Cannabis cultivators are growing a lot of strains, and patients with qualifying conditions can apply for a medical marijuana certification in Louisiana to purchase that cannabis as soon as it hits dispensary shelves.
Continuing the series from How Cannabis is Grown Part 1: Seed to Sprout, once a seed has sprouted, it’s time to transport to its first growing medium.
Taking that small flower to a budding cannabis plant requires a lot of attention and effort, and in this article we’ll take you through the whole process of how a cultivator takes a cannabis plant from seed to flower.
Cannabis Growing Stages – First Growing Pot
Transporting a Cannabis Plant to a Pot
The cannabis plant still has a long way to go before it becomes smokable cannabis flower, and after germination is where the real work starts.
Although more often than not cultivators use clones, in some cases growing plants from seeds is more beneficial.
Once a seed has been properly germinated, it’s ready for its first transport.
Transporting cannabis plants at any stage is a volatile process that requires extreme care. A plant is at its most vulnerable point when transporting, so cultivators put a lot of effort into making sure plants are handled properly.
Transporting is done by moving the plant into a small medium, typically the size of a cup and usually containing potting soil.
Here, the plant will start its first lighting schedule, which is one of the most critical parts of growing cannabis!
First Cannabis Lighting Schedule
The sprouted seed will need light to start growing a stalk, and it’s here where cultivators encounter their first lighting cycles for the plant.
Typically, cannabis plants will need around 16 hours of light a day at this stage, where the seed will begin to push the taproot deeper into the soil while pushing the stem of the seedling upward.
After a few days, the stem should spring out of the soil, producing two rounded leaves called cotyledon leaves that are responsible for taking in the new plant’s light to grow into a healthy plant. As the roots sink in, the little plant will develop its first set of fan leaves, where it will enter its next stage of life, the seedling stage.
Growing Cannabis in the Seedling Stage
Seedling Stage of Cannabis Plants: A little Water & Lots of Light
When a plant reaches the seedling stage, it will begin to develop more fan leaves with bladed edges. As the plant advances in this stage, more blades will accumulate on the leaves, and when this stage is over the plant will likely have between 5 – 7 blades per leaf.
The plant should remain a healthy and vibrant green color in this stage, and typically no additional nutrients are added other than the chosen soil. In fact, many cultivators favor organic grows, so often only natural ingredients and nutrients are added.
Because the plant is at such a young age in its lifecycle, it is very sensitive to nutrients and little water is needed as overwatering small roots can cause the plant to drown.
Expert Note: Monitoring a cannabis plant’s pH level can be the difference between having a dried-out yellow plant, and a healthy green plant. Slightly acidic soil with a pH level between 6.3-6.5 with a 30% - 50% perlite medium is usually recommended.
Humidity & Temperature in the Seedling Stage of Cannabis Plants
This is where the plant will be in a more vulnerable state for a longer period, so careful attention is paid to make sure the plants are free from mold and disease.
Humidity-controlled and sealed environments are the best way to ensure this, so cultivators keep the humidity around a higher level of 65-70% for the seedling stage while preventing additional moisture from accumulating on the plant, and the temperature is usually kept around 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit.
The plant should remain in the seedling stage until it has developed all of its fan leaves, which is typically after around 2 – 3 weeks, where it will be transported to its final pot and moved to the vegetative stage.
Growing Cannabis in the Vegetative Stage
Cannabis in the Vegetative Stage – Lots of Light & Lots of Monitoring
Once a plant reaches the vegetative stage, it’s all about keeping the plants happy and healthy.
This is the stage of the plant where it will grow its legs, ultimately leading to the final stage where buds are produced and dried cannabis flower is harvested.
This stage begins by transporting the seedling plant into a large pot for growing, which is where it will eventually reach its maturity.
The vegetative stage of cannabis plants typically lasts between 3 – 16 weeks (depending on whether it’s autoflowering or photoperiod) and requires around 16 hours of light a day for indoor grows or 6 hours of direct sunlight for outdoor grows.
Expert Note: Many parts of the cannabis plant are used for consumption, not just the buds. Many cultivators use leftover cannabis leaves and stalks to produce hash or edibles, and this is one of the best ways to make the most out of your cannabis plant.
This is the time to change the humidity as well because plants in the vegetative state favor a lower humidity level than the seedling stage, and the humidity should probably sit somewhere between 40-50% in the vegetative stage.
Lots of Water & Bigger Plants in the Vegetative Stage
Along with decreasing the humidity and increasing the pot size, the water schedule is also increased in this phase. When the plant’s root system grows larger, more of the soil will need to be saturated with water and the plants will usually let you know when it’s time.
Expert Note: When the roots start drying out much quicker, it’s time to add more water to the schedule.
This is also where cultivators start to monitor things like the cannabis plant’s nutrient levels, how much nitrogen a cannabis plant needs, and it’s also where the plants will begin to identify their sex.
Plants in the vegetative stage can grow quite large very quickly, and the plants usually start to show their gender around the 2-3 week mark of the vegetative stage (3-5 weeks total grow time).
If male plants are discovered they are plucked and discarded, otherwise, the plants maintain their water and light schedule and once they start to show buds, they begin their final phase - the flowering stage.
Get Your Louisiana Medical Marijuana Certification
Medical Marijuana is grown in a variety of ways to produce all sorts of cannabis-based products. Patients with qualifying conditions can register to become a certified medical marijuana patient and gain access to cannabis products in Louisiana.
Beat the lines and get your medical marijuana certification in Louisiana today, and you can even get certified for medical marijuana online for ease of use and convenience.
For questions about Louisiana’s medical marijuana program, or how to become a medical marijuana patient in Louisiana, consult with one of our trusted doctors and book an online medical marijuana appointment today!
Doctors Who Care.
Relief You Can Trust.
At Louisiana Marijuana Card, our mission is helping everyone achieve wellness safely and conveniently through increased access to medical marijuana. Our focus on education, inclusion, and acceptance will reduce the stigma for our patients by providing equal access to timely information and compassionate care.
Call us at (833) 253-2943, or simply book a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!