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Step by Step Guide: How to Grow a Small Weed Plant

September 25, 2019

small weed plants in a Pot for Pot grow kits

So, you wanna learn how to grow your own pot? Well, you’re in luck! Despite popular belief that it's a hard plant to grow, there’s a reason marijuana is called ‘weed’! This amazing plant grows really fast and is actually quite hardy considering all the different growing conditions it thrives in. 

You Can Grow a Small Weed Plant in Your Closet

You Can Grow a Small Weed Plant Outdoors

You can grow weed pretty much anywhere! 

And there are grow kits that make it easy and accessible. The hard truth is that there are more ways to cultivate cannabis than there are names for the plant. Every method can grow great plants. For example, hydroponics might yield more, while soil will grow stronger buds, aeroponics will grow the fastest, and there’s no replacement for growing marijuana outdoors. It’s as easy to overload yourself with options as it is to add too much fertilizer to your nutrient mix. 

Step by Step Guide to Grow a Small Weed Plant

This guide was written for cannabis enthusiasts who want a no-fuss way of growing healthy cannabis plants without the tents, timing, and grow lights. It’s a small step towards greater accessibility for marijuana home growing. So, flip a middle finger to big corporations, break up with your dispensary, and step into the world of DIY weed growing at home-- OG style. Growing sticky, smelly cannabis buds is easier and way more rewarding than you think!

Related: The Growth Of A Cannabis Plant

Of course, if you can’t be bothered to read this entire guide, check out aPotforPot.com. They have a complete marijuana grow kit designed to make the weed farming life easy for you. Get started immediately, and if you get lost during your grow, email the stellar support team for a helping hand at help@apotforpot.com

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Our complete grow kits include everything you need to go from seed to your very own supply of high grade medical cannabis.

aPotForPot Complete Grow Kit Unboxing

 

Steps for Growing a Small Weed Plant

Step #1 - Pick the Best Marijuana Seeds for You

Cannabis genetics are important to consider when planning your grow. Most cannabis consumers are familiar with the idea of Cannabis indica vs. Cannabis sativa. They understand how an indica-dominant strain is typically more relaxing and that sativa-dominant strains are known for their abilities to energize the mind and aid your creativity superpowers.

However, many people don’t understand the difference between autoflowering cannabis and photoperiod cannabis, aka regular flowering cannabis. Understanding these two options makes a big difference when selecting a 1st time strain based on how easy it is to grow. For beginners, we love autoflowers!   

Autoflowering Cannabis vs. Photoperiod Cannabis 

The key difference between autoflowering and regular flowering cannabis is how (and when) the plant’s flowering cycle begins. Simply put, autoflowering cannabis automatically starts its flowering cycle, while photoperiod waits for the correct light vs. dark period (12 hours light / 12 hours dark) to flower.

 purple autoflowering weed plant in garden

By far, the easiest and cheapest plant to grow for beginner growers is autoflowering cannabis. It comes from the species Cannabis ruderalis. This type of cannabis flowers, as the name suggests, automatically. 

Once the cannabis plant is a few feet tall, or about 30 days after she pops out of the dirt, she starts her flowering cycle. Autoflowering cannabis is typically ready to harvest in 80 days from seed-- regardless of her light schedule. This means the autoflowering cannabis growing season is year-round! Autoflowering cannabis seamlessly integrates into your home and plant family. Make it easy on yourself and go this route. 

We love these types of seeds so much that our Grow Kits include a $40 discount coupon on autoflowering seeds from our friends at ILGM.com

 outdoor flowering cannabis plant with blue sky background

Commercially - grown marijuana or those grown by seasoned growers are typically regular flowering marijuanas plants. More specifically, they are photoperiod cannabis. These, under the right growing conditions, are the giants of the pot world-- with the potential to grow 16 feet (or taller) and harvest 10 pounds of dried pot off a single plant.

This species of cannabis starts her flowering cycle when she starts receiving equal hours of sunlight and darkness. This means if you are growing this type of pot indoors, the plant needs to consistently receive 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness to release the necessary hormones to begin flowering. This is why many people that grow photoperiod cannabis indoors opt for grow tents or dedicated grow rooms. 

