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Legal Home Grow 101: How To Harvest Your Own Cannabis

Cannabis enthusiasts can now legally grow their own cannabis in Canada and in several states in the US. Here’s how to start your own successful home grow.
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One of the most exciting aspects of recent cannabis legalization efforts is the ability for enthusiasts to grow their own plants. While laws vary across each province and state, most jurisdictions where recreational consumption is allowed permit you to grow a set number of plants at home.

Many consumers shy away from home grows due to the perceived complexity of the process, but it’s simpler than you might think. Below is a basic rundown of how to start a successful home grow. From tools needed to different strategies, you’ll become a proficient green thumb after reading this guide.

Plan Your Grow

To start a safe and successful grow, you’ll need to make detailed plans and determine a planting and harvest schedule to ensure you’re in compliance with local laws. Space is the most significant factor when planning your grow; you’ll want to ensure you’ve got plenty of room to be successful.

Typically, indoor grows can only facilitate a few plants, and indica-dominant strains are preferred due to their short and wide growth characteristics. Sativa plants are better suited for outdoor growing, where they’ll have plenty of vertical space to mature. Depending on your climate, you’ll be limited on outdoor options, so research strains to ensure they’ll thrive in your environment.

Water and lighting are the other big factors when in the planning stages. Different species and strains have wildly different requirements when it comes to light and water. Be sure to understand what your specific strains require, and try to create the best environment you can based on those needs. Spare closets and basements are popular grow areas, allowing you to create a microclimate for your plants.

Seeds or Clones?

While this is a frequent debate in the cannabis community, both have specific advantages that will help you make the right call.

Seeds take longer to mature and will require steps to ensure your plants are flowering females, but there’s nothing more rewarding than raising plants from seed. You’ll be directly responsible for choosing fertilizers, and it’s the only way to know exactly what was done to your plants before ingesting.

Clones are a cannabis cutting, typically a branch from a live plant, that is then planted to grow into its own producing plant. Clones will help you speed up the flowering process compared to seeds, usually by at least three weeks. These cuttings have the exact genetic makeup of the “mother plant,” so users know exactly what to expect from the end product.

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Purchase Equipment

Home grow setups can be extremely elaborate, but you can consistently produce quality flowers with just a few basics. On top of the obvious items like pots and soil, you’ll need a couple of other things to build a great home grow.

Grow lights are essential to help regulate temperature and give your plants the necessary light requirements. Irrigation systems can help automate your watering, but you can be successful with a watering can as well. Grow tents and fans can be valuable for regulating temperature and controlling insects, but you should be fine without them if you choose the right environment at the start.

Lighting and Climate

It’s critical to focus on lighting and temperature for the duration of your grow. Most plants require at least 12 hours of darkness to move through their growth cycles, and you’ll need to increase that time as the plants mature.

Adequate temperature control will keep your plants healthy and also helps give the flowers their aesthetics. Colder temperatures during maturation give buds darker colours like purples and blues, and with a little practice, you’ll be able to grow visually appealing flowers without much thought.

With some practice and experimentation, anyone can master the art of growing potent, flavorful cannabis from the comfort of their home. Plus, it’s incredibly satisfying knowing you grew the flower yourself. Use these tips to start planning your own home grow today!

CPC-logoThis story was made possible by our Community Partners Program. Thank you Revive Cannabis for helping to expand local news coverage in Alberta. Learn more.