Topping Cannabis 101 – Doing It the Right Way

Topping Cannabis

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Growing marijuana plants can be a fun and rewarding experience. Imagine cultivating your garden and harvesting your products instead of buying cannabis stores. For those who want to try their green thumb, cannabis cultivation can be easy, if you know what to do. Though cannabis is a versatile plant, it doesn’t mean that you just plant it and leave it to grow and harvest it.

It needs your attention and care. Some cannabis plant needs pruning. Topping cannabis is also required for certain strains. Note that not all cannabis needs topping. The process of cannabis topping may sound easy but it is also tricky. Read on this article as we give you very helpful tips on how to properly top your cannabis plant. 

What is Topping?

Topping is a popular technique used in horticulture in which there is a need to cut off the top part of the plant to stop its upward growth to allow lateral growth in the lower branches. It is important that in keeping your plants healthy especially for cannabis who tend to grow taller. Topping will allow your plant to grow more colas and let it spread out. It can help in achieving abundant yield. 

Topping is important because it helps the plant to “evenly” grow. Topping is usually done vegetative stage because it helps redistribute the growth hormones that the plant needs to grow healthy. It will distribute these hormones to the new stalks surrounding it. By doing so, it will produce healthy buds. Topping will make your plant grow bushier by cutting the main stalk. By doing so, the plant will redirect the distribution of its energies to the newer stalks.

When Is the Right Time of Topping Cannabis?

The best time to top your plants is when they have developed 3-5 nodes. During this time, their roots and their stems are strong enough to be able to recover from the stress that the topping process may bring. This is basically around 30 days of the plant’s vegetative phase. 

Never top your cannabis during the seedling stage because it will not be able to handle the stress and it might hamper its growth or worst it might die. Also, do not top your plant during the flowering stage as it may cause damage in which the plant may not be able to recover. In topping new growth, wait for about 1-2 weeks before the new growth. 

How to Top a Cannabis Plant?

Topping is a high-stress training method that works best for developed plants. Topping might be an easy process but it can also be tricky. You have to know when to top and how to top. Here are helpful tips on how to properly top your plants.

  • A rule of the thumb for the first topping is to cut the plant above its 5th node. By doing so, it will allow your plant to grow more branches at the bottom so that it can grow bushier.
  • For continuous topping on the same plant, carefully cut the branch just above the 2nd and 3rd node. This will allow the plant to grow out.

Here Is the Proper Way on Topping Cannabis Plant

  • Ready your tools. The first thing that you must do it to get your tools ready. You will need a pair a razor blade or pruning scissors. Make sure that they are very sharp.
  • Sterilized your tools. This is very important. Sterilize your topping tools with rubbing alcohol to prevent infections in the plant. This might be a rare case but it better safe.
  • Decide in when and where to make your cut. In topping, you have to remove the newest growth on the main branch or stem. It will create two more stalks from where you created the cut.
  • Be sure to leave a minimum of 5cm of space from where you cut and your plant’s lateral branches. This will give a slight room in case of any error.
  • Repeat this process down the line. By doing so, it will result in four distinct bud sites.
  • Continue the process until you can achieve your desired canopy for your plant.
  • Monitor the results. Keenly observe is your plant is developing as expected. It is important to monitor your plant so that you’d be able to know if it is responding positively or there might be something wrong with it. By doing so, you will know if you were able to top it right or provide a remedy if there are any errors.

Topping Cannabis Help Shape the Plant

Cannabis is a versatile plant and when left on its own. Most cannabis plants will grow vertically. It will focus all its plant energy on its main stalk. It will produce one dominant cola with small stalks surrounding it.

The topping process will let the plant grow bushier. Not taller. It will allow room for new stalks to come out. It will produce more branches which makes the plant more bushed out. This will also create more bud sites for the plant thus it will increase your yield. A single cannabis plant can be topped several times and every time you do so, it creates more branches making the cannabis plant bushier.

Topping is a tried and tested method by cannabis cultivators. Note that not all cannabis plant needs to be topped. Note that cannabis plants come in many varieties. Marijuana horticulturists and breeders prefer topping for outdoor growing. It is an approach used not just by cannabis home growers but by commercial cannabis growers as well. Topped plants are tested to be more stable and produces stronger branch structure which requires less support.

Topping the cannabis plant is an important aspect of growing your garden. Though it may seem strange that you need to cut off vital parts of your plants and throw it away, the topping is an essential procedure used in growing cannabis. If you are seriously trying your green thumb in cannabis cultivation, you must know different stress training methods that will help you produce quality and abundant yield.

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