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Cannabis plants are dubbed as a weed. Why? People say it is because the plant grows like a weed. This is true in some instances.
On that theory, you should be able to throw cannabis seeds wherever you can find a patch of soil. Then, after a few days, in the right conditions, there would be a cannabis plant growing. Seems simple enough doesn’t it?
The cannabis plant may grow like this. But the quality of the cannabis flower or buds that your plant will produce probably won’t be of the highest quality. For good quality buds, you need rich, healthy soil and a nutritional growing environment.
Below, we are going to look at the most effective way to feed or give nutrients to your cannabis plants. We will look at different soil nutrients to give the perfect balance to your cannabis plants for them to thrive.
What Are The Correct Nutrients For Your Weed Plant?
Let’s start by understanding the basics of your cannabis plant.
Cannabis plants have two types of growing cycles, one being vegetative state and the other being the flowering state. While the plants are in these states or cycles they require specific nutrients from the soil to help the plant strive.
Vegetative State & Understanding Macronutrients for Cannabis Plants
The vegetative state is when your cannabis plant is focusing all their energy on growing as big as possible.
What does my cannabis need to grow as big as possible? The answer is simple. All your cannabis plant needs are:
- UV light – this can be in the form of sunlight (outdoors) or Light Emitting Diode (LED) light (indoors)
- Water – all life on earth needs H20 to survive
- Nutrients – nutrient-rich soil is one of the most important factors for producing perfect cannabis buds. But be careful not to add too many nutrients to the soil, you need a perfect balance! More on that later.
Cannabis Vegetative State Nutrients Ratio
During your cannabis plant’s first state of growing (vegetative state), it has a very specific requirement to grow and thrive. This is in the form (N, P, K) or Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium or also known as macronutrients.
These three elements need to be given in a controlled ratio. This is to prevent burning your cannabis plants, which can be caused by overfeeding of nutrients.
Best practice during vegetative state and early flowering is to have a higher ratio of nitrogen compared to the potassium and phosphorus. Common ratios found are (3-1-2) or 3 parts nitrogen, 1 part potassium and 2 parts phosphorus.
As long as the soil has a higher nitrogen ratio, your plant will thrive during this period. There are plenty of great products on the market in South Africa to keep an eye out for.
Cannabis Nutrients For Soil Early/Pre Flower State.
Let’s look at the best example of when your cannabis plant would want to turn and start producing flowers, commonly known as buds.
In nature, the flowering state will occur during the season change from summer to winter. This is due to the decrease in the amount of light the plant is exposed to and the drop in temperature.
So the early flower stage – or pre flower – would occur during autumn, in a natural environment.
Ideally in a controlled environment for your cannabis plants, what you would want to do is start by reducing the amount of nitrogen the plant would receive from the soil. This will help your plant to get itself ready for the full stage of flowering. While still giving sufficient nitrogen and without giving the plant a shock, which could be detrimental to your plant’s growth.
Cannabis Flowering Nutrients
We spoke about the ratio of NPK favouring the amount of nitrogen during the vegetative state.
During the flowering stage, however, the best practice is to have a higher level of both phosphorus and potassium than nitrogen. But this does not mean you should stop giving your cannabis plant nitrogen altogether.
A good flowering ratio of nutrients for your cannabis plant is a 1-3-2 NPK ratio, meaning 1 part nitrogen 3 parts phosphorus and 2 parts potassium. Be careful when trying to find the best ratio for your strain of cannabis as adding too much of one element will reduce your cannabis plants’ ability to absorb micronutrients such as zinc, iron, and copper. But more on the micronutrients later.
Micronutrients For Cannabis
Above, we spoke about the macronutrients for your cannabis plant to thrive. Now we are going to talk about the micronutrients or supplements to help aid and fine-tune your plant’s growth and flowering potential.
Some of the micronutrients that help supplement your cannabis plant are:
These are only used in very small amounts. The general rule of the green thumb is to use a hundredth as much as the macronutrients.
