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When cutting, make the slice halfway between the sets of nodes. The new clones should be two to four inches 3—5 cm long. Be careful not to crush the end of the stem where cutting. Carefully trim off two or three sets of lower leaves. Cut them off at the nodes where they meet the stem. Clones root very well when there are one or two sets of trimmed nodes belowground and two sets of leaves above the soil line. While taking clones, hold cuttings in a glass of water until you are ready to dip in hormone and plant.

Cut leaves in half to lower transpiration surface and to keep them from overlapping. Moisture that could promote fungus is often trapped between overlapping leaves. Gather leaves in your hand and use a pair of scissors to cut the leaves in half. This will allow less surface area for the plants to breathe, but will still keep foliage on the plant. Cutting leaves like this will keep them up off the ground, which helps prevent rot and disease.

Choose a rooting medium see Rooting Mediums, page Saturate the medium or root cubes with water. Use an unsharpened pencil, chop stick, nail, etc. The hole should stop about one-half inch 1.

Use a rooting hormone see Rooting Hormones, page Always read and comply with the directions. Pour a small portion of the rooting hormone into another container before using so you do not contaminate the original container. Mix the liquid rooting hormone if necessary just before using. Use the dilution ratio for softwood cuttings. Swirl each cutting in the hormone solution for 5—15 seconds.

Make sure the liquid penetrates the entire stem evenly. Place the cuttings in the hole in the rooting medium. Pack rooting medium gently around the stem. Dip stem in gel as per instructions. Make sure the part that will go underground is covered evenly with gel.

When planting, take special care to gently pack soil. Roll stem in rooting powder so that the underground part is covered evenly. When planting, take special care to gently pack soil into place and avoid disturbing the rooting powder on the stem.

Water the rooting medium lightly and keep the surface evenly moist at all times. The first few days are the most critical for moisture. Clones have no roots to bring water to leaves. Water arrives from leaves and the cut stem until roots can supply it.

Water as needed to keep growing medium evenly moist. Do not let it get soggy and if it does, remove water at once. Place a tray containing rooting cubes or small containers of rooting medium into a nursery flat so cubes are easy to handle.

Label each clone when planting. If you are taking complete flats of the same clones at the same time, you will need to label the flat. Give clones 18—24 hours of fluorescent light. Place clones four to six inches below single or dual fluorescent tubes. Cool white fluorescents or a combination of warm and cool white are excellent for rooting. If clones must be placed under an HID, set them on the perimeter of the garden so they receive less intense light; or shade them with a cloth or screen.

Place clones four to six feet 1. These are the most critical days for a clone to get over the shock of being cut. Remove any sick. Construct the tent out of plastic bags. Some growers mist once or twice a day when plants are under the humidity dome. A humidity dome or tent will help keep humidity high. Keep leaves up off the rooting medium.

You may need to mist clones several times a day as an alternative to the humidity tent. Make sure to leave openings for air to flow in and out of the dome so little clones can breathe. Gradually reduce the humidity to 80—85 percent after the first three to four days.

Give clones 95— percent humidity the first two days after cutting. Misting clones with water cools foliage and slows transpiration to help traumatized clones retain moisture unavailable from nonexistent roots.

Put a heating pad. Put clones in a warm place to adjust air temperature. A warmer substrate increases underground chemical activity. Set them aside and let them root longer. In 10—21 days you should see roots growing out the sides of the rooting cubes. Clones that are still wilted after seven days will grow slowly or develop a problem. If they continue to root slowly or show signs of rot at the soil line.


To check for root growth in flats or pots. Ideally none of the clones will wilt or loose rigidity. Signals that roots have started to grow include yellow leaf tips. In the beginning you may have some clones that wilt but become rigid in a few days. Some dieback in lower leaves is not a sign the plant is dying. Do not move clones below bright light until they have fully developed root systems.

Do not transplant slow- rooting clones or clones with a small root system. Once transplanted. Clones usually look strong and healthy soon after you take them. Keep slow-growing clones rooting until adequate roots have developed.

After about a week. See Transplanting on the following page. These clones are using all their resources to conserve moisture and grow new roots. After five or six days. Any sign of slime. Leaves stay small and often turn a deeper shade of green. Set up a vegetative pre-growing area that is lit with an HID or bright compact fluorescent lamp CFL for the rooted clones. Place them in this area to let them grow during the first week or two of vegetation.

Transplanting Transplant clones before they are too big for their containers so they can continue rapid growth. Signs of rootbound plants include slow. This area needs to be just big enough to accommodate plants from the time they are a few inches tall until they are about a foot tall and ready to be moved into the flowering room.

Severely rootbound plants tend to grow straight up with few branches that stretch beyond the sides of the pot. Restrained cramped root systems grow sickly. Plants must be sufficiently rooted to withstand being yanked out of the pot! When growing short plants that reach full maturity in 90 days. To check for a restricted root zone. A somewhat dry root ball is usually easy to remove from the pot. A large mother plant will need a large pot if it will be kept for more than a few months.

The more rootbound the plant. Water the clones until water freely flows from the drain holes. Carefully place the root ball into a pre-made hole in the growing medium inside the larger container.

Gingerly pack more potting soil around the wet root ball and water the transplanted seedlings heavily with a fertilizer solution containing vitamin B1 which will ease transplant shock. Carefully turn each container upside down and tenderly shake the intact root ball into your hand.

