Micro Growing: Growing a Small Weed Plant
Every expert cannabis grower started somewhere, and if you’re just setting out on your journey towards reaping the rewards of a bumper crop of sweet, sweet bud, cultivating a small but perfectly formed weed plant is an excellent first step.
In fact, even more experienced weed producers love to get in on the Micro Growing action, as it gives them a chance to try out new varieties. Cleverly, some growers even use their home Micro Growing setups as a valuable source of strains to use in crossbreeding experiments.
Growing a small weed plant: Advantages and disadvantages
It really is a no brainer. So with that in mind, here is our guide to the ins and outs of Micro Weed Growing.
In addition to the sense of achievement you’ll enjoy once you’ve established a flourishing weed plant in your home, some of the many benefits of Micro Growing include:
- Does not require much space.
- Hones your weed growing skills.
- Looks great in your home.
- Cheaper and more rewarding than buying commercial weed.
Aside from the obvious limitations in the size department, the main drawbacks of growing a small weed plant in your home are:
- Your plant will require regular attention.
- Smaller yields than full sized plants.
- Might test the patience of novice growers waiting for their first harvest.
- Additional equipment required to maximize yield/THC content.
How to Grow a Small Weed Plant
If you already grow your own weed, you’ll know that these incredible plants require a great deal of care and attention in order to enable them to reach their full potential. However, for the benefit of newcomers and as a recap for everyone else, the basics you’ll need are:
- A nutrient-rich growing environment.
- Lighting which mimics the natural daylight cycle.
- Enough warmth to simulate the type of climate in which cannabis plants thrive.
- A regular and balanced watering and feeding schedule.
For the purposes of this article, we’ll assume that you will only have access to basic hydroponics and UV lights. Fortunately, this does not mean that your small weed plant won’t be able to produce a highly enjoyable crop. It just might not be quite as potent as the stuff you’re used to finding at your favorite local dispensary or coffee shop.
In order to emulate the techniques used in a commercial weed growing setting in a domestic context without expensive equipment, simply follow the steps below:
- Pot your plant in a specialist weed going compost.
- Remember to feed and water your plant regularly and incorporate this into your daily routine.
- If you do not have a UV light, choose the location of your plant in your home carefully so that it gets plenty of natural light.
- If you have got access to a basic UV light, maximize its effectiveness by keeping your plant in a container such as an old fish tank or a large storage box lined with reflective material (e.g. tinfoil or white paper).
- Place your plant close to a heat source such as a radiator, or even in your kitchen near the oven.
Other than that, all you need to do is make sure that you prune your plant carefully in order to keep it within your size requirements. While doing this, remember to take care not to limit your final yield, and use your judgement to ensure that you harvest your bud at the correct time.
Top 3 Best Strains for Micro Growing
We’re assuming that you won’t have access to the sophisticated lighting equipment necessary to trigger the flowering phase as required by regular or ‘photoperiod’ varieties. As such, for reasons of practicality and convenience we recommend that you stick with autoflowering cannabis seeds.
Furthermore, we suggest choosing a strong strain to offset some of the loss of potency which is an inevitable consequence of growing weed without the aid of professional standard equipment, not to mention the fact that you may only be growing one plant. The good news is that there is a whole host of superb weed strains on the market today which will fulfill this criteria handsomely.
While which particular strain is right for you will largely depend on your own preferences, a few of our favorites include:
1. Northern Lights Autoflower
Needing no introduction, Northern Lights has been delighting weed lovers the world over since the early 80’s when it was first created in Seattle, Washington. The strain was then further refined by expert weed breeders in the Netherlands. In the decades since it has triumphed in pretty much every major contest the Cannabis community has to offer, including the coveted first prize at the High Times Cannabis Cup.
It was inevitable that this iconic weed strain would be at top of the list when weed breeders were developing new varieties which could be grown with relative ease, and sure enough the Autoflower version does not disappoint. Blessed with the same attributes which made Northern Lights famous in the first place, this mellow yet euphoric bud is a pleasure to smoke. With a sweet flavour and fragrant aroma, it makes a solid choice for any Micro Growing project.
2. Critical Autoflower
Developed relatively recently, Critical is beginning to become a firm favorite among weed lovers who appreciate something a little different but don’t want to compromise on the quality of their smoke. Being derived from a surprisingly robust plant, the Autoflower version shares the original strain’s mellow yet highly enjoyable effects, not to mention its distinctive sweet fragrance.
In common with all Autoflower weed varieties, this version does not require precise lighting techniques to trigger the flowering phase. Indoor yields are highly respectable at up to 450 grams per m2, and that all-important THC content can reach the dizzy heights of 20%, making Critical Autoflower a compelling option for weed lovers with refined tastes.
3. Girl Scout Cookies Autoflower
An Indica-dominant variety which was created by crossing the US favourite Girl Scout Cookies with a Ruderalis strain, Girl Scout Cookies Auto boasts an impressive THC content of 22%. Additionally, the finely balanced blend of genetics present in this highly advanced strain means that it also succeeds in replicating most of the generous yields offered by the original variety.
This equates to yields of around 250 to 400 grams per m2 when grown indoors, making it a superb choice for use as a Micro Growing plant. Expect to be ready to harvest your crop in a little over 12 weeks. Once you’ve had a chance to dry out your autoflower buds, you’ll be able to enjoy the delicious chocolate and caramel flavour notes that give this characterful weed variety its name.
