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What Do Marijuana Plants Need

What Do Marijuana Plants Need

6 Vital Elements That Marijuana Plants Need:

The most confusing part in growing marijuana plants is knowing exactly what they need and how much they need it. In fact, most growers experienced many failures in this area before they start growing healthy weed. Indeed, it takes a lot of time and effort to achieve this positive result. But the right knowledge helps to make the process move along faster.

The first thing to know about the cannabis plants is that they are generally fast-growing and extremely independent. However, they still benefit from a well-balanced nourishment. As a result, this strengthens the plant, increases their resistance to diseases, and accelerates their growth. All in all, it makes them much easier to cultivate. But best of all, this stimulates them to produce high yields and potent buds that we enjoy.

As such, marijuana plants flourish when they receive all the necessary elements to help them thrive. But what are the specific ingredients that they crave? For first time growers, learning about these basic marijuana needs is essential. Not only are they required for growth, but a lack or excess of these things can be a cause of stress for the plants. Thus, we have more reasons to be familiar with them.

So, in this article, we will cover the various requirements of the cannabis plants and how to make sure that they are met. In essence, the best way to get a satisfying harvest is to provide a nurturing and hospitable environment.

6 Key Elements to Grow Healthy Marijuana Plants

The first step to getting the best results in growing marijuana plants involves getting to know the key factors that directly affect its growth. This includes familiarity with specific amounts and values that are suitable for the plants. To make this step easy to accomplish, here is a quick guide on how to optimize these variables.

  • Adequate Water
Adequate Water

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Water is the foundation of life. As we know, all living things depend on this element for nourishment. This is especially true in marijuana plants as water plays a variety of crucial roles for sustainability. To name a few, it lends vigor and flexibility to the stems and regulates internal temperature.

So, no wonder that plants will most likely suffer a lot when they get too much or too little of this element. In overwatering, the roots can get choked with the overabundance of water that they will struggle to get oxygen. On the other hand, underwatering can get them too thirsty and unable to control the heat.

Thus, it pays to know the correct watering practices. Learning about the proper ways of watering helps to avoid committing these newbie mistakes. Fortunately, there are easy ways to remedy these problems and help the plants recover in no time.

  • Correct Temperature and Humidity
Correct Temperature and Humidity

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The right temperature and humidity play a huge role in the growth of healthy cannabis plants. In germination, a gentle heat is crucial in root formation. As the plant grows into maturity, the ideal temperature floats between 20 and 25 degrees Celsius to optimize growth.

In hot temperatures, the plant can lose a significant amount of moisture which can lead to stress. In contrast, very low temperatures can cause the plant to stop absorbing and circulating vital nutrients. The same goes for humidity. So, if we want happy and healthy plants, we must take the time to check and control both variables.

  • Good Soil
Good Soil

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One of the prerequisites in growing cannabis is to choose the best soil we can find. If we start with a bad one, we can end up with weak and sick plants. Look for the potting soil that has the following traits.

  • Balanced pH Level

The right pH value in the soil helps the roots absorb more nutrients. For marijuana plants, the ideal acid-basic balance is anywhere that is close to 7. But even the best soil can exhibit imbalances in the pH level once it is overcrowded with nutrients. Therefore, growers must be vigilant in regularly checking this variable to make sure that is optimal for the roots.

  • Good Drainage

In choosing the right soil, we must consider how well it drains water. As we know, the roots will have a hard time taking in oxygen when water pools in the grow medium. But at the same time, we don’t want the type of soil that easily runs water and leaving little for the plants to drink. Therefore, stay away from clay and sand-based soils. Most growers use a potting mix that has perlite to facilitate good drainage.

  • Right Amount of Nutrients
Right Amount of Nutrients

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Nutrients are crucial for marijuana plants to produce bigger and richer buds. Moreover, a lack of these elements slows down growth and makes plants susceptible to pests, molds, and diseases. On the other hand, an excess can alter the pH level of the soil or causes nutrient build up that prevents root absorption.

  • Macronutrients

Marijuana plants consume a lot of these macronutrients to support their rapid growth. But more importantly, they are the basic needs for survival of the plants. These include nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium.