Before flowering, these plants savor what is known as the vegetative stage. This is when the plant enjoys more hours of light than darkness. Indoors, this is typically 18 hours of light and 6 hours of darkness. During this phase and light cycle, a photoperiod plant will continue to grow in size without flowering. 

Growing marijuana outdoors, this specific lighting need is why photoperiod plants flower in the fall and can grow to such staggering heights. They grow all summer long in a vegetative stage until the start of fall, when there is less light, which triggers them into flowering. Indoors, a grower needs to control this light cycle to avoid confusing the plants. Addling light when the plant thinks it is nighttime can ruin a whole crop. If it’s your first time growing cannabis, this will be a bit more of a challenge to keep up. It’s also going to be a bigger investment to start growing, as well as a lot more work.

Take it from a seasoned grower: If this is your first time learning how to grow, autoflowering strains are more stress-free, cheaper, and easier to maintain. Autoflowering cannabis seeds are the best way to grow yourself some weed at home-- without all the fuss. 

 

Indica vs. Sativa Growing Styles 

Cannabis ruderalis and photoperiod cannabis both have strains that lean towards either indica or sativa dominance. The experience post-consumption and their growth traits are the same for both photoperiod cannabis and autoflowering cannabis. 

For example, Jack Herer Autoflower is predominantly sativa genetically. This plant will grow larger and might take a little longer to finish than her indica-dominant counterpart. Indica-dominant plants, like Wedding Cake Autoflower, tend to stay relatively short, reaching 4 feet tall at most. They are squat, stubby little weed plants with wide leaves. Sativas tend to be tall, stretchy plants with thin, narrow leaves. 

If your goal is to grow one small cannabis plant, you should grow some of the best autoflowering strains, such as OG Kush, Cheese Strains, Northern Lights or Girl Scout Cookies. Indica-dominant autoflowering cannabis plants typically grow to around 2 to 4 feet tall. This makes them great for growing in gardens adjacent to nosey neighbors! 

Autoflowering sativa plants grow much taller. Many will grow past 4 feet, and some reach 6 feet tall.  If you grow sativa-dominant plants outdoors, plan on sharing these amazing plants with your neighbors! 

Related: Grow Weed Starting From Seed 🌱

 

Step #2: Select Your Grow Location

Cannabis grows well in a variety of environments, and they are remarkably tough plants.

When learning to grow autoflowering weed strains, the number of factors that can go wrong dramatically decreases compared to photoperiod cannabis. If your goal is to grow a single cannabis plant, then the number of locations you can grow without risking your crop increases with autoflowers. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a $1000 grow tent setup to grow some good cannabis - all you need is sunlight and good water. 

You can grow the best cannabis indoors or outdoors. A good indoor setup for weed provides total control over the growing conditions. Indoor growers have a lot of responsibility -- you become Mother Nature!  Your cannabis plants depend entirely on you to meet all of its needs - including light, humidity, airflow, temperature, food, and water. Unfortunately, it can be expensive to get all the right equipment, plus you must consider the cost of ongoing electricity. 

Alternatively, you could grow your cannabis plants outside. This option is less expensive because nature does most of the work, such as providing sunlight. And cannabis plants love the natural sunlight because it boosts their immune systems. There is no replacement for the sun. If you are just getting your feet wet, doing a combination of indoors and outdoors is a great way to start. 

There are some drawbacks to an outdoor plant, however. Growing marijuana outdoors isn’t as private as many people would prefer, and growers often have to contend with the risk of stolen plants, animal attacks, or the wandering eye of your neighbor, who is now working from home. 

In summary, you’ll need to consider your budget. Weigh the pros and cons of growing pot indoors or outdoors before you start growing. Then, select the option that works best for you and your specific situation. 

 weed plant in grow kit as a houseplant

Growing Cannabis as a Houseplant 

Autoflowering cannabis can be grown as a houseplant, just put her in the sunniest spot in your house and let her rip. This method of growing cannabis is best if you are just looking to grow and don’t have high expectations. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t expect something. 

