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10 Top Tips for a Better Autoflowering Yield
Looking for a better yield on your autoflowers?
Autoflowering cannabis is just great. Without the complications of maintaining a light cycle it can be a whole lot easier than growing standard cannabis, and with seed to harvest rates from as low as 9 weeks (sorry I don’t rate anything with less than this time period) they’re fast too. But getting a successful autoflowering harvest can be tricky.
Want your autos to bud up like the one above? Follow our advice below and avoid results like that below
The key to getting a successful harvest from autoflowers is SIZE
A true autoflowering strain has a pre programmed lifespan: from the moment the seed cracks to the day she dies the age is indeed pre-destined … therefore more than any other type of cannabis the vegative growth is critical to the end yield
Read here about the veg stage in autos
So here are our 10 top tips for successfully growing autoflowers
Size of Pot
Even for dwarf autos you need to be using a 3 gallon pot to give the plant enough space to develop a good rootball.
A good light mix
A nice light mix such as 50:50 coco:perlite is best as it makes sure you get a good wet-dry cycle.
AVOID OVERWATERING AT ALL COSTS
- Give NO NUTRIENTS AT ALL until the autoflowering cannabis plant has developed 4 nodes. The dose should only be introduced gradually and in increments.
- Continue vegetative feed until ALL upward growth stops. The auto will have started flowering before this happens (in a 9-10 week auto, you would expect to continue using veg nutes until week 6)
- Ensure the genetic material (that’s technical talk for Cannabis Seeds guys!) that you start off with is of good, well bred and viable stock. Check what other growers are / have been growing and how well the strain did.
- For maximum grams (oz) / foot, make sure you have 16 dwarf/short autos in a 4 ft x 4 ft (1.2m x 1.2m) area
- Go easy on the nutes. Generally less is better in most cases.
- Don’t give them too much light to start with. Go for a low watt fixture for seedling growth, increasing the amount of light as the plant develops.
This kind of T5 light is a must if you are using HID grow lights for giving seedlings and young cannabis plants a great start.
and that brings us to top tip no 10:
- Autos don’t appreciate being transplanted. They just don’t have time to recover from transplant shock in their mad dash from seed to harvest. So don’t do it! Either sow the auto seed direct into their 3 gallon pot or better still, follow the direction below:
- Cut the bottom off a “party cup” or 7-10cm pot.
- Place 2″ of damp coco:perlite in the bottom of a 3 gallon pot
- Fill the larger, 3 gallon pot with coco-perlite (dry)
- Bury the “party cup” or 7-10cm pot half way down in the 3 gallon pot. Fill this with coco-perlite too.
- Now plant your germinated seedling into the party cup and water in as usual.
- When you water your autoflowering seedling (and remember no.3 above!!) make sure you water ONLY in the small pot for the first 10-14 days. This will ensure that the seedling gets the water it requires (and depending on its age, the nutes too).
- In the meantime the auto’s tap root will hunt downwards with accelerated growth hunting out the damp layer of coco-perlite it just knows exists at the bottom of the 3 gallon pot. The tap root sends out a vast network of smaller fine root hairs also looking for this source of water.
This method of growing autos pushes your autoflowering plant to develop a highly developed root system that will accelerate root growth (and thereby maintain larger plant growth) during the first few weeks of its life.
It also avoids transplant shock which, given an auto’s automatic race towards harvest, it cannot recover from naturally.
So there we have it, the Growers Guide’s top tips to maximising your yield from autoflowers. Avoid the lollipop effect of tiny autos that produce one joint per plant and really discover the simplicity of autoflowering growing!