How to grow marijuana for beginners in 5 steps
Choosing good genetics
This is the first question the novice grower faces, how to choose from such a wide range of marijuana varieties. At Cactus Martorell Growshop we always recommend choosing feminized seeds, with which we ensure that all plants are female.
If you are new to growing, you may not yet know how to tell if a marijuana plant is female or male, but buying feminized seeds saves you this step.
In addition to having female plants, we have to choose a variety that is easy to grow. In our opinion there are basically two options: either choose auto-flowering varieties or hybrids halfway between indica and sativa.
Auto-flowering marijuana seeds flower according to their age, so you don’t have to be so meticulous with the photoperiod they are subjected to. In fact, they can be grown with 12 to 20 hours of light per day, from germination to harvest.
The second option, choosing easy-to-grow hybrids, is highly recommended in the case of small cabinets where high temperatures can be a problem. These varieties need 12 hours of darkness a day to start flowering. Among the hybrid varieties, one of the easiest to grow is the Critical family, and in fact they are number one in sales in most grow shops.
Choosing a good substrate
There are various types of substrate with which to grow crops: soil, coconut fibre, arlita, rock wool… Of all these, soil is the substrate that allows the greatest margin of error when growing crops. Its percentage of air and water retention is quite stable, so it allows us to have some misunderstanding when watering.
The soil also has the capacity to cushion possible failures in the application of fertilizers. While an excess of fertilizer can be fatal in hydroponics, in soil it can be corrected with a simple root wash. In addition, plants grown in soil are usually the ones that smell the best and taste the best 🙂
In the same way, in the soil nutrients are available in a wider range of pH, being more difficult the appearance of nutritional deficiencies, frequent in the cultivation in coconut fiber and hydroponics.
Install a good lighting kit
In indoor marijuana cultivation, artificial lighting replaces sunlight, so the better the lighting kit, the better the end result in both quality and quantity. There are different types of bulbs, suitable for each of the phases of the crop: rooting, growth and flowering.
Low energy bulbs are suitable for the rooting phase and the first days of growth. Metal halide lamps, with a cold light spectrum, are suitable for the vegetative growth phase.
For the flowering and ripening phase, sodium vapour lamps give the best results. A good option to start the cultivation of marijuana is to acquire a mixed spectrum bulb, which will serve us for all phases of the crop.
Although there are lighting equipment based on plasma technology, LED and induction, still do not have good implementation in the cannabis sector, so we still recommend the cultivation with HPS lamps.
In addition to the type of light, the amount of light per unit area received by the plants must also be taken into account. Normally, a certain amount of light is assigned to each square meter, depending on the phase the plant is in.
As a general rule, 200 watts will be installed for germination and rooting, 400 watts for growth and 600 watts for flowering.
Assemble an extraction system
For marijuana plants to grow properly in an indoor crop, the air must be constantly renewed. This renewal ensures that the heat generated by the bulbs does not build up in the growing space, and that the plants receive a constant supply of carbon dioxide. Remember that CO2 is the fundamental molecule for photosynthesis, without it plants stop growing and flourishing.
There are several methods to determine which extractor is the most suitable for an indoor growing room. As a general rule, the volume of the room in cubic meters is multiplied by 30, and this number is the minimum flow rate that our extractor must have.
At the same time a slightly lower flow rate intractor is needed to maintain a negative pressure in the room. In this way the air will always have a tendency to exit through the extractor and the carbon filter, ensuring that the smell of marijuana is neutralized.
Watering with good water and nutrients
Last but not least, we have to talk about water and fertilizers. The purer the water, the more scope there is for the grower to add fertilizers. Although it is ideal to install an osmosis filter, you can also use rainwater or buy carafes (the latter is a bit cumbersome).
However, if you cannot choose any of these quality waters, and you have to use tap water, you must know whether this water is hard or soft. The hardness of the water refers to its lime content (and also magnesium), and there are different formulations of fertilizers on the market for cultivation with either water.
With this last advice we say goodbye to this post as growing marijuana for beginners until the next post. As always we invite you to leave your questions and comments, and to participate in the Martorell growshop cactus cultivation guide.
Greetings and good moods!