With 4 to 6 hours of direct sun, you can yield a surprising amount of cannabis. And since the cost of starting with just a pot is just some soil, a seed, and the sun, the investment will for sure payout in the green.  

 

Cannabis in a Grow Tent 

People typically grow marijuana indoors in a grow tent or dedicated grow room. The goal is to optimize the plant's environment and blast the plant with as much light as she can handle so you can yield the most amount of cannabis per square foot. Although, as most cannabis growers will tell you, locking a 600-watt HPS grow light in a 5x5x7 grow tent will give you more problems than you’d expect. Heat, humidity, airflow, and pest management practices are all things to consider and plan for.  (Yes, indoor grows are just as likely to get bugs as outdoor.) 

If you plan to grow in one of these environments, we suggest setting aside no less than a $700 budget for the tent, lights, fans, timers, and control boxes you will need, plus an extra $80 a month in power bills. Keep in mind this is a pretty hefty investment if you're just looking to grow a small amount of cannabis. However, if you are looking to make some cheddar from the cheese you are growing, this is a good way to learn to grow your own sticky icky before scaling up.  We all know that commercial cannabis will never be as good as homegrown goods grown with love and detail to attention. 

 

Related: How to Set up a Marijuana Grow Tent

 

small weed plant growing outside

Growing Cannabis Outside

Autoflowering weed will grow year-round outside. As long as the temperature does not get below 43 degrees fahrenheit, your plant can survive. And when it does get cold, you can just bring her inside. Because autoflowering cannabis will flower no matter the light cycle, you can get up to 4 harvests a year outside on your balcony or in a garden. Plants grown in the winter will have a beautiful purple coloring to them by the time they are ready for harvest. Plants in the summer will grow bigger and bushier, reaching C. ruderalis full height potential of up to 6 feet tall and yielding up to 8oz of dried marijuana. 

 

On the other hand, growing photoperiod cannabis outdoors is a one-time a year thing; she’s a seasonal crop. You put her outside in late spring; she grows all summer and then flowers once the days start losing light. Timing when this occurs can get tricky, depending on your latitude and how cold it gets. So plant a lot and clear your social calendar because those plants will run your life for most of the year. 

 

Step #3 - Pick the Best Grow Light for Pot

Light is how your plant gets all her energy to convert the nutrients in her soil into more plant matter. So, the quality of that light is vital to your final yield.  

If you grow indoors, you’ll need to think about your plant’s light source. Keep in mind, one of the biggest benefits of growing a single plant is that your plant won’t need much light. You can place your plant on a windowsill and have enough natural sunlight for it to thrive in many cases. However, if you’d like to grow your plant in a more discrete location, away from natural light, or have limited natural light, you’ll need to think about grow lights. In that situation, how to grow a small weed plant quickly becomes how to select the best lighting. 

The general rule of thumb is that the more light you give a cannabis plant, the more you will harvest. Autoflowering cannabis plants like to have some dark cycle to do their nighttime activities; we suggest around 4 to 6 hours of darkness a day.

outdoors sungrown cannabis enjoying the sunshine

Growing Weed with the Sun

The ultimate, cheapest grow light for cannabis is the sun. Sunlight is the most powerful light us earthlings have access to, so if you are lucky enough to live somewhere that allows you to take advantage of the giant fireball in the sky, we suggest you use it. Even just as little as 4 hours of direct sunlight will do wonders for a small autoflowering pot plant. 

When growing marijuana outdoors in full sun your plant can yield up to 8 oz. Cannabis grown outside will always yield more and be more potent than any indoor grow light. You just can't beat the power of the light spectrum of natural sunlight, and cannabis plants love it!

If you opt for natural sunlight and you aren’t using autoflowers, you’ll need to ensure that your plants receive at least 18 hours of sunlight during the vegetative stage of their growth. Unfortunately, that means unless you are growing during the correct season and in the right area, this may not be obtainable without supplemental lighting. In other words, even if you are growing outdoors, investing in an LED lamp for those cloudy and or ‘short’ days might be a good idea. 

