As we have mentioned in previous posts in this series, every strain and blend of cannabis is different. This means that they may require various treatments and may develop on a vastly different timeline from another strain planted at the same time. Because the proper time frame for the vegetative stage can vary so greatly, we need to use other methods to determine when it’s time to flower them. You also have to ensure proper techniques and tooling are leveraged to increase flower yield and transition healthily from vegetative to flowering stages.
Weed Vegetative Timeline
As we discussed in our previous article, the length of the vegetative cycle is completely up to the grower when vegging indoors. In an outdoor environment, the seasonal amount of sunlight dictates how long your plants will be in veg. However, when growing indoors, you control how long you want your plants to be in veg, and your decision will be factored on how big you want your plants to end up as well as facility limitations, such as ceiling height.
At Smokey Okie’s, we prefer to veg our plants for about five weeks, sometimes more or less if the strain requires it, but we have arrived at five weeks as optimal for how large we want our plants to be in Flower.
It’s during the vegetative stage that the plant grows and gains strength, gearing up to bloom and produce flower that will be harvested for consumption. There are many things you can do to ensure success and health for your marijuana and how to determine when your plant is ready to flower.
When to Pull the Flowering Trigger
You can introduce your cannabis plants to the flowering stage by decreasing light and increasing the dark periods, as this will hasten the buds’ production and flowering process. And knowing when to flower your plant is a crucial part of success. Too early, and you greatly reduce your yield. Too late and you risk overgrowth that may prove unmanageable for you. Some things to observe and consider when making the switch from the vegetative stage to the flowering stage are:
- Plant Height – You must remember, that your plant will double in size during flower. Keep this in mind when you are vegging your plants. Figure out how tall you want your plant to grow, and then take it out of veg when it is half of that desired height.
- Strain Type/ Genetics – While we just told you that you should expect your plants to double in height during flowering, some strains have the propensity to triple in height during flower, and some do not stretch as much. Therefore, it is best to consult with someone who has grown your strain (or even better, your exact pheno if starting from clone), so that you can get an idea of what this plant will do in flower.
- Method of Growing – Whether you are utilizing a sea of green or a screen of green, topping your plants in veg, a lollipopping or another cropping method will affect when your plant is ready to flower. How you trim and cultivate your plants makes a difference in terms of how tall they grow, how they disperse and absorb light and, therefore, how they grow their buds. More about those cultivation methods in our next installment!
In our final installment for this series, we will look at caring for your plants during the vegetative stage, increasing your yield and making you and your plants happy and healthy! And if you’re just now catching up, you can revisit the previous posts in this series below: