Most living organisms have self-defense mechanisms to ensure the survival and perpetuation of their species. Marijuana plants are nothing different. If put under stress, cannabis plants react in various ways. And that’s the core of super cropping techniques, leveraging those reactions to get the most of our plants.
If you have landed here, it’s because you want to know: “How can I get higher yields?” There are several ways to grow high-yielders plants.
In this article I’ll share with you everything about my super cropping techniques to get higher yields and bigger buds.
What are Super Cropping Techniques?
Super cropping is a high-stress training (HST) technique that growers use to force marijuana plants into growing more colas and producing more buds.
Think of a tiger. If wounded, it becomes a lot more dangerous. Well, our leafy friends may not have scary fangs and claws, but they have their own ways of fighting back when attacked by deer, rabbits, and other small predators. They increase their THC production to dissuade those predators from chewing and eating their flowers. Allegedly, animals won’t find it tasteful and won’t enjoy the psychoactive effects either.
What Do You Need to Super Crop Marijuana?
First and foremost, you need the knowledge. If you’re a rookie grower, know that you must be extra careful, as stressing your marijuana plants incorrectly can lead to disaster. Now, there are many ways to increase your yields. Super cropping only combines different training methods, so you can actually experiment and find out what works best for you.
I’ve been growing my own medicine for a while now, so if you’re a first-timer, you can borrow my super cropping technique. We’ll combine two training methods: topping and what I call “knuckling.” Here is what you’ll need for each:
Steps to my Super Cropping Technique
Step 1: Topping
The first thing we’ll do is top the plants. By topping the plants, we break absolute apical dominance and force the plant to grow 3 main stems instead of just one. We top the plants around weeks 2-3 of vegetative growth.
Here we highly recommend you use sterilized gloves and alcohol to disinfect your scissors or pruning shears. Also, ensure you achieve a clean cut by using perfectly sharp scissors.
Step 2: Knuckling
Knuckling is a great way to induce horizontal training without using weights or a screen for plants to weave into. Instead, we’ll break branches to generate explosive growth and more potent THC concentrations.
Firstly, you need to choose which branches you want to crop. I suggest you crop branches that are mature and notably taller than others. Now, with one hand, support the lower stem. Then, start by pinching the bottom of the branch you want to crop with your fingers. Pinch and bend the branch in the direction you want it to grow.
The key to successfully knuckling the plant is crushing the branch’s inner tissue without tearing the outer protective layer. It might help gently rolling the branch between your fingers until it feels more pliable and chances of the external tissue snapping are reduced.
For visual aid, you may refer to Kyle Kushman’s Chiropractic on YouTube.
Step 3: Fixing Broken Branches
Don’t freak out if you broke a branch (or a few) while knuckling. It is certainly an undesirable event as the plant will take longer to heal, but there’s a simple solution.
Just splint the tear site with tape or any other bandage material. If it’s bad and doesn’t hold, you may tie this broken branch to another or a garden dowel. You’ll likely be able to remove the bandage after a week.
Step 4: Tying Down the Branches
Even though you correctly bend the branches, healthy plants can heal really quickly, and you might see a few of the bent branches springing back to place in a couple of hours. To avoid this, you could just use a zip tie or a string and tie them down. Be mindful of using something that does not feel aggressive on the outer layer of your plant. Otherwise, it will eventually burn and damage its external tissue.
As your plant heals, it will develop big knots in the sites where you bent them (or even broke them). This is perfectly normal and beneficial. Actually, it’s exactly what we were looking for. A few weeks later, you will see the 3 main stems growing horizontally and many sideshoots growing vertically. When the plant enters the flowering stage, each one of these sideshoots will form its own colas.
When Should I Use Super Cropping Techniques?
You definitely don’t want to high or low-stress your plants if you’re dealing with pests or nutrient deficiencies. Super cropping techniques put your plants under a lot of stress, and they need to be in optimal conditions to deal with it.
For rookie growers, the prime recommendation is to crop only once during the late vegetative stage. Ideally, super-crop your plants between 3-7 days before flowering. Once flowering starts, your plants will invest all their energy into bud production, leaving the healing on hold.
Other Ways to Achieve Higher Yields
As I mentioned earlier, this super cropping technique is only the practice of combining two or three training methods to increase your yields. That means there are several other techniques you can experiment with once you have a couple grows under your belt and understand how the biological processes take place.
If you’re not a rookie, then you can read this article to get a big yield fast, and keep learning about: