How to Grow Potent and Strong Weed
The benefits of growing your own cannabis surpass simply cutting costs and having a readily available supply. While the intricacies of creating your own plants may seem daunting at first, being able to control the quality of your plant is an unparalleled advantage.
Not only are you able to pick the specific strain, more importantly, you will be able to control the potency and overall strength of your weed. Growing potent and strong weed goes beyond proper maintenance, so we will touch on the tips and tricks of maximizing the potency of your plants and why it is so important.
What Makes Cannabis Potent and Strong?
The potency of your plants, or more specifically their buds, comes down to the levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (or THC). THC is a psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis that contributes to the overall “high” you experience from the plant.
Differing from the other popular cannabinoid “CBD” which contributes mainly to the physical benefits of cannabis, increased THC conversely affects the psychological aspect. Each strain will have a “ceiling” for the maximum levels of THC, with different strains allowing for higher levels.
However, without the proper techniques, the levels found in your plants can fall below this upper limit. Whether you are growing for recreational or medical use, being able to control the THC levels of your plants prevents the disappointment often found when purchasing over the counter.
What are the Benefits of Potent and Strong Weed?
If you are a recreational user of marijuana the benefits of stronger weed should be obvious. The higher the THC levels of your yield, the better “high” you will get.
In addition to stronger weed overall, more potent weed means a longer-lasting yield. Higher levels of THC can also prove beneficial for medical patients, having stronger anti-nausea effects and pain relief.
Methods and Tips for More Potent and Strong Weed
Now that you know why it’s important to grow potent and strong weed, what are the ways to ensure you are getting the strongest yield possible? Aside from proper growing techniques, there are a few aspects to consider.
Picking the Right Strain
As mentioned above, some strains naturally have a higher genetic potential for elevated THC levels. Certain strains can have a THC ceiling of 10-15% higher than other strains, so researching and sourcing the seeds for these particular strains can either set you up for success or failure.
While some strains can reach upwards of nearly 30%, some may never go above 20% regardless of your growing methods, so deciding on the right strain is a pivotal first step.
Growing With Enough Light
Sometimes the basics of growing can prove to be one of the most important steps. While regardless of your experience level you may understand adequate lighting is important, the quality and duration are just as crucial for potent yields.
During vegetation, your plants should be receiving at least 18 hours of direct light per day. As the plants begin to flower, the lighting should be 50% darkness and 50% direct light.
The intensity of light is just as important, with some bulbs providing higher-quality exposure. HID (high-intensity discharge) lighting systems are the gold standard in terms of power and efficiency, while the more typical fluorescent bulbs will have significantly less output.
While the three essential tenants of growth are light, water, and air, you’ll undoubtedly see healthier and stronger yields with nutrient supplementation. The three most important chemicals during the flowering stage are nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.
Keeping high levels of all three during the vegetation stage, and then dropping your nitrogen levels during the flowering stage will give you the most potential for strong yields.
Other important nutrients include:
These nutrients, as well as a number of others, can be found combined into an all in one fertilizer product for both soil and hydroponic grows. Often times these will be split up for the various stages of growth, ensuring you get the right amount and type of nutrients delivered at the right time.
Harvesting and Curing
Knowing when you are finally ready to harvest your plants can make or break the potency of your cannabis. Allowing the plant enough time to grow for the strongest buds, but also not waiting too long that the THC converts into CBN is a delicate balancing act.
As a general rule of thumb, Indica strains should be harvested about 8 weeks after flowering, while Sativa should be harvested at about 10 weeks. Sticky flowers, a strong smell, and leaves turning yellow are all signs that it is time to harvest.
After you have harvested, the curing process can debatably have a significant effect on the strength. Keeping the dried buds in jars at room temperature (occasionally airing them) will at minimum retain the health of your yield, but also has the potential to increase potency.
Following the above-mentioned techniques will direct you on the path towards more potent weed, but you should always follow the traditional best practices of growing your own cannabis. These factors include:
- Proper watering: Don’t over/under water your plants and keep your soil saturated
- Maintain proper airflow, both within your indoor enclosures and your potted plants.
- Keep humidity regulated for minimal mold and to prevent drying out your plants
Being vigilant with the upkeep and health of your plants will not only guarantee a bountiful yield but a more potent and strong crop as well.