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The Secrets to Maximum Yield and Harvesting Cannabis (part 3 of 3)

If you’d like to know the proven strategies to harvesting cannabis, so you can get the maximum yields you desire, then this was written just for you.

In part one of this series, we talked about how to maximize your vegetative stage so that you start your plants right. In part two, we covered how to get bigger buds during your flowering stage.

Today, we’re going to talk about how to get the most out of the last weeks of the bloom stage all the way to harvest. We’ll discuss…

  • Why the last few weeks and days before harvest are CRITICAL to big bud yields
  • How to know when to harvest at the exact right time
  • Must know tips to get more ounces (and even pounds) right before harvest
  • The late-stage bloom boosters that can push your cannabis to new limits.


And a lot more. So let’s get started…

Why The Last Few Weeks And Days Before Your Cannabis Harvest Are Critical

It’s very easy to get impatient when growing your cannabis and want to rush your way into harvest.

After all, you’ve spent weeks getting to this point, so you may be thinking “I can’t wait to harvest!”

But it’s important to make sure you give your plants enough time to fully develop. If you harvest too soon, then you can easily lose a lot of potency and yield.

In fact, as a general rule, the strains that take the longest time to flower usually produce bigger yields compared to the strains that have a shorter-flowering time. It only makes sense that the more time they have to flower, the bigger buds they’ll produce.

So above all else, don’t make the mistake of harvesting too early!

How To Harvest Cannabis At The “Exact” Right Time

Because different strains take different times to grow, there is no one “right” answer to know exactly when your cannabis is ready for harvest.

Therefore, expert growers agree that you want to visually inspect your plant to determine when is the right time to harvest.

The best way to see if your plants are ripe and ready for harvest is to look at their glandular stalked trichomes (also known as resin glands) using some type of magnifying glass. These trichomes are the “crystals” that look “frosty” on well cultivated buds.

These trichomes change colors as they ripen. They start clear, then turn translucent (or “milky white” looking) and finally they turn to an amber color.

To start, you should aim for the “middle” time of this ripening. In other words, when roughly 50% of the trichomes on your cannabis have turned a milky white translucent color, then most strains are at peak ripeness.

In addition, because you are growing your plants, you can also sample small buds off your cannabis plants during this critical time period to determine when they have reached your desired level of ripeness. It’s definitely okay to cut off pieces of your plant at this time to sample and see what you like, because different strains mature at different times and you may have to do some experimentation to get the finished product that produces the results you desire.

Cannabis plants in bloom ready for harvest

4 Tips To Get More Yield From Your Buds Before Harvesting Cannabis

  1. Prune Old, Fan & Shade Leaves – As your flowering stage progresses to harvest and your plant shifts more energy towards bud ripening, many older leaves will start to die. Outdoor grows will especially show these yellowed leaves and they might fall off themselves. Either way, you can cut these fan & shade leaves away (making sure not to get too close to budding sites) so that you “free up” more energy for bud production and ripening.
  2. Less Humidity For More Resin – When your garden humidity is low, then your resin production will increase. In the last 24 hours before harvest, you’ll want to keep the humidity low in your grow room. This helps to increase resin production.
  3. Experiment With Days of Darkness – Some growers report enhanced resin production when they give their cannabis 1-3 days of complete darkness before harvest. This is thought to work because it’s another way of slightly stressing your plants.
  4. Stop Watering 1-3 Days Before Harvest – After flushing, in the final days of harvest, you can further stress your plants by stopping watering. You want to allow the plant to start to wilt just a small amount, because then the plant “thinks” it is dying and as a last-ditch effort, it will increase resin development.


Why You Should Flush Before Harvesting Cannabis…

Flushing is very important because it’s a free and easy way to increase the quality of your final harvest.

The same process plants use to grow—absorbing compounds from nutrients, water, and the atmosphere—causes them to build up excess salts and other harsh compounds. If you don’t flush these excesses out before harvest, you compromise final quality.

In short, flushing before harvest time can be as simple as giving your plants pH-balanced water with no nutrients in it to leach away any extra nutrients or salts that have built up in the growing medium or plant.

By getting rid of these residual excess nutrients, you improve the “smoothness” of the final product. It can also help improve the smell and taste of your cannabis harvest.

(A good tip is to wait until you think you are ready to harvest your plants, and then start your flush. This is because if you flush your plants too early you can reduce yields and potency. In short, it’s better to wait a little longer than to flush too early.)

Instead of flushing with plain water, which starves your plants and reduces floral growth and resin, you should use Flawless Finish®.

Flawless Finish uses empty chelates—which are like tiny, powerful vacuum cleaners—to remove excess chemical residues from your growing medium, roots, and other plant tissues, including fruits and flowers. The end result is a stellar crop of plants that will be free of at least 85% of the stored materials they held before flushing.