Use a screen to diffuse light if plants are in a small room. Keep the soil moist but not soggy. Move the transplants to the perimeter of the HID garden for a day or two until they recover and show signs of growth.

Keep the humidity around 70—80 percent and the little ladies should perk right up and show signs of growth in a few days. After you get good at each step. It will take them one to four days to recover from transplant shock. Add a little more growing medium if necessary.

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If transplanting rockwool cubes into soil. Start fertilizing with a mild fertilizer mix two or three days after transplanting. Once the first clone is transplanted and watered. To minimize odors keep the drying and trimming room well ventilated so fragrances do not linger. Harvest timing is critical. The peak harvest window is open for roughly 5—7 days. Once cured. Before Harvest Pungent marijuana odors are often a problem around harvesttime.

Most growers manicure harvested buds before drying them slowly and evenly so THC is preserved. After drying. Keep rooms cool. An air conditioner works well to keep odors to a minimum in sealed rooms. Like a fine wine. Clearing solutions remove fertilizer residue faster and are used the last few days before harvest. Give plants plain water the last 7—14 days before harvest. Irrigate with plain water or clearing solution to remove residual fertilizers in foliage and soil.

Make sure to let 10—20 percent of the water drain out the bottom of containers. How to tell when fertilizer will affect taste Leaf tips and fringes are burned Leaves are brittle at harvest Buds crackle when burning Buds smell like chemicals Buds taste like fertilizer Change the nutrient solution to plain water in recirculating hydroponic systems 7—10 days before harvest. Let the soil dry out but do not let the plants wilt.

Give plants total darkness for 48 hours just before harvest so that more resin develops on buds. Do not water for 1—2 days before harvest. These trichomes develop most heavily on buds and small leaves. In fact. THC is most concentrated where the stalk meets the ball of the resin gland.

The majority of THC is found on female sinsemilla plants in the resin glands or trichomes on flower tops. Mind-bending psychoactive THC tetrahydrocannibinol is located in leaves. THC content cannot increase after harvest. At harvest all plant growth and THC production stop. Stalked trichomes look like a small post with a ball on top. The THC content found in stems and roots is virtually nonexistent. Harvesting Leaves Remove large leaves while plants are still in the ground.

Cut or pluck off the entire leaf and leaf stem. THC potency has generally peaked. Male plants. Smaller leaves around buds continue to develop resin until buds are ripe.

Peak potency is retained as long as leaves are healthy and green. Large female leaves like the Yumboldt at right and male plants contain fewer resin glands and much less mind-altering THC.

Once the large leaves are fully formed. Harvest yellow and diseased leaves and dispose of them. Reach into the bag once or twice a day and turn leaves so the moist leaves mix with drier leaves. Paper bags breathe well and can be closed by folding over the top. Leaves will be dry to the touch in 5—7 days. Once dry place leaves in the freezer so they are ready to make hash. Toss leaves into a paper bag.

Harvest at the point when THC production is at its peak. Male Harvest Harvest male plants before they disperse pollen. Shake the plant as little as possible to minimize any pollen dissemination.

The white spots are drops of water. Male plant in early flowering. Put a plastic bag over any male plants that might disperse pollen before cutting the main trunk off at the base. Most growers remove them from the garden as soon as they are spotted at pre-flowering.

Lower buds that receive less light often take a few more days to mature. Most plants that receive the same amount of light throughout are ready to harvest at the same time. See Marijuana Horticulture: Too often growers harvest too early because they are excited to have a crop. In general. A plastic bag helps contain male pollen. Sativa and sativa-dominant strains are ready to harvest in 8— 12 weeks. Set the microwave on a low power setting and turn on in second bursts until it is dry enough to burn.

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Many growers harvest lightweight buds before THC develops to full potential. Test for ripeness by removing a small piece of a mature bud. Place a little bit of the dry bud in a single-hit pipe and sample. The dry. Put it in a microwave oven or conventional oven. Too Early!

This bud is weeks from harvest. Wait at least 6 weeks before testing buds for harvest. After a couple of weeks. If harvested a little early pure sativa and sativa-dominant plants contain lower concentrations of all cannabinoids. Buds harvested now will yield up to 30 percent less weight. Early Harvest This bud is still a couple weeks from harvest. Peak Harvest. Pure indica and indica-dominant strains tend to yield a somewhat less intense body stone.

The healthy. This close up of trichomes shows you what to look for at the time of peak maturity. Now is the best time to harvest. Resin gland formation slows. Late Harvest Trichomes start to degrade faster and faster.

Harvest when THC levels are at their peak for maximum mind-bending effects. Harvest now for a heavier high. Trichomes are starting to degrade faster than they develop. THC production has peaked out. White pistils turn brownish-red as buds continue to ripen.

In some strains, peak potency is when half of the pistils are white and the other half have turned brown. This test is only a general guide to peak potency. Indica, afghani, indica-dominant and afghani-dominant strains harvested now produce a heavier body couch-lock stone. Sativa and sativa-dominant strains harvested after peak potency yield more of a body stone too.

The most accurate way to tell peak potency is to look at resin glands on growing plants with a 10XX magnifier. My favorite is a 30X handheld microscope with a battery-powered light.

You can quickly check several buds daily for peak. Look at the capitate stalked trichomes, the ones with a ball on top of the stalk. They develop clear to translucent resinous trichomes. More and more well- formed trichomes continue to appear as they reach peak potency. Harvest when these resin glands form more slowly than they degrade. Bulbous tops and stalks start to deform when they degrade. Handling buds will bruise and deform resin glands. Such damaged resin glands should not be confused with naturally deteriorating ones.

