Growing indoors is tricking your plants into thinking they are outside. – Jim
Weed plant stages
A cannabis plant’s life consists of two main stages: vegetative and flowering.
A cannabis plant will keep growing during its vegetative stage as long as it “believes” it is in spring or summer. When you switch down the lights on the plant, it fools it into thinking winter is on the way and the plant starts producing flowers. This occurs naturally outdoors as the seasons changes. However, indoor growers have the ability to control their environment and use their lights to ‘tell’ their plants when it’s time to start flowering.
As a grower, it is very important to understand that cannabis plants in the wild have their life cycle set in stone.
Remember when growing indoors, that it’s all about tricking your plants into thinking they are outside and you do that with science. You don’t have to understand it all right now, but knowing things like it’s not age that makes a cannabis plant flower is incredibly important and will simply just make you a better gardener.
Cannabis plants that react to light changes are grouped together under the term photoperiod cannabis strains. There is an exception for strains that start flowering regardless of light changes, these are called autoflowers and are explained in the topic “Autoflowering and Photoperiod Cannabis Strains”.
Cannabis plants will keep growing as long as you give them more than 12 hours of light a day. Most growers give their cannabis plants either 18 or 20 hours of light while in the vegetative stage.
When the lights are reduced to 12 hours or less the plant begins the process of switching to the flowering stage, the stage where it produces flowers. And while the light schedule is the reason why cannabis plants switch from vegetative to flower stage, things like lowering your temperature and switching to flowering nutrients that have less nitrogen (N) and more phosphorus (P) all play in role in making a successful switch and reinforces the tricking.
Cannabis Life cycle
I started growing in college and decided to take a couple plant biology classes, and that taught me just as much about growing cannabis as reading cannabis-specific literature did. Cannabis is a plant and humans have been studying and manipulating plants for thousands of years. There is nothing special about the science of cannabis and way too many growers ignore that, but it’s their loss.
I guarantee that all professional growers will tell you the same.
Cannabis’ life cycle in the wild:
1. The cannabis seeds sprout during spring.
2. The plant grows during the summer.
3. The days get shorter, fewer hours of sunlight.
4. The cannabis plant starts making flowers or pollen.
5. The plant gets pollinated.
6. The pollinated female cannabis plant makes seeds.
7. The plant spreads the seeds and dies off for the winter.
8. The process repeats.