All plants, including marijuana, consist of about 80% water. Therefore it makes sense that issues with the water management could cause damage to the marijuana plant. Ourdoors in the ground, the marijuana plant usually has enough soil to work with. Depending on the quality and the structure of the soil, it also helps to regulate the amount of moisture. With indoor cannabis cultivation in pots it’s highly likely that the plant gets too much or too little water. The risks indoors are a lot greater, that why watering of the marijuana plants needs to happen with the greatest knowledge and care.
The water requirement of a marijuana plant is high, but a large portion of the water is also excreted from the plant again. This occurs through evaporation from the leaves. A small amount of all the water remains behind and is used as building blocks. On the way to the ‘construction site’, the water has also helped to absorb and transport the nutrient salts and carbohydrates.
The marijuana plant possesses over a perfect biological mechanism, so it is able to manage the available water as efficiently as possible. Sometimes the plant does not succeed to adjust the available supply and demand of water properly. In almost all cases, this is due to external causes. For instance when you forget to water it, or in all enthusiasm give too much water. A lack, or an excess of water always means that the plant could be doing better. This article is part of my e-Book “ The Marijuana Grow Bible”.
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In severe or prolonged cases the marijuana plant may even die. A shortage of water has a number of consequences. Since water is essential for photosynthesis, the lack thereof will reduce the photosynthesis in the plant. Furthermore the plant will, to carefully manage the available water, close the stomata on its leaves. As a result, less water evaporates and therefore the plant also absorbs less water. Consequently, it also means that no CO2 can go through the plant.
A lack of water supply causes a stagnation of the nutrient supply from the ground as well. Not enough nutrients means a shortage in protein production. The marijuana plant will show signs of nutritional deficiency in no time. Adding fertilizer is useless, because the plant can’t absorb it anyway due to the lack of water. So the symptoms of such a nutritional deficiency are therefore secondary: they refer to another deficiency. It’s always of great importance to identify the primary issue (shortage) of a sick marijuana plant because otherwise the problems can only become greater rather than smaller.
A third consequence of a water shortage is that the marijuana plant is going to breathe faster. This is because the plant has to put in a lot more effort to loosen the remaining water in the ground. This takes a lot of energy from the plant, energy that can no longer be diverted to growth and flowering.
A lack of water can be identified by:
- drooping leaves
- leaves becoming brighter
- leaves that shrivel suddenly
- leaves that wither eventually
Determining the right diagnose is not as simple, because these symptoms look a lot like the signals the marijuana plant gives if there’s an abundance of water. This is for the simple reason that in both cases the same biological processes stagnate. When you encounter these symptoms always check to see if too much, or not enough water has been given.
Too much water causes the roots to be too wet, so they take in less oxygen. The roots themselves are affected by the moisture, soften and eventually die. The marijuana plant is very vulnerable due to its fine root system.
It takes a long time before a marijuana plant recovers from damaged roots, and a lot of things can go wrong in that time period. Not only the growth is less successful, it can also come to a complete halt. Moreover, the plant loses its vitality and becomes very vulnerable to pests and diseases.
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