Often resin glands on strains change colors and deteriorate as plants ripen. The trichomes turn from clear to translucent to amber. All glands do not change color at the same time. Hairlike cystolith trichomes contain no THC. They are visible with the naked eye and with magnification. Find these protective trichomes on tops and bottoms of leaves, stems, and buds.

They exude substances that repel pests and protect. This will allow plants to use built- up nutrients in foliage. Accumulated nutrients in plants cause buds to taste like fertilizer when burned. Do not spray plants during harvest week so there are no unwanted residues on foliage at harvest. Sprays can also linger in dense buds, which may attract bud mold. Growers who do this say the buds are a little more resinous afterward. Cut or pluck off large leaves and leaf stems a day or two before harvest.

This will speed the rest of the harvest process, and it does not diminish harvest. Cut branches into lengths of 6—24 inches. Do not remove the root ball, it contains absolutely no THC. Manicure buds right after harvesting. Trim off smaller leaves around buds that show little resin. Use small, pointed scissors to get into tight spaces in buds. See Manicuring later in this chapter. Feel buds to check for dryness. They should be dry enough to cure in four to seven days.

See Drying, page 89 for more details. Once buds appear to be dry they are ready for the final drying or curing. See Curing, page Manicuring buds is time-consuming.

Budget 4—6 hours to manicure a single pound gm by hand with scissors. An automatic trimmer will cut manicuring time to 1—2 hours. Have 2 or 3 different pairs of scissors available. Use small easy-to-maneuver pointed scissors to reach into crevices in buds. Scrape accumulated resin from scissors when it clogs blades. Cooling will make it easier to scrape and rub the accumulated hash from the gloves. Set the hash-laden alcohol on the counter overnight to evaporate. Switch scissors when your hands fatigue.

This potent resin can be smoked immediately or pressed into blocks of hash. The ball of hash will grow as manicuring progresses. Ball up small bits of scraped resin by rubbing it together between fingers. Or put the rubber gloves in a freezer for a few hours. Use a small knife to remove built-up resin from blades. Scrape up the remaining hash after all the alcohol has evaporated.

Buds dried too quickly retain chlorophyll and other substances within foliage. Moisture evaporates evenly when plants are dried slowly over 5—7 days or longer. Buds are dry throughout so will taste sweet and smoke smooth. Drying converts THC into its psychoactive form and removes about 75 percent of the moisture from freshly harvested plants.

Humidity above 80 percent slows drying and increases the chances of mold attacks. Fresh green marijuana is not very potent. Small harvests can be dried easily in a closet. Use a small circulation fan to keep air moving in the drying room.

Use an air conditioner or heater to control extreme humidity and temperatures. Large harvests require much more room. A ventilation fan may also be necessary to help control temperature and humidity. When properly cured. Check for dryness by bending a stem. Curing is essential! Curing and Storage Once buds are dry. Proper curing ensures buds are completely dry and much less susceptible to mold when stored. The stem should snap rather than fold when bent. The curing process lets buds dry evenly so they smoke smooth and taste sweet.

The bud should be dry to touch. Once dry. Dry buds burn well when rolled into a joint. Depending upon moisture content. The owner of this Volkswagen Beetle stored buds in a cool. Moisture will move from stems to drier foliage. Close the container. To cure buds. Place the containers in a cool. Leave the top off for 5—10 minutes so moisture evacuates.

Open the container for a few minutes every few hours to release excess moisture before closing the lid again. Open the container after 2—4 hours to let humid air escape. Make sure buds are in an airtight container when stored in the refrigerator to prevent moisture from entering the container. Store packaged buds in a cool. Buds stored in the refrigerator will stay fresh a few months longer.

Gently squeeze buds to feel if they are less pliable and moist than they were a few hours before. Once they are evenly dry. Lumens decrease as the distance from the light source increases. Below is a simple discussion that will give you a basic understanding of the grow gear you will need—what it is and how it works. When CFLs are placed close enough to flowering plants. I prefer watt and watt HID lamps because they are most efficient and can be placed closer to plants.

Divide watts by lumens to get LPW. If you decide to grow in a small space such as a closet or grow cabinet. Fluorescent lamps work well to grow clones. CFLs can be used to cultivate clones. Wattages below are not as efficient converting electricity to light as larger wattage lamps. Smaller wattage bulbs can be placed closer to plants.

Wattage and distance lumen comparison 1-foot [cm] increments.

Light fades exponentially fast see charts. HID lamps are favored for growing vegetative and flowering plants. My studies see Marijuana Horticulture: Using a watt lamp lowers electricity bills and decreases heat in the grow space. The brightest bulbs have a high LPW rating. Light and Lamps You will need a light to illuminate your beautiful plants.

Lumens per watt is the measure of the conversion from electricity to light energy. A single watt lamp must be placed 24—36 inches 60—90 cm above plants. Other bulbs—incandescent. Use fluorescent. LP sodium. These points bulbs can be placed closer to plants. Two watt HID lamps illuminate plants better than a single watt lamp because they emit light from two different points.

Each foot closer nearly doubles light intensity. Fluorescent Tubes. Cannabis grows within a spectrum of K and K. PAR watts: Photosynthetically active radiation measures the specific amount of photons a measure of light energy a plant needs to grow.

