Marijuana growing on soil
Once you have your seeds, the next step is to ensure your marijuana plant gets off to the best possible start. Preparing the best soil and buying the right equipment are the crucial next steps in developing an awesome cannabis crop. You can grow your marijuana indoor or outdoors and even with a very low budget you can get great results. You just have to be creative and make sure you read a lot about growing marijuana.
Numerous growers across the globe choose to cultivate their product in hydroponic garden systems. Because marijuana plants can use nutrients as soon as they are absorbed, cannabis often grows extremely fast in hydroponic gardens. However, the time, equipment and skill required to successfully maintain a hydro system is far beyond the scope and goals of this beginner section (click here for information about setting up a hydro garden). Ultimately, the best way to be a single, self-sufficient grower is to go back to basics—pick up your seeds and get ready to get your hands dirty.
The Importance of Soil
To a plant, soil is a good portion of the world. Soil provides a good anchor against high winds and pounding rain. Soil carries water to thirsty roots, which also absorb nutrients that enable a plant to grow strong. A good soil absorbs several times its own weight in water and holds that water like a sponge, keeping it available to your plants’ root systems for as long as possible before evaporating. A good soil remains loose, whether wet or dry, with enough density to allow roots to gain a strong grip, but airy enough to permit easy expansion of nutrient-absorbing root tendrils as they spread to accommodate a growing plant’s needs. Conversely, a poor soil can hamper your plants’ growth and cause them to be stunted, or even just prevent them from achieving their full potential, so it pays to start with the best soil you can get.
Ultimately, whether you decided to mature your plant indoors or outside, soil is going to be a key ingredient in your success. If you’re following the suggested order of this marijuana grow guide, then you’re going to grow your plant from its most infantile stage as a seed up through mature harvesting. If you’re working with a cutting or already have a small plant, eventually your greenery is going to outgrow its current home, and soil is going to be a primary concern when repotting.
As you grow your crop, your plants are going to go through several different stages in their life cycle (see “Marijuana Life Cycle” section). The supplies needed for growth will change depending on how old your plant is. The next articles contain information that will help you decide what equipment you need for the initial “sprouting” of your seeds (the stage where you trigger the growth process itself). Beyond this stage, you will want to consider the best soil type for your plant once it’s ready to be placed in a permanent container.
Soils That Work: Store Supplies and Cutting Your Dirt
Peat plugs are probably the simplest and most convenient starting media. These mesh-covered cylinders of dried sphagnum moss are a good choice for starting most types of plants from seeds. They can be found at any home garden and supply store and usually come with a small terrarium top and shallow tray for easy storage.
To get started simply indent a small hole, half an inch deep, into the top of the plug using a pencil, drop in one or two seeds, and set the sown peat plugs into the tray. Add a half an inch of water to cover the bottom. Peat plugs readily absorb water, keeping seeds on their tops exposed to the moisture needed to make them sprout, but they also radiate moisture rapidly through evaporation, so be sure to keep sown plugs well watered.
If you are not able to find peat plugs, potting soil is a readily available and inexpensive seed starter that might be found anywhere from the garden center at Walmart to grocery stores. Both potting soil and the similar (but usually more expensive) composted manure are rich in the nutrients needed to nourish sprouts of most species into strong and vigorous seedlings. Just gently press a seed about halfway down into the soil, and then keep the soil moist and soft at all times, because ultradense potting soil becomes hard as mortar if allowed to dry, quickly strangling plants rooted in it.
Marijuana growers and gardeners alike tend to “cut” store-bought potting soil with sand or whatever local soil might be available. A mix of fifty-fifty that blends potting soil with leaf or grass mulch, dried sphagnum (peat) moss, or almost any local dirt or sand that will grow a plant provides more than enough nutrition for the first critical stages of growth, so a sack of potting soil can cover twice as much. More importantly, the addition of nonclumping media prevents potting soil from hardening, which is critical to the unrestricted expansion of roots as a growing plant seeks more nutrition, water, and a stronger grip on the earth.
Making Your Own Soil
If you live on or near a farm, or if you’re willing to compost your own rich growing soil from animal scat and other organics, you can create your own highly effective soil. Cow and especially pig excrement mucked out from stalls and sties, then aged a year or more, is an outstanding growing medium, even when mixed half-and-half with sand. Also look to excavation companies that collect topsoil from job sites and often sell it cheaply by the pickup load; good black topsoil can be used for starting healthy marijuana plants as-is.
Changing the Soil of Your Grow Plot
Even after your seeds have successfully sprouted, soil quality can have a serious impact on the life cycle of maturing marijuana. If you choose to grow exclusively indoors your ability to control the soil quality increases tremendously. However, if you decide to sow your product outdoors, you can use rich ready-made soil to create an oasis of healthy growth in places where marijuana couldn’t grow by itself. That has been exploited to good advantage by generations of outlaw pot farmers who use this “oasis method” to create small, hard-to-see plots of thriving hemp plants in environments where drug cops wouldn’t expect to find them growing and in terrain where most intrepid outdoorspeople won’t stumble onto them.
No two ideal growing spots will be the same, but most soils can be made to support cannabis plants with the judicious application of plain old plant food and fertilizer.
Thanks for reading and good luck growing your own marijuana. Please like, share or comment the article. And if you have any questions about growing marijuana go to our forum or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t forget to visit my webshop for high quality marijuana seeds.