how to grow exotic weed outdoors

“I warn people… crawl before you walk,” Wylie said. “Learn to get your plant to grow all the way to fruition, harvest it, dry it, cure it. Then you can build from there. Don’t run out and buy thousands of dollars of equipment.”

Phoenix Seeds & Clones also sells clones.

Wylie suggested first-time growers start with a hybrid strain and stay away from strains that have OG in the name or are labeled “exotic,” which tend to be finicky. Popular 50/50 hybrid Blue Dream, for example, is a resilient plant that can take higher and lower temperatures, he said.

If people want to clone their own plants, he recommended they plant multiple seeds at once, label each plant, and take a cutting from each one before they flower. People can then grow the cutting from whichever plant yields the best harvest.

After harvesting the plant, the grower should hang the plant upside down to dry for 10 to 14 days, he continued. The stems should feel brittle when dried. After that, trim the leaves off the flowers and put the flowers in an airtight container, like a mason jar. While the flowers are consumable at this point, the flowers can be cured for a better quality.

What else do I need to grow a cannabis plant?

As of Oct. 19, the company was sold out of seeds, but people can join an email list for an update when seeds are back in stock:

While it may be tempting to spray your plants in the middle of a burning, sunny day, the water droplets on the leaves can act like tiny magnifying glasses. As with other types of plants, it’s best to water early morning. If you have to water in the middle of the day, first discharge the hot water from your hose if that’s what you’re using, and water the soil around the plant, not the leaves, he advised.

After a few days, growers can switch to a ratio of 12 hours light, followed by 12 hours of consecutive darkness to activate the flowering stage. If growing outside, the light of a full moon is about the maximum amount of light a plant should receive during the darkness period, Sundberg said.

“We don’t see any difference between growing cannabis and growing vegetables and growing lavender, they’re all plants,” said Ryan Jerrell, co-owner of Dig It Gardens in Phoenix.

At local supplier Phoenix Seeds & Clones , people can purchase a grow consultation ranging from $75-200, including 5 to 20 seeds. Strains offered include Gorilla Cake, Tangie Cookies and Kino Vision, a high CBD strain.

Some people use grow tents, which look like black boxes, but cannabis can really be grown most places as long as people are able to adapt to the environment, Sundberg said.

Buyers should go with vetted sources to avoid fraudulent sellers. Sundberg recommended Canna Genetics Bank, a retailer that sells seeds from various breeders, and Neptune Seed Bank, both based in California.

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Once planted, the cannabis plant needs a ratio of about 18 hours light, 6 hours darkness to grow in what’s called the vegetative stage, which doesn’t produce flowers. How long you let the plant grow in this state depends on your space constraint, but Sundberg recommends beginners start small.

Where can I buy a cannabis clone?

Wylie recommended plants should be watered when the soil is dry. Growers can test this by sticking a finger into soil about halfway between the plant and edge of the pot. If the soil is warm and dry, it’s time to water.

A clone is a cutting from a living cannabis plant, which can grow into a plant itself. The new plan has the same genetic makeup as the original plant, hence, a “clone.”

Adults can grow six cannabis plants at home or no more than 12 plants in a house with more than one adult.

On average, a plant takes 50 to 60 days before it’s ready to harvest, Wylie said. Once harvested, the plant needs to be dried for about 10 to 14 days. Growers then have the choice of consuming their cannabis, or curing the flowers another week or two for higher quality, he said.

Ryan Jerrell, co-owner of Dig It Gardens in central Phoenix, also said his nursery plans on selling cannabis seeds in the future, as well as “starter kits” for first-time growers.

People can also purchase cannabis seeds on websites such as Leafly. Sundberg warned that quality seeds can be pricey. Seeds are also a gamble because only female plants flower, and there’s no guarantee how many female seeds are in a packet. Feminized seeds are genetically engineered to grow only female plants, but tend to cost more.

What’s the easiest cannabis strain to grow for beginners?

Other hybrids he suggested for beginners include Green Crack, Grape Diamonds and Cherry Garcia.

