The Second Week of the Flowering stage brings on lots of new changes to your cannabis plant. In this article, we take an up close look at those changes, so that you can know what to expect during the flowering stage of your plants.
This article is part of our video series, A Week-By-Week Guide to Flowering Cannabis. In this article, we take a look at these plants as they begin their second week under 12/12 lighting.
Changes in your plants from Week 1 to Week 2
The first thing you will notice in Week 2 of flower is that these plants have grown a lot in seven days! While they looked about the same in the Week 1 as they did in veg, the growth in Week 2 is distinct.
These plants have begun what is known as the Post-Vegetative Stretch. This phrase refers to the explosive growth that occurs after the plants have had a full week of the 12 on, 12 off, light cycle.
During the vegetative phase, the plants are exposed to much more light than darkness. We keep our veg room lights on 18 hours per day, with only six hours of darkness. But in our flower rooms, these plants get a full 12 hours of darkness each day, and this increased dark period basically puts these plants through puberty.
Now, the importance of the Trellis Netting becomes more obvious
It is in Week 2 of flower that you really get to see the importance of having trellis netting. These plants are stretching and growing daily. Our team comes in several times during this week to weave and tuck the vine-like branches of these plants through the netting.
The goal during this phase is to control the overall height of the plant, and attempt to spread the plant horizontally.
These plants will continue to grow throughout the remainder of flower, so we must start controlling their height now, in Week 2. Because they will grow more in Week 3 and will continue through Weeks 4 through 8.
Spread the Plants wide, to create a vast canopy
Tall and skinny plants do not lead to exciting yields. If you want to harvest a fat amount of weed, you need to top your plants in veg, and then spread them through the trellis during Weeks 2 and 3 of the flower stage.
The hard work you put in during Week 2 will reap rewards for you later on in flower. This is the time to be weaving and tucking these vines through the trellis netting, so that later, each trellis square will have a fat cola poking through.
Defoliation of excess leaf should take place in Week 2 or Week 3
You may also want to start defoliating your plants at the end of this week. With the explosive vertical growth, these plants also bush out with fan leaves galore. The sheer amount of foliage can make it difficult to work with.
These plants must be defoliated during the flowering stage to achieve the best outcome. The best time to start is either at the end of Week 2 or during Week 3. There is no hard and fast rule, but there are some guidelines to follow.
For optimal results, limit defoliation to Two Sessions during the flowering period
You can defoliate a little bit every week, but that’s not what we do. Here is why:
Back to the topic of stress, pruning your plants and yanking off fan leaves is a form of stress. Yes, your plants will recover. But we want to minimize stressful activities with plenty of recovery time in between. Therefore, we like to do these activities in “fits and spurts” where we do a very heavy defoliation, and then let the plant recover.
We typically do a heavy defoliation in either Week 2 or Week 3, it just depends on how the plants look, as well as fitting into our schedule of weekly tasks at the farm.
After we do our heavy defoliation, we wait a full two weeks before coming back again at the end of Week 4 or beginning of Week 5. And that is it. We only perform two defoliations during the entire flower period, and we do them early in the flowering cycle. By limiting defoliation to two sessions in the first half of flower, our plants are able to coast through the remainder of the blooming stage with low stress.
As you can see in our video above, we are at Day 9, and we have not yet done any defoliation. In our next video, you will see the further growth of the plants, and how we have adapted as we follow along, week by week.
Are you ready to move on to Week 3? Let’s go!