Avoid Contaminations and Grow Room/Pet SafetyWe will start with a few simple guidelines to keep your grow room healthy and pest-free. Never go in your grow area after being outdoors, take your shoes off or anything else that came into contact with plants outside. Yes your lawn counts too. Pets should never be allowed into the grow room. They pack critters, that can infest and ruin your grow, and the dangers to your animals from UV light emitted from MH (Metal Halide) and/or your HPS (High Pressure Sodium) lamps can blind your dog, cat, lizard, or any pet with eyes for that matter. Not to mention the risk of electrocution, or even getting into something causing an electrical fire and losing your home (It has happened more times than you think) Love your pets, your home and your garden, keep them out of the grow room. Now the good part is yes you can get a tan working in the grow room for short periods of time. . Wear sun UV protected sunglasses to protect your eyes while working in the grow room. This is a must for your safety. We will start with growing containers (plastic or clay pots). If they are brand new and sterile skip, to next part. Otherwise you will want to clean them. The easiest way I know is to place them the proper way, bottom side down. Now start with that big hole on top, place it in the shower or bathtub. Mix a 10% solution of bleach and tap water in a clean milk jug, or use a fine mist sprayer like a clean Windex bottle. You will save elbow grease having to scrub out dirty used pots. Wear gloves and eye protection. Bleach can burn or blind you. After cleaning the pots with your 10% bleach solution, rinse them with tap water in the shower or draw a tub of water to rinse, dry and then you are ready to start planting.
SOIL, YOUR ORGANIC GROWING MEDIUMSoil is not dirt from your back yard. Back yard soil is not sterile, can and will most often kill your seeds and also contains pests, and weeds that will cause so many grow room problems. If you really on a tight budget, you can place your back yard top soil in a large baking pan and cook for 1.5 hours at 125 degrees to sterilize the soil and kill weeds and pests. Let it cool before plating and don’t burn yourself. Preferable, you have a few extra dollars and you can buy some good potting soil. I like Black Gold coco fiber mix. Add to this 20 to 30% perlite or you will not have good light soil once it compacts from watering. To this add 1-cup espoma garden tone plant mix. It will not over or under feed your plants. And this helps get you more female plants (read our article on how to get more females in our grow section) Once you have your sterilized soil, with 20-30% Perlite and 1 cup of Epsoma Garden tone plant mix, all you have to do is water. Then add 1/2 cup dolomite lime, it keeps the soil sweet and PH Balanced. Now, fill your planting pots half full of mixture. 3-gallon pots are just right for the full life of the plant. Grow for a minimum of 6 weeks at an 18-hour a day light cycle. That means your light stays lit for 18 hours and off for 6 hours. Use a light timer rated to your light wattage for safety. Make sure your electrical outlet can handle the wattage. Typically in a house, you will have multiple outlets on the same breaker. So if you are using a single 1000 Watt MH Light, you won’t want to share any other electrical lights, timers, pumps etc.. on the same circuit (outlet). If you don’t have the proper outlets for your needs, hire a professional electrician to make sure you can run your equipment safely with out causing a fire. Next you need to get an oscillating fan and always leave it on. Place it about 4 feet from your plants. You need to simulate wind to invigorate your plants and also, so they form solid stems that can hold the weight of your buds. You cannot have a grow room without fan(s)
OXYGEN, CO2 AND NEIGHBORS SMELLING YOUR GROW OPERATIONYour little beauties will need fresh air and you can exhaust it out thru a bathroom vent, or an exhaust fan that will remove all the air. Time it to remove the full area of your room every 10 minutes. It is required for good plant health to exhaust all the Oxygen your plants are producing. They need a fresh supply of CO2 to grow. If you don’t exhaust your grow room, your oxygen levels will heighten and plant growth will stop. If you have neighbors or smell is an issue, purchase a carbon filter with an inline fan. It will eliminate odor. I personally like the smell, so do not do this on my account but it does cut down on weed bandits and people complaining a skunk is living in the walls. Some strains are less smelly or skunky than others. But if you have neighbors, you should use a carbon filter no matter which strain your growing for your own safety.
How To Pick A StrainPick a seed that meets your smell needs, sativa dominant strains are just about useless indoors as they grow too big without bending. Remember you need to move around in your garden and any plant taller than 4 feet is only going to block the much need light to your other shorter plants, or if your only growing tall sativa’s, the light will not penetrate the bottom of the plant and it will not turn out so great. Outdoors, Sativa’s are great and can grow into small trees with excellent harvest. Indica strains and Indica cross’s (Hybrids) work best for indoor grows like BC Seed’s Thumper, Chronic, Blueberry, Fuel, Northern Lights, Elephant Bud, Oracle, Upstate, are just a few great indoor plants. Read the strain descriptions, looking for words like SOG (sea of Green) Indoor, Short or Medium Heights, Commercial strain, Indica or Indica hybrid and you cannot not go wrong in making a pick for your indoor needs.
Into Your GrowAlright 6 weeks have passed, boy time fly’s when your having fun. Now we need to sex our green jungle to eliminate the male plants. 12 hours of light is now required. 12 hours of lights on, and 12 hours of lights off. This is called the “flowering cycle”. For medical use, the female plant is the only plant you’re interested in growing to full maturity. You don’t know what the sexes of the plants are until they show you, and that’s weeks after you change your light cycle to the flowering cycle. The Male Plant often show’s it’s sex first, a few days before female plants show their sex. What you want to look for is 2 white hair looking strands growing out of those little football shapes that are appearing where the branch leaves meet at the main stalk. This is a female plant showing its pistils. Pistils are what collect pollen from the male plant and fertilization takes place. You do not want his to happen. If they have a short stalk under that little bump or hang down and have a five-sided sheath covering these bumps, it’s a male plant. Get it out of the room now. Make sure it is far away from your grow room, because even after you pull the male plant, it’s pollen sacks can continue to grow and release it’s pollen ruining your grow room. All the lady’s (female plants) will be glad you did not want any unwanted kids or seeds in this case. When a female plant produces seed, it uses THC. So if you have seedless marijuana (sensimella) all the THC that would of gone into producing seeds, is now dripping and covering THC Crystals all over your plants. This is what you want.