  

Growing Weed with LED Lights

LED lighting is a great option for giving your plant everything she needs or just an extra boost. Natural colored LED lights using a COB LED are our preferred choice because you can see the correct color of your marijuana leaves and most closely resembles natural sunlight. While the pink and purple LED lights do a fine job, they also miss specific spectrums that contribute to the robustness of your plant. We’ve found that a more complete light spectrum develops a more complete terpene profile and produces more hearty plants.  

weed grow light hanging in kitchen 

For a single plant, a 75 watt COB LED grow light is ideal. LEDs are a popular choice for growing marijuana and are perfect for producing healthy marijuana buds on a single plant. They are also optimized to prevent your plants from receiving too much light, which could cause a condition called ‘light burn.’ Another huge benefit of LEDs is their cost. The bulbs are inexpensive and readily available. Best of all, they don’t require much energy, so you are not going to spike your electricity bill. The casual observer will never suspect that you are growing marijuana indoors just by seeing the light shining from your home. 

We discourage using HPS grow lights mostly because they tend to generate a lot of heat for indoor use. Plus, HPS lights can easily burn cannabis plants. For hobbyist growers, LED technology will grow great buds at a significantly reduced electricity cost.  

There are, of course, other cannabis lighting options, but for a single plant, they can be much more than necessary. However, it is still a good idea to research your options to make an informed decision based on your wants and needs. 

 

Related: Top 10 Lights For Growing Weed Indoors 💡

 

Step #4 - Picking a Pot Size for Autoflowering Weed

Some say cannabis got the name 'pot'  because early growers would move the pots they’d planted it in as needed. With marijuana restricted and illegal in some places, people who grew (and in some cases still grow) had to be creative! The pot provided the freedom to create the best environment depending on what was available. 

This is even more the case with autoflowers. Autoflowering cannabis is a really smart plant! She can sense her environment and grow accordingly. Much like a goldfish in either a fishbowl, aquarium, or ocean, your plant’s size depends on the size of its container. An autoflowering seed has the same potential-- it just depends on what you plant it in—the bigger the pot, the bigger the plant (which means more pot). 

 four weed plants in a Pot for Pot grow kits

To help you decide how much autoflowering cannabis you’d like to grow, we made our grow kits in three different sizes: 

 

Mini: ½ Gallon Pot Size

If you want to grow a tiny little cannabis plant that will be perfect for your desk or just as a little experiment for the kitchen windowsill, a ½ gallon pot will grow an autoflowering marijuana plant less than 2 feet tall. These little plants are adorable! How much you harvest will largely depend on the genetics and how much light you give the plant. It will need more frequent watering due to its small size. 

 

Small: 2 Gallon Pot Size 

A 2-gallon pot will support a small marijuana plant that yields about 4oz of pot. This size provides more space for your cannabis plant’s roots. When growing outside during the summer using organic soil,  water every couple of days, especially on hot days.  Your cannabis plant will stay a reasonable size. 

 

Medium: 5 Gallon Pot Size  

This size is the gold standard for autoflowering cannabis plants. If you go much bigger, you start to get diminishing returns as autoflowering pot plants don't grow massive root structures. With a 5 gallon pot, your plant will grow to her genetic potential of about 4 or 5 feet tall on average. A 5 gallon pot is a great size for growing outside under direct sun or indoors inside a grow tent.

 

Step #5 - Selecting the Best Grow Medium for Pot

When thinking about how to grow a small weed plant, one of the most important things that should be on your mind is what you will grow the plant in. Your plant will need a medium that provides the required nutrients for developing picture-perfect buds. And, just like grow lights, there are numerous options for best grow mediums.  Each medium will have its own set of requirements for best growing conditions, such as how often you’ll need to water, but in the end, every option is equally capable of producing high-yielding cannabis plants. 

Super Soil is Superb.

The most common (and easiest to use) grow medium is soil. Ideally, you should use well-composted organic soil rich with nutrients designed for growing cannabis and formulated for commercial cannabis specifically. A Pot for Pot’s Superb Soil is an excellent example of this. Superb Soil is what professional growers refer to as "hot soil." This means it has a surplus of bioavailable organic nutrients that are alive and working for you! 

