.

After you’ve determined that your buds are sufficiently dried you’re ready to jar them up for the cure. The stems should snap instead of bending and the outside of the flowers should feel bone dry to the touch. The truth is there is still plenty of water stuck in the bud and the curing process will slowly “sweat” out the remaining liquid.

Always use opaque jars (ones you can’t see inside) and place them in a cool dark place. Open up the jars to determine the level of moisture and leave them open if there’s any condensation forming on the inside of the glass. Slowly but surely, if you open and close the jars once or twice a day, the moist air will be replenished by dry air and the water that’s stuck in the middle of your bud will work its way to the outside and then out into the air altogether. After three weeks to a month or so curing, your buds should burn and taste perfectly.

Pro Tips for Proper Drying and Curing

A key part of learning how to grow weed is mastering drying and curing techniques. You do not want marijuana to dry too quickly or too slowly, as the ideal drying time for a healthy and flavorful marijuana plant is 10 to 14 days. In this video, you will learn the perfect temperature and humidity to dry and cure weed, as well as pro tips that will teach you how to grow weed and trim your plants like an experienced veteran, leaving you with a grade-A product.

Tips on How to Grow Weed: The Smart Pot

Attention to detail is essential if you are a beginner who is trying to learn how to grow weed. Even the most inconsequential detail could be the difference between a healthy plant and a dud. In this video, learn about the best type of container to use to grow your marijuana plant. We recommend a “smart pot,” which is a container that is made of breathable fabric that allows the roots of your plant to grow much larger. Larger roots mean a larger marijuana plant, which means a more bountiful weed yield when the time comes.

Tips on How to Grow Weed: The Hydroponic Garden

A hydroponic garden, also known as a “hydro” setup, is a very popular implementation to grow high-quality weed. In this video, an expert takes you through the ins and outs of a typical hydro setup, allowing you to see what it takes to successfully implement your own hydro setup at home. For those who are beginners just learning how to grow weed, a hydroponic garden may seem way too complicated to even consider. However, with some assistance from the experts at High Times, you can easily set up a hydro system that will give you an epic yield!

Pest Control and Management

As with any garden, when growing marijuana, pests are a constant concern. For anyone learning how to grow weed, it is important to become well-versed in pest management. The last thing you want is for the marijuana crop that you have been working so hard on to be eaten away by a pest infestation. This video teaches you how to ward away pests from your precious plants with integrated pest management, stopping an infestation before it can even happen. Just a few simple steps can mean the difference between victory and defeat.

Final Hit: How To Grow Weed

Now you know the basics of how to grow marijuana from seed to harvest. It’s time to get yourself the tools you need and get started today. And remember to take notes, or even better, start your own anonymous online Grow Diary.

Danny Danko is a writer, photographer and the Senior Cultivation Editor of High Times magazine. He has selected High Times’ annual Top 10 Strains of the Year since 2005 and is also the creator and founder of the High Times Seed Bank Hall of Fame, author of The Official High Times Field Guide to Marijuana Strains and the forthcoming book Cannabis: A Beginner’s Guide to Growing Marijuana. He hosts the podcast High Times presents “Free Weed from Danny Danko.”

48 comments

Hello, I am Jeff Kundert, President of the American Cannabis Society since 1978, My father, Prez Bob Kundert was a major player in the cannabis movement with Keith Stroup, Ed Rosenthal and Jack Herer. I also know all of these men and Jack’s son, Dan as well and have interviewed them all at Cannabis Cups in Denver. We are the “Thank You For Pot Smoking” people and our trademarked brands are all over the country. I am a medical professional (Registered Occupational Therapist and Wellness Educator). We have a lot of retro pictures of dad and Jack Herer etc. If you wanted some of this old school history, I am available at any time to interview with you or send you a brief article on what we do and our incredible journey. Dad passed away in 2000 and he toured the country all during the 80’s and 90’s. Keith would remember him and me.
Best to you all and thanks for all you do. Jeff for the ACS

I woukd love some of this info! I love jack herrera and ed rosenthal is my idle. Some old retro pics and info sound amazing. I jave ed rosenthals big bud x chronic 1990.

I need help . I have began to grow.. Tropicana Cookie.. feminized. In my home. I’ve sprouted. Planted in dirt. Have lights on. They are gorgeous.. but, what now?? Tops are 6 leafed, the starter leaves are mostly dying. But some are just…. Dying out in a day. Advise me please. Any advice is welcome..

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Could you send me directions to grow marijuana outside from start to harvest. Please.

Germinate your seed, put it in the soil, water daily and wait for the right season! :p

When you say right season, do you mean plant in spring and harvest in the fall ?

start your seeds 6 weeks before the last frost date in your area. place them in a sunny window over a heating pad. remove the heating pad once they germinate. if you are using feminized seeds expect one third to be males. if the seeds are not feminized expect 50% to 75% to be males, so germinate
enough seeds to cover that which gets pulled out in august as male plants. i use a jewelers loop to look at the crystals on the buds. harvest when halve of them are amber. it is best to harvest when the moon is in an air sign, plant when the moon is in a water sign.

I live in spokane wa and want to try a outside grow could you. Could you send me some info. from start to finish including best time to start a outside grow? Plz & Thank you fellow stoner.

I live in spokane wa and want to try a outside grow could you. Could you send me some info. from start to finish including best time to start a outside grow? Plz & Thank you fellow stoner.

