This garden plot looks like a small ganja field by mid-summer.
Breathable containers such as these allow air to penetrate the root zone more easily, which is important for getting oxygen to the roots. While the plant itself breaths in CO2, the roots use O2 the most and do so during the nighttime (dark cycle).
In the northern hemisphere, we say that outdoor gardens should have “southern exposure,” meaning that the garden is open mostly to the south, facing the sun’s archway throughout the day. Conversely, for those in the southern hemisphere, northern exposure is preferred due to the sun’s position in the sky relative to the Earth’s axis. Of course, for those cultivating plants closer to the equator, this is less of a concern, as the sun’s arc will pass directly overhead.
Are you a novice cannabis cultivator looking for a guide to outdoor marijuana growing? Or maybe you’re an old pro indoors, looking to take your plants outdoors. Well, you’re in luck. High Times Cultivation Editor Nico Escondido answers all of your grow questions in his weekly Nico’s Nuggets column, and this week, he’s focusing on outdoor marijuana growing for beginners.
Water & Nutrients
This backyard garden in Mexico gets solid sunshine for almost 12 hours a day in late spring.
Once you have selected your outdoor marijuana growing area, the next consideration will be its proximity to its caretakers. If the plants are on your property and easily accessible, you will have a lot more flexibility in terms of irrigating and feeding your garden.
Additionally, if your plants are farther away from your abode, you may choose to utilize time-release mineral pellets that dissolve over time and slowly release plant nutrients into the soil.
Location & Sunlight
The primary concern for any outdoor grow operation is something directly touched upon in this question—the amount of sunlight available.
If you have chosen a specialty mixture or created a proprietary blend of mediums as your grow substrate, large container pots or bags are likely the best option. Container bags for outdoor gardens come in every size imaginable with some holding over 100 gallons of medium. These bags are made of durable fabric and usually have handles sewn on. The fabric bags are the best, as they offer much more breathability than their plastic counterparts.
Having a constant breeze is good for your plants, and especially in hot climates. But if you live in an area with a lot of high winds, consider planting near a windbreak of some sort, like a wall, fence or large shrubbery.
For most first-time gardeners, we recommend buying a quality potting soil that will provide your plants with enough nutrients to get them through most of their growth cycle without having to add many amendments. This pre-fertilized soil—often referred to as “super-soil”—that can grow cannabis plants from start to finish without any added nutrients if used correctly.
Privacy and security
You also want to consider privacy and security. A lot of people want to conceal their gardens from judgmental neighbors and potential thieves. Tall fences and large shrubs or trees are your best bet, unless you live in a secluded area. Also, most state laws require that you keep cannabis plants concealed from the street.
Relying on the power of the sun, you won’t need to spend a ton of money on an outdoor grow. You’ll need some soil, fertilizer, seeds or clones, and maybe a small greenhouse to get them started. You won’t need to pay for electricity for lights, AC units, or dehumidifiers, and you can even collect rainwater.
Silty soil is the ideal growing medium. It’s easy to work, warms quickly, holds moisture, has good drainage, and contains a lot of nutrients. The best silty soil is dark, crumbly loam—it’s fertile and probably won’t need any amending.