How can you tell the start of the Cannabis flowering stage?
How can you tell the start of the Cannabis flowering stage?
What does the flowering stage of Cannabis mean?
The flowering stage of Cannabis is also known as the blooming or fruiting stage. It is the final stage of growth for your Cannabis plants. This stage is when your Cannabis plants produce their flower sets. During this time, your Cannabis plants invest all their energy to grow more buds instead of growing taller.
The flowering stage of Cannabis has three phases – flower initiation, mid-flowering, and late flowering or ripening. The flower initiation happens from week 1 to week 3 of the flowering stage. Then, the mid-flowering occurs in the fourth to fifth weeks. From week six and so on, late flowering takes place.
When does the flowering stage of Cannabis begin?
When growing Cannabis plants indoors, the flowering stage begins when the days grow shorter. Usually, it takes place when Autumn is approaching.
In cultivating Cannabis plants indoors, after 3-15 weeks of the vegetative stage, you need to switch to a photoperiod of 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness. You need to follow this schedule to enter the flowering stage of Cannabis plants.
The flowering period of autoflowers does not need a photoperiod change. The flowering stage happens after 3-5 weeks of growing. After the vegetative stage, it switches to the next stage automatically.
How long does the flowering stage of Cannabis take?
The length of the flowering period depends on the Cannabis strains. Usually, the flowering stage of Cannabis plants takes 8-11 weeks, depending on the variety.
It takes eight weeks for an Indica strain to complete the flowering stage. Sometimes, it may take up to 10 weeks. On the other hand, Sativa strains take 10-12 weeks to complete the flowering stage. In addition, a hybrid strain completes its flowering strain in 6-10 weeks.
What are the signs that your Cannabis is about to enter the flowering stage?
The flowering stage of Cannabis consists of pre-flowering and flowering phases. The pre-flowering stage is technically the sign that your Cannabis is about to enter the flowering stage. During this time, you will see pistils growing on the bud sites all over your plants. Later, they will develop into beautiful-looking, potent and aromatic flowers since they now contain terpenes and cannabinoids.
The pre-flowering stage runs for up to 3 weeks, depending on the strains and growing conditions. In most cases, autoflowering Cannabis can take up to 1 week and two weeks for photoperiodic Cannabis to get through the pre-flowering stage.
How does Cannabis look in different weeks during the flowering stage?
After two weeks in the pre-flowering stage, your Cannabis is ready for the flowering stage. In this stage, you will observe that your Cannabis plants develop buds. You will see the buds swell, the trichome production goes up, and they start to smell strong.
Flowering Stage Week 1
In the first week of the flowering stage, Bigger buds will start to form, and increased trichome production will happen. Thus, your growing space will start smelling strong if it doesn’t already.
During this period, you must supply your Cannabis with increased nutrients as the bud production increases. In this stage, your Cannabis plants can carry a full dose of nutrients or even more. However, you must follow the manufacturer’s guidelines because overfeeding can harm and shock your crops.
Flowering Stage Week 2
In the second week of the flowering stage, your Cannabis plants’ white hairs will get long and be all over the place. When this happens, you will notice many of them growing all over every direction and it’s bud site.
In addition, during this period, you will notice trichomes appear exponentially. The surrounding foliage will not be as frosty as it will get in the last week. However, you will quickly see the resin on the Cannabis buds and its foliage.
Flowering Stage Week 3
During the flowering period’s middle stage, the buds’ foundation is now fully established. It is a matter now of fattening up or growing the buds bigger to make them more appealing and beautiful. To make this happen, you must ensure the appropriate supply of nutrients and light. Also, the growing environment should be on point to ensure that buds will get denser and chunkier.
To know more about growing dense buds, you may read this article.
Flowering Stage Week 4
The buds during this time should appear to look and smell great. If you are regulating a good environment, there is nothing you need to worry about. All you need to do is to keep your focus on the plants for possible bugs attack or signs of deficiencies in your Cannabis plants that could be simple to fix by now.
Your Cannabis plants are most likely to stop growing during the fourth week. They are now spending most of their energy on developing their buds. There are still white hairs sticking out from the buds, but you will notice that these buds will grow fatter daily. As the buds become larger, Cannabis plants will produce more trichomes, which makes the odor more apparent to the senses.
During this time, it looks like your Cannabis plants are entirely ready. However, harvesting them during this can affect yield quality since the cannabinoids inside trichomes are not yet at their peak potency. Thus, it would be best if you harvested your Cannabis at the right time to get the full potency of your crops.
Flowering Stage Week 5
During this week of the flowering stage, you will notice buds all over your plants becoming thicker. Aside from that, you would observe new buds growing in new places like in the main cola.
With abundant buds growing, your Cannabis plants will appear fatter every day. It is a sign that they are in full flowering status. During this week, your Cannabis will have a great and intense smell. In this case, if you don’t want anybody to notice that you are growing cannabis, it would help if you have proper ventilation to ensure discreet growing.
Flowering Stage Weeks 6, 7, and 8
This stage is the late flowering period of Cannabis plants right before harvest. Though not all strains have the same time for their flowering, most varieties of Cannabis will be ready to harvest during these last three weeks. Nonetheless, there are also Cannabis strains that are ready to harvest before week 8.
