From cannabis seeds to flower guide
Congratulations, you have taken your first step towards becoming a self-sufficient producer of your own high-quality cannabis plants!
In our experience, many people new to growing need a little help to get the best from their plants, and naturally, we want you to get the most out of your cannabis seeds.
This is why we have created a few useful tips to grow healthy cannabis plants, with big and flavorful buds.
As with most things in life, everybody has their own opinion on how to best germinate a seed. However, at Nirvana Farms we recommend the following easy steps on the way from seed to flower.
Step 1: Place the seeds on a plate in between two moist tissue paper (wet the paper and drain off the excess water) put them in the dark and at room temperature. Make sure not to use chloride water. Clean tap water, rain, or distilled water works best.
Step 2: Within three days the embryonic root breaks through the seed cover. Burry the seed (with the root facing down) in seedling or cactus soil 1cm deep and protect it from the sunlight. Spray water on the soil (never on the seed sprout and cover with a transparent cover (a cut-out top part of a plastic bottle works perfectly), for a stable, high level of humidity (micro greenhouse).
Step 3: Once the sprout sheds its shell and unveils the two seed leaves, place it under direct light. Fluorescent light is preferred. Keep the top layer of soil consistently moist and avoid intense sunlight at this stage.
The root will follow the water level down, so wait until the soil becomes a bit drier not too dusty) before adding more water. In the early days be careful to water gently!
Step 4: After 1 or 2 weeks the seedling should have developed into a small plant that can be transplanted to larger pots with nutrient-rich soil or quality potting soil.
Your cannabis plants now have the best start in life.
Step 5: When Plants start flowering, they reveal their gender, weeks or months (depends on type) after sowing the seed.
Feminized and Autoflowering seeds will grow into female plants. They develop clusters of pistils (hairs), while regular seeds can either become female or male plants.
You can locate the gender at the internodes of the branches. Male plants develop pollen sacks (balls) and are hard to miss!
Remove all the male plants to prevent your crop from becoming seeded.
Step 6: Treat your plant right and it will treat you right when it comes to harvest time!
You can put the seeds directly in soaked Rockwool cubes or Mapito. Use water with a pH level of 5.5 to soak them to come to a pH of around 6 in the block. Then the seedlings are able to transport all nutrients that are required to grow. Be very careful, the plants can easily burn and dry out. That’s why you should keep the baby plants moist and don’t give them too much fertilizer.
Cultivation of cannabis outdoors
Once the cannabis plants are big enough, 15-20 cm (6-8 inches), they can be planted outdoors, in rich soil in the full ground, or in large pots. In the south of Europe or other warm and sunny regions, this can be as early as March, while in colder countries like Holland one should wait until the beginning of May. Outdoors, the development of your marijuana plants is determined by the amount of sunshine, rain, and wind. It’s your task to help nature by providing sufficient water and nutrients. Outdoors, your plants can grow over 3 meters(9ft) tall!
When the light cycle has shortened to 15 hours, the cannabis plants will start to bloom. With some luck, depending mostly on favorable weather during the last months, they will produce a lot of buds, up to a kilo per cannabis plant. The plant and yield can become very impressive!
Cannabis cultivation in green houses
The quality of cannabis plants grown in greenhouses can be better than cannabis plants grown outside. They can grow as indoor cannabis plants but have the big advantage of sunlight. Here, the marijuana plants can be well controlled. If you artificially shorten the light cycle to 12 hours, by covering the plants or whole greenhouse, you can harvest in the middle of summer and if organized well twice per year!
Cannabis indoor growing
Home growing has become very popular, which is logical if you consider you can supply yourself with a top-quality product that is not contaminated with high levels of pesticides, or in the case of hash bought from the street, is polluted with chemicals or shoe polish, which you have to buy for exorbitant prices. Another advantage of indoor growing is that you don’t have to worry about thieves ripping your outdoor garden in the middle of the night.
The quality of indoor cannabis plants is often very high. Under high-pressure sodium lamps, it is possible for almost everyone who has a little space available to grow their own. Indoor growing is a little more complicated because you have to control the whole environment, but your effort will be rewarded once you have the conditions right. Then it is as easy as anything! Make sure the temperature does not exceed 25 °C (77 F) or get cooler than 20°C (68 F). The room should be well ventilated and constantly refreshed with air. Enclosed humidity should be around 80% during the growing period, but needs to be lower than 60% at the end of the flowering period to prevent mold.
We advise you to read a book on growing or get yourself informed by other growers who have some experience before getting started. Although growing indoors isn’t difficult, having some knowledge of the basic techniques is definitely a big advantage.
The marijuana plants can best absorb all necessary nutrients at a pH value of 5.5 – 6, making sure all nutrients are transported within the plant. This way the whole cannabis plant thrives, which results in maximum growth and leads to more quantity of top-quality products. The cannabis plants require different levels of nutrients during different stages of their life. Many nutrient companies have a schedule for the optimum dosages when their products are used. You can also use biological stimulators, such as rooting and flowering stimulators, that activate the organic bacterial life, or micro-organisms, and therefore make the plant stronger and healthier. Some of these stimulators can make quite a difference.
Sinsemilla (without seeds)
Most cannabis enthusiasts grow for the production of top-quality buds for themselves and their friends to consume. If this is the case, then you don’t want to have seeds in your buds as this makes them less potent and is no good to smoke or vaporize. In fact, it may even give you a headache! To prevent the plants from making seeds, you have to remove the male plants by “sexing’’ them. The males are of no use other than to procreate. The female plants are the ones to keep, as they produce wonderful tasting and highly appreciated effects on the body and mind with their bountiful buds. They are the ones that should stay to bloom until they are ripe to pick.
Cannabis male and female plants are alike at the vegetative stage and sex shows only when the flowers appear. From that moment on, the cannabis plants become distinguishable, and the male and female look quite different. In the pre-flowering stage, one can sex the plants as described above by looking for the males to throw away. You should look at the main stem at every internode to find the flowers. Most likely you will find them in the upper part of the plant.
You should only harvest when the flowers are ripe – not before, but also not long after they are ready! It is time to harvest when the resin glands are swollen to their maximum size, which you can see best with a magnifying glass. Another less accurate way is to watch if the buds are still getting fatter with new growth. When this process of daily production has stopped and most of the little stigmas (hairs) on the flowers have turned from white to brown-orange, it is time to harvest the plants. First, take off the big fan leaves, then hang the marijuana plants upside down in a cool, dry, and dark place to dry out. About 14 days later, you can trim off the last few leaves so that only the buds remain. Now you are ready to experience your own grown quality super buds!