FEEDING YOUR PLANTS DURING THE FLOWERING STAGEAll the female plants you keep can be lifted out of its container carefully, one at a time. Now you add espona flower tone to its soil, about a cup for a 3-gallon pot. Fill the empty pot half full of the mixture and gently place the female back in pot. Also fill around its sides. Next, water with super thrive or any transplant shock mix. Follow directions.
FINISHING YOUR PLANTSYou will use this same 12-hour light cycle from now on until you harvest. No messy chemicals to mix, just add water and watch the plants grow until their ready for harvest. Probably in 8 weeks if you picked a good one from my friends here at b. c. Now if you have followed these simple directions you’re ready to remove the outer leafs, the big fan leaves that have little or no THC glands. The shiny white sticky stuff that should be coating the buds or flower clusters and any inner leafs. Any leafs not coated should be removed. Some time’s you cut half the leaf, removing the green outer part with scissors, leaving the other half of the leaf that has THC Glands left behind, as you will want to smoke this part once it’s dried. Cut your branches at the base of stalk. Hang in a dark dry area with a small fan for air circulation to prevent mold from starting. Don’t place the fan directly at the plants or they will dry out too quickly and ruin the flavor of the smoke. A line should be strung 4 feet above the fan, set to it’s lowest speed setting. You can use paper clips, unfolded half way to hang your branches. When the bare stem snaps when you bend it, it’s dry and ready to smoke
STORAGE OF YOUR MEDICAL MARIJUANAPlace in Tupperware container, glass jar, or zip lock baggy (the thicker, freezer one’s work best) anything air tight that will protect it from heat and direct sunlight and it will stay good for longer than it will be around. Small glass jars work great and you can store them in the refrigerator and let them warm before you open them or leave one out for daily use because that cold bud will suck up moisture from the air each time it’s opened and you do not want mold.
Longer Term Storage of MarijuanaUse a freezer, and make sure your marijuana is as air tight as possible, you don’t want any moisture from the air left inside the container, so make sure you don’t leave much air in your container. DO NOT take your bud out of the freezer and let it warm up to room temperature. This allows your marijuana to release it’s own moisture from within it’s leaves and cause storage problems. Left untouched in a deep freeze, you can store you bud for over a year. If you’re going to be accessing your storage container often, store it in the fridge instead of the freezer. The freezer is only for long term, undisturbed storage.
Bring Back Your Already Harvested Plants Back To LifeRe-vegetate your plants is a great option, You can do this once and still get a good bud return for your efforts, but your time, light and electricity use will be longer. When first harvesting your plants, Make sure you leave the bottom 6 branches, and all the leaf and buds intact on the stem. This part we will re-vegetate. Now continue on with your harvest cut off the rest of the branches above your re-vegetate area. Cut at 45degree angle so it will not form any rot. You will want to feed it a 20-20-20 fertilizer, 1 tablespoon to a gallon of water. Drench them with this mixture and do not forget to add the transplant product you already have from earlier (super thrive). Place this mostly harvested plant (except the bottom 6 branches) back into the grow room for 2 months at 18 hours of light. After the first month it will begin growing new leafs and branches. When it does start to regenerate, it will be needing nutrients, mix some espoma plant food, 1/2 cup to a little potting soil. At the end of 2 months, place it in a 5-gallon pot with the flower mix. Again fill as before, and in 8 weeks, or how ever long it took last time for your strain to flower; you will have buds all over again.
Re-Generate Your Plant OutdoorsIf your indoor grow finishes in the month of May, or the month you can plant outside for your location, you can plant it outside to re-grow and have a large harvest come September or October. If it gets too cold or too wet outside just before harvest, you can still easily move your plants back inside because they are still portable in your pot container. To finish them off inside, make sure you spray them with a pyrethrin based product ever 7 days for 2 weeks to kill any mites or what ever you brought in from outside because you will have problems, it always happens. If you already have an indoor growing, you may not want to infect your grow room, and take your chances leaving your plants outdoors in cold or wet weather. If you bring in your outdoor plants, and you don’t want any permanent houseguests, use raid in the green can. It works great for killing these unwanted pests. I hope I have shown you an easy way to provide for your medical marijuana needs. Written by a veteran Medical Marijuana grower, a very kind and giving person Edited by BC SEEDS. Please note BC Seeds does not recommend the use of chemicals. But, many of you want a chemical solution, so we posted this article to help you grow your medicine where legal. we do not want anyone to act in conflict with their local laws.
Mr. BC Seeds
Mr. BC Seeds is an over educated old school hippy who has been involved in the cannabis industry since the 1970's. He is one of the most experienced marijuana breeders in Canada if not the entire world. He was the first to use the most advanced breeding techniques in 2008 to create 42 of the world's strongest cannabis strains. He has been writing in-depth articles about cannabis in Canada for decades and looks forward to continue bringing you cutting edge cannabis strains for the decades to come. Mr. BC Seeds uses a "pen name" because he still travels the world collecting cannabis strains and continues researching cannabis in laboratories of non-legalized countries.