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Introduction

 

This page is designed for beginners, however some advanced growers may be surprised to find out that there are both cheaper and easier ways to grow. All the following methods can be expanded to a larger closet, room ... warehouse :-) This particular method of cultivating cannabis is the same method that most "professional ontario growers" use to pull out massive crops. Remember the bust at the Molson Brewery in Barrie, Ontario, Canada?.... This is the same growing method I will attempt to teach you in this Grow Guide.

 

The most important thing to remember when growing cannabis is that proper light, proper ventilation, proper spacing of the plants, proper fan and correct amount of food will go further than any "miracle" nutrient product out there. We, at Happy Girl believe that growing should not require expensive water systems (hence the name Hydroponics) and can easily be accomplished with a light, some pots, closet and some basic knowledge.

 

TO READERS: If you are going to follow our growing instructions, please follow them "religiously". Everything written here is meant to avoid diseases and bug problems and if the instructions are followed properly will provide you with a superb crop. It is never recommended to follow two different Grow Guides at the same time.

 

If you already "know a guy or a gal" who grows his own weed and is willing to teach you his/her own method of growing please listen to him/her and forget about this guide. Everybody is quite capable of developing their own particular combination of nutrients and light setup as well as they're own method of growing. It is much easier to learn by example then from any Grow Guide.

 

However, please check first if this friend gets the following yields when using whatever method gives them smoke.

 

If growing under a 400W light, the yield ranges from 4 to 8 ounces of completely dry and well manicured bud every 2 to 3 months.

 

If growing under a 600W light, the yield ranges from 8 to 16 ounces of completely dry and well manicured bud every 2 to 3 months.

 

If growing under a 1000W light, the yield ranges from 16 to 32 ounces of completely dry and well manicured bud every 2 to 3 months.

 

If not please stick to this Grow Guide.

  

Please feel free to contact me with any suggestions or questions in order to improve this Guide.

 

Please forgive me but I have no media skills

so this is the best "acting" you get... sorry...

 

These are some general things you need to know......

with a summary at the end.....

 

1. See How to build a 400W closet. This closet should produce between 4 and 8 ounces every 2 to 3 months. If you are planning to grow with 600W or a 1000W, you need a larger area then this guide talks about, however the principles on how to build a grow space apply exactly the same whether its a 400W or a 1000W light grow room.

 

LIST OF GROWING EQUIPMENT SUPPLIERS for Toronto Area

and a list of coffee shops in Toronto where you can smoke freely (don't try to buy any weed please, its all BYOW, Bring your own weed, bring it, roll it, share it, smoke it with friends)

 

2. Learn How to purchase seeds that yield the most bud (this is not as easy as you think).... of course from our own seed bank :-)

 

3. The optimum temperature for the growing space is 25 to 30 degrees Celsius (25 degree Celsius = 77 degree Fahrenheit and 30 degree Celsius = 86 degree Fahrenheit) . The perfect temperature is 27 degrees Celsius or 80 degree Fahrenheit. Humidity should be around 40%, however it is less of a concern as long as you maintain the correct temperatures. See this page about ventilation.

 

4. Use Promix, instead of soil. I can confirm that the following Brands of soil have appropriate qualities for growing weed indoors: ProMix BX, ProMix HP and SunShine Mix No.4. All should be available at Rona Hardware, some Home Depots, most larger Garden Supply chains and of course all Hydroponics Stores

 

5. When watering the plants. Water the Promix through-out and allow to dry before watering again. You can tell when Promix needs water because it gets light-weight when lifted by hand.

 

Learn this trick; place two identical pots (containers or planters) next to each other and fill each one with Promix. Add water to one pot (soak it though-out), but leave the other pot dry. With your hands lift each pot and "feel" the weight of the containers.

 

You will find that the difference in weight is very great, i.e. the pot soaked with water is much, much, heavier then the pot without water. It may take a few days for the plant to suck-up all the water and get as light as in this example, however it is important to maintain this wet-dry-wet-dry watering cycle in order to properly encourage the roots to grow. Of course you do not want to let your plants get as dry as in this example, however it is a good lesson to learn if you want to avoid over watering the plants.

 

Over watering the plants is just as bad as under watering.

 

Let me explain differently How to Know when to water your plants:

 

When you come to your closet to check the plants (on a daily basis)

I. You can see the top of Promix looks dry and feels dry when you touch it.

II. You stick your finger in the soil and it feels dry.

III. You lift the container (the plant is in) and it feels light (almost as feather light as in the lesson above, and it is quite scary how feather light a pot filled with Promix can get)

 

This means: Its is the right time to soak the container with water (or water + nutrients if its necessary). And I mean soak it until water drips from the bottom. Get appropriate size saucers for your planter/pots/containers.

 

If Promix just looks dry and feels dry on top, but the container feels heavy, it is still too early to water. In most cases watering every day is never recommended. In general terms a pot 8 inches in diameter (or 5 gallon in volume) should need watering every 4th to 5th day and more often as the plants get larger (that is why you should check your plants daily, some will suck up the water quicker then the others). The 5 Gallon pot should take approximately 5 litters of water at watering. You will find that the bigger your plants get, the more often you have to water them. Also, summer temperatures will cause increase in watering cycles.