In the commercial brands, you will generally find the following three:
- Iron (Fe),
- Manganese (Mn)
- Boron (B)
Marijuana Vegetative Nutrient Products
Let’s take a look at some products that you can find in South Africa to support the soil you already have.
Directions of use are: dilute the Nitrosol mixture with water recommended ratio is 1:200 meaning 1 teaspoon (5ml) per 1 litre of water.
Then, use the solution you have made as the watering fluid. Pour around the roots weekly during periods of rapid growth (vegetative state) or immediately after the plant has suffered some sort of stress, such as repotting. The solution should be incremented into a four-week cycle.
Seagro is a fish-based nutrient emulsion product in a liquid form, which helps keep soil healthy and full of nutrients.
An application of Seagro every two weeks will keep your cannabis plants healthy and thriving during their vegetative state.
For best application: Mix 5ml of Seagro to 1 litre of water, the dosage does not have to be precise.
You can make a spray form the mixture for the foliage of your cannabis plant. When applying it, soak the leaves completely for instant absorption.
Or you can water the soil and your plant’s root system will absorb the nutrients it requires.
What a cool name it already gives us the feeling that we are going to grow super fat and sticky buds. Now that’s out the way, let’s look at the vegetative state of your cannabis plant and see how swamp juice can help your seedling grow!
The best time to start feeding your cannabis plant Swamp Juice is when the cotyledon leaves have died off and the true cannabis leaves have formed.
Directions for the first stage of feeding:
- Week 1 – 4 add 1g Veg Part 1 to 12 litres of water and allow to dissolve. Add 1g Veg Part 2 to the same water and dissolve.
- Week 5 – 8 of Veg: Add 1g Veg Part 1 to 8 litres water & allow to dissolve. Add 1g Veg Part 2 to the same water & dissolve.
- Week 9 – 16 of Veg: Add 1g Veg Part 1 to 4 litres water & allow to dissolve. Add 1g Veg Part 2 to the same water & dissolve.
Once the plant has finished its vegetative state you can then follow the feeding directions for the flowering state:
- Week 1 – 7 of Flower: Add 1g Flower Part 1 Swamp Juice to 1.5 litres water and dissolve. Add 1.25g Flower Part 2 Swamp Juice to the same water & dissolve.
- Week 7 Harvest: Flush and feed with clean water.
A great product here in South Africa is Biobizz. They have the perfect product for you to help aid your marijuana plant’s nutrient needs.
Calcium and magnesium are essential elements to prompt plant growth and blooming. They play a key role in cell production and photosynthesis.
Calcium and magnesium deficiency are becoming ever common in plants, as the tap water often used does not have a consistent amount of mineral concentration.
Biobizz is an extremely easy product to use:
Add the CALMAG dosage to the water you are wanting to give to your plants, you may also add any other necessary fertilizer to the mix.
Biobizz has also made a feeding schedule for you to easily follow.
Sounds strange, doesn’t it? Worm Wee is the wee, tea, or vermicompost liquid produced as a byproduct from earthworms.
The worms leave the soil rich and fertilized with their wee. You can purchase worm wee online or you can produce it in your own worm farm. A good telltale sign that your soil is healthy, without having to test it, is seeing if earthworms can survive in it.
This is a great natural and organic way to get fertilizer for your cannabis plants. The worms also help oxygenate the soil and bring oxygen to your plant’s roots system. The best practice is to feed your leftover produce from your meals to the worms. This includes non-acidic fruit and vegetables.
Summary Of Nutrients For Your Marijuana Plant
We have taken a look at what type of nutrients cannabis plants need during the different phases of the plant’s growth cycle. The most important thing to remember is that cannabis plants require different nutrients in their different phases of growth. This mainly being nitrogen during the vegetative stage and phosphorus during the flowering stage.
We have also looked at the macronutrients and the micronutrients and how finding a balance between the two is critical to give your cannabis plant the support it needs, this will vary from strain to strain depending on the genetic structure of your cannabis strain.
We also learned about worm wee and the benefits the fertilizer the worms produce brings to your plants as well as how the worms help keep your soil healthy and oxygenated. Now you’re ready to go and make the best nutritional soil for your weed plants.