Times are changing in Canada, and it is becoming more and more common to grow your own medical marijuana these days. There are tons of benefits to starting your own grow operation, such as having the ability to choose your favorite strains and nurture them along the way. If you have taken initiative to grow your own cannabis and received your ACMPR license but have yet to start growing, keep reading. Check out the basics of growing your own medical weed from the comforts of your own home, all in just 6 easy steps.
- Consider the environment – There are lots of factors when considering the environment. Obviously the main thing to consider is indoor vs. outdoor, but an indoor crop has many more benefits than an outdoor one. Indoors you’ll have much more control, and won’t have to worry as much about changes in weather and outdoor pests. Also consider the medium you wish to grow your plants in, such as soil or rockwool. Promix potting soil is typically best for indoor crops. Next step is to set up the actual grow room, which in many cases is actually a grow tent. There are lots of options in terms of size and quality, so think about how many plants you’ll have when purchasing a tent.
- Pick your ideal strain (or ten strains!) – Once you have properly tended to the environment, it is time for the fun part…picking the strains! There is no definitive answer on which strain is best because it has to do with personal preference. Consider the weed you like to smoke or the medical benefits you are looking for when choosing your strains. If you are brand new to growing, choose a strain that is known for being easy to grow like Northern Light or Aurora Indica. When purchasing seeds, be sure to buy all feminized seeds that will grow proper buds.
- Germination and seedling stage – Germinate your seeds by letting them sit in a moist paper towel for a day or so. If you have different strains, be sure to label them properly to avoid any confusion later on. Once the seeds have sprouted, it is time to pot them. Keep the seeds under light for 16 to 24 hours a day before you start the flowering process after a week or two.
- Flowering – The flowering stage typically lasts anywhere from 7 to 9 weeks, and this is when you’ll see the buds start to develop and hopefully crystallize. To being the flowering stage, give the plants 12 hours of light and 12 hours of complete darkness each day.
- It’s time to harvest! – Deciding when it is time to harvest your plants can be tricky, but the best way to tell is with a powerful magnifying glass. The trichomes – or tiny hairs – that cover the buds will start to change color. Once about 80% of these hairs have turned a cloudy color, it is time to think about harvesting.
- Dry and cure your big beautiful buds – Once you cut the plants down you’ll be eager to test your crop, but it is not quite ready just yet. You’ll have to wait until the buds are dry, and once they are dry the curing process will begin. There are several ways to cure your weed, but the best way is to leave it in an airtight container for up to one month and open the container for a few minutes each day for air circulation. Once curing is done, it is time to enjoy your homegrown cannabis!