Throwing Weed Seeds Outside

Solely planting some cannabis seeds and waiting for them to grow just won't cut it (pun intended). Follow these 9 crucial tips for growing outdoors! If I bury this pot seed will it grow? February 20, 2009 4:02 PM Subscribe So every now and then a few seeds show up in the shake. Are these real, growable marijuana seeds? If I planted one, and

Top 9 Tips for Growing Cannabis Outdoors

Growing cannabis outdoors is not as simple as just throwing some seeds in the ground and hoping they grow. To ensure a good harvest, outdoor growers should do some research—analysing the local soil, preparing the site, and thinking about appropriate pest-control methods—and a great deal of maintenance.

Naturally, we all have our favourite strains, which we can’t wait to plant after the cold, tough and long winter months. Each situation is certainly unique, with the circumstances of someone living in Russia being different from those of someone living in Spain. Even so, there are enough varieties to be enjoyed in every corner of the globe.

Once you’ve chosen your favourite cannabis seeds, the first step is obviously to germinate them. It goes without saying that this must be done correctly, as otherwise the seeds will be useless. Be patient and bear in mind that some seeds may need a bit more time to sprout. For best results, follow this germination method.

The good thing about cultivating outdoors – and which makes us appreciate spring – is that, among other things, you can obtain considerable crops with a minimum of investment. And in times like these, who doesn’t want that?

Once we are clear on the conditions that we need – the right environment, the right growing spot, the outdoor growing method, and the variety that best suits our needs – we can get started.

1. Pick the right strain when growing cannabis outdoors!

It is important to choose the right strain of cannabis when growing outdoors. Depending on your location and climate, you may be limited in your choice of strain.

For example, if living in regions in the far north or south of the globe, where year-round temperatures are cool and summer growing seasons are short, you will need to choose strains that are acclimated to such conditions. Picking the right strain means curating your strain choice to suit the climate that you will be growing in.

Outdoor cannabis strains for cold temperate climates

Those who live in colder temperate climates, such as Northern and Eastern Europe, have to choose their strains accordingly. Summers are short and winter frosts are strong enough to destroy any cannabis crop. Therefore, timing and strain choice are essential.

Strains ideal for this kind of climate include Early Skunk Feminised and Jamaican Pearl. They are hardy strains with early flowering times.

Outdoor cannabis strains for warm temperate climates

Those who live in warmer temperate climates have a little bit more freedom when it comes to growing cannabis. In fact, the majority of commercial strains have been developed for growing specifically in warmer climates. Mild winters and long summers is the perfect growing condition for cannabis.

Those living in warmer climates can grow almost any strain. Both sativa dominant varieties and indica dominant varieties can be grown.

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2. Start your plants indoors if possible

It is advisable to germinate your seeds indoors, and allow your plants to grow in pots for at least a week or two under artificial lighting (which could be a simple household CFL light) or on a windowsill.

This will protect your seedlings from being eaten by birds or insects while they are young and tender, as well as giving them a head-start if outdoor conditions are still a little too cool.

When it’s time to expose your young plants to the outdoor world, it is advisable to go through a period of ‘hardening-off’ so that your plants gradually become accustomed to the change in environment.

At first, out your plants outside for a few hours at a time, and be sure to keep them sheltered from the elements.

After a week or so of increasing exposure to outdoor conditions, they will be hardy enough to be left outside full-time, either in pots, bags, or in holes dug into the soil.

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3. Choose soil or pots for outdoor growing

Every grower gets to choose whether they will sow their seeds or seedlings directly into the ground or whether they will be cultivated in pots. Each choice has its advantages and disadvantages, so let’s focus on the pros of each growing method.

Advantages of growing in soil

  • Unrestricted access to nutrients and moisture from the ground
  • Plants can reach maximum height as there is no restriction on root growth
  • Keeps costs low as there is no need to purchase pots

Advantages of growing in pots

  • Flexibility to move plants around
  • In the case of extreme weather, pots can be moved indoors
  • Easier to conceal a growing operation
  • Maximum control over the size and growth rate of plants
  • Ensures no contamination of soil from surrounding environment

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4. Good soil is crucial when growing cannabis outdoors

Making sure your soil is prepared correctly is perhaps the most fundamental aspect of outdoor growing.

Soil should be checked to determine pH, and if it is too low or too high then additives such as lime (to increase pH/make more alkaline) or sulphur (to decrease pH/make more acidic) must be mixed in.

