More often than not, weed cultivators don’t just want to harvest once or twice per year. Wouldn’t it be great if you always had some plants ready to harvest? With the perpetual harvest method, you can do exactly that!
Don’t top, prune, or pinch your autoflowers like you might do when growing conventional cannabis. With autoflowers, the only training method you should use is low-stress training (LST), where you carefully bend and tie down your plants so all bud sites are equally exposed to light. When performing LST on autoflowers, just stick with bending and skip the part where you’d top your plants. If you plan to do LST with your autoflowers as an alternative to a SOG, ensure that you start soon, but be gentle to avoid breaking your plants.
Note: Depending on where you live, there may be legal limits on how many plants you can grow for personal use, so make sure you know how many plants you can have.
TIP 14: HARVEST ALL YEAR ROUND
As for the right type of light, LEDs are now replacing HPS lighting in grow rooms and tents everywhere. They may be more expensive outright, but they use a lot less energy than HPS, so you will save massively on energy costs over time. If you’re using an LED grow light, you may want to see whether it is also equipped with UV lights. Some growers say that UV light makes for better taste and potency.
For germinating your autoflowering cannabis seeds, we recommend using the Autoflowering Starter Kit for best results.
You can find out more about making an optimal potting mix for your autoflowers in our blog **The Best Soil For Growing Autoflowering Cannabis.
With conventional cannabis, this would involve at least two separate growing areas. Luckily, with autoflowers, you can squeeze plants in different stages of growth all into the same room. As autoflowers take about 8–10 weeks from seed to harvest, all you need to do to enjoy a constant stash is offset planting by 2–4 weeks. This way, when you harvest one plant, the next is already starting to flower, waiting patiently in line.
Through cloning, you can create a new harvest with exact replicas of your favorite plant. Because genetics are identical, a clone will give you a plant with the same characteristics as the mother, such as flavor, cannabinoid profile, yield, grow time, etc. So if you come across a specific strain or phenotype you really like, you might want to clone it to reproduce more buds that have the same effects and characteristics.
Autoflowers don’t need lots of nutrients because they’re small and don’t spend much time in the vegetative cycle. They won’t need as much veg nutrients—such as nitrogen—but will need more bloom nutrients.
What are feminized cannabis seeds?
With cloning, you don’t have to get new seeds every time you want to grow another plant—you just take a cutting of the old plant—and you don’t have to germinate seeds or sex them out and get rid of the males.
Check out Johanna’s full video series on how to grow weed on Leafly’s YouTube .
If you don’t like the flavor, effects, or even the look of the bud, then it’s probably not worth growing.
Now that you know the basics of autoflowers, let’s explore each step in the growing process. The following guide covers a typical 10-week growth cycle and highlights milestones for each week.
Growing autoflowers can significantly speed up harvest time while delivering an ample yield of marijuana. Here are some autoflower pros and cons along with some growing tips to help you decide if this type of seed is right for your cannabis garden.
How to grow autoflowering plants
During the flowering stage, sticky, resinous buds will make their first appearance during week five. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Plant a seed in each hole, cover with soil, and watch for a seedling to emerge in the next several days. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
As the name implies, autoflowers automatically shift to the flowering period without intervention. Whereas the flowering of photoperiod plants is dependent on cycles of light and dark, autoflowers zip through this growth stage according to their age. Autoflowering cannabis seeds may mature in as little as seven or eight weeks from seed to harvest depending on the strain .