During these weeks or two weeks before harvest, you need to flush your Cannabis plants. This process will help you eliminate or flush out salt and minerals in the soil to get pure-tasting buds. When flushing your crops, you will stop giving nutrients to them. You would only give plain and pH-balanced water. If you skip this part, users will experience harsh, unpleasant, and chemical tastes when smoking Cannabis. You can read more information about this in the post that we wrote about flushing cannabis.
How to take care of your Cannabis during the flowering stage?
There will be a noticeable plant stretch as it grows vertically during the early flowering stage of Cannabis. In that case, the need for water and nutrients may steadily increase. Aside from that, there are things that you need to remember to take care of your Cannabis in this stage for you to get the ideal yield you want from them.
You need to water your Cannabis plants with clean and safe water. It would be best to use chlorine-free or filtered water during this time. If you only have access to chlorinated water just leave it in an open container overnight before giving it to your plants. Chlorine is an extremely volatile substance that just evaporates when not in a closed container. Also, always keep your eyes on the drainage to prevent problems like overwatering, root rots, and more. Daily watering is advisable when you are using small pots. If using large containers, switch to watering every two days. You may also check the soil to know if your Cannabis plants need watering by sticking your finger down a few centimeters or an inch into the soil. If it is dry, it is time to water your Cannabis plants.
Ensuring a Photoperiod or a light cycle of 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness is vital in the flowering stage. During the dark periods, do not interrupt their moment even for a second. As much as possible, prevent light contamination by following a strict schedule to avoid slowing down the budding process and producing hermaphrodite flowers. Especially light leaks can be fatal at this stage as they can stress your plants to the point that they reinter the vegetative growth stage.
During the flowering stage of your Cannabis plants, regulate the temperature of your plants between 64° Fahrenheit (18° Celsius) to 79° Fahrenheit (26° Celsius). If your crops are exposed below this temperature for an extended period, it may negatively affect the plant or kill them. It may stunt their growth and may cause irreversible damage. On the other hand, when your Cannabis plants are placed at high temperatures, it will cause several problems like burnt leaves, dryness, and stunted growth. You can read up on how to spot light burn here.
Controlling Right Humidity
Ensuring relative humidity is needed to keep your Cannabis plants healthy during the flowering stage. It is to avoid possible problems like mold and fungi. Ideally, you must keep 40% to 50% relative humidity during this period.
Providing Good Ventilation
Your Cannabis plants, during the flowering stage, need good ventilation to breathe and grow. Most significantly, they need it to avoid the formation of mold, rot, and fungi. Providing a moving fan in your growing environment helps a lot with your Cannabis plants. However, please do not put it directly on the buds, for it might damage them.
You may also use an exhaust fan to increase ventilation and air movement, and it can also help to lower humidity. If an exhaust fan is insufficient, you may use a dehumidifier to keep humidity within range.
Setting Right pH Levels
During the flowering stage, the pH levels must be in the range of 6 to 7 when soil is your growing medium. You need to maintain these pH levels because your plant will likely experience nutrient deficiencies and toxicities when it becomes out of this range. When this happens, the nutrients will stay in the soil, and plants cannot absorb them.
Using Appropriate Container
You need to consider the size of your Cannabis plant in selecting the size of your container. Using bigger pots will probably result in a giant Cannabis plant. Thus, it would be best if you transferred your Cannabis plants when the flowering stage starts. It is to avoid stressing your plants or any accidental damage.
Your Cannabis plants, during the flowering stage, need rich Phosphorus (P) and Potassium (K). While Nitrogen (N) is still needed for your Cannabis, when the flowering stage sets off, you need to lower the concentration of this nutrient. Nitrogen is more appropriate during the vegetative period.
Feeding your Cannabis plants with these nutrients would be best to do it through foliar, liquid, or solid fertilizer. You need to ensure that your Cannabis plants receive these nutrients because even if you are growing them organically, plain soil is not enough to produce quality fat buds.
When it comes to dosing, you need to follow the dose indicated by the manufacturer. Also, you may lower it by 1/2 of the suggested dosage to avoid saturation. Then, gradually increase the amount until the desired result is achieved. Avoid overfeeding your Cannabis plants with nutrients, for it might result in nutrient burn. When this happens, you will notice brown tips in the leaves.
How do you determine if the flowering stage of Cannabis is over?
After 8 to 11 weeks of the flowering stage, your Cannabis is ready for harvest. However, you need to monitor your Cannabis plants to see if they are done with the flowering stage.
One sign that the flowering stage is over is when the clear trichomes turn into milky white color. If most trichomes are clear or transparent, wait for more days as it is still in the flowering stage. But if most of them have changed in amber color and have opaque clarity, the flowering stage is over, and it is now ready for harvest. During this time, the THC content of the buds reached the peak of its potency.
When do buds grow the most?
During the end of the flowering stage, your Cannabis plants develop most of their buds. Usually, the flowering stage’s last three weeks is when the buds gain the most weight.
You may not notice much budding during the beginning of flowering, and it will slow down during the end of the cycle when buds are fully formed. After the peak bloom stage, do not expect to see much bud development ahead. When the buds are fully matured, your Cannabis plants are ready for harvest.