Help With Flowering Stretch

Discussion in 'Growing Marijuana Indoors' started by Azejacob, Jun 6, 2016.

  1. So here is the predicament I am in. I am a first time grower working on my first grow with my dad. We have the proper equipment (I believe) for a first timer, and we have done a fairly good job (I believe) at growing our plants. Our plants have very little if any nute burn. They've been growing horizontally fairly well and have turned into pretty nice little bushes. There's almost no holes in the canopy whatsoever and it is fairly dense... Which I assume is due to 6... 2, 2-1/2 foot tall plants being in a 2x4 foot space. We have 7 feet of grow space in height, the pots are just under a foot tall (about 10 inches) and the light is about 4 inches thick. It can be raised about 6 feet up from the floor because then it'll hit our ventilation system. The guide provided by our light company states the plants can be grown up to 18 inches away from
    the light, I'm hoping there a little room there just in case our plants end up being maybe 16 to 14 inches away from the light if it comes down to it. I planned to flower the plants before 2 feet tall to have a good 4-5 feet of room for the plants to grow into, however I went on vacation for about 2 weeks and my dad wasn't comfortable caring for the plants in flowering (he hasn't done his research and he isn't comfortable picking out which ones are male and female while I'm gone). I explained to him that it was a fairly easy process and all we had to do was flip the lights to 12/12 and he could just FaceTime me the plants and I could sex them while on vacation; however, it was something he really didn't want to deal with because he wasn't confident that he could do it correctly. Anyways, the canopy is very dense and I'm almost 100% sure we can't grow all 6 in there once veg starts so we are kind of banking on some being male. But then once we have got that out of the way and freed up some horizontal grow space our next problem and probably largest issue is watching out for the flowering stretch. We have 2 strains in there 3 of each TGA Agent Orange and some bag seed of Hella Kitty from a local dispensary. Is there anything I can do before flowering, which will probably start in 3 days when I get home to stop the stretch from being as large? I know it's too late to scrog but could I do something similar with the tops now to slow the vertical growth like a normal a dog would do? I've heard of super cropping or LSTing during flowering as a last resort, but I did hear that it's also not the thing to do either considering the the plants aren't getting the nitrogen needed to heal those breaks in the stems like they would during veg. I'm willing to buy or make or do just about anything to salvage this little crop. However, growing outdoors is not an option, we already have 1 outside and my dad just isn't comfortable growing any more outside. We both are in California and 100% legal but he is fairly paranoid of others seeing and doesn't want a negative stigma from the neighbors. As you may have guessed already my father is medicating due to excessive anxiety, paranoia, and stress so it's only fitting that he's not comfortable with the majority of my more radical decisions so please let's keep this stealth because it won't go down well with my partner.
    Much thanks,
    Azejacob
     
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  2. We have a 400W LED, so the stretch is probably going to be a lot more prevalent than if we were using a 1000 watter.

    Thanks Again!
     
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  3. Hi. First thing is to make sure that you keep the plants as close to the light as you can without burning them. A good way to test the heat from the light is to put you hand under the light until you feel heat...that's about the plant's limit.
    There a few tricks to reducing stretch...like pinching the main stem right below the top growth area..crushing the stem. This will help to reduce some vertical growth on the top most branch. you can also top each of the largest budsites, I do this often will no noticeable loss in yields.
    Honestly I would prune the hell out of them....it seems scary at first, like yer gonna lose a bunch of yield..or hurt the plant, but they bounce right back. I just treat my plants like bonsai trees and make them the shape that I want them.

    IMO going into flower under a 400w light you should have a nice full canopy of green about 1-1.5 ft tall off the base of the container. Top (fim) the tallest stems with the fattest stalks because these are the ones that will stretch the most. Also don't be afraid to remove alot of undergrowth so the plant has room to breathe.

    here's an example of a led grow I did...just showing to let you see before/after.
    start:
    [​IMG]
    finish:
    [​IMG]

    ** a good rule of thumb is that the branches with the thickest stems will produce the largest buds...so any branches that are like toothpick thin, just remove em...they will only produce fluff and make trimming a nightmare. Make sure to finish up with any pruning and training by about the first week of flower..after that the buds will be kinda set in place. You can still move branches around to get optimal light to everything..but after the stretch ends, the plants don't move much..and are kinda locked into place for flowering...if that makes sense :)
     
  4. Yeah I understand what you mean, so I should prune them up and remove the smaller undergrowth before the 1st week of flowering? Do you think I'll have a problem with the vertical growth? They're almost 2-1/2 feet tall now and they can't grow taller than maybe 5 feet at the very most. I've topped them already to about 8 main colas and there is a lot of smaller colas underneath I'm not experienced enough to know if they'll become decent growth or stay as popcorn buds so is there some rule of thumb for what I should trim off? I am familiar with lollipopping and I do believe I know how to do so, but my plants have been trained to look somewhat like a rough mainlined plant so lollipopping is a little bit more difficult to do in my opinion than a usual Christmas tree shaped plant.
     
  5. stretch also depends on how many tops you have...more tops=less stretch. I'd guess that maybe you'll get 1-1.5 ft of stretch as long as you don't let a few of the tallest branches take over.Just fim any branches that are the tallest..this will slow them down and allow others to catch up(or pull them down with a string or w/e). The plant will always put the most energy into the tallest branch(s). By lowering the largest branches to a lower elevation, the next tallest branch in line becomes the main stalk...I prefer fimming as it's less work.

    For pruning under growth I just look for those toothpick sized branches. Or if you're not sure which to trim off just wait till stretch is over and the hairs start popping on budsites...any budsites with less then like 10 hairs(bout the size of a marble) is just gonna be popcorn. You learn as you go..
     
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