Ready to grow your own small cannabis plant?
So there you have it. There’s a wealth of incredible weed strains to choose from, and you don’t even need to go to the trouble of investing in expensive equipment. Provided that it’s legal to grow weed for personal use in your country, there really is no reason whatsoever not to jump onto the Micro Weed Growing bandwagon.
The only question is, what are you waiting for? At Weedseedsexpress we have the best marijuana seeds for sale
Want to know why micro growing has become so popular? Read everything you need to know about growing a small weed plant.
$200 CFL Microgrow – Pictures & Write-up
To all you growers on a budget: It’s possible!
Published with permission.
Check out WasabiMayo’s amazing (budget) CFL microgrow with pictures and read his write-up…
The only nutes and soil I can find locally.
Note: It is important to avoid any Miracle Grow soil with “time released” nutrients for growing cannabis. It will seriously hurt your yields.
Final Yield: 29g = 1.02 ounces
$200 including price of seeds
The only things I bought for my CFL microgrow are displayed in the picture above (except for the 125w CFL which cost
The seeds cost about $70 for 5 x “G13 labs OG13” feminized seeds w/ stealth (insured) shipping
Grow Journal Details
Growing Medium – Soil & Perlite
Miracle-Gro isn’t the best soil for cannabis, but it was all I could afford/find. You gotta work with what you can get. There’s no such thing as a grow shop in my city.
Just make sure you do not get the Miracle-Grow soil with “time released” nutrients! That means do not get the “orginal” Miracle-Gro potting mix. It will burn your plants in the flowering/budding stage by releasing the wrong type of nutrients at the wrong time. If at all possible, I highly recommend you get better soil for growing cannabis to start!
I used the Seed Starting mix for the seeds, and a mix of Organic Choice and Perlite after that
Miracle-Grow Seed Starting Potting mix
Miracle-Gro Organic Choice soil
Local All-Purpose Plant Food
10-15-10 Nutrient Ratio
(there was also general purpose nutrients in the soil)
Miracle-Gro Liquid Cactus Plant Food
2-7-7 Nutrient Ratio
(adequate nutrient ratio for flowering cannabis plants)
- 1 x 125w CFL 6500k bulb above
- 4 x 23w CFLs 2700k on the sides
- Total of 218w of CFLs
The room she’s growing in is in a room pretty far from the entrance to my apartment, inside a cabinet you could pick up from IKEA.
The grow space is about 1.5′ x 1.5′. It’s only one plant so actual grow space is probably closer to 1’x1′, since I have the bulbs about 3″ away at most. I give the plant a 90 degree turn every couple days.
There’s a bar about 4′-5′ up that the zip ties are connected to and I wrap the cabling for the lights around it to secure them.
For the most part I just hang them but the bulbs on the left I jerry-rigged; it wasn’t close enough to the buds so I made hooks on the ends of a straightened piece of clothes hangar.
One end went around the Y-splitter the other the edge of the wing and it brings the lights in sufficiently. The reflectors are made from folded over heavy duty foil–heavy duty is the only kind that retains its shape when molded.
How much did it smell?
I think I’ve gotten used to the smell. I don’t even smell it anymore, lol. When I walk into the room I only smell slight hints of it. Even when I put my nose against it it just smells like slightly herby grass.
But if i just brush the plant with my fingers and bring it to my nose it smells like a real earthy varnish, STRONG.
My friend who doesn’t smoke says he smells it when he walks into my place but only because I told him about it, if I didn’t mention it he probably wouldn’t have noticed it.
No smells in my hallway at all. (I live in an upper floor apartment landlord is never around.) I’ve also had other friends/family around but no one’s ever said anything so I think he’s right.
When the lights are on I leave the cabinet open. It’s in a room that gets real good air circulation, when I leave the window open a crack I get a nice gentle breeze and the temp around the plant is spot on 77f with a RH of 20%. So I kind of lucked out on not needing a fan/carbon filter to control odors.
- Vegged for 30 days using just the 1 x 125w CFL 6500k bulb located above the plant
- FIMed once on week 3 (the third grow node was just coming in)
- Transplanted a couple days before going 12/12
- I didn’t defoliate during veg at all, as I didn’t read about it till about a week into flower. I hear you see best results when you start defoliating in veg so I’ll definitely be trying that for my next grow. But even for starting defoliation 2 weeks into flower I’m pretty happy with the results.
The 125w alone was more than enough for veg. In fact, I think I could’ve fit another plant in there if I used a smaller pot.
Here’s the plant in the seed starter mix + perlite.
At this point I moved the plant to a 5 gallon pot filled with only about 3 gallons of soil. This time I used the organic mix + perlite.
- I added the supplemental lights (4 x 23w CFLs) on the side after I flipped the lighting to flower.
- I started LSTing a week into going 12/12.
- Started defoliating 2 weeks into flower, gradually. (10%-20% of the leaves at a time every 4-5 days)
- I ended up clipping all fan leaves about a month after the start of flowering and just adjusted LST so the canopy remained open.
Day 10 of Flowering (40 days from seed)
To tie the plants down, I cannibalized metal clothes hangars. I stretched and straightened them with pliers and then clipped them to whatever length I needed bent in half so I could stake tops down.
Day 60 of Flowering Stage – 3 or 4 Weeks Left Until Harvest
View a complete CFL microgrow journal (in pictures) which yielded over an ounce.