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Tall weed plants can produce more flower buds than shorter ones, but this isn't always the case. However, if you want to grow the tallest and biggest weed plants for their huge yield, here are nine tips from our growing experts to keep in mind.
Is Growing Tall Weed Plants Better?
Cannabis plants are dioecious, meaning they grow as male or female marijuana plants, although they can be hermaphroditic (grow male and female flowers). Male marijuana plants produce pollen, while female plants produce flowers that can become pollinated.
In the wild, cannabis plants can grow for one year. Each strain has a different length of the life cycle. Marijuana plants have a flowering stage of at least two months. The plants die when they are fully mature, dropping their seeds on the ground in the fall. These germinated seeds may grow into the new breed of healthy plants in the spring.
When growing indoors, the height of the plant can be limited by the grow lights (light intensity, space between lights and plants, etc.) and indoor ceiling height. Outdoors, plants can reach as tall as possible if they have plenty of light and root space and are out of public view.
In terms of plant height, taller does not necessarily mean better, and shorter doesn't mean worse. Some indica plants may grow short but yield higher than taller sativa plants. Ultimately, plant height depends on your grow space, equipment, marijuana plant genetics, and cultivation practices.
While taller doesn’t always mean bigger yields, you can get more flower buds if you have an optimal grow set-up. If you want to grow tall plants, follow these nine expert tips to increase your plants’ height and maximize their yields.
Tip #1: Plan Early
If you want to have a successful cannabis yield, you need to start your growing planning early before the planting season. Before you put your cannabis seed in the soil, you need to have a rough timeline of your plants’ life cycle of your cannabis plant’s structure.
Ask yourself these questions to develop a strategic cultivation plan:
- How long is the cannabis plant’s germination, seedling, vegetative, and flowering stage?
- What is the best time to plant your outdoor cannabis plants in your region?
- Do you have enough vertical and horizontal space to grow the marijuana plant?
- Do you have all your cultivation supplies needed for all or most of the growing season?
- Is it legal to grow cannabis in your state, and are there any cultivation restrictions?
Tip #2: Grow Sativa Strains
Starting with the right cannabis genetics can help you grow taller plants. We recommend buying cannabis sativa strains, known for their slender and tall structure, at least compared to shorter and bushier indica varieties.
This is not a hard-and-fast rule. Sativa strain growth also depends on the plant’s growing practices and environment. If you want to get larger yields with tall-growing genetics, you need to give your plants the right care and maintenance. Look for tall-growing varieties wherever you purchase cannabis seeds or clones.
Tip #3: Grow Your Weed Plants Outdoors
In theory, growing marijuana plants outdoors gives you more vertical space to work with compared to growing indoors with a set ceiling height. In addition, tall-growing plants can get plenty of natural sunlight, nutrient-rich soil, and fresh air they need outdoors to shoot up in size.
Indoor growers can also grow tall plants with the right grow lights, light intensity, and low-stress training. They can also prune lower-yielding bottom buds that don’t get enough light to allow the plant to focus its growth on its higher flowering buds..
Tip #4: Give Roots Room to Grow
It all starts with a healthy and growing root system. Generally, the more room you give your roots to grow, the larger and taller the plant will be. We recommend a large fabric container with living soil. Find out more about choosing the right container size in our blog post.
Some commercial growers use extra-large containers exceeding 200-gallons in size. Growing in fabric pots allows you to move your plants outdoors to get the best light, shade, or protection from environmental threats. Just make sure to keep them out of public view.
Tip #5: Control Pests on Your Cannabis Plants
A pest infestation can happen if you don't regularly check your plants for common pests such as gnats, spider mites, aphids, thrips, and many more marijuana pests. A pest infestation can devastate your crop. Pests can eat your cannabis plant leaves and buds and significantly affect your plants’ health. Explore different pest prevention strategies in our blog post.
Tip #6: Check the pH level
The pH in your soil or nutrient solution can significantly affect the absorption of nutrients and minerals found in the grow medium. If the pH is outside of your plant's optimal pH zone, your marijuana plant can struggle to absorb nutrients, leading to stunted growth, compromised health, and a limited yield.
Tip #7: Extend the Vegetative Stage
Cannabis plants have their seedling stage where they grow just a few leaves, their vegetative stage, where they grow most of their foliage, and their flowering stage where they grow their flower buds.
Many expert growers recommend leaving your marijuana plant longer in its vegetative stage, if possible, to extend its height, which can double during its flowering stage. Just make sure you have enough room in your growing space for the extra size you expect.
Tip #8: Support Your Cannabis Plant
As cannabis plants grow taller and bigger during the flowering stage, their main stalk and branches may be too heavy, not to mention heavy winds or rain that can add more pressure and height. To support your tall weed plants, you may need to practice low-stress training during the flowering stage.
Low-stress training can include screen of green (SCROG) and super-cropping, which involves bending the branches to create an even canopy. Consider bamboo sticks, tomato cages, or metal stakes to support the stalk and branches to support taller plants.
Tip #9: Continue Your Cannabis Education
Giving your cannabis plants the proper care and maintenance throughout their life cycle can provide them the best chance of growing big and tall. Enroll in Cannabis Training University’s online marijuana school to learn more on growing marijuana plants indoors and outdoors from the world's top growers.