Despite the resilience of cannabis, achieving a good grow isn’t easy. All beginners tend to make the same mistakes. Customers send us pictures asking for help and its usually pretty clear right away what’s gone wrong. Below are the four mistakes we see most often.
This is, hands down, the most common problem of new growers. As people, we have a tendency to want things to be the biggest and the fastest. As animals, our intuition tells us that food means strength and growth. Put these two inclinations together in a cannabis grower, and you’re likely to get overfed plants. And, just like with humans, too much food is not a good thing.
There are organic and non-organic nutrients. Manure, compost, and other refined minerals in the soil represent the organic side. They release nutrients to the plant slowly so they are a good choice to avoid overfeeding. A good rule of thumb is to start low. Try a little less than the recommendation, observe your plants each day, and adjust accordingly.
Poor Climate Control
Humidity and temperature are crucial to growing quality cannabis. Regardless of whether you have an indoor or outdoor grow, you have to be aware of the climate. Too cold and the plant’s growth will shunt (or kill them). Too hot and they’ll get heat stress (where the leaves curl in like they’re trying to hide from the light).
Plants can handle extremes in climate, but not consistently. Happiness is 75 degrees during the day and the upper 50’s at night. Humidity is ok for seedlings, but as the plant grows, be sure the humidity level goes down. To avoid the mold bred by humidity, start at 60% and then decrease to 40%. Use intake or outtake fans or dehumidifiers as needed.
Mismanaging the pH
If you’ve ever had a conversation with a long-time grower, you probably got an earful of the acronyms: pH, PPM, Lucas Formula, 18/6, and more. It’s enough to make you wonder how cannabis survived before science came along. As a beginner, try to relax around most of it. It will come with time. But the one thing you do need to master as soon as possible is pH.
Poor pH makes a weak plant that produces smaller buds. And bad pH will simply kill your plant.
pH determines which nutrients a plant can absorb. When correctly managed, plants can uptake whatever they need whenever they need it. Invest in a testing kit and be careful to feed and water in order to keep within the correct range. Hydroponics should be between 5.5 and 6.5. The soil range is best at 6.0 to 7.0
If you feel you’re feeding adequately but the plant is struggling, it might not be the nutrients. Check the pH.
A grower needs patience. Waiting for the right time to harvest your cannabis can feel like a torturous art form. But it’s important to keep in mind that harvesting early will reduce the plants potency as well as its weight.
If the Tricome hairs are still white and sticking out straight, it’s too early.
Growing is a skill that’s easily mastered with experience. Trial and error are often necessary for new growers, so don’t get discouraged. Our best advice? Simply paying attention and observing your plants will make the biggest difference.