 

It's also the plant equivalent of rocket fuel, so adding nutrients isn’t really necessary. If you do not start with soil that has been optimized for cannabis growing, you’ll want to ensure that the soil includes perlite so that it drains well. Mixing your own super soil for cannabis requires over 17 ingredients and some heavy lifting when mixing it all. If you would like to learn how to mix your own, download our full guide below. 

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Hydroponics grows are hard. 

You could also go soilless and buy vermiculite, coco coir, or rockwool. These mediums require constant feeding and flushing to keep the root zone moist and free of nutrient buildup. While these may be more expensive than soil, they come with some advantages, including yielding a lot of cannabis. Hydroponic growing is a super fun and rewarding process that grows great cannabis. 

A disadvantage of hydroponic growing, though, is that they do not contain nutrients for your plant, so you’ll need to carefully measure and distribute the proper nutrients in the right proportions and at the right time. Worst of all,  one over-feeding can ruin a whole crop. You can produce very high yields with this method, but there is a steep learning curve, and it is a bit expensive (both time and money-wise) for a single plant. If this is your first time, we suggest keeping it simple and letting the plant do the hard work in an organic soil mix. 

 

Step #6 - Select Your Nutrients for Marijuana

With marijuana, you want to use specific nutrients that help your plant thrive during the different stages of its growth. Choose nutrients formulated for the particular medium you’re using - that doesn't mean Miracle Grow. (Please don’t use Miracle Grow aka Miracle No-no)   Certain nutrients will only work in hydroponic systems, while others work best with soil. 

 

No matter what nutrients you use for your pot plants, we suggest using ⅓ of the strength of whatever the manufacturer suggests (hint: they want you to use more than you need so you buy more faster). Cannabis plants can be very sensitive to too many nutrients. Lock-out from too many nutrients results in stunted, stressed plants that may flower too early. 

 watering weed plant

Watering Cannabis 

You’ll also need to consider the pH of your water source. Water is an important factor to consider in your plant’s growing conditions because it is how nutrients get to your plant. If the pH is incorrect, your plant cannot absorb those nutrients - think of a square block moving up a round pipe. The pH should be appropriate for the medium that you choose. When growing in soil, the pH of your water should be slightly acidic, between 6.5 and 7.0 ideally. This allows the plant to absorb the nutrients in the soil efficiently. (Growing hydroponically, your pH should be lower, preferably in the 5.5 - 6.5 range.)   

To be honest, nutrient and pH levels can be complicated and a definite hassle when you only want to grow a single plant. A much easier solution is a Pot for Pot Grow kit. Not only are these kits designed to make growing a single plant simple and easy, but they also provide the best nutrients and medium for your plants so that you don’t have to spend any time on this step. 

All you need to do is add water (in that sweet spot pH range) and let your plant do the heavy lifting. As you get more experienced with growing cannabis, you can start adding nutrients to maximize your yield. But, if you are just trying to grow one amazing cannabis plant, a Pot for Pot does a great job of empowering you to grow your own. You simply need to know how to follow instructions, provide sunlight, and add a little water! 

 

 

Step #7 - How to Germinate Cannabis Seeds

Autoflowering cannabis can only be grown from seed. There are plenty of ways to germinate a seed, but a seed germination kit is the easiest option. We like the method of soaking your seed in water for up to 48 hours; when it sinks, or you pop a tap root, she is ready to come out. And no matter what, after 48 hours, transplant your seedling to your germination medium. 

marijuana seedlings in jiffy pellets

Jiffy Pellets 

To use a Jiffy Pellet, moisten the peat-based medium, insert your seed, and water as needed. Once your seed sprouts, you can place the entire medium into your pot for easy transplanting.   

These steps produce the best results when germinating seeds:

  1. Soak seed in a cup of pH neutral water in a dark place (like a kitchen cupboard) for 24 hours

  2. Prepare jiffy pellet by soaking in pH neutral water

  3. Gently squeeze any excess moisture out of the jiffy

  4. Use your seedling or scissors to poke a ¼ inch hole into the expanded jiffy and plant the soaked seed

  5. Place planted jiffy pellet in a seedling cup under direct light until your seedling makes an appearance topside.

     

    Related: Why Jiffy Pellets are the Best Medium for Popping Pot Seeds

     

     

    Step #8: The Cannabis Vegetative Stage

    Once your marijuana seedling develops a pair of leaves, she has officially entered the vegetative stage. This is when cannabis plants have the singular purpose of growing bigger and stronger in preparation for the coming flowering stage.

