Hey Mate! I am so glad to find new people beginning to join the cannabis growers community every day. It is such an exciting time for us.
However, many new growers complain about the unending wait they have to go through for a good harvest. Many also get overwhelmed with the detailed work involved in maintaining Light, temperature and training the cannabis plants. If you are one of them, I have good news for you.
This article will detail autoflowering cannabis strains, which are lazy growers best friends. You need to sow the seeds, water them and get an amazing harvest when it is time. Sounds amazing, right?
I will also talk about the advantages and drawbacks that you need to know to make an informed choice about autoflowering plants.
Advantages Of Cultivating Autoflowering Cannabis Plants
Plants Are Shorter
This is a quality that almost all growers love. The autoflowering plants are shorter, and you can grow them without letting anybody notice them. Their average height spans from 60 to 100 cm, and generally, they don’t grow taller than 120 cm. This is great if you are looking for stealth growth as they stay easily hidden from the public view.
Some plants are also shorter than 30 cm. If you want to grow cannabis in shorter spaces like growing tents, closets, balconies etc., autoflowering plants would be the best for you.
Blooms Fast, Quick Harvest
The best part of cultivating autoflowering cannabis strains is how quick they grow and start blossoming. If you compare that to the regular photoperiod plants, the time they take to yield is the time a regular photoperiod gets to the flowering stage. Most autoflowers take eight to ten weeks to yield, and you can get smokable weed almost eight weeks ahead of the photoperiod strains.
If your growing climate is shorter and wet, you would also find this helpful. The photoperiod plants begin around late summer, making them vulnerable to rotting or freezing. They also get spoiled by the long wet autumn climate, and Autoflowers do not have such issues. However, a mould and pest resistance variety will be useful if you face a wet climate round the year.
I suggest checking out Homegrown Cannabis Co. for the best variety of autoflowering strains, and you can choose the strain that will be the best for you with ease.
Starts Blooming On Its Own, independent of Light
When you are growing the regular photoperiod weed plants, you need to provide them with a long duration of dark period to initiate the flowering phase. Until they get 12 hours of light daily, these plants will be in their vegetative stage. For the flowering phase to begin, they need at least 12 hours of ‘night time’.
You don’t need to control the lighting if you are cultivating autoflowering marijuana plants. With these plants, you can rest assured about flowering when their genetic count gets reduced to zero after three weeks from the seedling stage. You might keep them for 24 hours under Light while some might need 6 hours of ‘night time. These varieties are tolerant of cold until the condition is not icy. An 18/6 light schedule works for the entire growing period.
The autoflowering cannabis varieties also generally do not require any additional nutrients and are perfect for growing if you are starting without much knowledge and experience.
Can Be Grown Along With The Photoperiod Varieties
You can grow both autoflowering and photoperiod plants together. This is possible as the 18/6 lighting schedule works for the autoflowering strain and the photoperiod strains need such light conditions in their vegetative stage.
You can also plant both of these varieties together if you grow outdoors and get multiple harvests in a year.
Rich In Cannabidiol
Autoflower plants are often lower in THC and higher in Cannabidiol or CBD than photoperiod marijuana plants. CBD is a non-psychoactive compound, and it would give you a pleasant effect rather than inducing a high. CBD is great for medical usage.
A balanced THC and CBD level are preferred by many, whereas some prefer less THC and more CBD. Autoflowering strains can be easily grown by you if your state permits cannabis only for medicinal purposes.
Drawbacks Of Cultivating Autoflowering Cannabis Plants
Have Zero Recovery Time
Autoflowering plants aren’t great for experimentation. It would help if you never transplanted them as the plants do not get recovery time after repotting as they have a very short growing cycle.
Photoperiod plant growers can do experiments like train, defoliate or prune the marijuana plants. The plant can be kept in the vegetative stage if there has been any mistake.
Due to the absence of recovery time, you must take special care not to get the plant damaged. You must be accurate and precise if you wish to train them while managing the autoflower cannabis varieties.
Is Not Potent Enough
The autoflowering plants are created for the ruderalis variety; they have minimal THC and smaller harvest. However, breeders have provided a solution for this by selective breeding. This also concentrates the flavours and aromas.
Therefore, if you get a good autoflowering strain from a high-quality cannabis seed selling website, you would also notice the smell and taste have been made identical to the cannabis of the photoperiod varieties.
You, Will, Get A Lesser Yield
The autoflowering plants are shorter, and hence they have fewer bud sites than the larger photoperiod varieties. They yield less and produce fewer flowers as they have shorter blooming periods.
Photoperiod plants, on the contrary, take longer to flower, but they yield quite a lot. However, modern breeders have been creating high yielding autoflower strains by taking strains from the autoflowering plant with a major yield and creating the next batch of seeds. When the process becomes stabilised, the autoflowering plants yield a bigger batch.
You can also use the method known as the sea of green or SOG or plant in two-week cycles to yield a new batch twice a month. Many growers use these processes to have a seamless supply throughout the year.
You Will Not Have Much Control Over Your Plants
The growers of autoflowering cannabis varieties have very little role in the cultivation other than sowing the seeds, watering them and feeding them with nutrients if needed. You would find that the less you interfere with your autoflowering plants, the happier they will grow. This is radically different from the regular photoperiod cannabis varieties.
You can train the autoflowering cannabis plants, but you must only use low-stress training techniques, and the training should be minimal. You would not be able to make the vegetative phase longer with the autoflowering cannabis plants in the way you can do with photoperiod cannabis plants by adjusting the lights.
You can observe their process of growth and flowering and play along. You won’t have much control over the yield like the photoperiod plants.
Both new growers and seasoned ones love growing autoflowering marijuana plants. However, they have some downsides as well as amazing advantages.
The newer strains of the autoflowering varieties are much more productive than the older ones. They are also designed to have more THC content, and this quality will likely keep improving in the future. It is best to check the THC content while you are buying the strain
The fast-growing autoflowers are compact and extremely pest resistant. If you start with cannabis cultivation, I suggest that you try growing cannabis from autoflowering strains. You can get used to the process of growing marijuana and enjoy a super quick harvest.
They would also allow you to practise the art of drying and curing. You can also try one or two varieties along with your photoperiod plants.
I wish you good luck with your growing journey. Have fun!