Best Time To Plant Marijuana Seeds

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There's still time left to grow cannabis outdoors. Check out this post and find out all the possibilities depending on the strain. If you are thinking about cultivating cannabis, one of the first things you will need to determine is if you should cultivate outdoors.

There’s Still Time to Plant Cannabis Outdoors

In the Northern Hemisphere, from May to June, you might be asking yourself if there’s still time to plant cannabis outdoors. In this post we’re going to analyse the behaviour of different types of cannabis towards the end of the season, proving that the answer is yes; you’re still in time to plant cannabis!

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When it comes to growing cannabis, you need to keep in mind that most cannabis plants need a specific photoperiod (light period) in order to grow and produce the flowers that we’re all after. This means that if you’re growing outdoors you’ll need to do so within the right season in order to obtain the best possible results.

When Does Cannabis Flower Outdoors?

As a general rule of thumb, the flowering period of photoperiodic cannabis plants starts once they begin to receive less light and more hours of darkness. This can be done indoors whenever you want by simply flipping your light schedule to 12h light and 12h dark. However, outdoors this happens naturally over summer at different moments depending on the latitude at which you grow your plant.

  • Photoperiodic cannabis plants: feminized or regular.
  • Automatic or autofloweringcannabis plants.
  • Fast version photoperiodic plants.

Photoperiodic Strains

Photoperiodic cannabis plants are strains that depend on the amount of light the receive in order to flower. From germination, and during the first few weeks, these plants only spend energy on growing. Once they’re adults, they’ll keep growing until daylight is reduced enough to cause flowering. Photoperiodic cannabis plants can be both feminized and regular. Jamaican Dream is a fast flowering photoperiodic cannabis plant, ideal for late germination.

Autoflowering or Automatic Cannabis Strains

Autoflowering cannabis strains come from crossing a photoperiodic strain with cannabis plants that contain Ruderalis genes. Ruderalis is a strain from the Caucasus and they’re used to growing and flowering under 18h of light during the short Siberian summers.

Thanks to the ruderalis genes, autoflowering plants start flowering regardless of the amount they receive. This type of strain will start to flower between the third and fifth week of growing, depending on the strain. Autoflowering plants that flower sooner tend to grow smaller and produce less yield.

Fast Version Strains

These strains come from photoperiodic strains that have been crossed with autoflowering strains. The resulting plants are still photoperiodic, although they finish flowering up to two weeks before normal strains; these strains aren’t autoflowering but they do have a much shorter flowering period.

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Some seed banks sell these types of seeds under different names like F1 fast Version, Fast Flowering, Early Version and Quick, such as Jack 47 F1 Fast Version, Royal Cheese Fast Flowering, Quick Critical and Quick Gorilla.

Latest Time to Plant Cannabis Outdoors

During the summer, the days begin to get longer until the solstice. From June 21 – 24th in the Northern Hemisphere, the days will begin to get shorter by minutes each day. This won’t affect your plants growth until about a month later.

During the first few days of august, most cannabis strains will begin to flower, although this may vary depending on where you live.

Growing Photoperiodic Plants at the End of the Season

Photoperiodic plants need to grow first in order to flower properly. This means that the longer they’re growing for, the larger they’ll be when it comes time to flower, which makes for an overall better yield. If you germinate at the start of the season you can harvest large yields from enormous plants, although if you germinate towards the end of the season you’ll need to keep in mind that you’ll harvest less quantity per plant.

Germinating photoperiodic plants in June

From June to August there’s two months for photoperiodic plants to grow before flowering. If you’re using large flowerpots (we recommend Smart Pot) or you grow in the soil, make sure to keep your plants stress-free (drought, excess water, root burn etc.) in order to grow decent-sized plants.

By following this method you’ll be able to harvest the same amount from two 2m tall plants as you would from one 4m tall plant. This is a great time to germinate sativas and tall hybrids in balconies, terraces or gardens in which you don’t want your plants to grow over 2.5 m tall. Cannabis plants in Smart Pot during the flowering period.

