Growing top-shelf marijuana is the holy grail of horticultural pleasures. To grow top shelf bud is a craft that can be attained by following certain growing techniques and guidelines. To help you grow the best cannabis, we have compiled a list of eight highly successful growing tips. Follow these – and you’ll be harvesting top shelf bud with your next harvest!
1. Quality Genetics for Growing Top Shelf Buds
By growing only with feminized and quality genetics from the get-go, you’re sure to get the effects and appearance you want from your buds at the end of the growth cycle. Even though other factors such as your growing skills may make a huge difference, a cannabis plants’ genes can’t be overcome.
If you want top shelf buds that are potent and dense, you need the right genetics in place. You can use quality clones or feminized seeds to eventually harvest the best.
2. Let there be Light and Top Shelf Indoor Cannabis
Your plant has the potential to produce top shelf flower, however, if your lights and light schedule is underpowered or unorganized, you won’t end up with the best weed. Use powerful and highly effective cannabis grow lights like HPS, LECs or LEDs to produce the best quality buds. Keep in mind the square footage ratio between your plant space and the light wattage.
For example, in an average medium sized growing tent, you will do well with a 1000 wattage LED light to cover the spectrum that your plants need. In vegetive stage, give your plants all the light you possibly can. When switching to flowering stage, you need to adjust the light schedule to twelve hours dark and light, respectively.
3. Proper Nutrient Use for Growing Top Shelf Marijuana
To increase bud quality and be the proud farmer of top-shelf cannabis buds, you need to make sure you’re giving your plant the correct nutrients in all stages of growth. Below is a list of the three most important nutrients to use:
• Nitrogen (N)
Your cannabis plants need a lot of Nitrogen for vegetative growth, but doesn’t need as much for quality bud production. Give it a lot during the first stage, then lower the dose during flowering.
• Plenty of Phosphorus (P)
Phosphorus is very important for the development of your top shelf flowers. Feeding your plants with phosphorous during the flowering stage will deliver more top shelf buds.
• Potassium (K)
The element of Potassium is often overlooked. Providing your cannabis plants with a good and steady source of Potassium will increase the size and density of each individual top shelf flower.
Keep in mind that in general, keeping nutrient levels low closer to harvesting is important for means of clearing the buds of any unwanted smokables, but if you want to grow top shelf bud, make sure that you properly feed your ladies during all stages of growth.
4. Temperature and Humidity Control for Top Shelf Bud Quality
If you want to grow top shelf strains, you need to maintain and manage your temperatures. Daytime temperatures around 65-80°F (18-26°C) are ideal. However, if you’re using CO2, most growers recommend you back off and bring the temps down to 65-80°F for the last two weeks before harvest.
Night temperatures should ideally be kept around 68-75°F (20°-24°C). You definitely want to steer clear of the possibility of bud rot, which thrives in the 60°F (15°C) range. And if you’re growing a strain that turns colour, keep in mind that some of these strains will only show their true colours when night temperatures are lessened by a few degrees.
5. Let the Air Flow Free When Growing Top Shelf Bud
Another important aspect to growing top shelf cannabis is air quality. This is additional to temperature and humidity control. Good air flow and ventilation are essential. With 3 to 4 plants, you’re fine with an oscillating fan or two.
When growing more than 4 plants, and have hot lights shining, you’ll need a more improved system to ensure proper airflow. You can easily build your own ventilation system with a few outgoing pipes and more fans. You can also add oxygen manually with an oxygen pump.
6. Harvesting your Top Shelf Buds at the Right Time
For a lot of growers, this is one of the trickiest things to get right. Flowering plants will begin to smell better and look ready to harvest when they aren’t quite there yet. The problem is that there is a small two-to-three week window in which cannabis should be harvested, and most growers get the urge to take them down prematurely.
Remember, harvesting early is an easy way to ruin the buds you’ve taken so long to grow. Harvest only when the bud hairs mostly gone brown and you can clearly see the ripened terpenes and trichomes.
7. Drying Top Shelf Bud like a Pro
Growing methods are important, but so is harvesting. In fact, what you do during and after harvest, including drying/curing, is pivotal to the production of high quality cannabis. Drying/curing the right way will produce denser and more potent bud altogether.
The trick is to dry your buds slowly and patiently and then curing them in glass mason jars for 2-4+ weeks. After harvesting, hang your trimmed cannabis plants upside down in a moderate temperature clean and well-ventilated are and allow them to dry for 5 – 10 days. Drying buds too quickly will result in them being harsh and smelling like cut grass.
A good way to keep your cannabis plants from drying too quickly, is to trim the branches only after they’ve been dried. You can also decide to trim your buds before you dry them. From there the buds can be hung up to dry, or placed on a drying rack. We recommend leaving on as much stem as you can as it slows the drying process, and is easy to remove later. In short, dry your buds for as long as you can.
8. Proper Curing for Top Shelf Buds
Once your buds have been properly dried, the only thing left to do is cure them. This part largely contributes to the taste and smell of top shelf bud. Essentially, curing your buds in an airtight container for at least 2-3 weeks is the way to go.
During this time, the jars may be periodically opened, emptied and refilled with the same buds. This will prompt the buds to ‘rid themselves of any leftover chemicals, while also preventing mould from forming on your precious top shelf marijuana flowers.