For most indoor growers, this means removing “distractions” lower down on the plant. This encourages the plant not to waste resources on a node which is only going to produce “popcorn” buds. These are buds that are loose and wispy. While they produce the same results as any other, they aren’t as preferable of a final product.
The first thing to mention here is that defoliation is a controversial method for increasing yield. There are experienced growers who swear by it and others who shy away.
Incidentally, cannabis is not the only crop this technique works on. It is also used successfully in other kinds of agriculture. In fact, cowpeas can experience increased yields up to 50% when defoliation is performed correctly.
Defoliation is a method to increase crop yield used by experienced growers. The idea is to help shape the plant with selective pruning. This focuses the energy of the plant on the best-placed buds. Warning: this is not a good idea for beginners. You have to know what you are doing.
In essence, defoliation involves removing the small leaves from the lower nodes of the plant as they grow. You need to do this gradually and gently. Stripping a young plant of too much too early is stressful, but the idea is to concentrate the plant’s attention on the upper-most or strategically located buds. When buds are more exposed to the light, they will grow more densely and increase your yield, sometimes dramatically.
There are many different techniques for shaping plants depending on the conditions of the grow operation. This is where experience comes in. Growing your plants on a southern, exposed slope is one of the other ways to assist this process. The pruning you would do here is partly determined by the grow environment. Outdoor crops are defoliated differently, of course. The only light source is the sun.
Again, defoliation is not a good idea for beginners. It is far more important to hone other aspects of your grow techniques first. Make sure you have a decent grow space. Water and feeding is really important. Of course the lights – both placement and timing – are a big part of making sure you have a successful grow.
Obviously, every grower wants to increase their yields. Growing cannabis is a labour of love, which is why cultivators want more of it! There are various common sense methods for maximising your crop. These include proper lighting. Nutrients are an essential part of the mix, of course. Watering is a crucial aspect of growing healthy, unstressed plants and temperature control is another given.
This pruning process will not only help shape the growing plant, but also promote dense and thick bud growth in all the right places.
Increasing cannabis yield is a top goal for growers. There is a method called defoliation which helps the plant grow dense nugs – but it takes practice.