Autoflowering cannabis strains are a great controversy among growers. Some people stick to this kind of marijuana, others claim that they are useless and hard to grow. In fact, autoflowering is not a thing that you have to shy away from. If you know the secrets of their cultivation, these plants will become your favorite.
Historically, autoflowering strains are the descendants of a wild hemp strain known as “ruderalis.” Unlike most cannabis plants that respond to signals from the sun that indicate the right time for flowering, ruderalis weed does not need this kind of lighting change. It automatically begins flowering after three or four weeks of growing.
However, ruderalis is often eluded because of its poor quality and low content of THC. This stereotype still haunts many growers who are afraid of cultivating this kind of weed. Do not believe the rumors—modern autoflowering seeds produce quality yields and are as potent as the photoperiod ones. A long time ago, breeders combined the short growing period and survivability of the ruderalis plants and the high potency of our regular strains.
The ancestry of autoflowering plants has left them relatively short, which means lower yields. However, their lifespan is also short, and you can plant new seeds more often. As a rule, the spur of growth happens when the plant first starts showing the signs of flowering. Of course, there are some techniques that help you control the herb's size. The most important thing you have to remember is not to cut it. Instead, you had better use low-stress training that includes only bending the branches and tying them with gardening wire. You have to bend the middle branches down and away from the center. Besides, it makes the plant look like a star if you look from above. Do not touch the branches that are hard to bend; tend to the young and flexible ones.
A lot depends on the strain you buy and its breeder. There are many autoflowering seeds in the market, but you have to choose the best. Here is the list of the best of the best of them.
After you have chosen a strain, it is time to plant the seeds. Here is our small autoflower indoor grow guide for you. In general, these cannabis babies tend to prefer fewer nutrients than the photoperiod ones. If you already have a cannabis grow guide for the latter, just cut the feeding in four for a start and see how the plant is growing. If you have good soil, you may not need to add any nutrients during the vegetative stage at all. At first, your seedlings require just water. After a week of flowering, change your nutrient mix to the one that is designed specifically for this period. Feed them sparsely anyway.
These strains prefer to have lots of drainage in their pots. When growing indoors in a pot, do not use “hot” soil mixes that contain too many nutrients. You can also make your own medium. One of the possible recipes is to combine three parts of peat moss, three parts of compost, two parts of perlite, and one part of pre-vet vermiculite.
Considering the short lifespan of this type of marijuana, it is essential to give them a good start. Even if you plan to cultivate outdoors, it is recommended to start vegetating the plant indoors.
The best part of cultivating this kind of cannabis is that you do not need to worry about changing the lighting cycles. In fact, lighting can be done in any way you like. However, to get the best possible yield, you should give your plant a lot of light each day. They will not care even if you give them light at night— the buds will only get bigger. When cultivating indoors, most breeders stick to the 18/6 or 20/4 light schedules. You can experiment with your seedlings. You can even try lighting them 24/7, but most experts believe that a plant requires a few hours of darkness every day for better development.
If you want to use advanced cultivating methods when growing an autoflowering plant, you are neglecting the very meaning of this cannabis type's existence. They are designed to make your life easier. When it comes to fancy techniques, these plants are not as flexible as the photoperiod ones. Instead of a better yield, you will probably get a poorer one.