Each mineral plays a significant role throughout the life cycle of the plants during different times. So, to get the best results, growers must know how to adjust and balance their amounts.

  • Micronutrients

Examples of micronutrients that the cannabis plants need are calcium, manganese, zinc, copper, and iron among others. While the plants consume only trace amounts of these minerals, a deficiency or excess can be a serious problem.

  • Proper Light
Proper Light

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To manufacture food, the plants require a good amount of light to convert carbon dioxide into sugars. Therefore, not enough light is detrimental to growth. Specifically, plants in this situation tend to stretch to get to the source of light. In effect, they become thin with very few leaves.

On the other hand, too much light can burn the leaves and weaken them. So, make sure to adjust the distance of the light indoors to avoid problems. Outdoors, this could be a little difficult to control, but we can always try to position the plant directly under the sun for optimal exposure.

Aside from nourishment, the light is also crucial for the transition of the plants to the flowering stage. Hence, the grower must fully understand the use of this element.

  • Sufficient Air
Sufficient Air

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A well-ventilated grow room is a must for growing indoor marijuana. If we want to grow healthy plants with huge buds, then we must make sure that they always get fresh air. As a bonus, this also helps in minimizing the powerful scent of the weed.

  • Carbon Dioxide

After water, the plants require carbon dioxide to maintain their overall health. As mentioned, this element is converted to sugar which the plants convert to energy. Therefore, a good amount of carbon dioxide is essential for them to thrive.

To get sufficient amount of this element, most growers install CO2 generators in their grow area. This usually results to a high yield of large buds.

A Well-Balanced Environment Produces a Good Harvest

To get the best out of the marijuana crop, we must make sure that all the essential elements are available. Specifically, they must be in the right amount to positively affect the harvest. The good news is, it is easy to achieve this with the right knowledge and skills.

Therefore, when planning to start growing cannabis, always do the research first. The rest comes easily once we identify all the necessary variables. Of course, we still must hone the skills on how to make them suitable for the plants. But this is possible with patience and a lot of practice.

So, let’s start doing things right. To get the best results, study the basics about each element and learn to balance them to create the best harvest.

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Comment Section

46 thoughts on “What Do Marijuana Plants Need

By Pete on 17 May 2015

Do u need yo change your grow bulbs yo flower bulbs when u use auto flower seeds ? What is the best ?

By e on 6 August 2015

veg period last how long, and do you slowly add flower booster at the beginning of flowering or what?

By latewood on 8 August 2015

It is a good idea to change from blue to red light spectrum for best results; But not absolutely necessary. 🙂 Please join our support forum for many ideas and support from a wide range of knowledgeable members.

By latewood on 8 August 2015

You can add Bloom Booster when you start flowering. Follow the dorections on the bottle.
I suggest you join our support forum, so that we may share more information from many expert growers.

By Chayanne on 16 October 2015

Are the nutrients mixed together ?

By latewood on 17 October 2015


I can only assume that you are about our nutrients; "marijuana Booster". There are 3 parts to Robert's Nutrient system.
1.Grow Booster - For use in the vegetative stage of your grow.
2. Flower Booster - This is for the bloom phase of your grow; From transition to about 4-6 weeks in flower.
3. Mass Booster - This is used to bring out the optimum amount of oils,and to bulk up the weight mass which is ocurs at the end of a successful grow.

By latewood on 17 October 2015

Part 2...

You use each part as directed during the phase of grow you are currently in. You never mix any of the 3 concentrates tog ether without water.
Remember; Always mix your nutrients and additives in the amount of water measure that is called for in your particular grow schedule.

By ron cummings on 12 January 2016

my indoor plants are about 24" high and some of the leaves are turning yellow. What do you think is the problem?

By David varner on 15 January 2016

Hi Robert
Alwayse enjoy receiving mail from ilgm. Recieved my seeds haven't germed them yet still preparing my room, seeds are dark and Shiney but they look overly small to me I hope they germ ok, should have my room ready in a week or so then I'll germ have a great night.

By Jennifer ILGM on 15 January 2016

Great David, keep us posted!

