Growers produce good yields with 24 hours, but the quality isn’t as good as plants grown in an 18/6 cycle. The light setup also plays an important role here. Although autos grow well under different types of lighting, they prefer HPS or LEDs over CFL and fluorescent lights.
If you’re adamant on transplanting, though, make sure that the medium is exactly the same. For instance, if your seedling is growing in a potting mix of coco coir and compost, it should be transplanted to another container containing the exact same mix. Water the seedling container a few hours before transplanting to ensure that the soil is moist. There’s a high risk of hurting the roots when the soil is too dry or wet.
Autoflowers don’t give you a lot of time, so it’s critical to plan beforehand. What medium are you going to use? Soilless, soil or hydroponics? What nutrients have you chosen? Have you grown autos before? Have you bought the lights? What about ventilation? Have you set up your grow room?
1) Prepare ahead
Containers must be proportional to the size of the plant. For example, medium-sized plants require at least 5–7 gallon containers whereas big plants need pots that are more than 11 gallons. Remember, the type of container you choose plays a major role as well. Autoflowers love aerated soil that drains very well, so use breathable containers like fabric pots that allow maximum drainage.
LST is a method that requires bending the stems of the plant so that the light penetrates to the lower parts of the plant. Generally, autoflowers tend to grow one main massive cola while the rest of the plant produces small budlets known as popcorn buds.
It’s common for beginners to load their plants with too many nutrients and burn them. We get that you love your plants, but you’re only harming your autoflowers by feeding extra nutes. Photoperiod plants have bigger roots, but autoflowers are comparatively smaller and the nutrients have to be adjusted accordingly.
Ruderalis genetics provide these compact plants with everything they need to survive. In fact, autoflowering cannabis strains will actually grow just fine when left alone.
Welcome to the revolutionary and exciting world of growing autoflowering cannabis seeds. Whether you are a first-timer or an experienced photoperiod marijuana cultivator, learning how to grow autos promises a rewarding venture for any cannabis grower.
How do Nutrients Affect Autoflowering Strains?
Complete Grow Guide
Due to its short life cycle, if you hit an autoflowering plant with too high of a nutrient solution, it will burn the root system. Overfeeding often results in nutrient burn which causes irreparable damage as the fast-growing auto has a small window of time for recovery.
All cannabis plants, whether photoperiod or autoflowering varieties require specific nutrients in their diet for maximum production. As we discussed, NPK are the big players in your nutrient program, crucial to the plant’s success. Secondary elements such as Calcium (Ca) and Magnesium (Mg) contribute to the general overall health of the plant.
It’s easy to fret over NPK ratios but most autoflowers tend to grow well as long as they have some of each element available to them. Cannabis plants in vegetation generally needs plenty of nitrogen, increased phosphorous during preflower which continues with higher potassium for the flowering stage until ripening. The nutrients are then reduced signficantly in the last days of flowering.
After all that, it might be useful to lay out an example for a typical feeding schedule for an autoflowering cannabis plant grown in a soil, coco and perlite mix. Bear in mind that the strains you’re growing may perform better (or worse) with other diets.
Feeding Autoflowering Cannabis
Recommended NPK ratio: 2:1:2
The best nutrients for your autoflowers comes down to many factors, as you have seen here. Covering the basics such as lighting, pots and ventilation should be your first step, but do not forget the importance of fertilizers if you’re looking to take your grow operation to the next level.
Buy high quality nutrients – The higher-quality nutrients you purchase, the better. Choose reputable products that have a history of success and don’t be fooled by feeding schedules. Nutrient manufacturers often overstate the dosages of their fertilizers.