Consistency of soil is also important—too much clay, and soil will be sticky and will drain poorly; too much sand, and drainage may be too rapid.

Cannabis prefers loamy soil, or soil that consists mainly of sand and silt with a lower ratio of clay (around 40%-40%-20% silt-sand-clay is a good rule of thumb).

As well as this, soil fertility is important. Does the soil support a large amount and diversity of vegetation?

If not, adding mulch or manure is a good way to invigorate soil and increase the levels of available nutrients for your plants. If soil is poor, or if you just want to go the simple and hassle-free route, you can buy commercial soil, and even grow your plants in pots—or dig them into the ground, but keep them in bags so they are not exposed to surrounding soil.

5. Pick the right spot

The ideal spot for growing cannabis outdoors will be sunny, sheltered, well-irrigated, and will have good drainage. It will also be far enough off the beaten track that little human activity occurs in the vicinity—so no popular hiking trails or logging roads, for one thing!

A forest clearing that receives a good amount of sunlight and is sheltered from wind (as well as prying eyes!) is ideal; mixed broad-leafed forest is preferable to coniferous, as soil in the vicinity of coniferous woodland is often very acidic.

If you are growing in hilly terrain, aspect is an important and often-overlooked factor. Just as a south-facing balcony is preferable for apartment growers, a south-facing hillside is ideal for outdoor grows as it maximizes hours and intensity of sunlight.

The angle at which the sun’s rays strike the surface of the planet varies from the perpendicular according to latitude; in the northern hemisphere a south-facing spot will receive more sunlight, and in the southern hemisphere, a north-facing garden is preferable for the same reasons.

If you’re at all doubting your spot (for any reason), it is perhaps better to put your plants in pots. This way, you can move your plants around as necessary until you find the optimum spot to grow your cannabis plants. If you put them in the ground too soon, you won’t have the liberty of transporting them in the case of extreme weather or sub-optimal conditions.

6. Pick the best time to grow outdoors

In most climate zones, you should be aware of changes in seasonal temperature, rainfall and hours of daylight. If you live in the temperate zones, the change in daylight hours is considerable between seasons. This acts as a cue to photoperiod-dependent cannabis varieties to either perform vegetative growth (during the long days of late spring and early summer) or commence flowering (when the hours of daylight drop in the latter half of summer).

If you attempt vegetative growth in early spring, hours of daylight may still be short enough to induce flowering, so it is best to wait until at least mid-April (northern hemisphere) or mid-October (southern hemisphere) to put out your seedlings.

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If you live in particularly warm climates, you may be able to achieve more than one harvest in a year; in locations near the equator, this should definitely be achievable by taking advantage of the year-round warm temperatures and intense sunlight.

If located in a tropical region that experiences seasonal monsoons, it is best to avoid this time of year due to the increased risk of mould.

If I bury this pot seed will it grow?
February 20, 2009 4:02 PM Subscribe

So every now and then a few seeds show up in the shake. Are these real, growable marijuana seeds? If I planted one, and gave it all the TLC yer supposta, would it grow? Or do you need to get your hands on some sort of special seed stock if you hope to raise a plant?
posted by It ain’t over yet to Home & Garden (11 answers total)

Yes, you can likely grow them. There are plenty of fora discussing various techniques. Looks like a lot of work to me.
posted by jdfan at 4:10 PM on February 20, 2009

Yes, it should grow, but the breeding stock will vary depending on where it comes from. There is a correlation between the quality of the marijuana and the quality of the seeds. Keep in mind that if it was grown south of the border, it might not be well suited for your local climate. If you are looking for indoor use, some seeds will be much better for indoor use.

If you have a variety of marijuana, save a few seeds from each kind and you can find out which ones do best.
posted by diamondsky at 4:18 PM on February 20, 2009

I’ve raised a few from seeds. They definitely have not been as strong as what I can buy. But the ones I raised were literally thrown in the garden or rescued from the compost and ignored to grow wild like the weed they are.
posted by saucysault at 4:31 PM on February 20, 2009

I accidentally grew one once, from a seed that was discarded by throwing it in a pot with another plant.
posted by All.star at 4:39 PM on February 20, 2009

“It doesn’t take a miracle to cultivate a weed”
posted by piedmont at 4:40 PM on February 20, 2009 [1 favorite]

I’ve been tossing seeds in potted plants for years and they inevitably sprout into long leggy things that drop dead a week later. Even if they matured they would reflect the quality of the original weed — not so great if I’m picking out seeds in the first place.