By timmy moton on 18 January 2016

are cfl good to grow with indoor

By Bruce Greene on 1 April 2016

How do obtain thing. I used this system before but I'm forget

By Jennifer ILGM on 4 April 2016

Hi Bruce, not sure what you mean.

By latewood.ILGM on 18 January 2016

CFlL is a cheap way to provide minimal but, adequate light to your plants. On the other hand; If you invest in 125w-200w CFL lamps you will do fine. Smaller CFL lamps can be used for the vegetative phase. I prefer 400-600w digital lamp system from Ippower

By latewood.ILGM on 18 January 2016

Check our Support forum for links to Ipower digital lamp systems in the ILGM buyers guide

By jrock on 11 March 2016

I need a step by step guide to design layout grow set up. I'm looking for a complete guide that will show me how to build the grow site with dimensions and sizes and material list. I plant to grow 36 -72 plants. Do you know where I can get that information?

By Rhonda Norris on 16 March 2016

I have the three pack of boosters, but I don't know when to use them. Could you help me out by making me a simple list of when I should change over to the next fertilizer. Thanks

By Jennifer ILGM on 18 March 2016

Hi Rhonda, did you contact support? They can mail you the feeding schedule.

By Jeff on 20 May 2016

I received my seeds in a timely manner, well packaged and discreet. I decided to start with just two seeds since I am new at this. I placed my two seeds in two peat pots containing "germinating" soil. I has one seed that looked like it had been crushed, (the external shell was cracked and displaced. I soaked the two seeds in plain water. The "cracked" seed sank in about an hour so I planted it right away. The second seed sank in about 5 hours so I planted it right after it sank. 4 days later both seeds are up and making leaves!! It's like having a new additions to the family!! I have a plan to create my own grow box with a few items that I have on hand or can easily get. I hope to keep this site posted on the progress. Here goes...can't wait.

By Jennifer ILGM on 23 May 2016

Thanks for sharing Jeff, we love to hear from fellow growers.

By Mark on 2 November 2016

My tips are Browning on tip of leaves on my critical kush what can I do oh 6.5

By latewood.ILGM on 3 November 2016


It is evident that you have either burnt the tips with light or over fertilized your plants. It is hard to give you an informed decision with so little information.

I suggest that you join our support forum and, we will be able to help you our. When you join; Look around for topics with burnt tips. We have friendly members and expert staff always willing to help.

Happy growing 🙂

By Karen on 18 November 2016

Help! I purchased a growth chamber from DEALERZ.COM and it is designed to support growth of 6 plants, but I was concerned that 6 plants would be too crowded in the closet, so only grew three. It's been six weeks and I have beautiful plants, but no flowering stage. Switched over to 12 hours of light and 12 hours of dark 5 days ago. Pruned plants because they were too close to LED light. Proper nutrients added weekly based upon instructions that came with growth chamber. What am I doing wrong? Any help would be appreciated.

By latewood.ILGM on 22 November 2016


I don't see where you mentioned an issue. "No flowers" You won't see flowers for23-4 weeks from switching to 12/12, and then bud will develop from there.

It might benefit you to join our support forum. We have many friendly and knowledgeable members always will to help and share. See you there 🙂

By Alan on 15 January 2017

Hi when you first plant your seeds do you need fans

By latewood_ILGM on 16 January 2017

they will form strong stems! 🙂
You need a small oscillating fan as soon as your seeds pop and become seedlings. Thie fan will gently vibrate the seedlings and

By George Graeber on 3 February 2017

Salts are tough on yields. Fertilizers contain salts . Get top yields by reducing salts.
MKP is rated lowest in Salts out of all soluble blends of fertilizers.