People can grow plants from seeds or cuttings off an existing plant, also known as clones. Sundberg said cuttings are a gray area because it’s unclear whether a cutting that hasn’t taken root yet is counted as part of the six or 12 plants Arizonans are allowed to grow.

Wylie has been cultivating cannabis since 2002, when he first started growing for patient use in California. Sundberg cultivates cannabis for personal use and offers workshops for other growers.

Both Wylie and Sundberg said the key items you need to grow cannabis are nutrient-rich soil, water and light.

Sundberg described living soil, which has active microorganisms in it, as a major game changer. Compost, mulch and worm castings can be found at the Arizona Worm Farm in Phoenix.

Wylie said most people will likely grow indoors, in a closet or garage, for example. About 75 degrees, more or less, is an optimal temperature, he said. In a small space with stagnant air, he suggested using a fan to move air in and out. A beginner can start in a closet with a 100-watt grow light and oscillating desk fan, and it’s enough to get going, he said.

Growing from seed is a trial and error process and people should be prepared to “have a few rounds that are really disappointing” before they find that one best phenotype, he advised.

It is necessary to drop nighttime temperatures down to the 50-degree mark. This is a risky proposition because you could cause severe shock. Don’t expect to see any dark shades until the middle of the flowering stage. If the temperature is higher than the required level, some of these strains will provide a gold or red hue instead of the black you may see.

If you want red and pink colors, keep the pH range acidic, which means on the lower end of the ranges above. If you want purple hues, keep the pH neutral. Yellow and blue colors tend to appear in alkaline, or high pH, conditions.

In certain strains, the buds stay green while the leaves change color. The result is a stunning plant, but as leaves tend to be trimmed after harvest , you won’t see much of the color on the buds. It is possible for the buds to remain the same while the leaves turn purple, for example. This phenomenon can happen when your plants are exposed to low nighttime temperatures. The leaves exposed to light turn purple while those in the shade don’t change color.

All it takes is a few purple calyxes to provide a purple ‘tint’ for example. When you grind up such weed, you will see the colorful pieces throughout the sample. Obviously, the greater the number of colorful calyxes, the more vibrant the color of the bud.

In this article, you have discovered the various aspects involved in plant color. These include genetics, temperature, nutrients, and pH levels. If you want to grow some gorgeous colorful marijuana, follow the tips outlined above but make sure the genetics are right first!

Ideal Strains.

Certain cannabis strains only show their true colors when you set the night time temperature a few degrees cooler than the daytime temperature; especially as harvest time approaches. Not every strain reacts well to colder night temperatures, while strains like Panama will become colorful regardless of the temperature.

Your best bet is to boost the pH level of your plants as they approach the last few weeks of flowering. Soil quality is of paramount importance. Add organic soil amendments such as worm castings to your compost, but test its pH before adding it to the soil.

Then there are strains like Querkle that prefer it to be warm during the day. To cover all bases, look to grow your weed in a temperature range of 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 65-70 degrees at night. In general, marijuana with red, blue, and purple hues react well to slight drops in temperature. Be careful not to reduce it too much because your plants could go into shock.

There is a misconception that certain colors result in stronger marijuana strains. In rare cases, a strain will develop extremely dark genetics that makes the weed seem black. It happens in Vietnamese landraces , for example. These are genetically pure strains that have not been meddled with. As a result, these strains are naturally potent and provide a major psychedelic high. However, this has nothing to do with the color.

While all green plants synthesize these compounds, they are often covered by chlorophyll production. It is only in the latter stage of growth when chlorophyll production is reduced that you’ll see the colors of carotenoids.

It seems as if the molecules act as a ‘sunscreen’ for the plant, so if you increase the light and create stress, the plant will react by upping its anthocyanin production. Experienced growers know how to stress the plant just enough to produce the equivalent of a suntan for their weed! Novices could severely damage their crop.

Expert growers believe that pH is one of the most important changes you can make to bring out a marijuana strain’s color. As a rule of thumb, soil should have a pH of between 6.0 and 7.0, while hydroponically grown weed performs well in a pH range of 5.5 – 6.5.

