Do you want to get on the weed bandwagon and start growing your own? It’s a thrilling ride, and with proper knowledge, you can cultivate high-quality buds and enjoy the buzz of eating a commodity you’ve seen grow. However, before you embark on your path, you must have sufficient information to guarantee that your efforts will not be in vain. Many newcomers make mistakes that should have been avoided. You want to avoid falling into this category, so here are some of the most common mistakes to prevent in order to get the best harvest.
The most common mistakes made by novice cannabis farmers include not knowing what they’re cultivating, utilizing the incorrect nutrients and soil, overfeeding and overwatering, failing to maintain pH levels, and, most importantly, growing your weed in a location that is too public.
1. Diving In Head First
Yes, cultivating weed isn’t rocket science, yet if you go in blind, with hardly any idea what you’re getting yourself into, you’re in for an awakening. What is the right equipment that’ll meet your requirements, which marijuana seeds are the best choice, and what system best suits your area? These are only a couple of the many things you can look at before putting your money and time into cultivating marijuana at home. However, you needn’t worry since, thanks to readily accessible online services such as articles, tutorials, and discussion boards, conducting such research would be easy. Join the conversation, see what other marijuana farmers are doing, and improve your growing skills by learning from their mistakes. The simplest way to prevent more damaging errors and cultivate admirable buds is to equip yourself with realistic information.
2. Poor Germination
Growers sometimes make errors during seed germination, causing certain crops to die before they even start growing.
Your cannabis seeds need the following things in order to properly germinate:
- An atmosphere that is humid and dark
- Temperature ranging between 22 and 25°C
- About 70 and 90 percent relative humidity
- While fluorescent lights are preferable, a windowsill will suffice.
- Avoid constantly touching the seeds
- Ensure the right pH (5.8–6.2) if you’re using Rockwool to germinate
Methods of Germination
Marijuana seeds can be germinated in a variety of ways. While neither are the best, we do suggest germinating individually in soil. This eliminates the possibility of destroying sprouted seeds during the transition phase.
- Glass of water
Place the marijuana seeds in a glass half-filled with lukewarm (22°C) water. Your seeds will typically start growing after around 3–5 days, after which you can safely move them to your preferred growth medium.
- Paper towel
Place a few paper towels on a flat area. Place your cannabis seeds on it, spacing them out a bit, and add a few more papers on top. To prevent the paper from drying out, wet it. Then, move the seeds to your preferred growth medium after a few days once the seeds have sprouted.
The Rockwool method is used when you grow your cannabis plants in a hydroponic system. Put the Rockwool in a container with a cover and wash them with water that has a low pH. The hole of the Rockwool block is where you have to place each seed. The seeds will sprout after several days. Move your Rockwool blocks containing the seedlings into your desired growth medium once you see any roots emerging from the seeds.
- Direct germination in soil
In a small pot, add some potting mix that hasn’t been fertilized or is “light” so that the pot gets half-filled. Empty a small area in the centre of the soil, around 1cm long, and put your seed within. Slightly cover it with dirt. Regularly water the soil to keep it moist and cover the container with clingfilm. The seeds will start sprouting after a few days.
3. Use of the Wrong Soil
Another typical blunder is using soil that isn’t ideal for your plants. You might be wondering about what “ideal” soil is. So let’s have a peek, shall we?
It should have a pleasant and airy feel to it.
Cannabis soil should have a thin, airy texture including small amounts of perlite. This allows for proper drainage and unrestricted root development. Cannabis would not thrive in compacted dirt.
Nutrients should be there.
Except for unique soil formulations used for seedling and cultivation, most marijuana soils come pre-fertilized. With this soil, you won’t need to provide nutrients to your plants until they’ve been growing for several weeks. In fact, once your plants begin to bloom, you will just have to feed them nutrients. If your growing medium isn’t pre-fertilized for whatever purpose, you’ll have to provide your plants with the necessary nutrients from the start.
Contaminants should not be present.
Prevent use of soil from your greenhouse or some other low-quality soils, even recycled, repurposed soils from previous harvests. Contaminants, including spores or rodents, may be present. These dangers are not present in high-quality potting soils from reputable labels.
If you really wish to reuse your previously grown crops’ soil, you’ll have to add new nutrients to it. Prior to that, be certain that the soil is clear of toxins.
4. Improper Humidity
Seedlings are highly vulnerable, and they do not appreciate growing errors such as insufficient moisture and humidity levels. Both of these factors may lead to the premature death of your plants.
The humidity of your growing environment must lie between 60 to 70% during germination. Also, do not keep the soil wet. Better keep it moist.
Seedlings are often harmed by excessive moisture. Where humidity levels become too strong or seedlings are overwatered, your plants may fall prey to various deadly fungal diseases. You cannot do anything to stop seedlings from being brittle and tipping over. Avoid overwatering and excessive humidity, and don’t forget to use a clean growth medium!
5. Overfeeding and Overwatering
Plants will almost always rebound from mildly dry weather, but overwatering is greater than intermittent underwatering. When given excess water on a regular basis, the roots of your plants get deprived of oxygen, which may contribute to fungi and root rot. Enable the soil to dry out between waterings completely. Watering less often is preferable to overwatering!
People adore their cannabis plants, but they believe that providing them with more is a smart idea. But, unfortunately, that isn’t the case. Overfeeding can result in a nutrient lockout or burn due to mineral buildup in the soil. In this scenario, you’ll have to wash your soil and restart your feedings to get the pH back to where it should be. In a nutshell, don’t excessively feed your plants!
6. Not Monitoring The pH Level
Since marijuana can only absorb nutrients inside a narrow window, pH monitoring is critical. Your plants may get unhealthy if the pH level is not according to the ideal level.
The ideal pH level for soil lies between 6.0 and 7.0, whereas for hydroponic systems and soilless systems, it should be around 5.5 to 6.5.
You can change the pH of your system with the help of pH up/down products. Always have a pH meter or other pH drops on hand!
7. Lack of Proper Ventilation
Lack of ventilation, particularly while growing indoors, may result in a variety of problems, including mold. A simple fan blowing a gentle breeze over your crops can suffice if you’re growing a small grow, but larger crop operations may need more equipment to make sure that air is continuously circulating and does not become stagnant.
If your cannabis system is outdoors, ventilation shouldn’t be an issue; but, there are a few items to keep in mind. For starters, you’ll have to keep your plants safe from scavengers. Planting additional plants to hide your weed and mask the odor is one way to do so. You may also choose marijuana strains that develop naturally small and out of sight.
8. Inadequate Lighting
Marijuana plants die very easily if they don’t have enough light. This is because they are dependent on light to produce essential carbohydrates, which are used as a source of nutrition.
As a result, farmers must supply their plants with the appropriate lighting. If your lighting isn’t adequate, the plants will not give healthy yields. Whereas if your light is excessive, the photoperiod strains will not bloom.
When it comes to indoor growth, we suggest purchasing a good grow light as well as a 24-hour timer. When your plants are in the vegetative phase, the lights should be on for 18 hours and off for 6. To start flowering, you should provide your plants with 123 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness if you’re cultivating photoperiod genetics.
You won’t have to think about adjusting the light cycle if you have an outdoor system. Instead, simply choose a bright place in your garden that will fulfill your plant’s requirements. Ideally, the crop should be planted in a south-facing location that gets a minimum of 8 hours of direct sunlight per day.