The higher the PAR rating of a bulb. The color spectrum of lamps is measured in kelvin K. A watt lamp can be placed from 12—24 inches 30—60 cm above the garden. Flowering plants develop smaller. See table below. Wattages available: Fluorescent lamps range from bright to brighter.

Brighter T5 and T8 bulbs can be 4—6 inches above plants. Fluorescent bulbs are classified by the diameter of the tube. Grow clones. Their long shape and low lumen output make it necessary to keep tubes 1—2 inches above plants. New thin bulbs are brighter than larger tubes. Most growers replace bulbs after 2 years of operation at 24 hours a day. Take lamp and ballast to a specialty recycling center for electronic devices. Use a combination of warm and cool white bulbs.

A fluorescent lamp requires a ballast. Thermodynamic temperature is measured in kelvin K. The T12 fixtures use analog and digital ballasts. Fluorescent tubes can be set up to illuminate vegetative plants with outstanding results. The popular color spectrums are from K warm white. Life of bulb: Rated at The T8 and the T5 fixtures use electronic ballasts that run cooler and cycle electricity faster so lights do not flicker. Keep CFL lamps close to plants.

The color spectrum is delivered at K warm white to K cool white in a selection of bulbs. Keep CFLs close to flowering plants so they develop big. Larger wattages are bright but more expensive. CFLs produce very bright light with relatively low wattage.

These bulbs are bright and inexpensive. Smaller wattages are less bright and very low wattage. If you do not get a response, do not order! You may prefer to order from a company you can contact by telephone see note under Seed Ordering Security on page Speak to a qualified representative who will provide good answers to your questions. Companies with an e-mail address and web site are usually okay to order from, but make sure they answer your e-mails promptly.

Always call several companies and ask them specific questions about the strains they sell. Packaging is important. Seeds are easily crushed, and packaging must protect them from damage. Many seed companies place seeds inside the channels of corrugated plastic see photo left of filling seed packages at Dutch Passion.

The corrugated plastic is then placed inside an envelope and mailed. The volume of first class mail is great, and all sorting is done mechanically.

Occasionally the Postal service will find 1. How are seeds shipped in a such a seed shipment. When they do, they send a stea lth package? When wi ll seeds be shipped? No further action is taken. Howare seeds packaged? Are seeds in stock? Some seed merchants do not tell the 5.

How long does the average truth about their seed stock. They sell you seeds order take to arrive? What happens if seeds are lost? Other companies take your money and do not 7. Do you ship worldwide? It is easy to overcome such problems with a little homework. Always check Greenman's site, www. The site also Green Man's Seedbank Update! Seed sellers are rated with one to four stars, depending on the quality and services they offer. Greenman gives security, shipping, and payment terms as well as a rating for customer complaints including an "X" rating for rip-offs as well as many other grievances.

Seeds are available at shops in many countries. You can walk right in and download them. Find such seed stores at the web sites listed by the magazines and cannabis fair guides on the following page. When you talk personally with a seed merchant, you get exact information and can ask as many questions as you want.

Often the salesperson has personal stories about favorite strains. Search "medical cannabis club" on Italy United Kingdom www. Ask seed vendor to destroy your payment information as soon as your order is processed.

Use some initials in the name and address, and misspell the name but still make it deliverable. They do not need to know what is in the package.

Ask them not to open the package. Count on your e-mails being saved somewhere. Do not use this e-mail for other purposes. Learn more about proxy servers by searching for "proxy server security" on www.

International shipments take longer than domestic shipments. Wait several days longer before you start searching for the shipment. Do not telephone or e-mail vendor until a reasonable time has passed. Many national governments monitor all international telephone calls.

Use a telephone card and call from a public telephone or one that cannot be traced back to you. If you live in a country where seeds are illegal, call from a public telephone and use a calling card. Do not call t he seed company from a telephone located at a grow house. Even if you are a medical marijuana grower in the United States of America, the seeds must pass the US border and federal law applies.

Seized Seeds: The US Customs Service informing you of that has the responsibility to intercept and seize illegal items fact. We have never when they are attempted to be brought into the United heard a report of a law States by any means. Accordingly, the items s were enforcement official removed from the shipment and seized by the US showing up at the door Customs Service.

The remaining items in this shipment of a seed downloader. Often less expensive seeds are perfectly adequate for many growers' needs and desires. More expensive seeds are usually more stable and extra care has been taken to produce them.

Furthermore, expensive seeds are often winners of recent cannabis cups or are more difficult to produce. My preference is to download seeds that are in the middle price range. Unless feminized, always download packages of seeds, because the odds are that SO percent of the seeds will be female and the other half male. Of the desired female seeds, some will show more desirable characteristics than others. Feminized Seeds Feminized seeds are becoming very popular world- wide.

When grown in a stress-free environment virtually all feminized seeds grow into female plants. They are more expensive than "normal" seeds. Male plants are weeded out and female seeds are harvested.

Receiving Seeds Check seeds to ensure none are crushed. If seeds came in a see-through bag, do not open it. Call or e-mail the seller immediately to explain the problem. If one or a few are crushed, return all seeds for replacement. If you are not going to plant the seeds immediately, remove them and keep them from the original package.

