Growing and harvesting top-tier weed requires patience. So, how long does it take to grow cannabis? Well, there’s no exact timeframe because of several factors. For instance, the type of cannabis strain you choose determines how fast you get to harvest.
Consider getting autoflowering seeds if you want your weed to grow faster. Also, using clones instead of cannabis seeds can speed up the growing process. Despite lacking a definite growing period, each cannabis plant goes through specific stages to reach maturity.
It typically takes about ten to thirty-two weeks (3-8 months). However, as mentioned earlier, you can shorten this timeframe by tweaking a few things. The variability in the growing period occurs during the vegetative state.
So if you’re growing indoors, you can induce the plant to flower faster when the plant is still small. If outdoors, you have little control due to the weather changes. Implementing light deprivation using tarp covers could help influence the flowering stage.
Cannabis plants are annual. That said, the wild types drop seeds before dying, which grow into new plants. As for the other cannabis types, growers cut them down to produce buds. Therefore, you have to plant seeds for new cannabis plants to grow.
Cannabis growth occurs in four phases:
This stage takes up to ten days. The ideal light cycle is six hours under the sun and eighteen hours indoors. Germination is the phase where the seed develops shoots. Once this happens, you have two options.
The cutting option is how you grow a clone. You may proceed to transplant the cutting once it strengthens. Moreover, ensure the temperatures are at** **80-82°F, and the light sources are dim during this state.
Seedling phase takes up to three weeks and will require a similar light cycle to the germination stage. You’ll notice the plant gets its distinct fan leaves. Expect one ridged blade at the beginning. Later, when the weed plant reaches maturity, you’ll notice seven or more ridged blades.
Seedlings should have a rich green color. And since they are yet to develop roots fully, avoid spraying too much water. Seedlings are also susceptible to mold. Therefore, ensure they get maximum light.
This stage takes anywhere between three and sixteen weeks. Ensure the plants stay under the sun for six hours and remains indoors for eighteen hours. Failure to provide the required light hours will result in shorter and denser buds that will grow faster. This quick transition occurs because the cannabis plants will deem the less light a sign of winter approaching, quickening the maturity process.
Your cannabis plants should already be in their intended growing space. Also, the vegetative state is where you start to ScrOG or top the cannabis plant. And with the roots developing outwards, ensure you are not watering too close to the stalk.
Remember, you’ll need to cut off the males to prevent pollination and introduce fertilizers. If it’s a sativa plan, consider tweaking the transition to flowering by maintaining temps between 68-82°F and using nitrogen fertilizers.
Otherwise, if it’s an indica, consider reducing the light hours plus maintain high humidity and temps between 69.8-82°F. Autoflowers require a shorter time, about two and a half weeks, during this growth stage. Ensure to maintain temps between 64-82°F and use nitrogen or potash-based fertilizers.
Remember what we said about being patient? While it is possible to transition your plant into flowering after three weeks, waiting longer promotes better yield. Ensure you’ve already transplanted the weed into a larger growing space to allow buds to reach their full potential.
Typically, this stage takes about nine to eleven weeks. Again, this timeframe is all dependent on the strain and vegetation process. For instance, autoflowers may begin flowering in three weeks and be ready for harvest in the fifth week.
For outdoor growers, flowering relies on seasonal changes and will begin when fall begins. Indoor growers have to induce this process by limiting light cycles to twelve hours from eighteen.
Here’s what to expect during this stage.
Remember to adopt the ScrOG method to support buds and consider adding phosphorus. Also, sativa plants take longer to ripen and may require more light to produce inflorescences. Buds will stop bulging towards the end of the flowering cycle.
The maturation process requires maximum ventilation if growing indoors. That’s because the plant’s aroma is potent. Once mature, the next step is harvesting. Consider extending the flowering stage for about three weeks to improve the yield.
The harvesting stage is undoubtedly the growers’ favorite. You get to experience the aroma of a healthy cannabis plant. Remember your favorite strain needs to dry and undergo curing before it’s ready for consumption. The entire process may take about a month, about ten days for drying, and two weeks to cure the cannabis.
If you live in the Northern hemisphere and are an outdoor grower, expect to receive seeds from February to April. So, you’ll likely start growing by the end of April. Consider germinating in a controlled setting before transferring the plants outdoors.
However, if you’re working with clones, you are a step ahead. So, you only need to ensure you plant the cannabis by the end of June. Expect to harvest around September to November. This variability depends on the climate and weather changes. So if you live in a cold area like the Pacific Northwest, you’ll likely harvest earlier than a grower in California.
If you plan to grow indoors, you are free to choose when to begin planting. Note that seasonal weather changes will affect the growing space. Therefore, it would be best to buy heaters and AC units for winter and summer.
As you can see, growing weed takes time. It is a rewarding process as nothing beats that feeling of seeing a vibrant green cannabis plant full of dense buds with an aroma that fills up the room.
If you’re thinking of growing weed, the budtenders at Hikei are here to offer tips to get excellent yields. And if you are looking for the ultimate San Diego plug, Hikei is here for you! We have an assortment of cannabis products that are sustainably sourced and potent. Visit our online shop to purchase your favorite sativa, indica, and hybrid strain.