Strains equipped with the right genetics produce stunning colors under specific conditions. Marijuana produces anthocyanin and flavonoids for protection. According to a study by Mansouri and Bagheri, published in Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology in 2014, flavonoid accumulation is involved in various aspects of a plant’s growth including protection against UV radiation, pigment production, and pathogen resistance.

Those with minimal knowledge of weed often assume that it is more or less all green. You may hear about the occasional strain with purple tints, but in general, you might think marijuana looks a bit ‘boring.’ In fact, you can grow cannabis in a variety of colors, as long as the genetics are right.

This is also on the risky end of the spectrum. Nitrogen deficiency can result in a chlorophyll decrease, which turns the leaves yellow. A phosphorus deficiency could provide a darker green color with hints of purple or red in the buds. However, we don’t recommend this tactic because it could severely damage your precious plants if extreme caution is not taken.

Ideal Strains.

You need to take a risk with temperatures and choose the right strains to end up with dark-colored weed.

Experienced growers often use the ‘trichome’ method to determine when a crop is ready for harvest. Using a magnifying glass, they know that clear trichomes mean the plant isn’t ready. If the trichomes are milky white, the plant is at its highest THC content and prime for harvest . If the color changes to amber or yellow, you must harvest immediately, and the weed will provide a mellow high.

If you want colorful buds, choose a marijuana strain with colored pistils and buds if you can. In an ideal world, the leaves and trichomes will also be colorful. If you want maximum color after the drying and curing process, deep purple buds are capable of maintaining their colorful appearance once they have been dried and trimmed.

In rare cases, trichomes can turn pink or purple, which makes it hard to determine when to harvest. At this stage, the pistil method comes in handy.

The most important aspect of colorful cannabis is the strain’s genetics. No matter what you do, if a strain isn’t genetically capable of displaying stunning hues, your efforts will be in vain. The genetic ‘building blocks’ are called anthocyanins ; a flavonoid family which produces red, purple, or blue pigments. You also find them in plants such as red cabbage, violets, blueberries, and eggplants.

Carotenoids are the compounds responsible for the bright and cheery yellows and oranges (and reds) you see in plants. In actual fact, humans also rely on carotenoids because they play a role in the production of Vitamin A, which we need for better growth and vision.

It is imperative for you to realize that color doesn’t equal potency or even quality. You may get more antioxidants which come from anthocyanins. As a result, you may benefit from additional anti-inflammatory and painkilling properties, but then again, you could get a similar effect from eating red berries!


As you can guess, some marijuana strains naturally contain greater amounts of anthocyanins than others. This is why certain strains express the same colors time and again. For example, Granddaddy Purple always appears to provide light lavenders and darker purples. Other strains of this ilk include Purple Urkle , Purple Kush , and Mendocino Purps.

The pistils, or hairs, that stick out of the buds often turn orange, red, purple or pink; even if the buds and leaves stay green. After the buds are dried, they retain some of the pistil colorings, and you’ll also see some of the color looking to get through beneath the buds.

It isn’t easy to find strains with red/pink buds, and you’ll have to do a little research and legwork. However, there are several with red or pink leaves or hairs. The reddish hues are due to specific phenotypes that genetically predispose the strain to produce the color red during the flowering stage.

Pink Flower Shaman, Pink Lady Kush, Pink Lemonade and Alaskan Thunder Bolt.

It is often assumed that ‘purple’ strains are stronger than others. If you had to expose your plants to colder temperatures to get that hue, the strain could produce less THC.

As you probably know, calyxes make the buds. Indeed, the buds you hold in your hand are a combination of several hundred calyxes piled on top of one another, and some, or all, of them, can become a color aside from green. It is the calyxes that provide the most color in your buds.

While the importance of light levels varies depending on the strain, weed from the ‘purple’ camp prefers strong direct light on the leaves and buds. It is believed that experimenting with the light spectrum in LEDs can work wonders for increasing the rate of anthocyanin production in your plant’s tissues.

Those with genetic lineages from Vietnamese landraces; Vietnamese Black, Black Tuna , Black Willy, Black Mamba , Black Diesel, and Black Widow .

Look at these photo’s to see what can be achieved. If the plant really gets well established then yields of several hundred grams from single plants are quite common.