Keep seeds dry or they might start to germinate. Place them in a small dark vial or film canister with a dry packet of silicone, the kind you find in electronics packages. Label the crush-proof container before you place the seeds inside. Storing Seeds Store seeds in a cool, dark, dry place. See Receiv- ing Seeds, page Make sure to label containers! Some seeds will remain viable for five years or longer when stored properly.

When 50 percent of the stored seeds do not germinate, the average storage life is over. But seeds a year old or older often take longer to sprout and have a lower rate of germination.

Seedlings During seedling growth, the root system grows rapidly while green aboveground growth is slow. Water and heat are critical at this point of development.

The new, fragile root system is very small and requires a small but constant supply of water and warmth. Too much water will drown roots, often leading to root rot and damping-off rotting at the soil line. Lack of water will cause the developing root system to dry up. As the seedlings mature, some will grow faster, stronger, and appear healthier in general. A little heat now will help nurture small seed- lings to a strong start. Other seeds will sprout slowly and be weak and leggy.

Most growers cull sickly, weak plants during the third to fifth week of growth, and focus attention on the remaining strong survivors. Use heating cables or mat to raise the temperature of the growing medium. If you have just a few seedlings, you may want to save weak, slow-growing plants. Seedlings need at least 16 hours Baby such small plants oflight daily.

Many growers give along and let them seedlings hours oflight grow longer until they per day so they will grow as fast catch up with the as possible. Seedlings that receive others before moving 16 hours oflight and 8 hours of them into the next darkness tend to grow more stage of growth.

Seedlings require less intense light now and grow well under fluores- cent tubes or compact fluorescent lamps CFLs for the first two to three weeks.

Keep fluorescent lamps two to six inches above seedlings and CFLs inches cm above foliage. Growers prefer metal halides because the color spectrum ofHP sodium lamps tends to make seedlings stretch between branch internodes.

Keep HIDs three to four feet cm above seedlings for best growth. The seedling stage is over when rapid foliage growth starts. Rapid growth above ground is the begin- ning of the vegetative growth stage. Plants need more room to grow; transplanting into a larger container hastens development.

Transplanting Seedlings If you are growing a few seedlings, they are easier to maintain in bigger containers. This example shows how to transplant a small seedling grown in a rockwool cube into a 4-inch 12 cm container full of potting soil. Rockwool, Oasis, o Here is the same seedling near the end of the seedling growth peat pots, etc. It is very important to cover them when transplanting. If the cube is left uncovered, roots tend to stay in the root cube and not grow into the soil.

Vegetative growth is maintained in most strains with hours oflight daily. Plants grow faster when they receive more hours oflight. Marijuana will continue vegetative growth a year or longer theoretically forever as long as it receives hours oflight every day. During the vegetative stage, green leafy growth is rapid. Healthy plants will grow an inch or more daily.

Strong, fast vegetative growth is essential for a heavy harvest. Plants that are stunted now should not be induced to flower because they will yield much less. Hold them back until they are stronger. Proper levels of nutrients are important for fast-growing vegetative plants. Make sure you are following the manufacturer's recommended dosage when fertilizing.

Some plants can take much more fertilizer than others. In general pure sativa and sativa-dominant strains require less fertilizer. The photo at left is a good example of a Haze strain that received very littie fertilizer and suffered from overfertiliza- tion.

One of the best ways to learn a strain's fertilizer tolerance is to experiment so that you will know exactly how much fertilizer this specific strain needs. In general pure indica and indica-dominant strains can take higher doses of fertilizer.


Check with seed sellers and Internet forums to learn more about which strains can take high and low doses of fertilizers.

Check Marijuana Horticul- ture: When to Induce Flowering After four to five weeks of vegetative growth, plants grow early male or female pre-flowers. Once these pre-flowers appear, plants are ready to enter the flowering growth stage. Indoors you can control the life cycle of cannabis with light and dark. This light and dark cycle is called the photoperiod. Cannabis stays in the vegetative growth stage as long as it receives hours oflight.

Flowering is induced with 12 hours of uninterrupted darkness and 12 hours oflight per day. The vegetative growth stage is only two to four weeks long in most strains when grown indoors. Plants should be from inches cm at the end of vegetative growth.

If they are taller, artificial light will not be able to penetrate the foliage to the bottom. Plants will need to be flushed at the end of the vegetative growth stage and possibly once in between after three weeks. I like to flush plants with three times the amount of weak fertilizer solution as the amount of soil or soilless mix in the container. This will flush or leach out all the extra built up toxic fertilizer salts in the growing medium.

Mother plants see Chapter 7 enjoy a longer life from six months and occasionally as long as several years. Once a plant's sex is determined at pre-flowering, it can become a mother, clone, or breeding male. However, intersex aka hermaphrodite or bisexual plants with both male and female flowers can also occur. See Intersex or Hermaphrodite Flowers in Chapter 6: Flowering for more information.

Pre-flowers are the first sign of a plant's sex. The pre-flowers grow at branch internodes just Male behind the leaf spur or stipule about the fourth week of vegetative growth, when the plant is six to eight weeks old. This is the point of sexual maturity, the first sign a plant is preparing for flowering-the next stage in life.

You can see pre-flowers with the naked eye, but a lOx to 30x magnifier will make viewing easier. You can accurately determine plant sex after eight weeks. Using this method, you can distinguish sex before inducing flowering. Pre-flowering Sl. Male Pre-flowering Male pre-flowers are normally visible when plants are six to eight weeks old, after the fourth week of vegetative growth. The pre-flowers emerge behind the stipule at the fourth to fifth branch internodes and generally do not turn into full flowers.

