• Home
  • /8 Tips to Grow Big Dense Buds Indoors

8 Tips to Grow Big Dense Buds Indoors

Increasing your yields from your plants must be your number one priority. Of course, you would like quality; this goes without saying. However, you also want quantity. The time, effort and expense of growing marijuana indoors mean that a return on your investment comes from growing big, dense buds. There is a mixture of art and science in the growing of dense marijuana bushes. Here we guide you through the essential tips for growing the most buds on your indoor plants.BUDS_HARVEST

#1 Tip - The Starting Point

There are two main ways to begin growing marijuana. The first is to choose clones. The second is to choose to grow from seeds. You will discover that there are pros and cons to either choice, and both can impact on your yield. If you choose a clone, you will limit the time you have to wait for the harvest. This means you can grow more by increasing the number of plantings and yields you undertake.However, clones are more likely to contaminate the soil area than seeds. As you are growing indoors, there is no natural pest control. Bringing in clones can introduce pests to the growing area, and you have none of the beneficial insects to counter this. Therefore, although you might end up with higher yields with cloned plants, you could equally end up with no returns. It is a matter of making your choice and taking your chances.Maybe a better option is to consider the species and strain of marijuana you choose to grow. As space and time are restricted indoors, it is better to select an Indica or Indica-dominant hybrid. This is a particularly good choice if you are a beginner in your marijuana growing hobby. The Indica plants grow shorter, but they are denser. They also grow much quicker than the Sativa-dominant plants. Sativa plants are tall and large, but they take time to mature.So, the ultimate tip for any grower is to choose the genetics of the strain you are growing carefully. The strains known for high yields include the obviously named Big Bud. There is then the Northern Lights – which is also an Indica-dominant strain perfect for growing indoors. The growing time is short, about 50 days, so you get many buds in a shorter period. White Widow has a consistent and robust bud structure that many growers believe guarantees a hefty yield. In short, before beginning your growing plan, research the strain of bud that promotes higher yield.Depending on your skill levels with growing, you should also select the photoperiodic strains over those that are auto-flowering. It is a delicate process to manage the photoperiodic plant, but the chances of producing a lot of buds are increased.

#2 Tip - Trellising and Training

Trellising

If you want more and bigger buds, then you need bigger and heavier plants. So, if you do not use a trellis, then your plant will struggle to grow because it won't have the strength to support itself. If you want the plant to advance successfully through the development stage, then you need to give them a structure that will bear this weight for them.Any durable material can act as a trellis. It is likely that you will choose wood or a form of bamboo although you can use strong yarn or wire. However, if you are planning on multiple crops, then maybe you should consider a metal trellis. It is possible to use mesh, though the plants are not climbers and they will not naturally twist themselves around this meshing. Therefore, you will need to connect the plant to the support yourself.It is possible that a bamboo rod against the stalk of your plant could be enough to support the weight, keeping the plant upright, and helping it access the light need to grow. It is not necessary to be too sophisticated with your trellis setup to promote higher yields. It is just important to provide some support.GROWING_MARIJUANA_CONTAINER

Training

You also need to train your plant. It is important to support the plant through the delicate stage of vegetative growth, this provides the perfect opportunity for making sure the plant grows bigger and with a higher number of buds as it is more malleable too. Sometimes branches and leaves can, and this can limit growth.To gently guide your plant to grow the way you want it to grow you need to undertake low-stress training. (LST) This is like growing a bonsai tree but for your marijuana plants. You want to gently bend stems and tie them in place to help shape the plants. This means you open up the areas where buds will grow and potentially create multiple bud sites. It will also help you even out the canopy so that the light is used more efficiently.Most growers will use LST to make the plants shorts and wide. This increases yield because more light gets to the plant, or a more full canopy with many more colas for the buds to grow from. So, when some stems get taller than others, bend the tallest ones over and secure them at the same height as the other stems. You can use a twist tie to hold them in place. Gently repeat this process when necessary.A great tip is to use the same sort of ring borrowed from tomato growing. This is a metal ring around the canopy of the plant, which gives you a structure to tie the stems onto. Another option is to use the Screen Of Green method (ScrOG). This is a means of securing the plant stems to a grid or mesh of strings. Place this at a height where you expect the plants to grow. These guide a group of plants to grow in a neater pattern. To set up your ScrOG you would build a wooden frame around your plants and then tack mesh or netting over the top of the frame. This works best for feminised seeds. If you use this method with unfeminized seeds, then you are going to struggle when you need to remove the male plants to prevent pollination of the buds.Training also includes:SCROG_MARIJUANAWhen you plant your seedlings, at the start of the vegetative stage, make sure they are at least a foot apart. This gives the plants chance to bush out, especially as you are going to control the height and keep them lower to the ground. When stems start to poke through the mesh, simply bend them over and secure them with ties. Being gentle is important. The plant may be malleable at this stage, but that is because it is also vulnerable to damage.When you are training your colas, remember to keep them within the lighting. It’s best to keep colas growing directly under the light source. You may want to gently fan out the leaves after tying back a cola, to make sure there is even distribution of light.SCREEN_OF_GREEN

