Spring/Summer is usually every growers’ favorite time of the year and growing outdoor autoflowers is one of those reasons! Also known as autoflowering or autos, they will be ready to harvest from seed in 60-80 days in most cases and many growers will grow them throughout the season with successional plantings through the summer months. So once the Spring frosts have finished, make the most of growing outdoor autoflowers. To help, here are some good tips!
Boost outdoor autoflowers with a south facing location
By keeping your pots or grounded plants south facing, you will ensure your Cannabis autos receive the most amount of potential direct light. During the Summer months, you can reward your autoflowering Cannabis plants with up to 15 hours of U.V rich sunlight. Our tip here is to let the autos get used to one location and avoid moving your pots around to chase the sun.
Plant outdoor autoflowers direct into the ground!
One great way to grow large-sized autoflowering Cannabis plants and forge the symbiotic relationship with mycorrhizal fungi and beneficial microorganisms , is to plant directly into the ground. Of course there are some quality control checks that should be followed, so our tip here is to inspect the soil you have in your garden and identify how well a soil sample drains, holds water and most importantly if it is teaming with life. The best way to access this is to take a handful of soil and to smell, as good soil will have a sweet, fermenting aroma. You can always supplement your soil and add fresh worm castings or compost inside to instantly improve the nutritional value and enhance its quality and longevity.
Choose your plant pot wisely
Plastic pots are cheap and work well, however fabric pots are much better in terms of how they benefit the root zone and aerobic life forms and allow salts to break down easier. Many growers don’t enjoy working with plastic and the negative effect it has on the environment, so our tip here is to use fabric pots which allow the roots to prune themselves when in contact with fresh air, resulting in a much more prolific root structure. To take sustainability to the next level, you can even make your own (with basic sewing skills and a roll of felt).
Growing outdoor autoflowers discreetly
Autoflowering Cannabis plants will have a tendency to finish flowering at a height of 60-100cm. This means it is possible to grow a large number of Cannabis autos discreetly in the comfort of your back garden, polytunnel, greenhouse , or sunny roof terrace or balcony. Our tip here is to keep your Cannabis autos well hidden and even be prepared to accompany them with companion plants that may help them camouflage better such as Mint, Basil, Chamomile, Lavender, Dill, Peppermint, and Marigolds to name a few. The companion plants will also work hard to repel insects and reduce the threat of garden pests .
Plan for multiple outdoor autoflower harvests
If you missed planting out photoperiod plants in May, don’t worry, there’s still time to get a summer crop with autos – and even to enjoy multiple harvests. Due to the quick finish, it is possible to plant in June and then again in August . Parts of the world that experience Mediterranean/tropical climate conditions most of the year, such as Southern Europe and South America, can plant Cannabis autos all year around with excellent results and very little maintenance. Our tip here is to stagger planting over successive months to reap the reward of consistent harvests through the summer months.
Make a mini polytunnel for outdoor autoflower plants
Polytunnels and greenhouses are perfect for keeping plants sheltered from the rain. While these may be an expensive investment and require space, adapting the polytunnel concept is easily achieved on a budget. Our tip here is to build your own polytunnel and to customize the size to your needs. Invest in polytunnel suitable plastic sheeting which is designed for the job and make the supporting hoops from plastic plumbing pipe. Autoflowering Cannabis plants don’t need lots of head height so you can build your polytunnel 1.2 meters high and provide plenty of space inside to grow a number of outdoor autoflowers.