Growing cannabis comes with the burden of keeping everything right. The veg time affects the quality and quantity of your yield immensely. The longer the veg time, the bigger the plant grows. The bigger the plant, the more the bud sites, and thus more yield.
Growers who know how beneficial vegging for longer is to their yield per plant stretch the veg time. They keep huge plants for massive yields.
However, most novice growers think that you should also increase the flowering time when you increase the veg time.
Does Longer Veg Mean Longer Flower?
Vegging for longer doesn’t mean you should flower for longer. The vegging phase merely encourages the plant’s vertical growth and lays grounds for the bumper harvest. Flowering time doesn’t change just because the plant has grown huge. Once you flip the lights to 12/12, the plant will take standard flowering time to bud and mature.
Vegging for longer doesn’t have a direct impact on the length of flowering time.
Growers only control veg time. Once you switch the grow lights to 12/12, signaling the beginning of flowering, you should leave the plant to go through the flowering time naturally.
That way, the plant keeps the natural growth cycle. Any interference with the plant’s flowering time would mean re-vegging, and you wouldn’t need that when the plant has grown to optimum height.
Besides, any undue stress on the plant during flowering can cause the plants to go hermaphrodites. Nobody loves buds filled with seeds; they’re less potent and generally waste your efforts.
During the flowering period, the plant needs uninterrupted 12 hours of darkness to transform from veg to flowering fully. Any interference with the dark cycle confuses the plant.
They fail to know whether to continue growing outward and upward or to focus on producing flowers— the buds you’re waiting for. In the worst-case scenario, the plant will turn hermies because of the light-induced stress.
Thus, after shifting to the flowering lighting schedule, you should better leave the plant to do its own flowering. Though the plant might show rapid growth during the first two weeks of flower, the stretch isn’t a call for more growth time. After the stretch, the plant shall have fully transitioned into bud formation.
RELATED READ: What Happens If Your Cannabis Flowers Too Early?
Does Veg Time Affect Potency?
Veg time doesn’t affect the potency of your buds. Vegging for longer will make the plant yield more because of the additional bud sites that come with extended growth, but the cannabinoid component will remain the same. Potency is mainly affected by genetics and environmental conditions— not the length of vegging.
If you veg your clones for 6 weeks, and I veg mine for 12 weeks or more, if we’re growing from the same strain, the potency of our buds will remain the same.
I will only get a few more yields than you because of the additional plant size. Veg time affects the volume of harvest, not the potency of the buds.
Back to our example, with my 12 weeks of vegging, I get better yield than you’ll get with your 6 weeks of vegging, but the quality of our buds remains the same.
There can only be a slight difference in the taste and aroma of our buds if the grow room conditions are different. Environmental factors like light exposure, humidity, temperatures, and how the plant is trained can have subtle effects on the plant.
However, if the plant grows just fine, you shouldn’t be worried about vegging time being too short for potency— it neither improves nor reduces the potency of your buds!
Does Veg Time Affect Yield?
The veg time directly affects the yield of your cannabis plants. When you veg longer, the plant grows bigger and forms many buds sites for more bud production. Vegging for longer also means you’re developing a sturdier frame for bigger buds. Thus, vegging for longer improves your yield by the size and volume of the buds.
However, vegging for longer can only give the desired result if you’re using the best grow lights for cannabis and training the plant well.
Bigger plants mean you have a lot of growth to deal with. If you don’t trim the plant, the light might not penetrate to lower bud sites, and this might sabotage the whole reason behind vegging for longer.
Training the plant also tames its vertical growth and keeps the plant’s canopy from the heat of the grow lights.
If you don’t top the plant and train it as necessary, the plant may suffer light-related stress that may slow its bud development.
When growing conditions are kept optimum, bigger plants mean bigger yields. Just by sheer size, they produce more buds. That’s why the same strain will yield more when grown outside (where the plant’s growth isn’t inhibited) than indoors.
So, Does Veg Time Affect Flower Time?
Vegging time does not affect flowering time. You can veg as long as you want, but once you change the grow lights to 12/12 to initiate flowering, the plant will continue with the bud formation and maturing process until they’re ready to harvest.
Flowering time will be influenced by the plant’s genetics—not vegging time. You can stretch the vegging period, but the length of flowering should remain the same.
Once you begin to flower, you don’t need any strict timelines to harvest the plant. You will know when the time is right for harvest by examining the trichomes.
They should tell you when the flowering ends. Not the length of veg. Use a jewelers’ loupe to examine the changes in trichome colors, and harvest when appropriate.
The trichomes will begin as clear crystals. Then they’ll change milky white before turning amber. The best time to harvest is when most trichomes have turned milky white but yet to turn amber.
That’s when the THC is at its peak. If you stretch flowering for too long, the THC will begin to degrade into CBN, thus will result in a couchlock high— not the heady, full-body high most stoners yearn for. In summary, longer vegging doesn’t call for longer flowering. While the grower can control the size of the plant by either shortening or lengthening vegging period, the flowering period leaves little room for control.
Unless you plan to re-veg the plant, you’re better off leaving the plant to follow its natural process undisturbed.
- Temperature Stability and Bioadhesive Properties of Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol Incorporated Hydroxypropylcellulose Polymer Matrix Systems
2. Cannabis: A Beginner’s Guide to Growing Marijuana by Danny Danko