Most growers look for ways to increase their cannabis yield.
While there’s nothing wrong with growing cannabis regularly without any plant training, you won’t make the most of the strain you’re growing without it.
However, plant training has its risks, such as being extremely stressful when used on cannabis.
Thankfully, there is a safer alternative called super cropping.
- What is super cropping?
- What are the benefits of supercropping?
- Buy high-yield seeds
- When to start super cropping your cannabis plants
- How to super crop (step by step)
- Complimentary super cropping techniques
- FAQs about super cropping
- Other pruning methods
What is super cropping?
Super cropping is a plant training method that involves stressing your plants to encourage vigorous growth. This could not be applied to autoflowers, as they don’t have enough time to recover!
However, unlike most plant training methods, supercropping doesn’t remove any of the foliage on your plants.
Instead, it involves pinching and twisting (also known as cropping) the stalks of your cannabis plant.
Because of this, many growers often ask, ‘Is super cropping high stress?’ and the answer is yes.
Another question that’s also often asked is ‘how many times can you super crop a plant?’
You can super crop a single plant multiple times during its vegetative stage.
You can even super crop different branches if you want your plant to produce more colas.
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What are the benefits of supercropping?
There are a lot of advantages to super cropping weed.
For one, cropping the stem (typically the one around the 1st and 3rd node) causes your plant to rebuild the stem but larger.
Cropping the stem allows for more efficient transport of nutrients and water around the plant since the stem is much bigger.
This process works similar to topping and fimming cannabis.
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Applying stress by pinching and twisting allows your cannabis plant’s defense mechanism to respond by growing more vigorously.
Another benefit to cropping plants is the improved structural strength of your plants’ branches and stalks by making them larger, mainly since some cannabis strains produce large and heavy buds, such as Big Bud and Critical Mass.
Speaking of plant structure, you can also use supercropping to train your plants to grow in a certain way, which is another benefit if you’re looking to find ways to reduce the height of your plants.
|Little to no equipment needed||Slow recovery time|
|Greatly reduces the height of your plants||Possible site for infection|
|Better yield and higher potency||Plants may react negatively to the stress|
|Produces stronger branches||Incorrect cropping can result in lower yields|
When to start super cropping your cannabis plants
There is a small window of time to apply supercropping effectively to your plant.
So, with that said, how early can you super crop to avoid missing that window?
The best time to super crop is when your plants veg for at least four weeks.
During this time, the branches have developed enough to handle the stress of cropping.
How to super crop (step by step)
Step 1: Choose
The first step to supercropping weed is choosing the branches you’ll crop.
Pick pliable and healthy branches; this is so you can ensure they will bounce back after the super crop.
Step 2: Bend
The next step is bending your plant’s branch. To properly bend the stem, you’ll need to damage the plant’s inner tissue by squeezing the branches.
You can do so by using the best super crop tool – your fingers.
Step 3: Tape any damage
If you couldn’t avoid damaging the exterior part of the branch with your super cropping tool, no worries.
You simply need to tape over any of the damages.
Doing so will keep your plants safe from any infection and help train them to grow laterally as opposed to vertically.
Complimentary super cropping techniques
Selective leaf pruning
You can combine other types of pruning and training techniques on your super cropped cannabis to improve its yield and condition.
One pruning technique is selective leaf pruning.
This technique involves removing fan leaves that are shading important bud sites and excess leaves that are causing overcrowding in your plant.
However, it is crucial to apply this pruning technique only to rapidly growing, healthy plants.
Branch and node pruning
Although plants efficiently absorb light, they produce excessive growths that only waste energy, even for super cropped cannabis.
Even after you uniformly spread the branches to expose all of the bud sites to light, the lower growths are still shaded by those branches.
Enter branch and node pruning. They remove the unnecessary foliage to ensure that the energy and nutrients go up to the colas of your cannabis plants.
Topping and training
Another pruning method that you can apply alongside supercropping is topping.
However, unlike the other two methods, you would need to first top your plants before super cropping them. Although the order is different, the results are similar.
Topping will increase the number of bud sites on your cannabis plants. Learn how topping cannabis plants works.
Once topped, you can then super crop any branches to train your plant to grow evenly.
Other pruning methods
Besides topping, there are more techniques to prune your plants for more yield. Find a short explanation in my pruning article, or head directly to a technique below:
Supercropping is a high-stress training (HST) technique that serves as a safer alternative to topping your cannabis.
It achieves the same results but in a way that doesn’t involve stressing your plants too much by pruning them.
However, super cropping benefits from combining other pruning techniques such as selective leaf pruning.
If you want the highest yield possible for your plants, it’s best to get cannabis seeds with strong genetics that can handle HST.
At ILGM.com, we have a large number of cannabis seeds with strong genetics that you can reliably train for great yields.
Download my free Marijuana Grow Bible to learn more tips on growing your own personal weed plants that you can supercrop as well!
FAQs about super cropping
How long does a plant take to recover from super cropping?
It depends on the genetics of your plant and how well they deal with stress. However, the average cannabis plant only needs 3-7 days to recover after being cropped. That’s why you should super crop during your plants’ late vegetation phase.
Can you super crop autos?
Super cropping autoflowers is possible, and it’s one of the few HST that you can apply on autos with the same level of discretion that you would with standard photoperiod plants. Super cropping isn’t as stress-inducing as other HSTs; moreover, by cropping your autoflowers, you can maintain uniformed branches that allow for equal light exposure for all bud sites.
Super cropping vs Monster cropping
The main difference between super cropping and monster cropping is that one simply bends the stem to produce more bud sites, while the other method involves cutting growths to create clones. Learn more about monster cropping.
Does supercropping increase yields?
Yes, since it’s a form of high-stress training, super cropping does increase the yield you get from your plants. But instead of producing multiple main stems like how topping would, super cropping helps your plants grow uniformly to ensure that all bud sites are getting enough light. On top of that, the stress brought on by bending the branches causes your cannabis to grow more vigorously, which results in larger buds.