A final, supremely important thing to note about lighting during the flowering stage: once you start switching to the flowering light cycles – never go back. Never expose your plants to light in the dark phase of the day. You do not want to confuse your plants or make them switch back to the vegetation phase. This could dramatically impact your yield. It is the un-interrupted darkness that leads your plants to flower. Make sure this darkness is definite – not one minute of light in the night! Use a programmable timer to make sure you don’t forget when you need to turn your lights on or off, and be sure to test your settings and confirm they’re correct before trusting it on your precious cannabis plants.
The first 1 to 3 weeks of the flowering stage are a transition phase and your plants will still be growing. Your plants could double their height at this point depending on the type of strain you are using.
Even though your plants love your powerful grow lights, make sure they do not get burned by high levels of light and heat. If you’re using a grow tent, be sure it has enough height for the lights to be at least 12-36 inches above the top of your plants’ canopy. If you’re using higher wattage lamps (1000W or similar), you should be at the top end of that range, and for lower wattage lamps (250W or similar) you can be at the low end of that range, but make sure you always have at least 12 inches.
You do not have to think about tying your plant down at this point anymore. However, you might consider holding your buds up and close to the light if they are too heavy for your plant.
When your plants switch from the vegetation to the flowering stage, the growth will eventually get slower. When the plants start to develop flowers (so called buds), it is time to treat them differently. This means changes in light and different nutrients for the flowering stage.
When it comes to managing humidity during the flowering stage, keep your grow room between 45% humidity. While cannabis plants do love moisture, especially in the cloning and vegging stages, in the flowering stage you run the risk of powdery mildew on your buds with humidity anywhere about 50%.
Around weeks 6 to 8, your plant will have stopped vegetative growth completely and only work on the buds. A few leaves might turn brown at the bottom now and this is perfectly normal. Your plants will be sensitive to a lack of nutrients at this point. Watch your pH levels to make sure your plants get all they need.
Remember: Only female plants will produce buds. You can make sure to have female plants by using feminized seeds.
In weeks 4 to 6 of your cannabis flowering, the buds will get bigger and fatter. Once the flowers are showing as small white pistils (white wispy hairs), your plants will need more phosphor and potassium. Both are important for a good bud formation. The nutrients support flowering and fruiting.
These flowering stage tips will take your cannabis production to the next level. It's the moment we've all been waiting for. Weeks in the making, now is the most important part of your plants' lifecycle. It's make-or-break for the success of your crop. Follow these simple steps to ensure you maximize your yields.
In order to maximize your yields, it’s important to know what to focus on during each part of the flowering stage. It’s also really helpful to know what to expect so you know when something is going wrong!
During the first few weeks of the flowering stage, you will see bunches of single leaves forming at the tops of your main colas (like in this pic). Soon white pistils will start coming out of the middle of the bunches, and they will become your main buds!
Spreading out your bud sites and maintaining a flat canopy can increase cannabis yields by as much as 40%…or even more!
Week 4-6 – Buds Start Fattening Up
At this point, you only have a few weeks left until you lose the ability to do any further training, so don’t miss this last opportunity to control the shape of your plant, especially if you’re running out of room!
Although your female plants will start sprouting lots of white pistils, they usually won’t start growing “real” buds with substance quite yet. If you’re new to growing cannabis, it’s very important to note that only female cannabis plants make buds.
Quick Tip: Want to take better bud pics? Try taking a picture of the bud in the dark with your camera flash on. Learn more tips for taking great bud pictures!
Week 6-8 – Buds Ripen, Pistils Darken – some strains spend longer in this stage
As part of the stretch, your plant will be growing out its bud sites. Stunting growth at this point could cause the plant to make smaller and fewer bud sites than it would if it were healthy and growing fast.
You can maximize marijuana yields by focusing on the right factors each week of the flowering stage. If you know what your cannabis should look like week-by-week, you'll also be able to quickly tell if something is going wrong!