It’s mid-summer, the first week of August, for North American outdoor marijuana growers.
Depending on where you’re located, your outdoor marijuana plants have another 4-8 weeks in grow phase, but day lengths are dropping, and some marijuana strains may be slowing their veg growth already.
This is a crucial time for your outdoor marijuana plants, especially if they’re growing in the ground in a remote location rather than in movable containers in your backyard or in an easy to get to off-site location.
If you haven’t already topped your outdoor marijuana plants, now’s the time to do it.
Topping is as simple as cutting the topmost leaf set from the main branches in the upper 20% of your marijuana plants.
And while you have your pruners and clippers handy, also cut off any branches growing within nine inches of the ground, and thin out “sucker branches” throughout the cannabis plant.
Sucker branches are spindly, weak, thin branches, often coming off main branches.
You can see they’ll never be able to support big buds. What they can do is block air flow inside the plant canopy. This promotes disease, and blocks C02 and moisture exchange, especially during hot, humid weather.
Sucker branches consume nutrients and water, but because they’re hidden in the canopy, they don’t get sun on them so they don’t contribute to photosynthesis metabolism.
If there’s a way for you to do container watering or controlled tank irrigation watering for your outdoor marijuana plants, mid-summer is a good time to use hydroponics nutrients and supplements products.
Enrich your root zones with beneficial microbes in Voodoo Juice. Use B-52 vitamin B booster. Use a pH Perfect hydroponics base nutrient.
Even the richest soil in the world will benefit from hydroponics nutrients and supplements, especially when you include pH Perfect base nutrients that create an ideal pH in the root zone to increase the speed and efficiency of nutrients absorption.
I also suggest foliar spraying. Use Rhino Skin and B-52 in a 125 ppm, 5.8 pH spray on the top and bottom side of your marijuana leaves.
It’s hard to get water to remote marijuana crops.
With increasing drought across the American West and Midwest, surface water and groundwater has dried up.
Serious “guerilla” outdoor growers get vans that they can use to carry large containers such as huge garbage cans or horse irrigation containers.
Some of these containers can store 100+ gallons of water.
Marijuana growers sometimes use camelback portable backpack water containers to get the water from their large container (or a lake or river) to their marijuana plants.
Again, if you have control over water and can get it into a container before you apply it to your marijuana plants, it’s a fantastic opportunity to stimulate your outdoor plants with nutrients and supplements like you’d use in an indoor hydroponics garden.
For example, if you use pH Perfect base nutrients in the root zone, you optimize your root zone to the best pH for nutrients absorption.
In bloom phase outdoors, you get 10-20% higher yield and increased cannabinoid potency by supplementing with potassium silicate, phosphorus, vitamins, kelp, carbohydrates, and other bloom boosting components such as you find in products like Big Bud, Nirvana, Rhino Skin, B-52, and Bud Candy.
In particular, Bud Candy used outdoors is going to help your cannabis plants a lot, especially if you’ve added beneficial microbes such as Voodoo Juice.
When you top your plants, or when you have marijuana genetics (usually Kush and Indica cannabis strains) that grow out into a bushy shape rather than into a Christmas tree shape, it’s wise to support your plants.
More and more I visit outdoor marijuana gardens that have massive plants three feet or more in diameter and taller than five feet.
The growers almost always use plant supports.
The most successful outdoor marijuana plant support I’ve seen is a cage that goes all the way around the plants, with net support at 1-3 levels in the plant’s interior.
This kind of net support has to be done as the plant grows, so the growing tips grow through the net and develop more height above it.
This means vertical support is offered so longer, heavier buds can develop without breaking the branches.
Other outdoor marijuana growers put sturdy stakes around and/or in the interior (metal stakes are the best) and then tie plant branches to the stakes using green plastic plant tie ribbons.
The truly monster outdoor marijuana yields you see in the videos embedded in this article often are achieved in part because the plant is supported.
If you’ve fed your marijuana plants properly and they’re not pure Sativa (which tends to produce light, thin buds), you either support your plants or some of your bloom phase branches are almost sure to break from the weight of heavy buds.
If your outdoor marijuana plants are in pots instead of in the ground, mid-summer is the time to carefully transplant them into larger containers.
To get full benefits from outdoor marijuana potential, I’d go for a pot size of at least 10 gallons if not higher.
Check out these camo grow bags.
When you transplant your outdoor marijuana plants in mid-summer, it’s a good idea to put in a layer of enriched material at the bottom of your container.
The enrichment should be fruit bat guano and a smaller amount of earthworm castings. Only use a ratio of one part additive to ten parts soil.
If your outdoor marijuana plants are experiencing mid-summer drought conditions and the forecast is for more drought and not much if any rain, when you transplant to larger pots, you should add in a water-holder material such as Grodan rockwool.
Grodan rockwool comes in various water-holding types, and also comes as loose rockwool, slabs, formatted grow cubes, or smaller cubes.
Ask Grodan or your hydro store what would work best for you to make your root zone more dense so it holds water better.
Remember that cops and thieves start looking for ripened buds starting in mid-September.
You can confound these idiots if you have portable outdoor marijuana plants, and if you have an indoor grow happening nearby.
What you do is move your plants indoors into total darkness after they’ve had 12 hours of light every day. When you give them a 12-12 cycle for the rest of the season, they’ll finish before regular outdoor marijuana crops finish.
They’ll be cut and dried long before the copters start flying!
For more information on growing marijuana in a combined indoor and outdoor environment, read this article.
And as always—watch the videos embedded in our articles. They give you information that would take too long to explain via words only.
Outdoor marijuana growing involves more risk, luck, and worry than indoor marijuana growing but the rewards can make it worth it.
A properly cared-for outdoor marijuana plant can give you two pounds or more of dried bud, and you don’t have to pay for the sun, C02, or wind.
I sincerely hope you and your outdoor marijuana plants enjoy the rest of the summer and that you get megatons of sticky buds from your outdoor season.