Smoking a joint of your own home grown weed is a difficult feeling to describe. There’s a sense of pride and accomplishment within every toke.
You know about the entire history of this particular plant – every stage of it’s development. You’re essentially smoking “time” compressed into a singular instance. All of the care, all of the patience, all of the discipline entering into your bloodstream via the smoke from your own home grown bud.
I’ve recently finished a few different strains, sexed two Gorilla Glue strains for seed and went through the entire curing process. The last batch wasn’t what I expected, but it generated the results I was looking for.
Now – I’m in between grows, on the verge of doing some renovations on the house I plan on buying and getting ready for my summer crop.
As I take my time to gather my thoughts, I’m going to walk you through my Pre-Grow Checklist to ensure that I’ll have everything I need to guarantee a perfect harvest this October.
Choo-Choo! My Pre-Grow Train of Thought!
Before any grow, I first contemplate my grand vision. What is it I wish to achieve? The last grow cycle was my “winter balcony bud”. The experiment was – “can I still grow outdoor during the winter season?”
Based on my “undisclosed geographic location” – the weather permits for quick cycle crops. Essentially, the plant grows for about a month and a half and naturally begins to enter into the flowering stage. You can’t make huge harvests – but you can do them consistently.
My winter objective was accomplished. Come this Winter, I’ll know exactly how to plan my grow for maximum bud cycling and how to protect the plants from the elements.
This time around, I’m wondering about doing an indoor grow or utilizing the balcony space more efficiently.
If I am going to grow outside, I’d have to compensate for the extreme heats my location endures. This means finding a solid watering schedule, perhaps building shades for the plants and some artificial ventilation to stimulate wind when there is none.
If I’m going to have to build some sort of external structure to protect the plants from the elements – shouldn’t I rather build something inside so I can “control the elements”. I do have the space and will be doing some structural changes to the house – so all of this is important to consider.
Why is it important to have the end goal in mind? Because based on what you wish to achieve, you’ll be able to properly prepare to be most efficient.
This time around my objective is simple – Crop out the MOST I can of a single strain – aka Gorilla Glue. I’ll be using Shwazzing as my main method of increasing yield.
I’m still not sure if I want to do hydroponics or soil – especially since there has been occasions my neighborhood has experienced blackouts. In this heat, and with hydroponics – it would mean instant death.
And so I choose to grow in soil as an “insurance policy”. I might even choose to build an indoor grow section – depending on what I do with the renovations of the house.
Once you have decided the end goal – get the basics!
Every Grow has a few staple things you’ll always need. Those things go as follows;
pH Meter – in order to check the acidity of your water.
Grow Medium – depending on whether you go soil or hydro or some other variant
Additional Nutrients – depending on how you prepare your soil, you will need some additional nutrients. This can either be achieved by extracting it from natural sources like – banana for potassium – or getting store bought solutions.
Automatic Timer (if you’re growing indoors)
Cleaning Materials (bleach, mops, etc)
Pest Remedies – It’s always good to prepare for potential pests. This includes dichotomous earth, natural fungicides and pesticides, or your own home concoctions.
Irrespective of the type of grow you wish to create, whether we’re talking about something like a closet grow or something more substantial – you’ll need some variant of what I listed above.
Creating the Schedule – Following the Discipline
It’s important to establish your protocols. I, for example, like to observe my plants up close once or twice a day. I simply scan the leaf, check for pests, and take action before things get too difficult.
This way you mitigate any issues before they become too unbearable. However, this also takes time, so I need to plan how I approach this – for how long? Once you have designed something that you can commit to – there is only one thing left to do…begin growing!
Of course – some growers will tell you, “Dude – just plant the seed and see where it goes” and I agree with them 100%. If it’s your first grow!
If you have never done a full successful crop, don’t worry too much about the precision of your grow. You’re bound to fuck up in something.
That’s okay – it’s the way you become a better grower and it separates those who are serious from those who simply are “novelty growers”.
However – if you’ve done several successful crop-outs, and want to perfect your growing game – these changes become a necessity. You need a journal to jot down dates, measurements of weight and height, lighting schedules, etc.
This helps you become a better grower by creating data sets that can be improved upon. You simply need to embrace the discipline of a master grower. It’s not always easy – but it’s the only way to “up your game” if you feel like you’ve hit a wall.
The Sticky Bottom Line
To sum it all up;
Understand your end goal first. Dream backwards. What do you want to achieve, and then plan accordingly.
Get as much of the base materials ahead of time.
Organize your space
Organize your schedule
It’s really not more “complicated” than that – but then again, each point here could be expanded upon in great detail.