    During the vegetative stage, marijuana plants need plenty of light. You’ll need to give them around 18 hours (or more) of light during this phase. Also, ensure that the temperature in your grow room (or wherever you are growing your plants) is a bit warmer than room temperature. That means between 68°F and 82°F. The long hours of light and higher temperature mean your cannabis plants will need plenty of water, so monitor the moisture level and adjust accordingly. You don’t want your plants to be too thirsty. But, overwatering is more deadly than under-watering. 

    How well your plants grow during this stage will directly impact their yield. Smaller plants will yield fewer and smaller buds. Bigger plants, however, are stronger and can support denser,

    more plentiful buds. So, remember to provide the best care for your plants in the vegetative stage!

     close up of early flowering buds marijuana plant

    Step #9: The Cannabis Flowering Stage

    When flowers start to form, you’ve entered the flowering stage. Only female plants produce flowers. The first sign is thin flowers with white hair-like structures called pistils. Those little pistils will eventually produce buds – which you can eventually consume. This important phase in the life of your cannabis plant lasts until you harvest the mature buds. Here’s what happens during this stage: 

    Your plants will get large and bushy. You may want to ‘train’ them by trimming and/or bending the leaves to form a flat canopy on top. This pruning allows light to reach all parts of the plant for maximum yields. Pruning is an advanced technique, so you’d want to read up on it first before trying it.  

    If you did not purchase feminized seeds, or you are unsure of the sex of your plant, you’ll need to confirm that it’s female. 

    How can you know if your pot plant is male or female? 

    Easy. Just look at the junction of the branches and observe whether you see wispy white strings emerging from the buds. If these wisps (pistils) are present, that plant is female. If pistils aren’t present, then what is growing is a pollen sac, and the plant is male. Male plants do not produce the buds that you wanna consume. Female plants are prized for their ability to grow the yummy flowers we all love. 

    Depending on what type of cannabis you are growing, you may need to change the light schedule to initiate the flowering stage. If you are growing photoperiod cannabis, you will need to increase the amount of darkness your plant receives to 12 hours daily. That means 12 hours of light and 12 of darkness each day.  Respecting the light schedule is an absolute necessity for regular flowering cannabis seeds. Autoflowering marijuana doesn’t depend on a change in the length of daylight hours to start flowering, so this step is unnecessary with autoflowering seeds. 

    For all types of marijuana, you will want to consider adjusting the temperature. The flowering stage requires cooler temperatures, so keep it between 64°F to 78°F. Ideally closer to 65 degrees Fahrenheit if possible!  If you used any nutrients, make sure you’ve stopped and are providing plenty of water. This helps with taste, aroma, and potency when it’s time to enjoy your cannabis. 

     The most important thing to remember about this stage is to watch your plants. Cannabis plants in the flowering stage are rather sensitive to the conditions under which they are growing. Look for signs of a problem, such as brown leaf tips. This could signify a problem with watering, lighting, or nutrients.  

     

    Related: 15 Pros And Cons Of Autoflowering Seeds

     

    Step #420: How much Cannabis will you Harvest

    Harvesting pot at home is really exciting! You can watch cannabis develop and blossom amazing, pungent flowers. Soon, you’ll start to wonder when you can reap what you’ve sown. But how do you know when to make the cut? How do you know when to harvest your weed?

    Cannabis gives clear signals as to when she’s ready to move on to the most exciting time of her life -- consumption!  

    Two things to look for when determining if your marijuana flowers are ready to harvest:

    1. The color of the stigmas (the hair-like structures coming off the buds). You want 80% or more to have turned from white to orange/red/brown.  
    2. The color of the trichomes (the yummy crystals on the buds). You want these to turn from clear to milky. 