The little nub is a male pre-flower starting to grow. Early male flowers are easy to spot with the naked eye. They are located at branch internodes. Male pollen sacks hang like little balls. Each pollen sac has enough pollen to pollinate all the females in the average grow room. Remove and destroy male plants grown from seed as soon as you can verify male pre-flowers. Removing male plants now will virtually ensure an all-female crop of sinsemilla.

Anotherview of the little nub that will turn into a male flower. Female Pre-flowering Female calyx formation initiates about the fourth week of vegetative growth when they develop female pre-flowers.

The appearance of pre-flowers does not depend upon photoperiod. It occurs when a plant is old enough to show signs of sexual maturity, about six to eight weeks from seed germination. The pre-flowers emerge behind the stipule at the fourth to fifth branch internodes.

A pre-flower looks like a regular female flower; most have a pair of white fuzzy pistils. Pistils normally emerge after the light green seed bract part of the pre-flower has formed.

Wait until pistils have formed to ensure the plant is a female and not a male. The pre-flowering stage lasts from one to two weeks. Always wait to induce flowering until after pre-flowers appear. Inducing flowering with 12 hours of uninterrupted darkness and 12 hours oflight before pre-flowers develop will stress the plant.

This stress could cause odd growth, and plants might grow into hermaph- rodites. Inducing flowering before pre-flowers form will not speed flowering. Flowering will occur about the same time as if you had waited for pre-flowers to show! Vegetative seedlings are now ready to start flowering. Male and female flowers will form and are easy to see. This garden is full of females that have been flowering for three weeks.

Marijuana is a dioecious plant, being either male pollen-producing or female ovule- and seed-producing. Male plant with pollen- Female plant with unfertilized Intersex plant with both male producing flowers pollen-producing flowers and female flowers.

In nature, cannabis flowers in the fall, after the long days of summer. The long nights and short days of autumn signal marijuana to start flowering. Plants are normally either male or female. Growth patterns and chemistry change during flowe ring: Nutrient needs change as growth stages change. Plants focus on flower production rather than vegetative growth. Green leafy growth, requiring much nitrogen, slows. Phosphorus and potassium uptake increase to promote floral formation.

Shortly before the flowering stage, growers change to a "super bloom" fertilizer formula with less nitrogen and more potassium and phospho- rus. Always flush or leach soil with water two to three days before changing to the flowering fertilizer.

When flowers are full of ripe, mature seeds, the female will die, having successfully completed her life cycle. The male com- pletes his life cycle and dies after producing and dispersing all his pollen into the wind, in search of receptive female pistils.

Induce flowering indoors by giving plants more hours of total darkness and fewer hours oflight. Give cannabis 12 hours of uninterrupted darkness and 12 hours oflight to induce visible signs of flowering in two weeks or less. This program is effective in all but the latest-blooming pure sativa strains. Flowering Often, when using low-nitrogen, high-phosphorus and potassium bloom formulas, large older leaves yellow or turn purple during flowering.

Such fertilizers make buds swell with resinous growth. Water intake of flowering plants is usually somewhat less than during the vegetative stage. Adequate water during flowering is important for plants to carryon internal chemistry and resin production.

Withholding water to "stress" a plant will actually stunt growth and diminish yield. Once the sex of the plant is guaranteed, males are almost always harvested before they shed pollen, and females are coaxed into higher yields. Once the photoperiod is set, disrupting it will cause plants to suffer stress. If they suffer enough stress, hermaphrodite tendencies increase. Some male plants flower under long days and short nights as well, but these generally produce fewer flowers. Once male calyxes show, pollen develops quickly and can disperse within a very short time.

There is always a flower sack that opens early and sheds pollen, often within 24 hours or less! To avoid pollination problems, remove males as soon as they are distinguished. If growing male plants, always isolate them from females, to prevent accidental Early male flowers Open male flowers that pollination.

This male was allowed to mature completely and disperse its pollen. When you decide to let male plants mature to shed pollen on receptive females, make sure to keep the male in another room and as far as possible from female plants that you do not want pollinated. Female Flowering Female cannabis is prized for heavy, potent resin production and weighty flower yield.

Ideal female plants grow squat and bushy with branches close together on the stem and dense foliage on branches. In most strains, the first signs of female flowers appear one to three weeks after inducing flowering with the Blue Mistic hour photoperiod. Female flowers initially appear near the top of the terminal bud and gradually develop on lower branches starting at the tips and moving downward.

Flowers have two small one- quarter- to one-half-inch mm fuzzy white hairs called "pistils" that form a V. The set of pistils is attached at the base to an ovule, which is contained in a light-green pod called a "calyx. A cluster of buds is often called a "top" or "cola. Buds put on much of their harvest weight as they swell during the last two or three weeks of growth. Pure sativas, including Thai varieties, can flower for four months or longer! Once the ovule has been fertilized by male pollen, rapid Power Plant calyx formation and resin production slow, and seed growth starts.

Sinsemilla Flowering Sinsemilla pronounced sin. Sinsemilla is the word that describes flowering female cannabis tops that have not been fertilized by male pollen. Highly prized sinsemilla buds are the most potent part of any strain, with a proportionately large volume ofTHC per flower bud. When females' flowering is at their peak, pistils swell and swell. Soon they Trichome Burmese 3 change in color, most often from Technologies white to amber and, eventually, to reddish-brown.

