Cannabis seeds need high humidity to germinate, this technique makes sure they are kept in a humid environment. In order to get as much germinating seeds as possible, use 2 pieces of kitchen roll and 2 similar plates. Make one piece of kitchen roll wet and place it on one plate, then put the seeds on the wet kitchen roll. Make the other piece of kitchen roll wet and lay it on top of the seeds. Cover it with the other plate turned upside down.
Keep them at 20-22 °C. A few days later, the seeds will open.
If the seeds are older or really dry, another method is recommended. Fill a glass with lukewarm water and put the seeds into the water. Most seeds will open after a few hours.
How the young plants should be handled, depends on the strain and on whether they are for indoor or outdoor growing. These growing instructions are for outdoor strains that are relatively easy to grow.
The seedlings can now be planted in small flower pots, just put them about 0,5 cm deep into the soil. Keep the soil wet, if it dries, the seedlings will die. Also, do not place the seeds in full sun. The temperature for the seedlings should be around 24 °C. After the young plants develop several leaves, they are ready to be planted in big flowering pots.
First of all, we have to prepare the soil in which the young plants can grow into strong plants. Of course, you could use regular potting soil, but this will not produce the best results. So it is recommended to make a mix:
40% potting soil
30% perlite (an industrial mineral available at any gardening shop)
The size of the flower pot depends on the strain, but generally, a small pot leads to smaller plants and a big pot produces bigger plants.
After you planted the young plants into their flower pots, you can put them outside.
The soil should never dry out, therefore you might need to water the plants twice a day. But do not add too much water either, just make sure the soil stays wet all the time.
Male and female plants
Male plants should be separated from females as soon as possible. If the females are fertilized, they will put all their effort into producing seeds and reduce THC production.
To determine the gender of your plant, you have to look at the preflowers. Preflowers appear after 4 weeks of vegetative growth from seeds. They are very tiny and missed easily. You have to search the nodes carefully, it´s best to use a magnifying glass.
The female preflowers are pear shaped and form a pair of pistils. Not every preflower opens and forms pistils. That is why you have to check the nodes very carefully.
The male preflowers are like small balls on a stick, they also do not produce pistils.
Flowering and harvesting
The exact harvesting time depends on your own flavour. You can observe the pistils with a magnifier to check when the amount of THC is at its peak. If the pistils on the bud are clear, with no colour or just slightly coloured, THC production will have reached it´s maximum.
But a lot of people prefer to wait just a little bit longer, until the pistils reach an amber colour, this means that also the CBD and CBN levels have risen.
Whatever method you choose to follow, all the leaves should be removed first.
The easy and fast way: Cut away the buds, hang them upside down, after one week the buds are dry and ready to use.
If you have more time, cut the plant on the lowest part of the stem, just above the flowering pot. This time the entire plant should be hung upside down. The ideal drying condition is a humidity of 55%. If humidity is too low, the plants will dry too fast and get a bad taste. If humidity is too high, the buds could mold. The temperature should be kept between 18-20 °C.
Make sure you do not hang the plants together too closely, since this can also raise risk of mold. After about 3-4 weeks, you can cut away the buds. Do not forget to crop away the little leaves around the buds.
The explanation why this method produces better results, is simple. With this technique, the plant continues for some time to transport minerals and sugar into the flower, giving it more and better taste and making the active components more powerful.