 

IMPORTANT NOTE FROM MARK: I need to change the Grow Guide a little bit. Watering with plain water is NOT as good as watering with water + 25% nutrient mix...... This means that every time you water your plants you have to add al least 10% and at most 25% of nutrients....and of course more when they need it..... This will actually leach out the old nutrients better then watering just with plain water and also prevent nutrient lock.... sometimes when you water with plain water (i.e. 0% nutrients) the plants "think" there is a problem with nutrients supply and they try to retain as much nutrients as possible... the stem becomes dark and the leafs look burnt or drooping or .. just unhealthy.... To prevent this from happening you can always add a little bit of nutrients to your water and prevent nutrient lock in a first place..... If you see on this Grow Guide that I talk about plain water, you must change that to water + 25% nutrient mix..... this also applies to the end week of the bloom cycle when for the last week or two you "leach" out the nutrients before harvest.... "leaching" also means adding 10% to 25% of nutrients.....

 

6. About Nutrients: There is 2 types of nutrients used to grow cannabis. One is a basic A and B formula. A (comes in one bottle) and B (another bottle, but you need 2 bottles for make a complete nutrient, thus the name A and B formula). The A and B formula is sold under brand names like, Bigfoot or DNF or some Hydroponics Stores make their own (its all the same). The other is an Organic formula (comes in 1 bottle only), sold under brand names like, Pure Blend Pro, Flora Nova or Bat Guano. None is better then the other, chose as you wish. Those two formulas break down into a Vegetative part (so you can purchase 1 bottle of Vegetative A formula and 1 bottle of Vegetative B formula together OR you can purchase 1 bottle of Vegetative Organic formula) and Bloom/Flowering (so you can purchase 1 bottle of Blooming A formula and 1 bottle of Blooming B formula together OR 1 bottle of Flowering Organic formula). In general terms you will start using a Vegetative A and B  or Vegetative Organic  when the lights are on 18 hours ON and 6 OFF. You switch to the Bloom/Flowering formula of A and B or the Bloom Organic when you switch the lights to 12 hours ON and 12 hours OFF. I do not recommend using nutrients bought at a hardware store like, miracle grow or 20-20-20. Those formulas are too concentrated for a beginner to use successfully. In most cases people over feed their plans (which kills them). If you insist on using these products remember that the mixing rate is 1 ml per 1 litter, not as it says on the label.

 

Important Note: When using A and B nutrients you have to mix them correctly. It does not matter which one you measure first but you have to mix them separately into a container filled with water. In other words you have to do the following: Mix formula A first into the water container and stir with your hand. Measure formula B and add to the water container and stir. DO NOT put formula A directly to unmixed formula B before mixing into water. This will cause strange chemical reaction and make the nutrients useless (not dangerous in any way, just useless).

 

When using an Organic formula, you must shake the bottle well before using it, because organic nutrients accumulate heavy stuff on the bottom of the bottle when left on a shelf. On the other hand, If you see any strange materials floating in an A and B nutrients you have to get a fresh batch. The A and B nutrients need to be clear (transparent). If any bottle is not clear or has stuff floating inside, it is no longer usable.

 

7. Add nutrients to the water only every 2nd or 3rd time you water your plants. Most nutrient formulas (sold at Hydroponics stores) have labels with information on how to measure the nutrient and how often to give it to the plants. Problem is that the labels are designed for growers using 1000W minimum. If you grow under anything less then 1000W, you have to add nutrients far less often then what the label recommends. It is either you add nutrient to your water at about 50% of recommended dosage every time you water your plants or you feed at full recommended dosage but only add the nutrients to water only every 2nd or 3rd time. Anything more will cause the plants to overfeed and die. Remember that it is always easier to add more nutrients later when they need them then it is to recover overfed plants.

 

IMPORTANT NOTE FROM MARK: I need to change the Grow Guide a little bit. Watering with plain water is NOT as good as watering with water + 25% nutrient mix...... This means that every time you water your plants you have to add al least 10% and at most 25% of nutrients....and of course more when they need it..... This will actually leach out the old nutrients better then watering just with plain water and also prevent nutrient lock.... sometimes when you water with plain water (i.e. 0% nutrients) the plants "think" there is a problem with nutrients supply and they try to retain as much nutrients as possible... the stem becomes dark and the leafs look burnt or drooping or .. just unhealthy.... To prevent this from happening you can always add a little bit of nutrients to your water and prevent nutrient lock in a first place..... If you see on this Grow Guide that I talk about plain water, you must change that to water + 25% nutrient mix..... this also applies to the end week of the bloom cycle when for the last week or two you "leach" out the nutrients before harvest.... "leaching" also means adding 10% to 25% of nutrients.....

 

8. Read about, N-P-K, Micronutrients and Hydroponics Food Formula, and see Glossary of Hydroponics Terms (the lingo), You may not need to know all of this information, but its good to familiarize yourself with the terms so you don't buy unnecessary food (an example of a useless Pure Blend formula without the Pro in the name, unlike Pure Blend Pro which is an excellent product) or equipment or gimmicks.

