Do you want to know how to grow weed indoors? Of course, you do, millions of people are interested in this. Here we have a complete guide on how and why you should do it. Normally, this type of growing isn’t difficult, but it isn’t the easiest either. It is up to you to understand how the entire process works. Growing weed for dummies guide is here to assist you in any way possible.
First Things First: Strains of Cannabis
In essence, we have two, main strains or types of weed. They are Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica. Both of them are popular and common, but they are actually different.
Cannabis Sativa is harder to grow indoor, but it has much higher levels of CBD and THC, meaning it is the best for smoking and the most popular for recreational usage. Just to add, it is slightly more difficult to grow indoors than the second strain here. Still, this type of growing is more than just possible. This also makes it ideal for growing outdoors, much easier than Indica strain.
Here we have Indica strain. It is simpler to grow indoor and it is a more forgivable strain. However, it has much higher levels of CBD than THC, making it more suitable for medical applications. Anyway, it is up to you which strain you want to grow. Our growing weed for dummies works well with both strains.
Cannabis Ruderalis is a separate strain of Sativa. It is commonly used for making ropes and we will stick to this application. The fact it comes with a much higher CBD than THC levels made it useless for smoking or equivalent applications. When it comes to growing, it is relatively simple and even beginners won’t have a hard time getting success in growing.
Advantages of Growing Marijuana Indoors
Believe or not, there are several advantages of this type of growing. The first and the most important is to know that ganja community agrees, weed grown indoors is far better and offers a higher level of quality than the one grown outdoors. But, there are several other advantages. They are:
- When growing indoors, you have a much better control over light which affects enzymes and chemicals in the plant
- You can protect the plant from insects and viruses
- The perfect time for harvesting is easier to determine
- It is easier to control soil, temperature, and other variables
- Protects the plant from numerous issues which affect growing
- It is much easier to get a high-quality weed
Of course, all of this means that you must have plenty of space indoor to grow the plants and you must have the proper equipment. In general, it is more demanding than outdoor growing, but it provides better results.
1. Choosing The Perfect Seed
Growing weed for dummies begins with choosing the best seeds. There are so many of them out there, so finding the one you will need may be a tricky business. Overall, you must avoid seeds which are green, soft, damaged or pale. They are not mature, they are ‘’sick’’ or they have some other issues. At the end of a day, they won’t produce high-quality plants, something you actually need.
The best seeds are tear-shaped and they are hard. When it comes to visual differences, Indica has stripes (dark ones) similar to tiger stripes. They should be dark and the seeds must be hard. Sativa seeds have black and brown stripes, but they may be less expressed than in a case of Indica.
Regardless of the types of seeds, you want to use, keep in mind that you need those which can produce male, female and feminized plants! Those which are feminized, have around 5% chance to develop hermaphrodite plants.
2. Germination Process
Germination is the most important process of them all. In essence, it is defined as a process during which a seed’s cocoon is broken apart and roots become growing (they are white and small). During this time, you will lose the most of your potential plants! Only 2 or 3 out of 10 seeds will grow into large, female plants! Others will root or grow as male plants. As such, make sure you include this calculation into a number of seeds you need to start with. Don’t try to plant fewer seeds due to the fact the entire result will be lower!
Growing weed indoors is a time-consuming process, but germination isn’t. It lasts between 2 and 7 days and in most cases, first sprouts are visible in less than 5 days. Once the step is completed, you will want to remove all, male and less-developed plants. Experienced growers repeat the step two times in order to get more female plants, the ones you actually need. Mats developed for this purpose are definitely a useful addition, but they are also an additional expense. One, the free thing that can help you get more female, healthy plants is to start the germination process during the warm months.
Young plants will start growing and they should keep doing so. Once they reach ¼ of an inch, they must be transferred to another medium, usually rockwool one. Only afterward, they must be transferred to a hydroponic system or a garden, depending on what you use.
There are several methods you can use to germinate marijuana seeds. We advise you to start with the most affordable seeds, just to make sure you determine which method works the best. By doing so, you won’t waste money on expensive seeds. Anyway, methods include:
The most common and the easiest method of them all. Use a cup filled with warm water (not hot). Place seeds inside and wait. It is important to remove all of those who will float at the top. They are damaged and they won’t germinate. Cover the cup with a lid, so you eliminate the light penetrating into the cup. Seeds will start germinating within 48 hours, but some may complete the process within 24 hours.
