The Best Ways To Control Cannabis Stretching
Cannabis Stretching is usually a natural growth-shoot for cannabis plants. However, it can affect your yield and it can be a bother, mainly for new cannabis growers.
Elongated and stretch stems do not provide cannabis plants with the stable base they need. Thus, it affects cannabis stretching all through their life cycles. Luckily, various ways are available to prevent the stretching of cannabis seeds.
Why do cannabis seedlings stretch out?
Cannabis seedlings stretch because of various reasons, including the type of cannabis strain you grow. Genetics is a crucial factor in determining the height of your hybrid, indica, and Sativa cannabis strains.
Indica strains tend to grow shorter, and they are bushier. Sativa cannabis strain typically grows taller; at times, some breeds grow up to 6+ feet. Hybrid strains are in between Sativa and indica.
While stretching is a normal vegetative stage, dramatic stretching comes with problems like lowering your harvest by about 20-30%. When deciding on the type of strain to grow, do your homework on the height of each strain. It helps you know if the plant will experience dramatic or normal stretch so that you choose the perfect CBD cannabis strain that grows best under your conditions.
Other factors that cause stretching are:
Amongst the many causes of excessive stretching of your cannabis plants is inadequate light exposure. Typically, plants that are far away from the source of light tend to respond by encouraging stem growth towards the source light. It is common when there are many other plants since it creates disparities in the ratio of the light plants get.
Besides the source of light, the type of light that you use also can lead to stretchy cannabis seedlings. The orange and red lights may encourage stretching of your plants since it leads to thin, small stems. Contrary, blue lights encourage thicker, shorter stem growth.
Another vital factor that can cause stretching of cannabis plants is heat. Temperatures of 27+ degrees might stimulate cannabis stems to grow longer, mainly Sativa variety, which can stretch to their full heights.
It occurs when you place lamps too close to the plants. Thus, this creates an intolerable surrounding that produces tall, wobbly cannabis plants that fall over, and of course, lose flowers.
Considerable environmental stressors
Some of the significant environmental stressors coming from the transplant can cause cannabis plants to experience shock. Such a shock will then prompt a response, causing plants to stretch. Usually, cannabis plants that lack sufficient nutrition or proper cultivation may react in different ways, including stretching.
Overcrowding cannabis plants
Overcrowding the plants means that there is no enough space from one plant to another. It will result in a competition of needed resources, including fighting for light. So, it will lead to stretching.
How to prevent stretchy cannabis seedlings
Understanding the underlying causes of stretching of cannabis plants helps you find the right solution. Here are some of the ways you can prevent such stretching:
Cannabis plants that grow outside will not experience this problem because the open-air will naturally limit stretching. However, you need to maintain proper air circulation inside the closed space when growing cannabis indoors.
Adequate airflow may strengthen the stems of cannabis plants. Also, it can help stems grow thicker, not taller.
It is the first factor you should consider before you start growing cannabis plants. Make sure that the cannabis strain you intend to grow, whether from clones or seeds are suitable for your growing conditions, including space.
Indica cannabis strains will not stretch that much, whereas Sativa plants have tendencies of stretching. The hybrids will depend on the dominant strain. Also, ensure you choose strains that will roughly show similar stretch traits if you decide to grow many varieties of cannabis together.
The temperature in your grow room or space
High temperatures during the day tend to encourage growth since they produce more gibberellin than during the night when temperatures are low. Therefore, it is wise to achieve about 5 degrees Celsius between daytime/nighttime temperatures to reduce the possibility of stretching.
Also, you can increase the temperatures at night to be more than the daytime to reduce the production of gibberellin, which will, in turn, control stretch.
Ventilation can significantly help prevent stretching. Use of extraction fans and rotary oscillation fans improve air movement and ventilation that will strengthen your indoor cannabis plants. They move the plants in the breeze to promote thicker stems.
Bending the stems and leaves of cannabis plants
It is a method that is suitable if you don’t mind getting your hand dirty. It has the same effects as wind because bending your cannabis plants may leave them with tiny tears. Thus, the plants will pay attention to regenerating the stem instead of growing vertically.
Topping occurs when you cut a new and actively growing cannabis node in an attempt to reduce its size as well as creating a V shape that opens to form 2 colas. However, ensure to stop topping when the flowering phase starts.
Irrigation, nutrition, and CO2
Stretching consumes more nutrients, particularly phosphorus and nitrogen, as well as a high amount of water. Reducing the quantities of these macronutrients and cutting on irrigation, mainly during the first weeks of flowering, will help reduce plant stretching. Also, stop feeding your plants with C02 during this period to prevent further cannabis stretching.
Stress issues such as transplant shock, low/high temperatures, humidity, and light spectrum result in stem stretching. Thus, ensure that your plants are happy by providing the best environment.
Growing cannabis plants is a worthy thing to do because of the many health benefits that come with this amazing plant. A study shows that cannabis can treat health issues like chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, and temporary insomnia. Are stretchy cannabis seedlings giving you a headache? If so, then the above ideas will help you prevent your plants from stretching.
Nonetheless, remember that each situation is unique and what works for you may not work for another person. Understand the underlying factor why your cannabis plants are stretching, and in doing so, you will identify the solution.