the grow schedule
Having a schedule is vital to maximising plant growth and controlling the climate and environment of your cannabis plants. This grow schedule is suited to those growing in a pre-fertilised soil. It is a good idea to get your head around the schedule so you know what to expect for each stage and what equipment or nutrients you will need to have ready. Happy growing!
grow schedule for soil growers
This schedule is best for those using soil that has been pre fertilised and your plants have just come out from germination and are now starting the vegetative stage. The seedling should have started to develop their roots well.
For this schedule we recommend using a 120 x 120 x 200cm grow tent with 20 litre plant containers and 400-watt MH lighting during vegetative stage, increasing to 600-watt HPS during the flowering stage.
Week 1 – Vegetative Stage
Your little seedlings will need to get used to the light, so introduce the light slowly at 50%. Plants at this stage prefer the blue/whitish lamps of MH lighting, which mimics the type of light the plant would get from the sun during the spring/summer months. Water your plants until the water begins dripping out from the bottom of the container, then wait until the plant has soaked up all this water. Avoid adding nutrients at this stage as the seedlings will not be able to cope. It is also a good idea to lightly spray your plants with water each day to ensure they are moist and to maintain the humidity level.
Week 2 – Vegetative Stage
At this stage, your plants will need a lot of light. Bring your plants closer to the light and make sure the lighting is on all the time during this phase. Be sure to check whether the plants are not too close to the light, if it is too hot to hold your hand underneath for more than 10 seconds, chances are its too hot for your plant. If you notice your plants roots are coming out from the pots, it will be necessary to move them into a larger pot, being careful not to damage the root system.
You can now place a fan in the room (directly over your plants), making sure your plants are close enough that they are moving with the air going through them.
You can start adding nutrients at this stage, particularly those high in nitrogen. If you think your plants are strong enough, you can also start pruning them to increase growth (topping and firming are both popular methods).
Leave your cannabis plants in this stage until ready for flowering. The plant will be becoming much denser with little to no light reaching through to the bottom of the leaves.
Week 1 – Flowering Stage
When the light cycle suddenly changes to 12 hours of darkness or less, it tells the plant to commence the flowering stage. For outdoor cannabis it is the same as Autumn approaching, where the plant will start making flowers before the cold weather arrives. By changing the light cycle we can tell the plant to start flowering (tricking it into believing the seasons are changing).
At this stage, it is best to switch to a 600-watt HPS lamp, which emits a warm, red/orange colour, mimicking the type of light outdoors as Autumn is arriving. Your plant won’t start producing flowers immediately but will be slowly changing each day.
The fan should now be blowing through the space just under the lighting, allowing the warmer air to be circulated around the room. Remember to keep checking your equipment is working order, as well as the temperature and humidity if the room is at the correct level.
Your plant will still need nutrients high in nitrogen, as well as lots of water (use this at the bottom of your plant and wait for it to dry out before watering again).
Week 2 – Flowering Stage
Plant growth can take off during this stage so remember to keep an eye on the distance between your plants and the lights. Keep the plants at the same distance from the lights as last week but increase them to being on all the time. If plants have started to curl or discolour, distance them further from the lighting and ensure good air circulation. You should also stop ‘topping’ your plants at this stage (basic pruning and pinching, such as cutting off small shoots from the bottom of your plant is still ok).
Week 3 – Flowering Stage
This is the time your plant will be putting all its resources into growing the buds. You will start noticing small, white pistils on your plant, which will slowly be formed into beautiful buds. It is important to keep monitoring during this stage, ensuring everything is at the right level or temperature.
After rinsing your plants (watering with plain water, no extra nutrients, with a pH level of 6.5), you can start adding more phosphorus at this stage. The plant is super thirsty at this time so keep checking that all parts of the soil are always moist.
Week 4 – Flowering Stage
As your plant grows, remember to keep checking the distance between the top of the plant and the lighting and move lamps further away if necessary. The white pistils will be growing longer at this time and buds may even be starting to form. Again, keep checking for any signs of problems, such as mould, which will need to be fixed immediately.
Week 5 – Flowering Stage
Keep up with the watering during this stage, as well as checking the climate is at the optimal temperature and humidity levels. Lower the humidity levels slightly to 50% but slightly up the water intake. Buds will start to be forming during this phase, making the plant heavier. You may need to help it keep upright by attaching certain stems to plant poles. Ensuring air is flowing through your plants, checking for any signs of mould where there have been heat spots. If you do spot signs of mould, put a dehumidifier in the room. You can also flush your plants at this stage (plain water, pH level 6.5).
Week 6 – Flowering Stage
The white pistils should start to turn to an amber/brown colour and everything else stays pretty much the same during this time. It is still important to ensure your plants are as healthy as they can be, checking for mould and other damages. Keep checking the colour of the pistils during this stage as some strains will flower sooner than others (around 80% of pistils turning brown will indicate your plant is ready to harvest). You will also need to add higher amounts of potassium and phosphorus at this stage. Try buying a nutrient or fertiliser specifically for the late flowering stage.
Week 7 – Flowering Stage
Buds will start to get bigger and heavier during this stage, with a lot more pistils turning an amber/brown colour. You will see lots of sticky resin on your plant too. Gradually lower the amount of nutrients, before flushing the plants, again with plain water of a ph level of 6.5. The lower leaves may start to turn yellow at this stage (as long as its not the leaves at the top, this is fine).
Week 8 – Flowering Stage
This is the final week before your plant should be ready to harvest. The majority of the pistils will be turning brown and the plant will start to take in less water. Flush out your plants again during the last few days to ensure a purer tasting bud. Once around 80% of the pistils have turned brown and have curled back into the bud, you plant will be ready to harvest.