However, this doesn’t mean large, dense yields are guaranteed without the constant care of the cultivator. Ensuring the correct conditions for optimal growth are maintained should be the main priority for any grower, especially if they want dense bud. The main causes of an underwhelming crop are bad lighting, poor nutrition, or extreme temperatures. Letting just one of these factors get out of control – especially towards the end of a plant’s life cycle – can drastically impact the quality of the bud.
We are going to take a look at each in turn, and see how they can be controlled to produce the best yields possible. Never let lights be too close or too far from the top of your plants – to close and plants risk being burnt by the heat, to far away and the light will not be strong enough. Ideally, lights need to be positioned so the whole canopy of the crop receives light, but close enough that they can benefit from increased intensity without burning. A good test is to place your hand at the top of your plants. If the heat produced by the lights are uncomfortable for you, they are uncomfortable for your plants. Cannabis is able to use certain light frequencies more effectively than others at certain stages of its life. Check out your flowering bulbs colour emission; most manufacturers put the details on the box of the bulb. During the flowering stage, cannabis utilises the red frequencies of the light spectrum most efficiently, so using a bulb with a high output (660nm is ideal) during flowering will help boost the amount and density of bud.
However, it is important to note that cannabis uses the entire spectrum to some degree, so bulbs should be full spectrum with the red enhanced, not simply red. We have written an article outlining all you need to know about the light spectrum and cannabis, should you wish to find out more. It is important that temperature stays within the right range. Average and peak temperatures should never be too low at night and, most of all, never go above 30°C during the hours of light. Temperatures that are too hot stunt flowering and can seriously damage buds. In outdoor cultivation, high temperatures can be an issue if flowering has been forced early in the season. Screening and water spraying the plants helps them bearing July and August high temperatures. Closely tied in with temperature, it is important that humidity also remains within acceptable bounds. Never surpass 60% in the flowering phase and try progressively reducing it down do 45% in the last 2-3 weeks before harvest. The plant will go into overdrive as it seeks to protect its flowers, responding by producing denser buds and more resin on them. Lower humidity will also help avoid mould formation. Each strain has different feed requirements, so getting to know just how much feed a plant needs, and when to change amounts, comes with time and experience. However, generally, cannabis requires higher levels of nitrogen during the vegetative stage to push growth to the max, followed by higher levels of potassium during the flowering phase to fuel bud production. It is always a good idea to keep an eye on the pH of your growing medium, as it can affect nutrient uptake. Excessive watering fills all the small air pockets in the soil, eliminating any trace of oxygen for hours or maybe days. They will start showing droopy and curling leaves, and buds quality will be compromised if the problem is not solved. Be careful when watering and be sure your pots perfectly drain out excess water. Always choose a light soil mix and add some extra perlite. Underwatering damages plants too, but that’s a less common, and much easier to fix, mistake. If growing in a container, its size will influence root expansion and, as a natural consequence, a plant’s growth and bud development – ensure cannabis always has as much room as it needs to spread out its root base. Organic supplements like the bloom boosters can increase bud weigh by pumping sugars, amino acids, trace minerals, phosphorous and potassium in the plant. Cannabis genetics can influence bud density, and sativa-dominant strains naturally have less dense than indicas. Regardless of the strain, a proper, slow drying and curing is mandatory for good product’s quality. The last common mistake we are here reviewing is the early harvest. During the last weeks and days, plants produce a lot of trichomes and resin – so be sure to let them finish their job. Growing cannabis like a master is, understandably, tough work. However, if you bear the above in mind, and learn from mistakes, you should soon be on the way to producing yield upon yield of dense, sticky bud!
Top 5 Most Common Reasons for Airy Marijuana Buds (get a complete breakdown of all the ways to increase bud density in the article below) Light – The most common reason buds don’t develop as densely as they could is the plant didn’t get enough light in the flowering stage. Although cannabis can survive in relatively low light levels, it won’t produce much bud. Up to a point, more light in the flowering stage = bigger buds.
On the flip side, too-bright light (less common, but can happen when buds are too close to grow lights) can also cause buds to develop poorly and/or produce airy, hairy fox-tails. Strain / Genetics – Some strains will only produce airy buds no matter what you do.