The method in question is almost identical to the aforementioned one. You will have to use soil, where you can add water. Wait for the water to drain and make a tiny hole (use a pen) in the middle. Plant a seed and spray water on top of it. Wait for 7 days and you will get a sprout. This is also one of the most successful methods and it is relatively simple. Some say that it produces stronger and more durable sprouts.
Kits for Propagation
If you are looking for growing weed for dummies methods, but you want to stand out from the crowd, you should use propagation kits. They are cheap and easy to get. All you have to do is to add seeds to the tiny holes and add the hormone (you get it in the package). Furthermore, you get instructions on the package, but this is a generic process. Yes, it is possible to make your own propagation kits, but why should you? They are cheap to purchase.
Place Peat Briquettes into the water and let them swell. After that, make a hole and place seeds inside them. Wait for them to start sprouting. Once they do, transfer them to another medium.
Using Paper Towels
For this method, you will need two paper towels and two dishes. Use hot, boiling water to clean the dishes, so you remove all the germs out of them. Soak both towels and drain the excess water. They should be warm and damp. Then, place the seeds onto the towels and use a second dish to cover the first one. This is an important step which eliminates the light coming to the seed. Also, make sure you transfer the seeds as soon as the germination process is done, usually between 2 and 6 days.
All of the aforementioned ways actually work and all of them are successful. It is up to you to choose which one is the most productive. It is advised to try all of them, just to determine which one works the best in your own case, due to a variety of variables.
3. Seedlings Process
This process comes after successful germination. After plants reveal their sprouts, the time is to transfer them to a pot. There, they will grow into smaller weed plants. The first thing you will notice is a pair of leaves. They are called as a seedling leaf. It is useful because of this element stores nutrients and water for further growth. Once a plant gets bigger, it will use those nutrients, after which seedling leaf will turn pale and eventually come off. It is perfectly normal.
During the process, some people try to speed up the growth of a plant. They add excess water, use more light and they add additional fertilizer. All of these are mistakes and they can destroy your plants. A marijuana plant needs 16 hours of sunlight daily, not more.
Because during seedling, plants will develop their roots and leaves, adding water and fertilizer will kill them, simply due to the fact they will use all of the nutrients, which are harmful when used in severe amounts.
4. Transferring Plants to a Hydroponic System or a Garden
After plants get a proper size, around a few inches or less, you will need to transfer them to a garden or aforementioned hydroponic system. Basically, it is up to you where you want to grow the plants.
The only thing you should do is to move the plants from rockwool to the soil. Keep in mind that some pieces of foil shouldn’t be removed, or they can damage the roots of the plants! On the other side, they are harmless when left.
5. Monitor The Growing Process
Now, your plants are transferred to larger mediums, so you should watch for their growth. This is a time-consuming process, without any doubt. Make sure that the leaves and the branches are green and look healthy, without any spots or issues. Some of you may know that the crucial period is between 5 and 7th week. If you notice stems which are purple in color, don’t be afraid, this is a perfectly normal thing. Yes, this is an important step to grow weed.
Here are a few things you will have to monitor during this period. Humidity is the number one. High humidity is good for female plants, while low humidity is good for male plants. Low temperature is beneficial for female and high temperature is beneficial for male plants. When it comes to nitrogen, low is good for a female, and high is beneficial for male plants. Blue and red lighting is preferable for female plants. The same goes for potassium.
In essence, female plants require a lower level of nutrients and lighting, while male requires more of them. Keep in mind that this is an essential difference to keep in consideration. For lighting, the best alternative is LED grow lights. They are highly effective.
6. Growing Mature Plants
Now when you have mature plants, you will have to continue growing them. You will have three alternatives here. It is up to you to choose the one you prefer. All of them are equally successful, but there are some differences with the time and money invested into the process.
Soil: This type of growing mature plants is the best one for beginners. It is the most affordable and offers the easiest results. Don’t forget that soil must be organic because it provides the best results. It should contain nutrients (we will mention them later) and it should be good in filtering water.
Containers: They are a great alternative. All you will have to do is to drill a hole at the bottom, which is used to drain excess water. All containers should be black in order to keep the light away from the roots. You can make your own or purchase some of the containers made for this purpose.
Ground: If you have space outside, you will be able to grow plants there. Although it is an effective method, you must have plenty of space and you must pay attention to the spacing.
We explained that you must transfer the plants to the larger containers after the seedling process is done. But, now you will have to transplant them. The process is stressful for a plant, but most of them won’t have any severe complications.
Nutrients to Look for
Below are the most important nutrients you will have to consider and to keep an eye on them during the growth period. We will explain why and how growing weed for dummies depends on these nutrients.
Nitrogen: It is probably the most important nutrient of them all. If the levels are low, plants will turn yellow and they will die! Make sure you use as much nitrogen as you can, especially during the vegetation period.
Phosphorous: This nutrient is the main one during the flowering It should be available in a higher amount than nitrogen. Furthermore, it is essential for respiration and photosynthesis.
Potassium: Plants need it for better sugar transport and for better water absorption. Higher levels are ideal and the essential for better, faster growth of plants.
Here we can add two, additional factors, closely related to the nutrients we just mentioned. Watering plants is important. You must not water them every day. They should be watered every other day. Pour water until you see 20% of it drains out of the container. It will stay on the tray, so make sure you remove it from it, or it will get re-absorbed.
pH levels are important to consider as well. They must be between 6.7 and 6.2. Using fertilizers with higher pH levels can damage the plants and have a negative effect on the pH levels in the plant. Manure fertilizer is the best option here and it is proven to be the most productive. Marijuana likes this fertilizer and there is no need to look for another type.
One of the most common and the most successful processes to grow marijuana is to clone them. As the name suggests, this is a simple process, but it does require certain facts to know. The first one is that you must choose strong and large plants to get the cuttings out of them. The goal here is to use the elements of already grown plants to get new ones.
Once you acquire cuttings, you will have to place them in a separate medium. This is essential for their growth. So yes, you will have new plants, but you won’t have to go through germination process all over again. They also grow faster than ‘’original’’ plants and they are highly desirable among professional growers. The main benefit is that all of the clones will be female, the ones you want!
Money saving benefits are huge. You don’t need extra seeds and you don’t need time as much as for other plants. Overall, they are the fastest way to grow the marijuana and this process is more than just recommended. Make sure you use the cuttings of the strongest plants and try to plant 50% more than you actually need.
On the downside, your final product won’t be as versatile as you may want. Clones are vulnerable to insects and germs and they are very sensitive. Nevertheless, once you plant 50% or more of the amount you actually need, all of these drawbacks are irrelevant.
The process of cloning is almost identical to the conventional growing. Cut the branches and place them into containers. Then, pour water and leave them. Water them every other day and you will get the promising results.
Hydroponics Systems: Are They The Best?
Growing weed for dummies guide simply must be focused on hydroponics systems. They are the most common and the most effective way to grow marijuana. The full list of advantages is extremely long. First and foremost, you will get the best product for them all. Then, the environment pollution will be significantly reduced and the water you use will stay in the system, so the water bill will be lower than usual.
The quality of the crops will be the highest as well. All the nutrients are controlled, so plants get the right amount of them at any given moment. Overall, they are reserved for professionals or for amateurs who don’t mind the high process of these systems. Just to add, these systems run on electricity solely. Don’t use these systems if the power grid isn’t stable at your home or in the area.
Growing Marijuana in Hydroponic Systems
You will definitely use our guide for growing marijuana into the mentioned systems. As we have mentioned, it is the most productive way of them all. Just keep in mind to follow each step so you can actually get a useful product.
1. Gather the needed elements
They are LED lighting, containers, pots, timer, nutrients, white paint and pH detectors.
2. Paint your walls in white, gloss paint
It is used as a reflective layer so it will literally transfer the sunlight to the plants. This simulates the sunlight from nature.
3. Hang the lights in order to get the best and a complete coverage
On average, you will need 3000 lumens of light per square foot. Some, more demanding plants will need between 7000 and 10.000 lumens per a square foot.
4. Make sure each plant gets the same amount of light, so they grow equally
Use the lux meter in order to get the precise data. If needed, adjust the lighting.
5. The temperature should be 90 degrees Fahrenheit, maximum
Marijuana plants don’t withstand higher temperatures.
6. Provide a proper ventilation to the plants
The entire area must be well ventilated so they can get fresh oxygen.
7. Unless you are using cloning method, use high-quality seeds
They require germinating process, something which we explained above, so go back and read it again.