Preparing the grow spot. Your spot maybe in your garden/greenhouse, woodland, by a field, in a forest clearing, near a river bank or on a mountain. But wherever you are you growing you should really accept that preparing the soil you plan to grow in is a minimum requirement. Many growers will prepare the plot as few months before and dig in manure, compost, or fertilisers such as worm castings, bat guano etc. First-time growers may simply prefer to get the ground dug over and put in as much good quality bagged compost as they can carry. That approach alone will be a good start. More experienced growers will test soil pH, adding lime if it is too acidic and digging in well rotted manure a few months before the grow starts.

Anyone looking to grow outdoors should read some of the tips and advice on the grow forums such as the UK420 Forum where you can read about everything from soil characterisation, soil improvement, pest control and lots more.

Today we look at outdoor growing. For lots of people growing outdoors is the preferred method. Outdoor enthusiasts say that sun-grown weed tastes better too. Certainly the potential for growth is enormous especially in warm sunny climates.

To harvest the weed it is simply chopped off and dried by hanging on a wire in a dry and dark place. Once it has been dried it is cured (or matured), often for a couple of months or more in glass jars or sealable plastic containers. Most growers will tell you that a well cured weed smokes smoother and strange though it sounds it may seem stronger when it is well cured. Good weed will often still be a great smoke many months after harvest if well cured. Longer term weed storage is possible by putting marijuana in a sealed container in the fridge. Although it is not widely known, you can also put your stash in a freezer where it will remain highly potent and just as tasty for years.

Holland’s Hope. Another proven Dutch Passion outdoor variety with generous yields.

Protecting the spot. Rabbits and deer are constant threats to cannabis plants, so are other large mammals. Many growers will surround the plant with a ring of chicken wire (or similar) 50cm high. They may put a few slug pellets down on visits to the plants. Often growers will take the chance to get a few litres of water put into the ground near the plant on visits. Google Earth is useful to many outdoor growers for selecting good grow spots. Nearby rivers are useful for water especially if it is hot and dry.

Which seeds to grow? For a first time grower you are looking for a strain with a proven reputation for being hardy enough to grow outdoors even in northern climates such as the UK, The Netherlands, Germany, Czech Republic, Poland, the northern part of Russia etc. The highly recommended Frisian Dew and Passion#1 have stood the test of time and are solid, robust varieties which will yield well even in the hands of first time growers when only a few basic preparations are made. Even in northerly latitudes tough strains such as Passion #1 and Frisian Dew are capable of yielding well. AutoFem’s need just 10 weeks from seed to finish, even a Siberian summer can support them!

And without too much trouble you will find that even a first time grower can get an ample harvest of absolutely top quality marijuana. Just as good as anything you will have bought, if not better. And with even our best outdoor strains available for well under €10 per seed you can see that a seed is a great value investment, so get some good ones. The cannabis seeds you buy for your grow is the one area of your life where you really should not compromise!

Preparing the plants. Often the grower will have sprouted the seeds and grown them into small healthy plants before taking them to the final outdoor grow spot. As a general rule you will get better results in the long run if the plants are established and healthy before planting out. Often they are started indoors under lights or in a greenhouse. When to plant your young plants or seedlings will depend on where you live. In Spain you might be able to plant out in March or April whereas a UK grower may want to wait until May.

Selection of grow spot. In a domestic back garden on your own property you just need a sunny position. Most growers prefer a private spot that can’t be seen by others.

Outdoor growers in warm climates with longer seasons will be able to grow more exotic strains than more northerly growers.

With so many people growing weed for the first time we thought it would be worthwhile publishing some general guidelines that will allow you to make a good start and grow some absolutely great quality weed with the minimum effort. Over the next few weeks we will review indoor, outdoor and greenhouse grows.

So if you are planning on growing outdoors now is the time to decide where and perhaps start preparing. The internet has lots of grow forums in your own language, and you may want to get a good book. Authors such as Jorge Cervantes and Ed Rosenthal have been popular, but there are lots of great resources online these days. Thanks to modern outdoor varieties and fast growing AutoFem’s everyone can grow great quality marijuana outdoors and become self sufficient very easily. What are you waiting for ?