What is hydroponic weed? How to grow hydroponic weed at home?
Growing marijuana at home can be a fun-filled and wholesome activity, but it gets a bit technical at times. Since it's become more legalized(fully in Canada and partially in the US), you may be able to grow it legally.
What is a hydroponic weed, or hydro weed?
Broadly speaking, there are two ways of growing marijuana at home:
- Using soil as the medium for growing weed
- Growing marijuana hydroponically
In ideal conditions, we would all be able to grow the cannabis plant in the open, with natural methods. However, not everyone has growing space and someone may prefer way a more controlled environment.
That is where hydroponics come in.
Hydroponic weed is the way of growing weed directly in water, without planting it in soil. All the necessary nutrition is fed straight in the container. This also means that you have two places where you can start growing: indoors or in a greenhouse.
Benefits of growing weed hydroponically
It can be a little difficult if you are just starting out. However, you're in luck. Marijuana is not the only plant that can grow in water.
Common foods like tomato and lettuce grow fantastically in water. You can even try growing them for experience before marijuana as it'll take less time and make for a better homemade sandwiches.
Hydroponic vs soil weed | Some core reasons to choose water over soil:
- More efficient: Growing in a water medium helps with you grow more efficiently in less time and get better yields in comparison to soil. They also grow faster, taking 30-50% less time.
- More control: Even though soil is a natural medium and can help grow bigger plants, you are also more likely to not have total control over the nutrients the plant receives. With hydroponics, you can make sure your grow operation has only what it needs, nothing more.
- Less testing required: Soil can lose a lot of nutrients as all the stuff you add may not reach the plants roots directly. There is also the issue of testing it for pH and PPM levels. With water, these problems although not eliminated, are easier to manage.
- Hydroponic Marijuana is easy to grow: If you choose soil, you have to scram every time the weather goes a little out of whack. In the case of hydro bud, this is not even a thing.
- Healthier and less disease prone plants: You have power to protect your marijuana from pests and pathogens that can make your plants sick.
- Safer/more discreet: As the technique is used indoor, it is easy to protect the plant from the eyes of prying neighbors or the local HOA.
Types of Hydroponic Systems: Active and Passive Hydroponics
Active hydroponic systems mostly involve using electricity to power water pumps. It also involves oxygenized water powered air stones. They will require greater use of technology and electricity.
Passive hydroponic systems are simpler and utilize capillary action to deliver nutrient to the plant's roots. They are minimalist in design and use less technology and more natural physical phenomenon.
Now, let's have a look at how to actually start growing
How to prep your grow room
1. Light up the room: Plants use light to grow. As we are growing indoors, we will need to brighten up the room. You can use any of the following methods to do this:
- White paint: You can choose different shades of white, although we recommend you choose basic flat white. Semi and full gloss options are also available in most stores selling paint.
- Aluminum foil: Classic, cheap and easy to handle. It's not the most efficient reflector though.
- Mylar: Highly reflective, it is around 90% effective. It can also make the room much hotter as it is a heat reflector. That means that proper ventilation will have to be installed in the room.
2. Grow lights: The position of the lights installed has to match how tall your plants will grow. Hanging lights are the best, although this depends more on the kind of room and your budget.
NOTE: Make sure your plants don't get burnt out with the lights. care that you don't burn or overheat your plants with your light source. You also have to ensure that the temperature doesn't drop too much.
For reference, the ideal temperature to grow weed is between 27°C to 32°C. The solution to keep the ideal temperature is simple? Use a fan for ventilation and a small heater if the room needs heating up.
Nutrients for growing pot at home
Marijuana needs two kinds of nutrients:
Micro-elements: Potassium, Phosphorous, Nitrogen, Sulfur, Magnesium, and Calcium.
Macro-elements. Copper, Zinc, Boron, Molybdenum, Manganese, Chlorine, and Iron.
These elements can be found in stores or online. To use them, you will have to create a water-based solution to create the most perfectly balanced nutrient solution.
Now that we have set up the room and are ready with the nutrient mix, let's get growing!
Instructions to grow hydroponic cannabis
Stuff you'll need: Cannabis seeds, rock wool block, nutrient solution, coco coir
- Soak the seeds for 24 hours in a bowl. Place them between two moist towels. Make sure you place the seeds at a distance so that their roots do not get tangled.
- Once the seed has germinated, transfer it to a rock wool block.
- After sprouting has begun transfer the plant into a plating medium like coco coir.
- Now start feeding your plant the micro and macronutrients along with adequately adjusted pH water (5.5 to 6.0).
- Now that our plant is growing and getting bigger, it is in the vegetative stage. During this time, give them 18 to 24 hours of light a day.
- Once they get to around a couple feet, change the light schedule to 12 hours a day. This will spur the plant to start producing buds.
- Within a coupe of weeks, the sex of the plant will become clear. Female plants grow white hair and the male plant will have grape-like balls. Make sure you remove the male plants as soon as you find them.
- In a few weeks, this process will lead to the flowering stage, which can stay for 6 to 12 weeks. During this time, just water your plant with adequate pH leveled water without the nutrients.
Voila, your hydroponic weed is ready for harvesting.
How to harvest your Hydroponic marijuana
- When is the right time to harvest? When around two-thirds of the white hairs turn an amber or brown color. Another way is to check if the trichomes in the buds are semi-brown, semi-white or full white.
- You can do this two ways: cut off buds at regular time intervals or harvest the whole plant all at once.
- Harvesting also depends on the kind of high you want to experience. If you want a euphoric and focus producing high, harvest early. Doing it later will give more relaxed high.
- You can also harvest slowly and experience all the different effects. The weed strain you choose also matters as they all have different effects..
- Cut away all the leaves. You don't need to dump them though. You can still use the cannabis leaves to make cannabutter, which is perfect for baking pot brownies.
What to do with harvested weed buds
Simply hang the broken off buds in a cool and dark setting; and let them dry out. You can check that by seeing if the buds breaks off easily under pressure.
Place these buds into sealed containers like a jar, and leave it alone for two week so the marijuana buds can get 'cured'. Just make sure to air it once a day, otherwise it can catch mold and become unfit for smoking.
If that still ends up happening, you can read this weed mold removal guide on how to remove mold from weed buds.
Storing and Hiding weed at home
To ensure your batch stays fresh and smokable, store your weed in sealed containers. Make sure you store it responsibly so it stays out of the reach of pets(weed is really bad for dogs)or kids.
For the stash that you need handy, you can store it in one of Allinbud's collection of premium weed stashboxes. All our boxes are handmade and constructed with solid steam beach wood.
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