Marijuana plants have two distinct life stages: the vegetative or growing stage and the flowering stage. During the vegetative stage, the plant grows actively producing leaves and stems. But during the flowering stage, the plant gradually stops growing and uses all its energy to grow flowers. Let’s take a look at the beauty of the cannabis flowering stage week by week pictures. With these, you’ll be able to confidently grow your plants and care for them during this crucial yet exciting stage.
Week 1 – The Early Flowering Stage
Flowering time varies from strain to strain. Some are quick flowering and can produce buds in just six or seven weeks after germination. Meanwhile, some strains can take a while up to 10 or more weeks.
During the first week, your plants will be in the early flowering and will be adjusting as it transitions from the vegetative to the flowering stage. Plants know through air changes that the cold season will be here soon and it will have to carry buds. Some strains show massive growth at this time, as the plant tries for the last time to stretch to grow more bud sites. You will notice new leaves that are mostly located at the top.
Week 2 – The Appearance of Pre-Flowers
This is the pre-flowering stage when you can finally identify if the plant is male or female. The pre-flowers are distinct for male and female plants and will develop along the junction between the fan leaves and the main stem.
In female plants, you will notice fine, wispy hairs growing at these sites. These will grow into buds that will receive pollen from male plants. Once pollination occurs, it won’t take long for seeds to form. Meanwhile, male plants will grow small green balls or sacs on the sites. These will soon fatten and burst to release pollen in the air.
At this time, male plants should be separated from the females if you wish to grow weed. However, if you plan to grow seeds, the male plants may remain in the growing area.
Week 3 – Real Buds Start to Form
Your plants will still be growing taller and wider and soon, they will slow down until it completely stops stretching. Let’s say that you have removed the male plants from the growing area and only the females remain. The sites where you found hairs now have real buds growing. But these are unlike those that you find in cannabis buds pictures as these won’t have resin glands and crystal structures or trichomes.
Week 4 – Buds Become Bigger and Fatter Every Day
You’ll notice that the buds have become bigger and fatter. It’s now very obvious that the plant is using up all its energy on developing buds. The white hairs are still seen from the buds but this time, there are more trichomes and thus, the buds look sparkling especially under your growing lights.
At this time, you won’t have to worry too much about your plants at this point as everything seems to be on autopilot. Just make sure to support heavy branches with large and heavy buds and you’ll almost be ready for harvest time.
Week 5 – Bigger Buds, Intense Odor Develops
Looking at the cannabis flowering stage week by week pictures, you can identify weed plants during week 5. The most prominent buds will become larger, heavier, and denser. There may be buds forming along with hidden sites like the bottom part of the plant or within the plant’s canopy. It’s not too late to develop these small buds. You can cut down unnecessary foliage so that light can reach these buds. You may also support the branches and stems using wire, stakes, or supports.
Another important thing to take note of at this time is that the white hairs that were seen earlier have turned to darker or brownish amber. The trichomes are also starting to become cloudy. These signs tell you that it won’t be long for harvest time.
The plant’s distinct odors also start to develop. Some strains have very strong odors while some have only faint ones. Some that have very striking odors can become a nuisance. If you’re growing your plants in a hidden area, you might get caught if you don’t do something about the smell.
Week 6 – The Late Flowering Stage
The 6th week marks the late flowering stage. Your buds are now more prominent, showing off their bright pistils and dense trichomes. However, only a few cannabis strains are ready for harvest at this time. Some may take from 9 to 12 weeks.
For plants that are ready for harvest soon, you need to flush them at least two weeks before you cutting. Flushing is when you stop giving nutrients/fertilizer. You will now start giving only pH-balanced water. With plain water, you can remove salts and stuck minerals from the soil to create better-tasting, pure-quality buds. If you don’t flush your system, you may end up with a harsh-tasting weed.
Week 7 and onwards – Before Harvest
As you continue to flush your plants, you also need to watch out for harvest signs. Use a magnifying glass or a jeweler’s loupe to check for these signs. Most of the pistils should be darker or orange-red. Most of the trichomes or crystals all over the buds should have turned amber and opaque. These signs would mean that the THC levels of the buds are at the maximum amount. Your plants are now ready for harvest.
Harvesting early will miss your chance to enjoy weed’s recreational effects. But harvesting too late will give you weed that can knock you out as THC has turned into compounds that can make strong and heavy weed
By carefully monitoring the cannabis flowering stage week by week pictures, you can carefully check your plants and remedy any problems right away. Common problems at this point are molds and pests that can take advantage of your large, dense buds. Make sure to monitor for pests and molds and learn to prevent them during the flowering stage.