#3 Tip - Bigger Containers

This is possibly not the biggest revelation to those of us who have gardened before. However, if you give a plant a bigger container, then it grows more. For instance, rather than an 11-litre container, you might want to buy a 20-litre instead. It is not about buying something that is too huge, as this is unmanageable for most people indoors and too much space can stunt the growth of the plant too.Here is the most sensible way of thinking about the size of your container. You want to grow a certain amount of marijuana. You are prepared to pay a set amount for this marijuana. Therefore, if the cost of your container pushes the price you are willing to pay, then it is too expensive and therefore too big. Even if you are hoping to get a higher yield, you need to stick to the price you budgeted when you were planning your cannabis grow season.MARIJUANA_PLASTIC_CONTAINER

#4 Tip - Nutrients and Pest Control

Nutrients

Like humans, marijuana plants require a balanced diet to reach the full potential of the plant. However, a marijuana plant needs a different balance of nutrients depending on the stage of growth. You need a set ratio of NPK for each growing period. NPK stands for Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium. There are some tried and tested rules of thumb for optimal growth.Vegetative Stage: high nitrogen, medium phosphorus, high potassium.Flowering Stage: low nitrogen, medium to high phosphorus, high potassium.The bottles of nutrients will read something along the lines of 3:2:4. This is the sort of ratio you are looking for at the vegetative. Three parts nitrogen to two parts phosphorus to four parts potassium. For the flowering stage, you are looking for a ratio that reads something similar to 1:3:4. One-part nitrogen to three parts phosphorus to four parts potassium.General purpose plant nutrients tend to be high in nitrogen, so this can be used for the vegetative stage. However, you need to reduce the levels of nitrogen, so you need to buy specially created nutrients for marijuana growth here. If you use nitrogen, you will prevent bud growth. More phosphorus and you will have more weight – bigger buds and more buds.If you give too much of any of these nutrients, then you can kill your plant. Therefore, getting the ratios right is one of the essential routes to a yield of any kind. Check the instructions on the bottle, checking the ratio of nutrients so you don’t get nute deficiency.Organic growing is a nice way to go but if you want fast efficient growing use the chemical nutrients to ensure faster growth and increase the potency of your buds too.MARIJUANA_HIGH_YIELD

Pest control

If you use clone plants to start your growing, then you must consider the possibility of pest infestation. If you start with seeds, then you can avoid pests. However, even then you are going to have to keep the growing area clean, giving it a thorough dowsing with water and bleach before growing.Remember that anything you spray onto the plants will impact on your harvest. Therefore, if you do get pests, then you need to use organic sprays on the underside of foliage. This will deal with aphid infestation. Alternatively, if using only soil you can let the top few inches of soil to dry out so that you prevent fungus gnats. Basically, the healthier your plants, the higher your yield. However, the more chemicals you add to your plants the more impact you will have on the quality of the end product.

#5 Tip - The Lighting

One of the most critical components of high yield production is your use of lighting. Marijuana requires precise conditions to produce high quality, high quantity harvests. Too few seeds and excessive temperatures, which some would suggest will give you a higher yield for your investment, can severely compromise the outcome of your crop. It is way too simple to say that the more light you offer, the higher the yield. Therefore, it is essential to slow down and give some solid advice on how to use light. Read about some of the basics around , chlorophyll.CANNABIS_LIGHTINGBefore we get started, remember the advice about the container size. It would be best if you had sat down and worked out your budget before you begin. Liighting setups can cost a fortune for the very high end LEDs but they will pay themselves back overtime, cheapo HPS can be bough for like $100 - easy. When budgeting, consider not only the price of the setup but also the cost of the energy to run the lighting rig, remember LEDs run at about half the cost when compared to HPS lights that waste energy on heat.Make sure you consdier heat stress, which can prevent bud growth. If the temperatures are too high, then you will see visible changes in the buds closest to the light. They will appear bleached and stretched. It is even possible for the buds to become burnt, with yellowing and brown spots.BURN_MARIJUANA_PLANTSThe plants thrive in an environment where there is a daylight temperature between 70 - 85-degrees Fahrenheit. There should also be a night time temperature between 58 - 70-degrees Fahrenheit. The night-time temperatures should be without light.A different temperature from the floor to the ceiling can adversely impact on the size and quantity of buds so make sure you have a good ventilation system going. Temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit slow growth considerably. This is one of the benefits of growing cannabis indoors.Other than LEDs which we totally recommend (!) the most common light for your indoor growth is HID lighting (eiher MH or HPS. You need MH for the vegetative growth stage, and you need HPS for the flowering stage. If you are looking at bulb strength, then it should be between 400W and 600W usually. The lights should be hung at the same level, somewhere between 30 and 50cm above the canopy. Seedlings will likely find a 600W bulb too intense. Therefore, it might be worth using different strength bulbs in different stages of growth for optimal yield.

