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Week 14:  Pruning has begun!

Week 14: Pruning has begun!

Posted by Jennawae McLean on 2020 Mar 5th

Strains in the tents: White Widow, Spanish Mango, Juice Box, Ayahuasca Purple.

Grow method: Indoor SCROG with LED.

LED Details: 2x California Lightworks 1100 + 2x California Lightworks 550, on our VEG 3 setting of 90: Red, 99 White, 50 Blue for 12 hours.

Gear I am using: Pure Tents, California Lightworks 1100s and 550s LEDs and controller, Pure Pots (20 gallon), Promix HP, solo cups in various sizes, Lock Down Pads, Greenhouse Powder Feed, Organic Reactor

The time to prune has finally begun!  In the video I said I would include a video, which I shot, but for some reason in a brutal format, so no video of me actually doing it--sorry!

Good news is, it's super easy to explain!  As you can see from some of the video I clear out everything that is under the canopy--every branch that isn't getting light, every little leaf.  The reason we want to do this is pretty simple:  I only want to spend my resources (light and food) on buds that actually have a chance at making a decent bud.  Keeping under-developed stems and leaves on the branches only sucks the energy away from the top buds (which are all I'm going to keep anyways).  Up until now my main goal has been to build an extensive root system (and a lot of leaves on top to create the canopy).  Once I strip away all the leaves that fall below the screen my extensive root system still exists but all those roots are soaking up nutrients and directing them to specific areas (and not spreading themselves too thin along a whole branch).  Additionally, the air flow during flowering is critical--we don't want to crowd the buds with too many leaves (which hold a lot of moisture and may lead to mould or mildew).  I am basically left with buds attached to long sticks (or straws as I like to imagine--sucking up the nutrients).  If you take away too many leaves its no big deal, some will grow back--you can also add more organic reactor to remedy this.  Most of mine will come back within a week.  Throughout flowering your main job is to make sure your fans are working, that you keep everything under the screen clear and that you remove any leaves that are dying or shading out other flowering sites.  After all the plants were pruned I gave them a health dose of Organic Reactor just to fluff them up and fill in the canopy again.

Strain name: Spanish Mango
Genetics: An early phenotype of Soma's Somango bred out by a friend in the North of Spain.
Flowering time: 8-9 weeks
Yield: Average
Level of difficulty: Medium
Notes:  My first haircut is a little severe as you can see.  But it's no big deal.  I fed her some Organic Reactor and all the light green leaves are new growth.  I am still quite confident that I'll be able to get a strong yield.  I will say this strain was one of the biggest pains in the ass of all time to defoliate.  The fan leaves have really long, rubbery stems.  I would prefer to defoliate by popping leaves off with my fingers (its just faster and I am less dexterous with a pair of scissors in my hands--especially at the back which is why this one looked like a friggin mullet). My fingers were covered in black finger hash after I pruned this one.  It sorta smelled soapy?  (which is weird because there were no pesticides used this round).

Strain name: White Widow
Genetics: Brazilian X South Indian
Flowering time: 8-9 weeks
Yield: Heavy
Level of difficulty: Easy
Notes:  While you can't see it in this picture (because it hadn't been done yet) this was by far the easiest to prune.  I found it to be a lot like my Russian Doll from my last grow.  The leaves just snapped off really easily and while it took a little while (because this was densely covered) I still got everything cleared out without needing scissors.  I have a pretty decent canopy and I am excited to see what these little flowers will look like (although I am afraid of a high leaf to bud ratio already--I'm hoping to see more stacking).  

Strain name: Ayahuasca Purple
Genetics: Red River Delta X Masterkush
Flowering time: 9 weeks
Yield: Heavy
Level of difficulty: Medium
Notes:  So with the structure and the leaves of this one I expected the pruning to be as difficult as the Spanish Mango (because so far the scrogging has been).  You can actually see in the video how many zip ties I had to use to keep this plant alive!  Actually, it ended up pruning surprisingly easily.  The leaves came off and because there was so much internodal spacing (which has been the case since the beginning) there were actually not a lot of leaves to deal with (but the leaves that WERE there are huge).  I still spent about an hour on it but it was a lot less painful than I had anticipated.

Strain name: Juice Box
Genetics: (Cannalope Haze X Juanita La Lagrimosa) X Jack The Ripper
Flowering time: 10 weeks
Yield: Average - Heavy
Level of difficulty: Medium
Notes:  While it isn't quite done in this picture yet, this one was also very easy to prune--mostly because there is a lot of stretching and not a lot of judgement calls that I had to make (will this make it up to the screen? won't it?)  I managed to get the full tent pruned in about the same time as the Ayahuasca Purple (and all the leaves popped off really easily too).  Pre-germination this strain was the one I was most looking forward to on this grow and I have yet to be disappointed!