Today marks the official start of my new column in Hanf Journal.The first official thing I would like to do is thank you, the readers and growers, for reading this journal and column.Together we can change cannabis laws.I believe the easiest way to change the world is grow cannabis until it is everywhere!
I live in Spain and am not familiar with the intricacies of your climate, but I have visited many indoor and outdoor gardens on four continents.I will do my best to make the information in this column specific to your needs within your climate zone, whether in the mountains of the south or the northern flatlands.
If you have seen the grow book with the light bulb on the cover, Marihuana Drinnen: das Standardwerk, you have seen my work published in German.I have more than 20 years experience in studying and writing about cannabis.My job is to collect information on growing cannabis, refine it and share it with you.
Please send me your questions and desires for this column.Reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.I will do my best to send you a response quickly.Please remember that I speak only Spanish and English.
I believe growers are interested in simple effective techniques they can use immediately to make their life easier and increase yield.This is what this column will focus on: s simple easy ways to increase yield.
Start seeds indoors now if you have not already!The easiest and most secure way to start seeds is to lay them on a moist paper towel on a saucer.Now, place another paper towel on top so the seeds are sandwiched in between.Tip the saucer so any excess water drains off.Set the saucer on top of the refrigerator or somewhere they will stay warm, about 20-25 degrees C.
Check the moisture of the towels every day.Add water to keep the towels moist.Do not let excess water sit on the tray.Drain off any excess water.Do not let the towels dry out or seeds will be slow and irregular germinating.
Within 3-7 days you will see a small white shoot emerge from the seed.When this shoot is 1-2 centimeters in length, it is time to plant.Carefully take the seed and plant the shoot pointing down in a pre-made hole in fine moist soil and cover with about 0.25 centimeters of soil.Water again once planted to ensure sprouted seed stays moist.Keep the soil surface evenly moist until the seedling is about 5 centimeters tall.
May is a great time to plant outdoors in much of Germany even though it is still cold at night, you can move cuttings and seedlings outdoors.As soon as the last threat of frost is gone, it is time to move clones and seedlings outdoors.Harden-off tender indoor-grown plants.Leave them outdoors for an hour the first day.Give them two hours the second day and progressively more until they become accustomed to the weather.Protect tender plants from desiccating wind and strong hot sunshine with plastic and shade.Let them get used to these things gradually during a week.
Set pots up off the ground on a board or Styrofoam so they stay warmer.Cover plants at night to add warmth.You will be surprised how much faster plants will grow when covered at night so they stay above 10 degrees C.
If it is still cold where you live, consider using a Wall-O-Water to give plants a headstart.This water-filled tepee protects plants down to degrees C!Check www.wallowater.com for complete information.
Soil heating cables, available at many nurseries, will increase growth substantially.If growing with extra soil heat, make sure to cover plants at night to retain heat in the atmosphere.
Transplant cuttings and seedlings into large 20-50 liter containers filled with fast-draining potting soil or soilless mix.Always buy soil in bags.Often you can find sales on inexpensive soil at discount stores.Spending a little time now hauling soil will pay off in sweet buds at the end.Fill a pot with the soil.Saturate the soil with water.If the water drains within 30 seconds it is OK.If not, add coco peat and perlite.The coco will retain water and air evenly and still drain.The perlite will speed drainage.Mix up to 30 percent perlite to speed drainage.More than 30 percent tends to stratify.
Transplanting is simple and easy.Carefully remove the seedling or clone from the container and place it in a pre-made hole in the larger pot.Press soil around transplant and saturate with water.Transplanting late in the day gives time for recuperation.Keep transplant out of direct sunlight for a day or two, until it recuperates.Add a product that contains vitamin B1 to help ease transplant shock.
If seedlings are tall and skinny, remove some of the bottom leaves and plant the root ball 10-15 centimeters below the soil surface.The stem will grow roots and the plant will be much healthier and less prone to drying out.See photo.
Now outdoor plants should receive full sunlight during the middle of the day, from 10:00 until 18:00 if possible.Sunlight is brightest about 14:00.If they receive three hours of light on either side of 14:00 they will develop strong buds.But remember the angle of the sun decreases as days grow shorter and nights longer.
Cool spring temperatures and less intense sunlight keep plants growing slowly.The small root system is unable to take up large amounts of nutrients, and it is very easy to over-fertilize tender young plants.Be very sparing with fertilizer now.For example, last week a friend got excited and gave a big dose of soluble fertilizer to a Sweet Tooth clone on her terrace.The next day it showed the first sign of over-fertilization, the leaves cupped slightly upward.Upon seeing this I gave the plant 10 liters of water to flush away the toxic fertilizer.Two days later the plant looked perfect!
- Cuttings with a strong root system will grow into strong healthy plants.
- Cuttings or seedlings are transplanted into containers and placed under a light, or outdoors in the garden.
- Place seeds on a paper towel and moisten to germinate.
- Note the tip of this sprouted seed is dry.This seed took two weeks to resume normal growth.Never let germinating seeds dry out!
- This cut-away of a sprouted seedling in rockwool shows how it grows underground.Note the abundance of moisture!
- Healthy seedling sprouted yesterday.This seedling was kept evenly moist and is growing perfectly.
- Healthy seedlings are set outdoors for a few hours every day the first week to acclimate them to the harsh outdoor climate.A white container reflects light and helps keep soil cool.
- Seedlings are ready to transplant now.The lower leaves will be removed and root balls will be planted 10 centimeters deep in the ground.
- Remove bottom leaves on tall skinny plants and plant them 10-15 centimeters deep.The stem will grow roots and the plant will be much healthier.
- Beautiful close-up of a Blueberry bud!
Plant, plant and plant some more!Plant seed directly in ground outdoors or plant indoors and move outdoors next month.Protect from cool nighttime temperatures.Cut the bottom out of a one-gallon plastic milk jug to make a small greenhouse.Leave the top off to allow for ventilation.
Transplant clones after they have rooted for at least one month.
Transplant seedlings when they are at least a month old.
Harden-off clones and seedlings before moving outdoors.
Protect seedlings and transplants from slugs, caterpillars, rabbits and deer.Apply snail/slug bait around plants.Apply granular Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) to kill caterpillars.Cover tender little plants with a chicken wire dome to protect from rabbits and deer.
Outdoor temperatures are warm now in all but the coldest climates.Monitor heat levels indoors more closely now.Do not let rise beyond 80 – 85 degrees.Vent rooms with CO2 generators to lower heat.
Humidity can be a problem even when temperatures rise outdoors.Do not let nighttime temperatures drop more than 10 degrees F. below daytime temperatures to avoid excessive condensation.Monitor humidity at night and run the vent fan on all night if humidity is a problem.
Plants should use more water now, but be careful not to over-water.
Keep pots off cold concrete floors.Even though the temperature outdoors is warm, cold concrete sucks the heat out of containers and causes growth to slow.Put pots up on pallets or Styrofoam to insulate from cold floors.
Flush plants with a mild nutrient solution at least once a month.Resume normal nutrient solution.
Take clones to start a new crop as needed.
Inspect leaf undersides for spider mite eggs and adults.Spray mites and eggs with (aerosol) pyrethrum or neem as needed.
Harvest plants as they ripen.Replace harvested plants with clones in perpetual crops.Have supplies and clones ready to move into the harvested cleaned room the day after harvest.
Remove pungent odors from flowering plants with an ozone generator.