Sinsemilla is all smoke with no seeds! During six to ten weeks of flowering, calyxes develop and swell along the stem, yielding more high-quality buds than pollinated, seeded flowers. Make any female marijuana sinsemilla by removing male plants as soon as they are identi- fied. Removing males virtually guarantees that male pollen will not fertilize female pistils, but sometimes premature male flowers shed a few early grains of pollen.

Sometimes an intersex hermaphrodite with a few male flowers will sprout on a predominately female plant. Pollen dispersed from wild or cultivated male cannabis plants could also be floating in the air. Intersex or Hermaphrodite Flowers Intersex or hermaphrodite flowers may occur, sometimes near the end of the blooming cycle, though occasionally they appear earlier.

Plants that flower past peak potency are most prone to show intersex flowers. Intersex plants are more common in some strains. A clone is a branch tip cut from a female mother marijuana plant that has been planted and has grown roots. Female clones can be induced to flower as soon as they have a strong root system and are inches lS-4S cm tall. When planted from seed, crops take four to five months to mature. And unless you planted feminized seed See Chapter 3: Seeds and Germination about half of the plants will be undesirable males.

You must grow them yourself or get them from a grower or medical marijuana cooperative. Induce clones to flower when they are inches lS-4S cm tall to make most efficient use of HID light. Short crops of clones in small containers are much easier to move and maintain than big plants in big containers. Well-illuminated, strong clones grow fast and have less chance of being affected by pests and diseases. Fast-growing clones develop more quickly than spider mites can reproduce.

By the time a spider mite infestation is noticed and sprayed, the plants are a few weeks from harvest. Clones are also easy to submerge in a miticide when small. Mother Plants Any plant can be cloned, regardless of age or growth stage. Take clones from mother plants that are at least two months old. Plants cloned before they are two months old may develop unevenly and grow slowly. Clones taken from flowering plants root quickly but require a month or longer to revert back to vegetative growth.

Such rejuvenated clones occasionally flower prematurely, and buds are more prone to pests and diseases. Clones and Mother Plants Keep several vegetative mother plants for a consistent source of cloning stock. Start new mothers from seed every year. Give mother plants hours oflight per day to maintain fast growth. For best results, give mothers about ten percent less nitrogen, because less nitrogen promotes rooting in clones.

A female plant will reproduce percent females, all exactly like the mother. When grown in the exact same environment, clones from the same mother look alike. But the same clones subjected to distinct environments in different grow rooms will often look different.

Get Ready to Take Clones Clones go through an enormous transformation when they change from a severed growing tip to a rooted plant, their entire chemistry changes. The stem that once grew leaves must now grow roots to survive. Clones are attheir most vulnerable point in life when they are cut from the mother and forced to grow roots. While rooting, clones require a minimum of nitrogen and increased levels of phosphorus to promote root growth.

Avoid spraying during rooting because it creates extra stress. With good instruction and a little experience, you can achieve a consistent percent clone survival rate. Large cuttings with large stems grow roots slower than small clones with small stems, and are more prone to diseases. Thin-stemmed small clones with few leaves root faster than big leafy cuttings because there are no roots to absorb water and supply moisture to foliage. A small amount ofleaf space is all that is necessary to supply enough energy for root growth.

Some cuttings may wilt but regain rigidity in a few days. Older leaves may turn light greenj growth slows as nitrogen is used and carbohy- drates build. Carbohydrate and rooting hormonal content is highest in lower, older, more mature branches.

A rigid branch that folds over quickly when bent is a good sign of high carbohydrate content. Always make sure there is plenty of air in the rooting medium to stimulate root growth.

Do not overwater clones. Aeroponic rooting medium P clone gardens evenly moist. Do not normally do best let it get soggy. Any with apH of Disinfect all tools and working surfaces to kill bacteria, fungi, viruses, and other diseases already present.

Use sharp scissors, razor, or razor blade dipped in alcohol, vinegar, or bleach five to ten percent solution. Wash your hands thoroughly beforehand. Get all cloning supplies ready before you start to take clones. Make sure to have all cloning supplies within arm's reach- rooting cubes, hormone, razor or scissors, humidity dome, etc.

There are many different "clone machines" available such as this aeroponic model that make cloning quick and easy. Rooting Mediums Set cut stems in rockwool,Jiffy peat , Oasis root cubes, or fine soilless mix.

All cubes are convenient and easy to trans- plant. Some growers report rockwool cubes stay too wet to make clones. Other growers love them. You can also use small containers or nursery flats full of coarse washed sand, fine vermiculite, soilless Jiffy pot mix, or, if nothing else is available, fine potting soil. Fill rockwool tray with water, pH The growing medium must drain very well to withstand heavy leaching without becoming waterlogged.

Rooting Hormones Rooting hormones help initiate roots and are available in liquid, gel, or powder form. Use only products that are approved for human consumption and use before expiration date. As soon as cuttings are taken, clones start sending natural rooting hormones to the wound and arrive in full force in about a week. The artificial rooting hormone fills the need until natural hormones take over.

If exceeded in concentration or duration, IBA applications impair root formation. Liquid rooting hormones Gels are easyto use and Powdered rooting penetrate stems evenly and practical. Gels keep root- hormones do not stick to are the most versatile and inducing hormones evenly stems evenly, penetrate consistent. They can distributed along the poorly, encourage uneven root be mixed in subterranean stem. Insoluble growth, and yield a lower different gels hold and stay with the survival rate.

