Growing cannabis can be done in a variety of environments, using different techniques, which leads to a plethora of plant types and sizes. They are known for their resiliency and hardiness to adapt to different kinds of growing environments. Did you know that cannabis growers have the option to grow small or big plants? In this article, we will cover the method of micro-growing and the advantages of growing your small weed plant.
What is micro-growing?
With the legalization of marijuana in many parts of the United States and across the world, many people have turned to grow these psychoactive plants themselves. Growing one for your personal use does not need to be difficult but many people often find themselves struggling with limited growing space. This is where micro-growing enters.
Micro-growing is essentially the process of growing cannabis in a small space, like a cupboard or a cabinet, while still trying to get the best possible results with optimum conditions. This technique is smaller than the standard indoor growing method. It removes the hassle and expense that comes along with growing a giant tree, making it the perfect technique for beginner growers. When micro-grown, cannabis plants will require not only less space, but also lesser resources, such as water, light, air supply, and soil. They are also a great way to keep nosy neighbors, parents, cops, or anyone who might cause you some problems away. While weed cultivation is legal in several states, we are still operating in a gray area due to federal laws.
How to micro-grow a small weed plant?
Step 1: Select the right strain.
The first thing to consider when doing a micro-grow is to choose the right strain. Sativa and Sativa-dominant strains tend to grow tall and slender, enjoying up to 200% to 300% increase in height once they reach their bloom phase. This makes them too tall to be used in a micro-grow setting. Indica strains, on the other hand, tend to grow short and compact and will stretch to an additional 50% growth in height only. Similarly, Auto-flowering strains also tend to stay small due to their genetics. These auto-flowering cultivars also have a distinct advantage when it comes to micro-grow settings because the plants are not dependent on any light regime, which means that their entire life cycle from seed to harvest is shorter as compared to both Sativas and Indicas. That being said, many micro-growers usually use Indica and Auto-flowering strains as these are more compatible with the technique.
Step 2: Choose the right elements of earth, wind, and water.
These mean the soil quantity, air, and water supply for your plants. Any grower knows that the root system of a plant is vital to any grow as this is where the plant takes up its nutrients and water. The quantity of soil available for the plant’s root system has a big influence on its size. Therefore, for micro-growers, the actual amount of soil used is a major consideration to take on. The rule of thumb is that if you want to contain growth and limit plant height up to 60 cm, there should only be around five liters of soil on the pot. Similarly, two to three liters of soil will allow the plant to reach up to 24 cm while one and a half liters of soil is enough for a 13-cm plant. What we need to remember is to avoid putting plants in pots that are too tight and small for them as this can lead to root-bound, which will lead to stunted plant growth.
As with the soil quantity, good airflow and a clean water supply system is necessary for any kind of growth, including micro-grows. Because of the spatial limitations, small computer fans with a good ventilation system will help achieve the needed airflow in a micro-grow setting. Many growers tend to put one fan at a higher position to act as an exhaust fan to manage the hot air generated by the lights and another fan at the lower part of the space to act as the intake fan. Additionally, installing carbon air filters is important when doing stealth micro-grows to neutralize the distinctive cannabis odors.
Depending on the humidity levels of your micro-grow space, do not be surprised that your plants will have an elevated moisture requirement. However, you should still need to make sure not to overwater your small weed plant, which can easily become a delicate balance between drowning them and under-watering them.
Step 3: Select the correct lighting.
There are several lighting systems available for cannabis growers, each one suitable for a particular type of growth. For micro-grows, a light source that is too close to the canopy or that will result in excess heat can cause serious damage to your small plants. And because of the small space, heat can build up pretty quickly if you choose the wrong lighting system for your set up. There are three types of bulbs available in the market – the HPS/HPI lights, the fluorescent/CFL lights, and the LED lights.
The HPS (High-Pressure Sodium) and HPI (High Wattage Metal Halide) lights are tried and tested staple systems in many outdoor grow environments due to the amount of heat that they let off. The fluorescent tubes, the CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lighting), and the LED (Light Emitting Diode) lights, on the other hand, tend to produce less to virtually zero heat while offering an excellent light output. The only difference between these two systems is that the fluorescent/CFL lights are not generally broad-spectrum, so they are often used during the vegetative phase of the plants only, while the LED lights have a wide light spectrum, being able to generate all the colors needed during the different growth phases of the plants. With that, LED lights are becoming more and more popular among cannabis growers and micro-growers as they provide a suitable solution to heating and lighting issues. Also, LED lights are incredibly inexpensive as compared to the other lighting systems.
The idea of growing a small weed plant or micro-growing inside your cupboard is pretty incredible. It also comes with several advantages, including stealth, easy maintenance, and lower expenses. And if you are not sold yet, here’s another benefit of micro-grown cannabis – the weed tastes better. The article above will help beginner growers enjoy a mouth-watering harvest that is a lot simpler and less expensive to grow.