8. Rockwool block is needed for the seeds which have completed germination process
9. Start feeding your plants
Too many nutrients will kill them, so add them in moderation. Make sure the pH value is between 5.0 and 6.0 during this process. The safest alternative is, to begin with a smaller amount of nutrients and gradually increase them, as plants
10. Monitor the pH levels, watering and lighting systems
Plants are sensitive at this stage, so they must be treated with a lot of care. The best value to look for is pH levels. They must be within the range we have mentioned. Even the smallest mistake can have a catastrophic effect.
11. All environmental conditions must be perfect during the vegetation and flowering processes
Try to provide the best or similar environment to the one they get in natural habitat.
12. Monitor the growth by measuring the height of the plants
They will grow constantly during the vegetation process. During flowering stage, they will grow between 6 and 8 inches.
13. The flowering stage begins at the moment plants reach 18 inches in height
Then, you will have to provide 12 hours of light per day. Don’t try to speed up the process by adding more light over a longer period of time.
14. Now, you will be able to see the gender of the plants
Female ones get white hairs around branches. Male get ‘’’balls’’ and elements which look similar to the bananas. You need both genders, but female ones are preferable.
15. Keep your eye on hermaphrodite plants
They will start as female plants, but they will get male attributes.
16. Remove the male and hermaphrodite plants as soon as possible
Male ones will ruin female ones and hermaphrodites will destroy themselves.
17. Some female plants will stat developing sacs in their buds
They also must be removed as soon as possible. It is a much better decision to sack your losses now than to ruin the entire system.
18. This stage is the most, time-consuming
All Sativa plants require between 6 and 12 weeks to reach maturity. During this stage, you will have only to maintain and nurture the plants.
19. 7 days before the harvest, use water only
Remove all other nutrients, because they will affect the taste of the final product and make it worse. This is actually a secret experienced growers
20. Once resin on the buds is sticky and clear, the harvesting time has arrived
Some of them will get dark brown or amber colors.
21. When 50-75% of pistils changed their color to red or brown, you will get mellower high
This is the most recommended harvesting time. Once they reach 70-90% of color change, you get much stronger weed. This is the time when you harvest if you want this type of weed. Yes, you can wait until the whole pistils are brown/red, but the weed will be too strong for almost any usage.
22. Pay attention to the hair on the buds
They should be amber in color and milky. If they are clear, they are not ready for harvesting. Keep in mind that if you are too late and all of the hairs are amber in color, completely, your weed will be too strong and useless. For the best and the most accurate result, you will have to use a magnifying It isn’t effective trying to see the details with naked eyes. Our growing weed for dummies guide must remind you to check for change daily.
23. The perfect time for harvesting also affects on the strain of a plant
Indica must be harvested after 8 weeks, while Sativa should be harvested later, after 12 weeks. Of course, some other strains should be harvested after 10 weeks. Anyway, look for the clues we mentioned above. They will help you get the best harvesting time. Auto-flowering plants should be harvested as well, usually 10 weeks after seedling.
After the harvesting, you are free to do with your weed anything you want. Keep in mind that these steps will ensure the quality of the weed is outstanding. You won’t be able to get better weed regardless of what you try. On the other hand, if you make a mistake, you can ruin the entire process. Growing weed for dummies is simpler than you may believe, but also more sensitive to changes!
The Importance of Light
Lighting is probably the main factor to consider here. There are countless alternatives and choosing the one you will need actually depends on your budget and your capability to grow weed. In general, you have bulbs, reflectors, and LEDs, but in real life, there are additional alternatives you may want to consider.
The main thing to consider, after you have chosen the lighting system is where to place it. Bulbs should be placed higher above the plant, due to the fact they generate heat. LEDs should be positioned 15 inches above the plants because they don’t generate as much heat as conventional bulbs.
Older LEDs were not great and they still should be avoided. On the other hand, the CFLs are the traditional choice. Regardless of what you choose, make sure lighting comes with a full spectrum of light and doesn’t generate heat. If we take into account that you are a beginner, and we assume you are, CFLs are a much better and more affordable choice. Over time, you can invest into better lighting and increase the harvesting capabilities.
How much light plants do need? We mentioned this matter a few times in the content, but now is the time to summarize all the things:
- During the seedling stage, plants will need between 16 and 18 hours of light daily. Don’t forget that we think on proper lighting!
