How to Get Marijuana to Bud
When the time comes, and you are satisfied with the level of growth that your bodacious, bushy babes have achieved, then it’s time to coax them into flowering. After all, it’s that succulent bud of hers that you prize so highly.
During your vegetative growth, you should have been giving your girls anywhere from 16 – 24 full hours of light each day. When you decide it’s time to start flowering, you’ll need to switch out your light bulb from metal halide (MH) to high pressure sodium (HPS).
Make sure that your girls are all healthy, and prepare them for any adjustments to their nutrient blend by gradually changing the quantities of nutrients; don’t just jump from one nutrient formula to another overnight. Before you start flowering, the plants should have firm, strong stems and broad, bushy green leaves.
Check for absolutely any signs of nutrient imbalance or bug / mold problems before you start flowering. Mold, mildew and bug problems can be dealt with far easier when your plants are vegetating as opposed to flowering, so get them all in tip-top shape.
Now, you get to play God just a little bit. Drop their light cycle to 12 hours of light, 12 hours dark, and be sure that the dark portion is really, truly dark. There can be no light sneaking in through cracks or creeping under doors, your plants need total darkness.
The change in hours can be an instant shift, or you can emulate nature a bit and gradually reduce their time, taking off 30 minutes every two days for 2 – 3 weeks until you’re down to 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness.
Flowering will start very quickly, with pistles and new bud forming at the nodes within days. The total flowering time will vary based on strain, but typically lasts 2 – 4 months. Some growers harvest very early once the bud has matured, while others will let the plants continue to grow for a few weeks to gain extra resin crystals.
Keeping your grow-room cool, with temperatures as low as the mid-50s, during flowering may also encourage extra resin production as the plant tries to insulate its buds. Some growers have found that low temperatures during flowering also cause the bud to change color.