In LaK’esh Ala K’in my Friends, i have a question regarding nutrients. i am growing 4 plants indoors under a 600 watt Halogen bulb, i would like to grow all natural and am using fish fertilizer during veg growth, is continued use during flowering a good idea or is there a natural flowering fertilizer that i can use? Gratitude for this site and the life giving info that is provided here.

Switch to a fruit bat guano for the phosphorus and drop the nitrogen mutes as they’re not necessary after budding commences

Nice article and useful for someone with a bit of xp under their grow belt. However this is not a step-by-step guide for beginners as a beginner doesn’t know how to setup their light, how to nurse their plant, when to shift stages, how to setup their grow space and etc etc…

See also  How Long Does It Take To Grow Weed From Seed

This is a general overview of how to get your plant to yield and not be a dried up husk at the end!

I am definitely interested in seeing more research. Is anyone else concerned about a company that sells nutrients telling us to keep using nutrients through harvest? All I am saying is that the possibility of bias or marketing strategy is there. I am not saying they are wrong…

Not flushing would be one less change in routine and easier for most growers, I would think.

Grow journals are strongly encouraged. If you do not have one, make one! No better way to learn than through trial and error.

I’m growing a couple of plants and I need some advice I’ll send you a pic of my plants and if possible can you tell me what I’m doing wrong please and explain the to me the pic of the one flowering

I live in the desert where 100+ temperatures are normal in summer. I saw you recommended a thermometer/hygrometer to monitor temp and humidity, but I never saw what ranges we should be going for?
With lights and outside temp versus house ac my grow area is topping at 88-92F, is that ok?

what are the best things to feed your plants during bud stage?

what are the best things to feed your plants during bud stage?

i used starter fertilizer once and burn the plants. today i use fish emulsion once a month during growing and every two weeks during bud. i grow outside. i would not want fish emulsion indoors

I am a beginner and need info on how to grow.

any body else growing outside and having trouble with spotted lanternfly? they are not on the hop bines, but are all over the marijuana. Any helpful hints?

Use BTK it will take care of any pests.

Bacillus Thuringiensis Kurstaki

I’m an unexperienced young rookie to growing pot plants, I smoke quite a bit so I decided it might be a good idea to grow to save cash. I have helped grow once before, and I’m using the same soil from that plant in a new cup. I started the process with the paper towel trick, its been 5 days and it has a long white stem like thing. I put it in a cup with the stem facing downwards and the three decent sized holes at the bottom. I’m using some sort of bright white light and I have my window open with a screen and ac periodically kicks on every 20 minutes or so. I put it on the windowsill, I was wondering if this will even grow, I’m not really that worried about it since I have a bunch growing outdoor around the same age, plus extra seeds, but I want to start growing indoors with what I have available. the light is a Intertek household use light, 250 watts, but bright as all hell. house base temperature usually never breaches 80. window is facing where the sun rises, therefore, I think it will get enough orange light to be healthy. And I’m supposed to be getting larger pots very soon, where I’ll transplant then seedling once it gets to a decent 5 or 6 inch tall. That will be the final transplant. I realize the light isn’t ideal, but is the air flow ok? also I live in Florida so that may or may not change things, and if you have any tips I’m happy to hear them.

straight up indoor growth is the easiest to master
there is no way a window will provide you adequate light, I tried and I am in the same area as you.
you will need at least a decent grow light I use a 1000 watt from GrowKing off amazon about a 100 bucks has a blue and a yellow setting grow and flower, and you will see amazing growth with them. make sure you have a big enough container for them, at least 2 or 3 gallons and decent soil like foxfarms

Hey, here is a small piece of information. Every first time grower should be aware of.

Cannabis deficiencies and other cannabis leaf symptoms can be a nightmare for any grower. But fortunately, many strange weed leaf spots, marijuana leaves turning yellow, the whole marijuana plant turning yellow, and other strange cannabis leaf problems or deficiencies can be fixed.
1- Solution For Calcium deficiency:

– Supplement with extra Calcium

– Dolomite Lime – For Soil Growers (Organic)

2- For copper deficiency:

– Adjust pH to Correct Range

– Give the Right Nutrients

– Take Good Care of the Roots

– Watch for Leaf Recovery

3-For Heat Stress:

– Keep roots cool

-kelp extract for roots

What a great read – I’ll be sharing with my colleagues. This is appreciated!

When I first heard about growing weed I really thought it’s too difficult for those who don’t have the experience yet. It’s a good thing that guides like this exist. Thank you so much.

i can now grow my own shit

I found your blog useful This is an extremely well written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post. I’ll definitely return. My site : https://weedlify.com/

Really like these new tips, which I haven’t heard of before, like the How To Grow Weed: A Step-by-Step Guide For Beginners. Can’t wait to implement some of these as soon as possible.

Interesting, some of the information in this article is new to me.
Thanks for this detailed guide.

I Love the article, it so detailed and well organised though some vital information has been avoided, it is still very helpful.
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Saddest write up waist of time I thought high times would tell me something I didn’t know. there are so much more better on YouTube showing you and telling u detailed info ppl at home come on u pretty much wrote quick go buy a tent buy a light I like this 1. what about par dli ppfd how about length the light this is 2021 not 1990 u should be explaining things to adults not teenagers. And shouldn’t matter if this is a write up for beginners beginners wasn’t in the heading the info should be there and if they want to buy a lux meter or most phones have them now and try a little more difficult grow. yet u think this write up is good enough for the whole world of adults is worth reading

My bad I was stoned there is beginners in the heading still a boring, sad write up sorry for criticism but this is or was the biggest weed mag I’ve heard of and was expecting so much more.

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