 

9. Allow plants to grow only up to 2 feet tall maximum. This is the period when you are Vegetating the plants and your timer is set for 18 hrs. ON and 6 OFF and just before you decide to trigger bloom process (lights ON for 12 hours and OFF for 12 hours).

 

Plants taller that 2 feet when put into bloom cycle will not produce more bud. They will simply get too stressed out and end up producing less yield.

 

If you find that your plants are getting too tall and for whatever reason you are not ready to flower them immediately, you can always chop/cut the plant in half and continue the vegetative cycle for minimum 1 week longer and may be even 2 or 3 weeks depending on the rate of her recovery.

 

The plant you cut will pour its energy in developing side branches and it will become more bushy. Instead of a single cola on 1 plant you will have multiple colas on 1 plant. This method is sometimes called "super cropping", "topping" or "pinching". This is an easy way to improve your yield in a small closet.

 

 

10. When in doubt ASK or send us your comments

 

 

Summary of the Growing cycle of Cannabis:

 

1.  so you have your closet built.

 

2.  your Promix ready and your ventilation set-up.

 

3.  you sprout the seeds. usually takes from 24 hours to 1 week

 

4.  When they sprout you transfer them into small pots filled with Promix. Water Promix with plain water. Add no nutrients unless you want to add B1 or Rizotonic or Super thrive.

 

5.  place the pots 4 feet away from a 1000W light, 3 to 4 feet away from the 400W light, 3 feet away from a 250W light and 1 foot away from fluorescent lights.

 

6.  Wait until you see small leafs and until they are about 2 to 3 inches in height....... and generally the sprouts look like miniature plants. This should take between a week or two..... or three... some cannabis strains may take longer depending how experienced you are

 

7.   After this period you can move the little sprouts closer to the light. This means 2 feet away from a 1000W, 1.5 feet away from a 400W, 1 foot from 250W and 2 to 3 inches away from a fluorescent lights.

 

8.  Make sure you have an oscillating fan to move the air and the plants (set the fan to appropriate speed in order to achieve "gently rocking wind" as oppose to "a hurricane").......

 

9.  When you move the plants closer to the light it is time to add nutrients to your water. Until now you should be watering them with plain water. The first time plants receive nutrients it should be mixed at 50% of whatever your nutrient is recommending. Use Vegetative formula. This is so called VEG PERIOD, when plants simply grow bigger and bigger. Your lights are ON for at least 18 hours a day. Familiarize yourself with point #5, 6 and 7 above.

 

10. When plants reach 4 to 8 inches in height, you can transfer them into bigger pots (I recommend at least an 8 inch pot or 3 Gallons in volume)

 

11. If the plants reach about a foot in height but they do not seem bushy enough you can cut the top 2 inches off of each plant. This is called "super cropping" or "pinching". By removing the top 2 inches you force the plant to sprout side branches thus become more bushy. The sooner you do this the better. Remember that when you do this you have to wait at least a week before you bloom these plants. This is because you heed to give her a chance to grow new side branches.

 

12. The biggest plants should get no bigger than 2 feet tall before bloom. If you let them VEG longer they will become too big for light to penetrate inside them.

 

At this point you have 2 choices.

 

A. You can let them grow (VEG) until they reach 1.5 or 2 feet in height and switch to bloom.

 

BLOOM PERIOD is a when you switch your nutrients from vegetative formula to blooming or flowering formula (see point no.6 above). You start bloom by changing the light cycle of your lights to 12 hours ON and 12 hours OFF. This cycle generally lasts about 8 weeks and culminates with harvest. All seeds should state the appropriate time of the bloom cycle. In general however it is usually 8 weeks.

 

You should check your plants daily for any signs of sex and remove the males as soon as they show, usually within the first 3 weeks or sooner.

 

On the 6th week of bloom you can add so called Bud-Boosters. A bud booster is a high Phosphorus nutrient with numbers like 10-52-15 or 1-12-13 (NPK number on every nutrient label). Phosphorus is the middle number of NPK. You can add this nutrient on top of your regular watering cycle, twice in one week, on the 6th week of the blooming cycle. This very specific nutrient adds weight to the plant. After the 6th week most plants are generally ready to consume, however if you spend additional week watering with the bud booster and spend another week watering with plain water, you can add a lot of weight to the plant. During the last week of bloom you should use only plain water in order to leach out any salts and nutrient build ups. This will greatly improve the taste after its dry. Some choose to spend up to 2 weeks leaching the plants. This makes the taste cleaner and the smoke lighter in colour.

 

You then harvest the crop after roughly 2 months.

 

B. When they are still in VEG take a clone from each plant, place those cones under a fluorescent light inside a cupboard and bloom the clones in order to find sex of each plant. After 2 weeks the clones would show sex, you could then choose to keep a female plant as a mother for cloning or simply remove the males, and bloom the females.

 

Note: feminized seeds make horrible mother plants.

 

A clone taken from a female plant is 100% female as well so keeping a mother plant is a nice shortcut when growing long term.

 

 

Stoned Free Guide to Growing Cannabis.

 

 

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