Here’s another example of a net being used to help keep plants short and flat. Manifolding creates a solid main trunk with several symmetrical branches. This allows you to achieve monstrous yields on a relatively small plant. Other types of pruning and manipulation such as Low Stress Training (LST) and Supercropping (extreme bending) can be used to create almost any size or shape plant.
Keep grow lights as close as possible – Make sure your grow light is as close as possible without stressing plants. “Top” your plants – Cut off the top of the plant when it’s just a few weeks old. This technique is known as “topping” and causes plants to grow more spread out as opposed to tall. A good time to top a plant is when it has about 6 sets of leaves. To top a plant, you cut off the top by clipping through the main stem. Topping makes plants grow more wide and bushy instead of tall. As a bonus, it increases the total number of main bud sites and improves yields! Autoflowering Tip: Top an autoflowering plant after it’s already started making buds to keep it shorter.
Topping in the flowering stage is normally considered a bad idea because it stunts most autoflowering plants, but can be a good tactic if you want to stunt the plant on purpose. Topping after buds had already started forming caused this plant to stay extra small. Here’s another example of a plant that was topped after it had already started making buds. Plant training – “Plant training” techniques give you ultimate power to create plants of nearly any size or shape. Training techniques such as LST (low stress training) and supercropping (extreme bending) are especially handy if you need to change your overall plant form or reduce the height. The grower wants to keep plants as short as possible. As the plants grew, she regularly bent all the top branches over and tied them down. Don’t forget to tie the branches down or they’ll turn back up! (I like plant twist tie for hooking around stems) The arrow points to the twist tie that was used to hold down the branches as this plant grew. Use supercropping to bend at right angles without breaking your stems. This can be especially helpful if you’re plants are already too tall for your space. Some growers take plant training to extreme levels. Check out the “skeleton” of the above plant after harvest. The grower basically trained the main stem to grow in a flat spiral around the base. You can produce impressive buds on a small plant with a powerful grow light and high-yielding genetics. It’s amazing what can be accomplished with a little bending and tying down as your plant grows! Don’t wait too long to initiate flowering – This doesn’t apply to auto-flowering strains, but if you’re growing a photoperiod (regular) plant, initiate the flowering stage when the plant is half the final desired size. Plants typically double in size after receiving a 12/12 light schedule, so plant height can get out of control if you wait too long. Initiate 12/12 when your plant is about half the final desired size. Plant about double in height before harvest, though some strains “stretch” more or less (notice how the back left plant from the above tent got taller than the rest). You should now have a solid understanding of what it takes to grow marijuana plants in any size or shape you want! What is it that makes some containers better than others? The answers are contained in the roots of your cannabis plants.
The idea behind choosing the right container is to pick one that is going to provide the best possible environment for your cannabis roots. Your roots are like the “heart” of your of your cannabis plant.
They need to be healthy for your plant to get nutrients and grow. Happy cannabis roots want… Moist at all times – roots die when they dry out! Good watering practices combined with a great growing medium will make sure your roots never dry out. Oxygen – your roots “breathe” oxygen, so one of the best things you can do for them is make sure they always have access to plenty of oxygen – more oxygen to the roots = faster growth.