What can be more amazing than flowering cannabis plants in your grow room? Oh, yes, only the dried weed buds that are ready for consuming. Probably, all weed growers will agree that flowering is the most important stage of growth when it comes to marijuana. But did you know that there are four stages of cannabis flowering? Moreover, special plant care during each flowering stage can significantly increase your yield.
Newbies may think that flowering is the only stage that lasts from the time you set the 12/12 hour day/night cycle until the time you harvest cannabis buds. However, the reality of cannabis flowering is quite different and depends on many factors. For example, if you cultivate auto-flowering plants, flowering period is the longest growth phase, as the vegetative stage in these plants lasts only for a couple of weeks.
Moreover, cannabis bloom stages are also determined by growing conditions, nutrients, and the genetics of a particular strain. Though the genetic makeup of a plant is beyond our control, we can easily adjust the grow room conditions and nutrient supply to each stage of marijuana flowering.
So, let us look closely at these four cannabis flowering stages and how you can benefit from them.
Your cannabis plants enter the pre-flowering stage when you can notice the first gender signs on your females. Primordial flowers on female plants usually appear before you start switching your lights to 12-12. You should also keep in mind that female bulbs at stem nodes have two white hairs, while those pre-flowers that are without them belong to male cannabis plants. If you notice such bulbs, try to get rid of male plants before the next flowering stage begins.
Also, note that pre-flowering phase may happen earlier if you cultivate marijuana from clones, while plants grown from seeds need more time to set the root system well. Weed plants with ample root systems and primordial flowers are completely ready for the 12-12 light schedule.
Few days after you put your marijuana plants to the new lighting schedule, pre-flowers grow into budding sites, and early flowers appear on the plants. Early flowering phase usually lasts for three weeks; its duration depends mainly on the strain's genetics.
During this stage, female buds develop more white hairs, and new gender signs appear: resin glands, calyxes, and small support leaves. At the end of this phase, the flowers on your plants are turning into small and dense clusters. Take care of your plants during the early flowering phase as they require additional potassium, phosphorus, and carbohydrates that are necessary for a more potent yield.
Even beginners can easily spot the peak flowering phase by the mature floral structure and increasing density and number of resin glands. Peak flowering is the longest stage of cannabis flowering and usually lasts for 2-5 weeks depending on the particular weed strain.
This period is the most important marijuana flowering stage, because your plants contain the maximum amount of cannabinoids and terpenes at this time. Provide your cannabis plants with special care during this phase, as any problems with nutrients, humidity, lightning, temperature, or health can greatly reduce the quality of your harvest.
Fertilize marijuana with all the necessary nutrients, bloom boosters, and carbohydrate products to make sure that your plants feel good. Each marijuana strain is different, but at this stage, the right amount (and ratio) of potassium and phosphorus will certainly improve the bud size, potency, and value.
You can tell that your cannabis plants enter the late flowering stage when bud hairs and resin glands are beginning to deteriorate (although not too much). This phase is a time right before harvesting, and it usually takes 8-14 days.
At this time, you can add late flowering stimulants that will increase weight and THC content in your plants and even stimulate bud development—a thing usually not expected by many growers during this stage.
To harvest the best yield, you should stop using all nutrients beforehand and flush your marijuana just before trimming the buds (flushing plants means giving them just plain water). This will allow you to dispose of pollutants and stored fertilizer salts.
Follow these tip wisely to get more resin glands, earlier flowering, and larger buds from every cannabis plant you cultivate.