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growing weed light deprivation

Growing weed light deprivation

However, by depriving your plants of light for 12 hours per day during late spring, you can trick them into thinking that autumn has arrived early. This simulated change in day length causes them to flower earlier in the summer, allowing you to harvest the buds in July. Once the solstice has passed, you do not need to limit sunlight to achieve the second harvest in October or November.

Once you have committed to growing plants in this manner, it is important to block 100% of sunlight during the deprivation period. Allowing light to filter through the covering can significantly reduce the number of buds produced in some plants, developing into hermaphrodites.

How Does Light Deprivation Work?

All plants have internal mechanisms by which they perceive day length. This ability triggers deciduous trees to shed their leaves in the fall and open their new buds in the spring. Cannabis also responds physiologically to the longer days of May and June and the gradually shortening days in July. Of particular interest to growers is the emergence of buds in early fall.

Furthermore, plants grown under light deprivation actually yield superior buds to those grown traditionally. Because the time spent growing is shorter than usual, there is a reduced risk of mold. Customers also prefer fresh, summer plants to last year’s aging harvest. Many also report being more likely to purchase a product with the look of an indoor-grown plant that light deprivation bestows.

What Are the Benefits of Light Deprivation?

It’s common knowledge that to make plants happy, you should give them lots of sunshine, water, and fertilizer. However, successful marijuana suppliers and those in the CA cannabis industry insurance market have learned that depriving your plants of sunlight at certain times during the growing cycle actually results in higher yields. Read on to learn why light deprivation works and how you can implement the practice.

Growing weed light deprivation

Farmers typically grow seedlings or clones under supplemental light to get a strong start, and then put them under light dep conditions to finish within two months. So long as they’ve got another batch of clones or seedlings ready to go into the ground, they can do it all again in time for fall.

The benefits of growing light deprivation cannabis

It can be a game changer for a number of reasons. “It’s a great way to get some money before the typical fall harvest, so you’re not waiting so long for income,” said Rachel Turiel of Herbanology in Mendocino. About a quarter of her farmland is devoted to light dep. Her setup is nothing fancy: two hoop houses made out of PVC. The cannabis goes straight into the ground, she said.

Example of a light dep greenhouse from Advancing Alternatives.

The process may or may not be super labor intensive. Gellman’s garden is small enough that the covering and uncovering of tarps doesn’t bother him. For Casali, the task is so big, he built a pulley system that lifts a 500-pound tarp up and over the plants. As for Turiel, it’s a lot easier when her husband—measuring 6’2” versus her 5’2”—pitches in. Otherwise, “it’s one person running back and forth to tie down sides before it flies off like a sail,” she said.