Clones root fastest and strongest with 24 hours of fluorescent light. Keep the lamps two to six inches 5- 15 cm above clones. Set clones on a heating mat or cables to control the rooting medium temperature. Humidity levels of95 to percentthe first two days and gradually reduced to 85 percent over the next seven days.

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Mist cuttings with water to slow moisture loss through leaves and cool foliage. Afogger in the cloning room will ensure humidity stays above 95 percent. No tugging on clones to see if they are rooted. Roots should be visible through rooting cubes in one to three weeks. No fertilizer on clones or seedlings the first week or two of growth. Do not take clones from a sick pest- or disease- infested or flowering mother.

Ifthe strain isdifficult to clone, flush the soil with two gallons 8 L of water for each gallon 4 L of soil every day for aweek before taking clones to wash nitrogen from the plant and soil. Take clones from lower rigid branches. Drainage must be good. Do not add fertilizer. When cutting, make the slice halfway between the sets of nodes. The new clones should be two to four inches cm long.

Be careful not to crush the end of the stem where cutting. Cut them off at the nodes where they meet the stem. Clones root very well when there are one or two sets of trimmed nodes belowground and two sets ofleaves above the soil line.

While taking clones, hold cuttings in a glass of water until you are ready to dip in hormone and plant. Moisture that could promote fungus is often trapped between overlapping leaves. Gather leaves in your hand and use a pair of scissors to cut the leaves in half.

This will allow less surface area for the plants to breathe, but will still keep foliage on the plant. Cutting leaves like this will keep them up off the ground, which helps prevent rot and disease. Saturate the medium or root cubes with water. Use an unsharpened pencil, chop stick, nail, etc.

Marijauna Grow Basics - Jorge Cervantes

The hole should stop about one-half inch 1. Always read and comply with the directions. Pour a small portion of the rooting hormone into another container before using so you do not contami- Dip stem in rooting hormone liquid.

Mix the liquid rooting hormone if necessary just before using. Use the dilution ratio for softwood cuttings. Swirl each cutting in the hormone solution for seconds. Make sure the liquid penetrates the entire stem evenly. Place the cuttings in the hole in Put hormone-covered stem into pre-made the rooting medium.

Pack rooting hole in rooting medium. Press hole closed so that growing medium comes into firm contact with stem. Using Gel Rooting Hormone Dip stem in gel as per instructions. Make sure the part that will go underground is covered evenly with gel. When planting, take special care to gently pack soil into place. Dip stem in rooting hormone gel. Take care twice as deep as the width of the not to expose the tender rootlet to seed.

For example, plant an eighth- prolonged intense light or air. Point inch 3 mm seed O.

Make small indent about O. Cover the sprouted seed with a Once covered, gently press the O. The photo above shows clones on the left and seedlings on the right. Seeds set inside rockwool blocks often heave up and out. Germinate seeds before planting and make sure the white rootlet is at least D. S-inch 1. S cm long to avoid this common problem.

Some seedlings will of the seeds will have broken through show their first signs of "true the planting mix or emerged from the leaves" with the classic cannabis root cube. After seven to ten days, all the seed- In 10 to 14 days all the seedlings lings will have cotyledon leaves and should have true leaves that are many will have their first set of true the same size or larger than leaves.

Some growers apply a mild quarter-strength fertilizer, but it is not necessary for another week. Most important now is to keep the soil evenly moist. Some growers wait until leaves yellow to begin feeding. Use a mild quarter- strength solution. If yellowing persists, give seedlings a little more fertilizer. Peat pellets or root cubes both seedlings and clones may be transplanted in two to three weeks or when the roots show through the sides. Feed with a dilute, quarter- strength fertilizer solution.

This is a critical time for plants, and they need extremely close attention. Do not let them dry out! This sickly freak trifoliate seedling is the result of dodgy genetics as well. Overwatering and underwatering are the biggest obstacles most growers face when germinating seeds and growing seedlings. Keep the soil uniformly moist, not waterlogged.

Do not Underwatered seedling with a let the growing medium's surface dry for long. Setting root cubes or toxic nutrient accumulation. This seedling is also a planting flats on a grate allows good drainage. A properly watered flat of rockwo01 cubes needs water every three to five days when sprouting seeds. When the surface is dry 0. Remember, there are few roots to absorb the water early in life, and they are very delicate. Seeds do not need any extra hormones to germinate. Household water contains enough Soggy overwatered soil causes dissolved solids food to nourish seeds through many problems.

Supplemental nutrients often disrupt internal chemistry. How to Obtain Seeds Get seeds from a grower who developed them. This is an excellent option because the grower usually knows the strain he is growing well and can tell you many details about growing it.

Most such growers can also tell you about the qualities of the plant-taste, aroma, and high. Bag-seeds are okay because you will know more or less what the taste, aroma, and high of the final product will be like.Female flowers initially appear near the top of the terminal bud and gradually develop on lower branches starting at the tips and moving downward.

Depending upon moisture content, buds should be totally dry in a few days to 2 weeks. Seized Seeds: Buds put on much of their harvest weight as they swell during the last two or three weeks of growth. Take lamp and ballast to a specialty recycling center for electronic devices. Overwatering and underwatering are the biggest obstacles most growers face when germinating seeds and growing seedlings. The dry.

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