When to Crop Your Cannabis Plants

It’s important to know when to crop your cannabis plants in order to get the most out of them. Keep reading to learn more about the best time to crop your plants!

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Introduction

When you grow cannabis, you will eventually need to crop your plants. This is done for a variety of reasons, including to increase yields, produce better-quality buds, or simply to keep your plants healthy. But when is the best time to crop your cannabis plants?

There are a few things to consider before you start chopping away at your beloved plants. In this article, we’ll go over the best time to crop your cannabis plants, as well as how to do it properly.

Cannabis plants can be cropped for a variety of reasons. The most common reason is to increase yields, but cropping can also be used to produce better-quality buds or simply to keep your plants healthy.

The best time to crop your cannabis plants depends on what you’re trying to achieve. If you’re looking to increase yields, the best time to crop is early in the vegetative stage. However, if you’re aiming for better-quality buds, you’ll want to wait until the flowering stage has begun.

Cropping is a delicate process, and if not done properly, it can damage or even kill your plants. So, before you start chopping away at your crops, make sure you know what you’re doing. Once you’ve got a handle on the basics of cropping, go ahead and give it a try – your plants will thank you!

The Different Stages of Plant Growth

Your cannabis plants will go through different stages of growth. Each stage is important, and you will need to know when to crop your plants. The first stage is the vegetative stage. This is when your plants are growing and developing. They will grow leaves and stems during this stage. The second stage is the flowering stage. This is when your plants will start to produce flowers. The third stage is the harvest stage. This is when you will crop your plants and collect the buds.

Seed germination

Seed germination is the process of imbuing a cannabis seed with enough moisture for it to break open and begin growing. This process can be done in a number of ways, but all have the same basic goal: to get enough moisture into the seed so that it can start growing.

Once the seed has imbibed enough moisture, it will begin to swell and the root will start to emerge. At this point, the seed is said to have germinated. Once the root has emerged, the seedling will start to grow leaves (cotyledons), and soon after it will develop its first true leaves. Once the first true leaves have developed, the seedling is ready to be transplanted into its final home (a process known as “vegging”).

The vegetative stage

The vegetative stage of a cannabis plant’s life cycle is when it is growing and developing its leaves and stems. In this stage, the plant is focused on producing energy through photosynthesis to fuel its growth.

The length of the vegetative stage will depend on the specific strain of cannabis and the conditions in which it is grown. In general, cannabis plants need around 18 hours of light per day to stay in the vegetative stage. Once they receive 12 hours of darkness per day, they will begin to flower.

Some growers choose to keep their plants in the vegetative stage for longer than is necessary, in order to produce larger plants. However, it is important to remember that the longer a plant stays in the vegetative stage, the more time it will need to recover before it can begin flowering again.

The flowering stage

The flowering stage is the third and final stage of a cannabis plant’s life cycle. It’s when your plants produce flowers (or “buds”). The flowering stage begins when the plant receives less than 12 hours of light per day (this is why indoor growers often use grow lights to simulate different light cycles).

As your plants enter the flowering stage, you may notice that they start to grow taller and thinner. Some growers initiate the flowering stage by “topping” their plants (cutting off the main stem), which encourages the plant to grow multiple buds side-by-side (instead of just one big central bud).

You’ll also want to pay close attention to your plants during this stage, as they are susceptible to pests and diseases. The most common problem growers face during the flowering stage is nutrient deficiencies, which can be remedied by using a nutrient-rich fertilizer.

Once your plants have flowered, they will enter the final stage of their life cycle: harvest.

When to Crop Your Cannabis Plants

Many factors go into deciding when to crop your cannabis plants. The most important factor is the strain of cannabis you are growing. Some strains are more forgiving than others and can be cropped a bit later. Others, like auto-flowering strains, have a set flowering time and must be cropped accordingly. Another factor to consider is the weather.

The pre-flowering stage

The pre-flowering stage is when your cannabis plants are growing new leaves and stems, and preparing to flower. The best time to crop your plants is during the pre-flowering stage, when they are young and growing quickly.

To crop your plants, simply cut off the top of the plant just above a node (where the leaves meet the stem). This will encourage the plant to branch out and create more flowers. You can also remove any small leaves or stems that are not contributing to the plant’s growth.

Remember to always use sharp, clean scissors or knives when cutting your plants. This will prevent them from getting damaged or sick.

The early flowering stage

The early flowering stage of a cannabis plant’s life cycle is when the plant produces its flower buds. This is the most important time to determine when to crop your plants, as it will heavily influence the final yield and quality of your harvest.

During the early flowering stage, cannabis plants grow rapidly and can double or even triple in size. The amount of time it takes for a plant to reach this stage depends on the variety of cannabis and the growing conditions, but it typically occurs about 6-8 weeks after planting.

As the plant enters the early flowering stage, its growth will start to slow down and the flowers will begin to form. At this point, you will need to decide whether to crop your plants or let them continue to grow. If you want to maximize yield, you will need to carefully monitor the plant’s development and choose the right time to crop.

The main factor that determines when to crop your cannabis plants is the ratio of leaves to flowers. If there are more leaves than flowers, then cropping will encourage the plant to put more energy into developing buds. On the other hand, if there are more flowers than leaves, then cropping will force the plant to focus its energy on creating more leaves.

The ideal ratio of leaves to flowers depends on the variety of cannabis and your personal preferences, but a good rule of thumb is that 60% of the plant should be covered in flowers (buds) and 40% should be covered in leaves. This ratio can vary depending on whether you are growing indica or sativa varieties. Indica varieties usually have a higher flower-to-leaf ratio while sativa varieties have a lower ratio.

Once you have determined the ideal leaf-to-flower ratio for your plants, you need to monitor their development and identify when they reach this point. The best way to do this is by examining both side branches and main colas (the large central bud). Start by looking at side branches because they tend to flower sooner than main colas.

If a side branch has more flowers than leaves, then it has reached the ideal leaf-to-flower ratio and is ready to be cropped. If there are still more leaves than flowers, then you should wait until additional buds develop before cropping. Once all of the side branches have reached the ideal ratio, check main colas for readiness.

As with side branches, if a main cola has more flowers than leaves it is ready to be cropped. However, if there are still more leaves than flowers, then you need to wait until additional buds develop before cropping. Once all of the main colas have reached the ideal leaf-to-flower ratio, your plants are ready for harvest!

The late flowering stage

Cannabis plants go through two major life stages: the vegetative stage and the flowering stage. Depending on your end goals, you may want to harvest your plants at different times during these stages.

The vegetative stage is when your plants are growing and putting on new leaves and stems. This is the best time to crop your plants if you are aiming for a high quantity of biomass (the total weight of your plant material).

The flowering stage is when your plants are producing buds. This is the best time to crop your plants if you are aiming for a high concentration of THC or other cannabinoids.

The late flowering stage is when most of the THC has been produced, but some cannabinoids are still increasing in concentration. This is a good time to crop if you want a balance of THC and other cannabinoids.

Conclusion

Now that you know the ins and outs of cropping your cannabis plants, it’s time to make a decision about when to do it. The truth is, there is no perfect answer. Some growers prefer to wait until their plants are mature, while others crop early to maximize yield. Ultimately, the best time to crop your cannabis plants is when they are healthy and vigorous – and when you feel confident in your ability to execute a successful harvest.

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