Every cannabis grower intends to harvest good yields irrespective of whether he or she is growing cannabis commercially or for their personal use. One of the best ways to ensure that you get high returns from your weed is to have big buds on your crops. Getting your plants to produce bigger buds requires dedication, patience, and hard work.
You also need to ensure that you follow all the growing guidelines, feed the crops with all the right ingredients, give them enough light, and show them some tender loving care. Outdoor weed growers have it easier than indoor growers do because they do not require as much input in terms of growing equipment for the growth of their weed. Having it easier than indoor growers, however, does not mean sitting back and allowing nature to take its course for the healthy growth of the crops.
Just like indoor growing, weed growing outdoors needs just as much care as that growing indoors. If you let nature take its course, the result will be small buds, weak growth, and minimal low-quality yields. Read on to learn more about how to grow bigger buds outdoors.
Choose the right strain
Before you even go to the other steps that you can do to the crops to grow bigger buds, you should ensure that you choose the best strains to grow. The genetics of the plants play one of the most significant roles in the kind of buds and harvest you will get. Where you buy your strains will also matter. For best results, make sure you by your seedlings from reputable online seed banks.
One of the best ways to ensure that your outdoor plants grow larger buds is by pruning. Some people assume that pruning is probably getting rid of too much of the plant foliage, but it is not. As the plants grow bigger, they form nodes, which translate to available locations for more bud formation.
Having more nodes or more buds, however, does not lead to having better quality. Having too many buds growing on the lower parts of the plant instead of the upper part of the plant means that the buds do not get enough light to make them grow large and healthy. The upper part of the plant canopy blocks light from reaching the lower sections, which leads to buds not maturing into anything you would be proud to see.
To ensure that you get larger buds, you need to prune off the nodes and branches on the lower parts of the plant in order to allow light to penetrate through properly. Doing this creates larger plant canopies that absorb light better. This kind of pruning called “lollipopping” enables the buds at the top of the plant to receive more nutrients and energy in just one take, making them grow larger and healthier.
Training your cannabis plants is another great way to grow bigger buds. Allowing your outdoor plants to improve without any help, leads to some of the plant stalks growing more extensive than the branches surrounding them. When this happens, the large stems block the surrounding and lower branches from receiving enough light.
With less light, colas and buds on the branches surrounding the large stalks lack enough sunlight resulting in less formation. Stress training of the plants comes in handy at this point. The exercise entails bending the branches and tying the stalks to prevent them from growing higher than the branches.
Stress training helps to make the plant canopy even with the stalk and all the surrounding branches, which in turn leads to even distribution of sunlight. Stress training is not an easy exercise to carry out, especially for first-time growers. It is delicate, and if you are not careful, the stalks can snap when you are trying to tie them.
The difference between growing marijuana indoors and producing the same outdoors is that with the latter, you can control the lighting system for the crops. What this means is you choose the light units best for the crop growth, you select the distance between the lighting system and the plants, you select the wattage, and the hours the plants need to receive light. In outdoor growing, you depend on only the natural light from the sun, which you cannot control.
Even though you cannot control the power from the natural source of light, or the sun, you can control the space your crops have between them to ensure that they get even distribution of light. In a grow tent, you can give a space of 3 by 3 feet between crops, but outdoors it is advisable to increase the area to 5 by 5 to ensure that there is no overlapping of colas or leaves. Allowing more light penetration into each plant is a sure way of growing bigger buds.
Spacing the plants may lead to a reduction in the number of crops, but it also means you get more yield from potent and healthier-looking buds. Make sure that no crops grow under trees or anything that can block the light from reaching every part of the plant.
Nutrients and soil
Using the proper nutrients and the right soil is also another way of ensuring that you grow bigger buds outdoors. One of the mistakes some people growing their weed outdoors is to assume that they can plant the seeds in the existing soil and wait for miracles. Weed needs soil rich in nutrients for the seedlings to germinate into healthy crops.
The dirt soil that you pop the seeds into may not contain any nutrients conducive to healthy crop growth. What you need to do is to get potting soil for your outdoor crops. The crops also need proper nutrients such as Nitrogen, Phosphorous, and Potassium (NPK) for them to flourish. Feeding the plants with the right nutrients and soil will lead to more foliage and better vegetative growth.
The healthier the plants grow during the vegetative stage, the more the yield. During the flowering stage of the crops, reduce the nitrogen input to allow the buds to grow bigger and faster, as they become denser. During this stage, you can add other nutrients such as bat guano and worm castings.
Control Pests and Bugs
Controlling pests and insects from attacking your crops does not have any direct control over the growth of the buds, but it is an essential factor to consider. Growing your plants outdoors means that you may not have control over animals getting into your farm to eat the plants. You can avoid this by building a protective fence around the plants to keep away animals such as deer, squirrels, and other small or large animals.
You can also use special pest control techniques such as specialized solutions and essential oils to keep bugs, spider mite, and fungus infections from attacking your plants. After all, what you want is an abundant harvest, and some animals eating away your crops may reduce the yields.
Read next: Best Insect Fogger for Cannabis
Planting your seedlings at the right season is also very important if you want to harvest bigger buds. Remember, you have no control over the weather changes if you are planting the crops outdoors. Choose the right season to transfer the seedlings to the ground outdoors to harvest the full-grown buds at the right time.
The best times to plant weed crops is during the spring and harvest the buds during summer. Planting the germinated seedlings before spring may expose them to frost and weak growth. Cold stress affects the weed crops, which leads to no harvest or if you are lucky, to a yield of small buds.
Do not harvest your cannabis before the “harvest window,” as this may reduce the potency and quantity of the yields. Allow the buds to grow to their last stage as this helps to increase their sizes and maximize returns. In the last three weeks, buds gain an additional 25% size.
Harvesting at the appropriate period also ensures that you get buds that have the potency you want from your weed. The longer the wait, the higher the potency, and the more the yield are what you should remember.
Keep a growing journal
Keeping a journal has nothing to do with growing bigger buds, but it helps you with your subsequent growing sessions. It is important to note everything you do during the different stages of growth to monitor the growth of the crops. If by any chance, you do not get a good harvest during one growing season, you can always refer back to the journal to check what you did wrong the last time.
Rectifying the mistakes may help you to do it the better second time around and grow bigger buds. All it takes is consistency and practice until you get it right.
Wrapping it up
The most crucial thing in weed growing is the sizes and potency of the buds. What you do to achieve this is vital, and following all the above steps will ensure that you get bigger buds. Therefore, space the crops for even lighting, prune the crops, stress train them, keep away the pests, feed them with the right nutrients and soil, and, best of all, ensure that your timing for planting the crops is right. With this done, you can be sure to enjoy a good harvest with quality buds.