Germinating photoperiodic plants in July

If you germinate your cannabis plants during the first couple of weeks of July, they’ll grow for about a month before flowering. If you do it in the second half of July, they’ll reach the second half of august before they start flowering. These plants won’t be as tall as others that germinate at the start of the season, although you’ll still be able to harvest a decent amount per plant.

In the worst-case scenario, you may be held back a few days before harvesting, but that isn’t much of an issue. If you’re going to plant sativas and you don’t want them to grow too tall for whatever reason, June and July are the perfect months to germinate.

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Germinating photoperiodic plants in August and September

Germinating during these months means that most strains will be ready to harvest in November. In areas with mild winters such as Mediterranean climates in Europe, you can easily grow a plant during these months. In this case, we recommend using fast-flowering plants in order to harvest much earlier.

When is the best time to plant cannabis outdoors?

A number of states now allow cannabis cultivation for adult use, and even more states allow cannabis cultivation for medical purposes.

The increase in cultivation reform has resulted in a rise in interest in growing cannabis among cannabis consumers.

Cultivating cannabis can be one of the most rewarding activities that a person can do, and with a pleasant reward at the end of all the hard work (assuming the cannabis is grown right).

If you are thinking about cultivating cannabis, one of the first things you will need to determine is whether to cultivate cannabis inside or outdoors.

Why cultivating cannabis outdoors can be better than growing indoors

Cultivating cannabis outside has the following advantages over cultivating cannabis indoors:

  • Reduced equipment costs
  • No increased electricity bill
  • Larger harvest
  • Lower carbon footprint
  • Often easier to incorporate organic cultivation methods
  • Cheaper nutrient/input costs

Growing cannabis indoors has its benefits too, but for people that want a lower maintenance garden, cultivating cannabis outside is the way to go.

An obvious question – when is the best time to plant cannabis outdoors?

One of the first things that a grower needs to determine when planning a sun-grown garden is when to put plants into the ground.

A one-size-fits-all approach does not work. A number of factors are involved:

  • What is the latitude of where the garden will be located
  • What is the altitude of where the garden will be located
  • What is the precipitation level where the garden will be located
  • What will the temperature be like while the plant is in the ground

Ultimately what a grower needs to try to avoid is planting the plant(s) too early in the year, which could result in the plants dying due to the soil/air being too cold.

Also, the grower needs to avoid planting the plants too late in the season so to ensure that the plant(s) has enough time to go through a full growth cycle.

Generally speaking, you want to plant your plants in the ground outside in early to mid-May, similar to when it’s recommended to plant tomatoes.

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Tomatoes do not grow exactly like cannabis, but for planting purposes, they are almost identical. With that being said, each part of the country is different.

A great resource to look up the recommended planting date for where you live is the Farmer’s Almanac.

Simply enter your location and it will tell you when is the best time to plant tomatoes outside, which can double as the date for when to plant your cannabis too.

Getting started ahead of time is key

If you are growing from seed, you will want to germinate the seeds at least 6-8 weeks before planting.

A way to cut down on the prep time is to use a clone if you are able to. Clones are often harder to find than seeds. Each route provides its own advantages.

Growers can get a head start by letting their plant grow indoors for a few weeks prior to putting them inside. This obviously requires a greenhouse or indoor garden.

By allowing your plant to grow in a controlled environment while the air and soil outside is warming up, you give your plant some additional growth time, resulting in a larger plant.

Other tips that can help

If you live in an area where the warm season is shorter than in other parts of the world, there are two tricks that can really help.

The first is growing your cannabis plant in a container rather than planting it into the ground.

This allows you to move your plant to the most favorable parts of your yard to get the most sunlight as the season goes along.

Putting your plant in a container also allows you to bring the plant in at night when the temperature drops below a desirable threshold.

The second tip is using a concept known as light deprivation, or ‘light dep.’ This method involves cutting back on the sunlight time that a plant receives by cover the plant up after 12 hours of sun.

It’s a tricky method that requires using a tarp over a greenhouse or building a box that can go over your plant.

When you first plant your cannabis plant outside, the amount of daylight at that time is usually around 14 hours.

As the season goes along, and your plant is big enough, you can cap the amount of light it is exposed to at 12 hours and your plant will start to bloom faster than it normally would, thereby helping your harvest come sooner.

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