It is now possible to grow cannabis plants at home in specific states. For individuals fortunate enough to live in one of these places, they are free to experiment and grow a small crop.
Those who have tried it say it is challenging yet rewarding. They also say it gives them a greater appreciation of the cannabis plant. This guide is designed to help you grow a single plant for fun.
This guide is designed to help you grow a single plant for fun.
Please make sure you live in a place where it is legal to cultivate cannabis before you begin. Also, check out these easy to grow marijuana strains. We recommend choosing one of them before beginning your adventure.
You have the option of purchasing seeds or using a clone. The latter is more expensive but makes the process easier. However, it also takes away the fun of growing a seedling.
Here’s an overview of what to expect:
- Germinating the Seed
- Preparing the Soil
Germinating the Seed
If you have a clone, you can skip this section. The germination process requires cannabis seeds, air, heat, and water. There are several ways to proceed, although the paper towel method is one of the quickest and easiest. As you can guess, it involves using paper towels! You also need a couple of plates and your seed.
Overall, germination can take 24-72 hours, depending on the method used. If you decide to purchase seeds, make sure they are feminized. Otherwise, there is a 50/50 chance that the plant you grow is male. When the seed has germinated, it is time to transplant it. This means planting it in soil.
Preparing the Soil
It is important to ensure that the plants have enough oxygen. Their roots also need to have enough room to grow. You have to switch your plant to a larger container as the growth cycle continues.
Choose a healthy full-bodied soil, but more importantly, find nutritious soil boosters to add to the plant. There are many organic boosters on the market. However, you can DIY and use bat guano, compost teas, or even fish guts to fertilize and bring nutrients to your weed crops.
The seedling stage lasts for 2-3 weeks. Your plant develops its root system during this period. Make sure the seedling is kept at a temperature of around 77 degrees Fahrenheit. A humidity level of 60-70% is adequate.
Cannabis’ growth is based on a light cycle. This is why it grows particularly well outdoors during certain months when the light conditions are ideal. When growing indoors, you must choose a light that best fits your budget, as well as the plant’s needs.
One handy tactic is to place your plant near a sunlit window. That is if the climate you live in provides enough sunlight during the summer. You can then use a simple fluorescent bulb (CFL’s, T5’s, T8’s) to provide enough light during the night.
If you don’t get much sunlight in your region, you’ll need stronger indoor lighting. You can use a 250-watt HID light in a dark and enclosed area. However, the fixtures for these are costly. You probably can’t justify the cost of HIDs or LEDs for a single cannabis plant. Unless, of course, this is a trial run, and you plan to cultivate more plants in the future.
Two More Growth Stages
After a few weeks, your seedling is firmly in the vegetative stage. Your plant needs approximately 18 hours of light every day. The plant will grow taller, and you get to see its distinct characteristics. An indica will become short and bushy, whereas a sativa will get thin and tall.
Assuming your plant is female, you will notice two white pistils. However, if you have a male plant, you will see pollen sacs.
Keep the humidity level between 50% and 70% and the temperature between 65- and 80-degrees Fahrenheit. In most cases, your plant will benefit from a high level of nitrogen. It also thrives on potassium and phosphorus, but don’t forget secondary nutrients like calcium and magnesium.
After 3-8 weeks, depending on the strain and your preference, your plant will enter the flowering stage. You need to force it into blooming by ensuring it gets 12 hours of consecutive darkness each day. Sativas tend to take longer to bloom. Some can remain in flowering for up to 14 weeks! However, 8-9 weeks is more typical.
During blooming, drop the humidity level to 40-50%. You can keep the temperature at the same level as when the plant was flowering.
It’s important to make sure your cannabis is ready before snipping down branches and hanging them to cure. A magnifying tool is a useful item for recognizing when your trichomes are in full force. You can choose a jeweler’s loupe, a handheld magnifier, or a digital microscope. The latter is extremely expensive, however!
The trichome method is a popular way to see if a cannabis plant is ready for harvesting.
The trichome method is a popular way to see if a cannabis plant is ready for harvesting. A good rule of thumb is to harvest when the trichomes have a cloudy or milky color. Wait too long, and the trichomes turn brown. If this happens, it means much of the THC in the plant has become CBN. Such marijuana is less intoxicating than usual and will make you feel sleepy.
Another way to determine if cannabis is harvest-ready is the pistil method. It would help if you harvested when around 70% of the pistils turn brown. Again, wait too long, and your plant will start losing THC. You will benefit from a higher CBD level if you wait until 80-90% of the pistils are brown. However, the risk isn’t worth the reward if it is generally a low-CBD plant.
The drying and curing process vastly improves the quality of your cannabis. As you only have a single plant, you should find it easy to prune. We recommend doing this before hanging it to dry. If you proceed with wet pruning, make sure you wear gloves and use sharp scissors. Remove the fan leaves and sugar leaves. Consider using them for edibles rather than throwing them away.
In a well-ventilated room, hang your plant upside down. One convenient method is to put up a small clothesline. Ensure the room temperature is between 65 and 75 degrees, with a humidity of around 50%. The slow drying process takes 3-7 days, typically. Check your buds daily to ensure the drying process is proceeding smoothly.
Curing is a controlling of humidity and can create a truly phenomenal final product. Ideally, you will have some wide-mouth glass mason jars, although one is likely enough depending on the yield’s size. Put the buds in the jar, but don’t fill it more than three-quarters of the way.
The buds should not clump together in the jars. Make sure they can move around freely when you shake them. If they are sticking, you need to dry them for longer as they aren’t ready to cure.
During the first few days, open the jar several times for a few minutes. This process airs the buds out and aids the curing process. If you want precision, invest in a hygrometer to test the humidity level of the buds in the jar. Once it is between 60% and 65%, your cannabis is ready for use.
Some experts believe you should allow the buds to cure for up to eight weeks.
However, some experts believe you should allow the buds to cure for up to eight weeks. Others suggest that you get the best cannabis when it is cured for six months! Once the humidity level goes below 65%, you only need to open the jar once a day, or even once every few days.
When your cannabis is cured, you should divide it into several portions. It is also a good idea to weigh each package! It is best to keep the wrapped marijuana in a sealed mason jar to keep it fresher for longer. You should also store it in a dark place at a temperature of no more than 70 degrees.
Final Thoughts on Growing One Marijuana Plant
Trying to cultivate marijuana for the first time will undoubtedly feel daunting. There is a lot to learn, but you’ll soon find that the process is relatively straightforward when growing a single plant. Choose a robust strain that has a high resistance to pests and diseases. You should also check out high-yielding strains to get the most bang for your buck.
Ultimately, growing a marijuana plant is a rewarding experience and makes you appreciate the herb that little bit more.
For more interesting articles on medical marijuana visit the WayofLeaf blog