Whether you’re growing marijuana indoors or outdoors, trellising can make a big difference in your yields. It provides guidance to your plants, ensuring that they grow in a way that will produce the highest quality buds.
There are many different types of trellises, from classic designs to more intricate ones that take a bit more effort to build. Whatever you choose, it’s important to know the impact of each type on your cannabis yields so that you can decide which is best for your needs.
1. The Impact of Light
As lighting research and technologies evolve, growers increasingly seek a deeper understanding of how light quality and intensity affects cannabis yields. This quest is a key component to any cultivation operation, particularly for high-yielding plants like marijuana.
One of the most important aspects of light is how it impacts cannabis growth and development, including terpene and cannabinoid production, biomass development, flowering time and bud quality. Using the appropriate lighting cycle and spectrum can help you maximize yields, while also minimizing plant injury, stress and disease.
Studies have shown that the correct spectrum and intensity can significantly improve crop morphology and cannabinoid production in many types of plants, with high-PPFDs (photosynthetic photon flux density) having the greatest impact. This is a significant benefit to growers because supplemental lighting is one of the fastest and most energy efficient ways to increase yields and quality.
In partnership with Fluence by OSRAM, an LED lighting fixture manufacturer, Texas Original Compassionate Cultivation tested a variety of spectra to determine which ones would best help produce the highest yields. They discovered that monochromatic red spectra and high-intensity LEDs produced the most robust cannabis plants, while broad-spectrum white light had a lower overall impact on yields and bud morphology.
The team is continuing to explore the impact of different spectra and light intensities on cannabis. This will help them provide growers with more insight into what type of spectral design and light intensity they need to meet their specific production goals.
Another aspect of light that can affect cannabis production is its effect on secondary metabolite levels. This is a factor that has been established in other crops, but it’s not widely recognized how much of an impact this can have on cannabis.
In addition to affecting secondary metabolite levels, light also has an impact on canopy height and the number of leaves per plant. This is especially important for growers who want to control the height of their canopy, as well as those that are interested in airflow management in the canopy, or those who are seeking to homogenize canopy height through vertical farming.
2. The Impact of Space
Generally, cannabis is cultivated in controlled growing rooms that allow growers to monitor growth conditions and produce consistent quality products. However, producers are beginning to produce cannabis for recreational use under greenhouse conditions as they provide a larger cultivation area and reduce heating and lighting costs.
In cannabis production, yield is a key aspect of profitability and the ability to produce high-quality products. Although the plant is predisposed to yield a certain amount, the actual final yield depends on several factors, including the strain you use and the growing environment.
To achieve the highest yield possible, cannabis must be treated with care. The optimum growing environment depends on the strain you choose, and the amount of space you have available.
Larger plants tend to grow faster than smaller ones, so you want to make sure that you have plenty of space to accommodate them as they grow. The length of the flowering stage and the time spent in veg mode can also affect your yield.
The amount of light available to your plants is important for maximizing their yield. The higher the light intensity, the more water and nutrients you will need to supply them. You can increase the light intensity by adding additional lights, but be careful that you don’t overdo it.
This is because your cannabis will need to spend more energy on photosynthesis, causing it to yield less per square meter of growing space. Similarly, the more light that you apply, the shorter your plants will grow.
Fortunately, this is not the case with many strains. Some are genetically predisposed to yield 1500g/plant or more outdoors. While these plants might require a bit more care than others, they can still produce great yields.
This study investigated how growing a Cannabis sativa variety (‘Stillwater’) under varying average canopy-level photon flux density (APPFD; i.e., lighting history) and growth stages affected plant morphology, yield, and quality. The results demonstrate that cannabis has a remarkable capacity to exploit the incident lighting environment to efficiently increase marketable biomass at APPFD levels as high as 1,800 mmol*m-2*s-1.
3. The Impact of Direction
As the cannabis industry develops, it is important to understand the factors that affect yields. This will help researchers determine the most efficient cultivation methods and optimize production of the final product.
The scientific literature is full of data on cannabis yields and quality in a variety of growing conditions. Currently, yields can be measured by a number of factors such as plant density, fertilization, lighting regimes and temperature.
In some cases, these variables are correlated, but there are also significant differences in the way that they impact cannabis growth and yield. This is especially true when looking at the impact of a new method or technology on a cultivar or variety.
For example, a study published in 2018 examined the effect of high intensity light on yield and found that yields were significantly higher at PPFDs of over 1400 umol/m2/s. In addition, the authors concluded that a higher PPFD had a significant impact on flowering time as well as a positive influence on yield per square meter.
However, it is unclear whether this impact is related to an increase in overall plant growth or only the increased concentration of cannabinoids in the dry flowers. These effects are likely to be dependent on the individual variety and grower specific growing conditions, requiring additional research to be fully understood.
Another factor that influences cannabis yields is direction. In particular, the direction of the canopy affects a plant’s ability to absorb the sun’s UV radiation. The use of a canopy shade or net can reduce the amount of UV radiation that reaches the plants by up to 40%, potentially reducing the amount of stress the plants receive from this sunlight. This can be particularly helpful for plants that are prone to leaf-burning, such as cannabis.
4. The Impact of Support
Trellising is a popular method for increasing cannabis yields. It helps plants spread out their canopy and provide buds with more room to grow. It also supports the weight of the plant as it grows. It is important to consider the impact of different types of trellising on cannabis yields before making a decision.
The most common type of trellising used for outdoor cannabis plants is vertical. This type of trellising uses frames made from wood or metal and helps to support the weight of the plant.
Indoor cannabis growers also benefit from trellising. The trellising system can be used to increase plant growth, as well as to ensure that the cannabis plant has a good airflow.
When trellising, it is a good idea to use netting that can help to regulate the flow of air. This can prevent the emergence of mold and bugs that cause bud rot and lower yields.
Another benefit of trellising is that it can reduce the amount of time the plant spends in the vegetative phase. This can make it easier to harvest a large crop of high quality buds.
The type of trellising also affects how the plant responds to light. This can either be a positive or negative impact on the plant’s ability to grow and produce bud.
It is also important to consider the type of trellising when comparing results between different growers. For example, if you want to produce a high yield of top-quality cannabis with the greatest possible number of colas, then you should choose a trellising system that will help your plants to grow to their full potential.
However, if you only want to produce a small number of buds and a fast harvest, then trellising is probably not for you. The main reason for this is that it takes a long time to grow a plant to its maximum potential, and you may not have the patience needed to wait for it to reach maturity.
In addition, trellising can reduce the amount of light that is absorbed by the plant. This can also affect the amount of water the plant receives and can affect its growth rate and overall performance. It can also negatively impact the amount of THC and CBD that is produced by the plant.