Compare Salt Levels of Popular Soluble Fertilizer formulas


Fertilizer Formula Salt Level
High to Low
Potassium chloride 120.1
Urea 46-00 74.40
UAN 32 71.10
Potassium nitrate 13-0-46 69.50
Potassium Thiosulfate KTS 0-0-25 68.00
CAN 17 65.00
NABTA-LIB 12-6-24 60.05
NABTA-LIB 15-15-30 51.40
NABTA-LIB 20-20-20 50.15
Magnesium Sulfate 44.80
Potassium sulphate 0-0-52 42.60
NABTA-LIB 15-30-15 40.99
NABTA UrP 17-44-0 30-40*
Diamonium phosphate 29.20
NABTA MAP 12-61-0 26.70
NABTA MKP 0-52-34 8.40

The Salt Index is based on the relative comparison to sodium nitrate. The Salt Index is the measure of the Salt
concentration that fertilizer induces in the soil solution.
Because Nabta MKP 0-52-34 (mono potassium phosphate) is Sodium free, Chloride free, and Lead free, it is possible to apply both as a drip/drench or as a foliar.... or both.. If you want to impress your friends with extra large buds apply MKP. Nabta MKP is Pharmaceutical grade, Food grade and Ag grade.

By John Jakobs on 13 April 2017

Can you manage the soil's ph by using PH balanced water on a regular basis? I have the ability to regulate my water's PH

By latewood.ILGM on 15 April 2017


Yes and No. By using properly PH 6.5 you can manipulate the dailt 1st drink. The best way to insure proper PH in soil is to add Dolomitic Lime. Happy growing. Com see us in the forum – I❤️GM

By Stephen L. on 26 April 2017

Where do I measure temperature and humidity? Is it at the top of the canopy or down by the top of the planting pot?

By Shane Locke on 2 July 2017

Yes measure the canopy on both sides & also measure about 1-2feet under the canopy & make sure there is plenty of air flow through the garden.Lockey

By paul on 19 January 2018

Got my blueberry auto flowering seeds about 2 weeks ago and set them in damp paper towel 4 days ago and all 5 germinated! I have high expectations.

By Cindy on 21 January 2018

Looking for investors in Oregon farm. We have two tax lots and lots of water.

By Peck on 28 February 2018

Hi guys, I’ve been with ILGM for about 4-5months. All of my seeds have germinated & produced great results for my outdoor grow(Southern Hemisphere). I am now looking forward to beginning to grow indoors. Is there a beginner set-up? Or tent/light package available for a novice who only wants to grow 1plant at a time & keep the grow as basic as possible? Thank you & happy growing🙂!

By Jim Jacobs on 9 March 2018

your site on how to harvest is not working. Can you tell me what I have to do.

Jim Jacobs

By latewood_ILGM on 14 April 2018

Jim Jacobs,

I am not aware of a how to harvest site. We have a Blog, a Support forum and a seed shop. Pwerhpas you should just join us at

By latewood_ILGM on 26 September 2018

Join our forum for expert guidance and a friendly learning environment

By Gayle on 11 April 2018

I want to grow two plants at a time I’m thinking a 4 X 4 tent with a 1000 watt full spectrum led Not sure though if my tent and light are correct. I’m researching before I buy.

By latewood_ILGM on 14 April 2018


A 4x4' tent is perfect for 2 plants and you can achieve max yield by growing just 2 plants in that space. Air circulation will be good, and there will be space for the plants to branch out. I have grown 1.5 LB. in a 4x4' tent. Genetics is the key to successful growing.

visit our seed shop for the best genetics and guarantee on the W3. 🙂

Happy growing

By Gayle on 17 May 2018

I’m thrilled to tell you I’ve got three plants in the vegetation phase. I went with the white widow beginner package. Tomorrow I’m planning CO2 generating with dry ice and hot water. So far my little grow hobby is thriving. Thanks for all your guides and valuable information

By Elizabeth Johnson on 28 May 2018

A pleasant and helpful article for a new grower like me. I learn some tips to grow cannabis from this article and apply them while growing cannabis. I started growing cannabis three months ago after I got my MMJ card from the OnlineMedicalCard and got a good percentage of female flowers in my harvest.

By Danyel Smith on 9 September 2018

Hey I am so new to this an need to know if my plant is OK or not it grew the first two real leaves bout 5 days ago an now there is one more leaf an I thought they come in 2 at a time is this normal

By Jennifer on 16 September 2018

What size container do I need for growing one plant?

By Stacy ILGM on 18 September 2018

It depends on how big you want your plants to grow but in general we advise to go for a 3 or 5 gallon pot.

By latewood_ILGM on 26 September 2018


I suggest you join us at: and allow us to guide you to a successful grow.

Happy growing

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