#6 Tip - Climate Control

MARIJUANA_DEHUMIDIFIERAll this information on lighting feeds into tip six, which is to control the climate to get the best yield tightly. This essentially means avoiding heat stress and the extremes of cold that damage your plants. Although you would still get a harvest from a damaged plant, the yield will be severely reduced as the plant's energy has gone into dealing with the problems.Indoor growing allows you to control the climate tightly. This is not just about lighting, but also ventilation and humidity. A ventilation system is the means of more tightly control the temperature. The humidity needs to be between 50% and 70% for the perfect growth at different stages of the plant’s development. The wrong humidity and more likely that your crop will suffer from the yield-destroying plant disease powdery mildew.The higher the temperature the lower the humidity. A higher temperature takes moisture out of the air. Variations in the temperature will cause variations in humidity levels. Therefore, you need a stable relationship between both to ensure you produce the biggest and the most buds. This is the VPD (Vapour Pressure Deficit).Air conditioning might not be enough to take the moisture out of the air and maintain an optimal VPD. So, it is be a good idea to invest in a dehumidifier. This is better than a fan, as it is difficult to manage the consistency of the VPD with such a cooling system. Air conditioning on its own can equally cause cyclical fluctuations.Therefore, the best advice for the management of the climate is a mixture of sufficient lighting, air conditioning and a dehumidifier. If you switch the dehumidifier off before turning the lights on, then the plants can warm up gradually but in dry air and so avoid condensation. It is the condensation that can cause yield destroying diseases that scare most marijuana growers.WHITE_POWDERY_MILDEW_CANNABISIf you manage the humidity this closely, then you are going to have to feed and water the plants more. However, the more food and water you put in the better the yield. Remember if the plant is demanding water then it is growing, and this can only be a good thing!

#7 Tip - Pruning

Here comes the exciting point. Your plant is flowering, and there are lots and lots of buds growing strong. This is not the time to relax and count the bounty. This is a time that you need to manage the growing conditions. If you prune the main shoot, also known as the apical shoot. If you do this, then it allows it to form another cola.CANNABIS_PRUNINGThe earlier you do this pruning, the more time your plant has to heal before entering the next stage, the vegetative stage. Cut the stem, and you cause two new shoots to form. If you cut the terminal branch tip, you can cause two lateral branches to form. Pruning like this you can double the space for the flower growth. Also, if you remove lower limbs that have limited chance of flowering, then you send the additional energy to the stems that will flower. You should also remove leaves that are dying, as they reduce light to the plant.As a simple guide to pruning to get the maximum yield, you should:
  • Start removing the larger branches; this will clear space for more detailed work.
  • Remove branches that are growing up the middle of the plant beneath the canopy. These will not grow as plentiful as those receiving all the light.
  • Then, work on the bud sites that will receive no sun, at the bottom of the plant for instance.
You will feel like you are damaging your yield by pruning. This is a normal feeling, and it is worth taking your time and pruning with caution when you are new to growing marijuana.It would help if you started pruning when the plant takes on a bushy shape. You do this around the same time as you begin training the plant. You can keep pruning up until the plants begin to flower, but you should stop soon into the flowering period. If you keep pruning after this point and you will damage your yield.

#8 Tip - Time Your Harvest!

You have a two-week window when you can harvest the buds. You will know when this period has begun because the smell of the plant will become pungent. This will tantalise you. If you can be patient, you could increase the size of the buds by a quarter. You will worry and feel like you make lose out on your hard work. However, waiting longer could increase your yield significantly.BUDS_HARVEST

Quick guide to High Yields

You have skimmed the article and got a feel for what would increase your yield. What if you have missed the essential advice in your quick read? We understand you are busy, so here is the short version with the most critical advice included.One: Choose your strain well. Indica-dominant strains will grow quicker and shorter, giving better yields overall. Growing from seed will give you better control over diseases but growing from a clone is more rapid, so you can grow more because you can harvest quicker.Two: Set up the growing structure for the best yield. You are going to have lots of buds, so the plant will be heavy, help bear this weight with trellis. Use training methods to keep your canopy even and allow light to hit your plants consistently.Three: Choose a container with a bit of space but one that gives you value for money for your harvest.Four: Make sure the ratio of NPK is appropriate for the stage of growth, to ensure optimal growth. Be careful what chemicals you use for pest control, remembering that the plant sucks up much of what you spray onto it.Five: The type power and location of lighting can make all the difference to your yield. More light does not necessarily mean more buds. Get the timings and the temperatures right. It is precision that optimises return.MARIJUANA_BUDSSix: As well as temperature, you need to manage the humidity. It is not about creating a warm environment but a consistent space with limited condensation.Seven: Prune bravely. The better you prune, the more your plant will thrive. You will provide space and energy for the growth of your bud.Eight: Time your harvest well, with a little patience you could maximise your yield.Maximise every element of your grow, nutes, training, genetics and light and you will go a long way to growing awesome dense big buds!