When building a cannabis-growing operation, you may decide to grow large crops. However, bulk cultivating cannabis is much different than a small, at-home operation. With so many plants to monitor and manage, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. In worst-case scenarios, you may lose a significant chunk of your crop, either by accidental fertilization, pest problems, or lack of nutrients and sunlight.
So, to help you get the most bang for your buck, we’ve compiled a list of the top tips for bulk cultivating marijuana seeds. Here’s everything you need to know.
Start With the Best Marijuana Seeds
Not all cannabis seeds are created equally. If you start with subpar seeds, you’ll have to do a lot more work to maintain your crops. Poor seeds lead to weak plants that don’t produce as many flowers or buds. When that happens, you’ll be wasting a lot of time and energy cultivating plants that won’t be very profitable.
When buying bulk seeds, be sure to work with a reputable and highly recommended seed bank (like us!). Ask other customers what they thought of the seeds, and look for banks that offer certifications or quality assurances. If you’re going to invest so much time and money into your bulk crops, you need to ensure that you’ll get the best results.
Group Similar Strains
One of the primary challenges of bulk cannabis production is that you need to grow multiple strains at once. As you’ll notice, each strain thrives under slightly different conditions. For example, some strains need more sunlight and less moisture, while others might prefer the opposite. So, when planting and germinating your seeds, it helps to group similar strains.
Pay attention to environmental elements along with growth periods. For example, perhaps there are two strains that take four weeks to mature. By grouping these together, you can harvest them at the same time and double your production capacity without increasing your root zone.
Use CO2 and Phosphorous to Your Advantage
Whether you’re building an indoor or outdoor operation, you should be using all the tools of the trade to boost production. Two of the most valuable elements are phosphorous and CO2. Here’s a rundown of how to use them during bulk cultivation:
- Phosphorous for Faster Bud Production – Top growers recommend adding a little extra phosphorous to the plants at day 8 and day 13 of the flowering stage. This chemical tells the plant to make its buds faster so you can avoid stretched plants that might droop or collapse from their own weight.
- CO2 for Better Nutrient Absorption – As we all know, plants breathe in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen. So, adding more CO2 to your grow room can help the plant photosynthesize faster and absorb more nutrients from the soil. Doing this can help you cut down on your growth period and help produce more trichomes in the plant. Pro growers will ramp up CO2 levels from week one to week seven, then drop them back down to about 1000 ppm for better trichome production.
Use Strains that Work Well for Your Environment
Cannabis is native to hot and humid environments, so if you’re growing outdoors, you need to replicate their home turf as much as possible. However, thanks to crossbreeding, some strains can thrive with less sun and/or moisture. Other strains may grow and mature faster so you can harvest before colder temperatures arrive.
Before choosing bulk cannabis strains, first look at your local climate and how it adjusts throughout the year. Also, moving forward, climate change will likely affect your ability to grow cannabis. In some areas, you may have a longer growing season as summer extends further into fall and winter. However, you may also have to worry about scorching hot days that could kill your plants from too much heat stress.
Make Your Root Zone Larger and More Efficient
If you’re not sure what a root zone is, it’s the area in which the plant’s roots can extend. For example, if you’re using a plastic bucket, the sides of the bucket mark the edge of the root zone. As you might imagine, a larger zone allows for bigger plants and better cultivation.
One of the easiest ways to increase your root zone is to plant marijuana seeds in the ground. As long as each plant has its own marked area (i.e., 10 square feet), it can expand its roots as much as necessary. However, if you can’t grow in the ground, we recommend continuous boxes. This way, the roots can extend past the plant itself and keep going.
Always Monitor Your Nutrients
As a bulk grower, you’ll be adding various nutrients and ingredients to your plants during their growth cycle. As you add a new element, be sure to monitor your plants to ensure they’re taking to it well. In some cases, you may have to do some damage control, so you need to be proactive about spotting potential issues and resolving them before they spiral. Use nutrient monitors and test your soil regularly. Also, you can look at the plants themselves and see if they’re showing signs of stress, illness, or lack of nutrients.
Prepare for Harvesting Early
Bulk cultivation means you need lots of room to dry and cure your plants. Even if you’re using industrial dryers, you have to have enough room for your entire crop.
So, preparing your harvest as soon as possible can help the process run a lot more smoothly. For example, mark space for your drying racks and assign extra help on harvesting days. Also, if you’re growing outdoors, you can plan your harvest based on the moon phase. As a rule, it’s best to extract your plants during a new moon when they have the least amount of liquid inside.
Maintain a Suitable Pest Control System
Cannabis plants are notorious for pests and diseases of all kinds. Even if you’re growing indoors, you have to worry about different pests getting into your crops. So, you need to have a comprehensive pest control system in place. Overall, by inspecting your plants and looking for signs of damage (i.e., bite marks), you can nip a pest problem in the bud (no pun intended).
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