    You will know the buds have matured from the color of the stigmas. You will see wispy white hairs growing out of the buds. These wisps will change color gradually until they become amber at the peak of maturity. This is a great first sign to look for. Cannabis can be tricky, though, and can keep producing stigmas way past her prime. This tendency is why it is important to look at more than just the stigmas for cues. 

    Your plant’s trichomes’ color and shape are a more reliable way to gauge readiness for harvest, but this will often take magnifying lenses to see properly. You’ve reached peak THC when the trichomes are cloudy in color and have rounded mushroom-like shaped heads. Premature trichomes have flat heads.

    A good time to harvest is when most trichomes are cloudy or milky in appearance, with one or two trichomes appearing amber. Too many amber trichomes, and you’re past peak THC harvest. At this point, a significant portion of the THC is now CBN (a cannabinoid that relaxes and calms the mind). So, you will still get some medicine from over ripe buds-- just a different cannabinoid. 

    marijuana trichomes magnified  

    How do you harvest the buds? 

    Simple, take some scissors (there are some in the a Pot for Pot Complete Kits) and start cutting. First, remove fan leaves and pre-trim. Extra leaves hold water, and we want our weed to dry efficiently! You can leave the fan leaves but know that drying will take longer. Grower’s choice!

    Sometimes, the top-most buds are ready before the bottom buds. This is a normal occurrence because of the relative light exposure between the top and bottom of the plant. In these cases, harvest in stages-- take the top buds first and circle back for the bottom buds in a few days. 

    Using your scissors, cut each branch just below the bud and hang it upside down (buds facing downward) in a dark closet for a few days until dry. If you lay your buds flat to dry, they will get smooshed and dry unevenly. It’s best to have humidity around 50%, temperature around 65 degrees fahrenheit. Drying can take up to a week, but most finish in about 5 days. 

    Test for dryness by bending the stems-- when they snap instead of bend, it's time to cut the buds off! Don't test for doneness by touching the buds because if the buds are still wet, they'll get smooshed. Finally, give them a proper trim job and store them in glass jars. It’s best to keep these jarred-up nuggets out of direct light, as sunlight can bleach your buds. Open the jars everyday day to burp them for a few minutes (this allows fresh oxygen in and other stuff out.)

    You can smoke your weed as soon as it's dry. Some impatient growers throw a few fresh flowers in a brown paper bag for two days (a flash dry method) and then grind them right into a rolling paper. The curing process really just brings out the flavor, terpene profiles, eliminates chlorophyll and makes for a smoother smoke. We recommend curing your buds if you plan to smoke or vape your harvest. You can cure for ten days, two weeks, four weeks, two months, or even up to 6 months - how much patience do you have? (This is coming from some impatient stoners but, hey, we appreciate a quality experience!)

     

    Related: The Ultimate Guide on How to Harvest Weed

    Knowing how to grow a small weed plant is likely the hardest part of actually growing it. Now that you know what to do and ideal growing conditions, you are well on your way to enjoying hassle-free, home-grown marijuana. When you’re ready to start growing, see what a Pot for Pot has to offer! 

     

    harvesting marijuana with two hands

    FAQs about Growing a Small Weed Plant

    What's the difference between feminized and autoflowering seeds?

    Autoflowering seeds bloom automatically without having you do anything, while feminized seeds need a change in the light cycle to start the blooming process.

    What pot sizes should I be using for Autoflowers?

    The ideal pot size for autoflowering cannabis plants are 0.5 to 5 gallon pots. The size of the pot determines the size of the plant! Bigger pots = bigger plants.

    Do I need to add nutrients to my marijuana grow?

    Not in an organic, general-purpose Superb Soil mix! It has a complete nutrient load for an autoflowering cannabis plant. You should add nutrients if you're growing in hydroponics or any nutrient-less medium. 

    How much light should I give my autoflowering plant?

    Autoflowering cannabis is great because she can grow under any light conditions. Ideal conditions outdoors are a minimum six hours of direct sunlight. When sunlight is not available, supplementing with a grow light (or a high wattage regular light) will keep your plant happy. We recommend giving her 20 hours light / 4 hours darkness each day for those growing entirely indoors.

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