- During the vegetative stage, 18-24 hours per day are mandatory.
- Flowering stage is a bit more specific. It requires 12 hours of light per day, but keep in mind that you must increase red spectrum. Other than that there are no additional requirements.
Once again, we must point out that lighting is an essential factor of them all. If you make a mistake here, your product won’t be very good and you can expect a variety of issues. The most common mistakes include higher than needed temperature and low light. Make sure this doesn’t happen to you.
Harvesting may be the most producing stage of them all and it is truly fun, but it is a responsible process. You will have to perform it in perfect timing, something which we mentioned earlier. Furthermore, you will have to perform harvesting at a specific time of a day, in order to get the best possible result. Our growing weed for dummies guide ends with harvesting but your path just begins.
The time when you must harvest is explained above. Once again, look at the hairs and color of the pistils. Both of them are white in young plants, but they will turn dark brown when the time is ready for harvesting. Ideally, you will harvest them when the color change is at 70%. Yes, you can wait longer, but the weed you will get won’t be especially good. It is up to you really.
Harvesting should begin at dawn. As we said, this is a time-consuming process, so you will need plenty of time. Always start with larger and heavier plants and slowly move towards smaller ones. Cut a plant from the root. Remove some of the larger, fan leaves. Place a wire or a rope horizontally above the ground and place the weed across it. Make sure there is enough spacing between them. Obviously, plants will have to hand upside down. The next step is to dry the plants.
Drying stage can be completed in two ways. The first one is to use air, which is the most affordable way as well. The second one is to use a drying machine. Some believe that air dried plants are better, others prefer drying machines so it is up to you. In our growing weed for dummies guide will simply summarize the obvious advantage of the drying machines. They are much quicker than air drying process. Yes, they are a more expensive alternative, but if you don’t have plenty of space, but you have plenty of weed, they are mandatory.
In a case you have some plants planted outdoors, harvest them at dark. Not so nobody can see you, but due to the fact, they will store nutrients and food which they absorbed during a day.
On the other side, indoor plants should be harvested according to the lighting hours you used. For example, if you provided light during the night, harvest them early in the morning.
The main goal here is to provide a superb quality. Harvesting at the right moment can provide you precisely that. The nutrients and the food they stored has a positive effect on the weed quality, People prefer the nutrients and treat them as mood boosters.
Yes, you will have to wait before you start smoking your product.
Curing is the final stage. Basically, you will have to wait until natural processes inside a plant are completed. They are so beneficial in the fact that 50% of the taste and flavor depends on the curing stage. Professionals believe this is actually the most important step of them all, we kinda agree with them. But if the overall quality of the weed isn’t good, curing won’t be able to do so much. If the quality is exceptional, curing will simply make it slightly better.
So, curing is essential for breaking chlorophyll which boosts the taste. The aroma will also be improved during this stage. Then we have the THC, which will be transferred into the psychoactive elements, which make you high. Reduced harshness is guaranteed as well. It simply makes weed much better to smoke.
One, the important addition to the curing process is the fact to remove germs and bacteria and side effects. We can deduce that it affects the safety of the weed and it makes it’s much better and safer at the same time. Some add that potency will increase as well, but it hasn’t been proved till now.
Anyway, curing is the process you will have to perform, one way or another. It is absolutely essential for the best results. We know that you want to try the weed you grew a little bit, but it isn’t an option till you wait for the curing process to complete.
In order to cure marijuana, all you have to do is to place dried plants into jars. Wait until they are completely dry, so when you mix them, they are not linked with other plants. Always fill jars maximum at 75% and never filled them to the max. Mason jars are the best for this application. Keep them in dark and dry place. The precise time cannot be specified due to the fact it depends on the weed, environment and a variety of other factors. The only thing you can do is to wait.
The Final Word
As you can see growing weed for dummies is simpler than you would expect. But, it is still a responsible task which will require plenty of your time. Make sure you understand all the stages before you start and make sure you are prepared to expect mistakes. One way or another, a mistake or two will occur. It is up to you to accept them and move on. On average, the first time is the most difficult and the most fail-probable. The second attempt is a much better. Because you cannot skip the first attempt, all you can do is to try it make it as productive as possible.
One thing we must point out is that after a few times you try this method, you can make your own modifications. Make a stronger weed, try other strains or etc.