BY: PERCY GROWER
Whatever you’re growing you want to get as big a yield as possible. Autoflowering plants differ in how you best grow them than regular photoperiod plants. These 5 tips will help you get the most out of your plant and help you avoid the cute little lollipop cannabis plants so often associated with autoflowering strains.
#1 Buy quality seeds
When buying autoflowering cannabis seeds the cheapest price is not necessarily the most important factor. You want companies that look after their seeds correctly before they ship. Seeds must be dried and stored at the optimum levels of temperature and humidity to ensure a high germination success rate. Established companies have a reputation to uphold so ensure their seeds arrive in their prime. Once you’ve identified the strain you want, do some research to make sure it’s not coming from a fly-by-night breeder or seed supplier. Check out the seed buying guide to find some trusted seed banks.
#2 Plant in the pot you’ll finish in and don’t transplant
Growing autoflowering seeds differs from photoperiod seeds. It’s extremely important not to restrict the roots of an autoflowering plant. If a root is restricted in a smaller pot this will impact the final size of the plant. This is because these plants grow and flower fast. As soon as the roots are restricted they send signals to the plant to say “I’m root bound stop growing and concentrate on flowering”. To give the roots plenty of space to grow plant the seedling in the pot the plant will finish in. Absolute minimum of 3 litres but 10 litres is a good size. Always remember “more root = more fruit”.
#3 Let the roots breath
Unlike leaves, which require carbon dioxide, roots need oxygen. To enable them to breath you must plant in an airy substrate. Coco or perlite work well to provide the pockets of air your roots need to help the plant grow to it’s true potential. Both the grow techniques outlined in the Windowsill Weed book show you how to provide the right mix to grow your autoflowering plant to the max.
#4 Give them plenty of light
Plants feed on light through photosynthesis. You have to consider light a nutrient just like any other food a plant needs. Autoflowering strains require as much light as possible. They grow quick and flower after a period of time rather than a change in season (light reduction). To get the most out of your autoflowering cannabis plant make sure it gets at least 15 hours of sun light per day. This means germinating late April or early May (or later depending on your location). To figure out the right time for you find out when the sun rises around 6 and sets around 9.
#5 Don’t overwater
If your autoflowering plant is well watered the roots will not have to work so hard to find the water the plant needs. This means that they will not grow to the fill the large pot you have them in. As stated in rule number 2 “more root = more fruit” so small roots will equal a small lollipop plant.
These tips and many more can be found in my book Windowsill Weed : A home growers cannabis journey which is available from Amazon in print and digital format. The book covers everything that you need to know to be self sufficient in your cannabis supply, including seed selection, growing, processing and consumption. I hope these tips help you to get the most out of your autoflowering cannabis plants. If you have any more useful tips please share in the comments.