TIPS FOR LOW STRESS CANNABIS TRANSPLANTING
By Sophia Ruiz
Whether you are a beginner, a novice, or a master grower, there are some basic tips you’ll want to know when it comes time for transplanting cannabis. Moving a plant from one pot to another is one of the most dangerous times of the plant’s life–a time when carelessness and mistakes translate directly into unnecessary stress, potentially stunting growth or even causing plants to become hermaphrodites or worst case scenario, die.
Stress can cause all kinds of unnecessary and unwanted harm to your plants and should always be avoided. Try to handle the moist, not soaked, plant-bed as little as possible when transplanting. Make this process as painless as possible for you and your plant/ plants. Before you even start, assess the size of the planter you will be using. Be sure it is large enough for your root system ultimately. Read your plant and it’s roots’ body language, and consider root growth over the time it has been vegetating and then consider how much time remains in your plant’s life (continued veg. time + flowering time) and choose your finish pots accordingly–bigger pots cost more to fill and so save your cash for tactics that are guaranteed to fruit better flowers. A large pot or soil volume will not necessarily give you a better or bigger yield, however a pot that’s too small will certainly stunt your plant’s growth.
That said, I’ve seen monster plants fruit monster colas from 20 litre (5.28 gallon) airpots, and I’ve seen outdoor master gardeners that swear they use every cubic inch of 500 gallon pots each season. Not to mention the hydro I have seen that defies logic–trichome jungles from root balls in some of the most confined reservoirs. It’s surprise value across the board, so I encourage you to experiment and see which methods and which of all the mediums and pots available fruit the best results for your venture. Don’t forget to share your results with us.
If you are transplanting from traditional pots or cups, put your hand over the soil surface with the stalk between your middle fingers and with your other hand grab the bottom of the pot and gingerly turn it upside-down, freeing the root ball and dirt clump from the pot. This may take some gentle force and don’t be alarmed if some of your soil chunks off, simply continue to the new pot and cover the exposed roots immediately. We’ve recently had the chance to experiment with some airpots in our research garden and among other attributes, these funky looking pots make transplanting a snap, literally just unsnap the old pot and unfurl it from the medium–the easiest safest way to transplant.
If your roots are bound up against the edge of the pot, gingerly pull them apart and in extreme cases cut some of the roots loose to promote new, lateral root growth. When you are transferring your plants from a smaller pot to a larger planter, it’s a good idea to stake your plants. You do this, so they have a little stability until their stalk and roots strengthen.
One of the most important things to remember when transplanting is to water immediately upon replanting your cannabis plant. Avoid transplanting plants in direct sunlight when possible, cannabis roots are not fond of UV rays. These are just some basic simple tips to help you when it comes time to upsize your beds.