Growing quality pot takes some work — myself, I’ve never had the patience or inclination to see a crop through. There is also an investment in lighting (pay attention here, large growers get popped all the time because their attics spit out a huge IR signature and/or their utility bills spike), ventilation (good weed stinks, like a skunk) and time. That said, if you want to grow for personal use I encourage it. It tends to remove the whole sleazy “drug dealer” part of the equation and puts you clearly in the victimless crime category.

The people I know who have grown high quality weed from seed have started with good seed stock. It’s my understanding that having seeds sent from overseas (seed banks) has a pretty good success rate. Obviously you will want to take commonsense precautions to maintain deniability just in case those pesky postal inspectors are paying attention and you probably don’t want to use your credit card.

If you want to grow for profit my advice would be to start working out now. It’ll make you look better when you start doing push-ups with your new friends in jail.
posted by cedar at 4:55 PM on February 20, 2009 [2 favorites]

They are, and it would. Cultivation methods (as well as genetic makeup) make a big difference in final quality. Also be aware that for your purposes only the female plants matter, so for each seed that reaches maturity, there’s only a 50% it will prove interesting.

And as Cedar points out, please recognize the significant legal implications of allowing said seeds to do what nature intended.
posted by fogovonslack at 8:16 PM on February 20, 2009

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It’s cute to see them germinate (toss them in with a houseplant) but it takes a little extra love to get them to grow big.

Also, you might end up with male plants which won’t do much for you, recreation-wise.

If you do end up getting a healthy happy grown up female plant, she’s gonna be odourous smelly.
posted by porpoise at 8:35 PM on February 20, 2009

Best answer: They’ll grow, just pick the ones that aren’t cracked!! Put em on a wet paper towel and cover with saran wrap, then wait until they look like a little sperm, pop em in the soil, give LOTS of light for 24 hours for a month, switch to 12 hours of darkness, and enjoy 😉
posted by In Heaven at 9:58 PM on February 20, 2009

Best answer: Putting aside all other issues of legality, security and so forth (which you should definitely not do were you to hyconsider taking this question beyond the hypothetical) sure, there are viable seeds in most weed.

The quality of the plant is variable and impossible to determine in advance. Marijuana is sexually gendered (it has distinct male and female plants, although there are varieties that strongly exhibit hermaphroditism as well). Males produce the pollen and are useless in terms of producing high quality marijuana – so half the seeds you might theoretically plant are going to be pointless except for making more seeds. More importantly, the biggest factor in the quality of the plant’s product is its genetics.

The seed in your shake may be resulted from pollination by some random male, including an agricultural variety, because there are massive amounts of wild hemp from decades old agricultural production all over the place and there is plenty of hemp pollen floating around as a result. The genetics of the seed could therefor be pretty unfavorable for producing marijuana for smoking.

On the other hand, a seed might have set from stray pollen from the grower’s own propagation program, in which case it could be as good as the product it was found in. Grown carefully, it could be better, if the product was poorly grown/harvested/dried/transported.

It’s worth noting that many of the foundation varieties of the high-end cannabis breeding world were developed by people in California breeding out of stock from mostly indifferent Mexican commercial pot. The potential is always there: the principles of breeding for specific characteristics is like any other plant.

Serious commercial growers are managing their own propagation programs to generate a stable quality seed stock or getting seeds from the well-established and very lucrative market that exists, in some places openly or semi-openly (Holland, Canada – in Canada there was a thriving market that has been under attack by their authorities for a while now), for seeds of known varieties of exceptional quality. Some commercial seeds even exploit chemical manipulations to produce seeds with only female plants.

If you are really fascinated in the entirely hypothetical world of growing weed, consider checking out some books – Ed Rosenthal and Mel Frank are two classic authors.

Legally growing is quite a different issue than the sort of small scale possession most pot smokers deal in. Personally I’d never chance it these days but of course I’m a father now and a lot more conservative with respect to risk in general. I still wistfully hope someday (within my lifetime, please) it might become as accessible as home brewing, as it should be.
posted by nanojath at 10:37 PM on February 20, 2009

Best answer: Your seeds are likely from an outdoor grow since an indoor grower would never let pollen spread among the female plants. Your seeds can be grown indoor or outdoor but if you go the indoor route in can definately be worth to try to get your hand on a specific indoor strain since theese are breeded for yield and quality under controlled curcumstances opposed to the outdoor strain where you want them as though as possible.
posted by ilike at 2:58 AM on February 21, 2009