In short, if you use this Advanced Nutrients solution, you’ll have the cleanest, sweetest cannabis yields possible.

The Best Bloom-Boosting Additives For Huge Buds…

During the final ripening stage, you want to continue to not only feed your plants Advanced Nutrients bloom phase base nutrients, but to get the maximum yields possible, you’ll want to supplement too…

Bud Factor X® is a unique additive that will benefit your buds, when used throughout your entire bloom phase.

Flowers grown in the soaring heights of the Himalayas secrete an abundance of highly potent essential oils to protect themselves from the incredible amounts of ultraviolet light they’re exposed to. These are the same types of essential oils responsible for your crops’ taste and aroma. With Bud Factor X, you are harnessing this “Himalayan secret” to enhance your crops!

This is because Bud Factor X triggers systemic acquired resistance (SAR) within plants to produce markedly higher amounts of essential oils and terpenoids, which directly benefit flavor, aroma, and resin production, giving you higher-quality cannabis with greater market value.

Plus, these powerful ingredients allow your plants to better handle stress and delay fruit senescence and decay. It also helps your plants produce thicker stalks and branches, signaling them to generate heavier harvests because they sense they can support the additional weight.

Lastly, the supporting ingredients in Bud Factor X—like all Advanced Nutrients ingredients—enhance plant growth and flowering.

In short, if you’re serious about bigger buds, then you’ll want to use this additive throughout your entire bloom phase.

Maximize Your Late-Stage Flowering To See Maximum Yields…

The last three weeks is when your buds can actually gain the most weight – that is if you feed them Overdrive®.

After your peak bloom phase, your plants enter their late bloom phase (the precise timing and length of which depends on the strain of cannabis you’re growing). By that time, most growers don’t expect to see much more floral development ahead. Instead of accepting this, you can get even more out of your plants during the finishing phase with Overdrive.

When you use this unique bloom booster, you’ll reinvigorate your cannabis with a second wind. Your buds will pack on more weight and density by filling their structures with extra essential oils—well past the point when the late bloom phase typically shows signs of slowing down. This, in turn, will give you much bigger yields when harvest day dawns.

And with additional essential oils come better flavors, fragrances, and colors, not to mention protection from oxidative stress from a powerful antioxidant: ascorbic acid.

To see how to develop a personalized cannabis-specific feeding program, customized to your particular grow, using Advanced Nutrients base nutrients and these popular bloom boosters, you’ll want to use the BudLabs app.

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The Advanced Nutrients Team

Since 1999, Advanced Nutrients has been committed to educating the community and bringing the most up-to-date knowledge to the forefront of grows across the globe. Every article you read here has been curated by Advanced Nutrients’ industry experts, so you can continue raising your bud weight… and your reputation.

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Over time, components within the nutrients settle on the bottom of the bottle. When you pour a bottle without shaking it, you can potentially be pouring out an unbalanced solution. Shaking up the nutrient bottle ensures you are pouring the right blend into your reservoir, giving your crops the nutrition they need.

Usually, it’s not a problem. But some products are incompatible with each other and can damage your plants when they’re used together. For example, bloom boosters with high PK numbers or low-grade silica products can destabilize your nutrient mix and cause nutrient lockout.

Nutrient manufacturers design their products to be used with each other. In doing so, they include specific portions of each nutrient in each product, so crops receive the right nutrition through each stage of the grow cycle. When you stick with one manufacturer, you don’t have to worry about inadvertently destabilizing your nutrient mixture. One example of why you need to stick with only one manufacturer’s products is Advanced Nutrients’ pH Perfect line. These products are designed to keep your crops’ root zone within a specific pH range. When you use them alongside products from another manufacturer, we can’t guarantee your root zone will maintain its optimal pH level.

Yes! If you’re growing with Advanced Nutrients products, you can use our easy nutrient calculator to generate the correct nutrient chart for your crops in seconds. Check out Advanced Nutrients’ nutrient calculator here. Another great resource is our library of free custom-growing recipes. Try our expert grower-tested nutrient schedules here.

You can also download our official BudLabs app to generate nutrient schedules and receive real-time notifications for specific tasks, including feeding your crops. Upgrade to BudLabs Pro to maintain profiles on an unlimited number of crops.

If you are a grower, visit this link to find the closest Advanced Nutrients Authorized Retailer. If you are a retailer, visit this link to identify our official distributors.

Our greatest passion is growing great cannabis—and helping other growers do the same. That’s why we offer complimentary cultivation support 24/7 from Monday to Friday and from 9 AM until 7 PM PST on Saturday… With the same level of advice licensed producers would pay consultants tens of thousands of dollars to unlock.
Just call 1-800-640-9605 or email support@advancednutrients.com. For Spanish-speaking growers, email spanishsupport@advancednutrients.com.

Yes! If for any reason you are not absolutely thrilled with the results you achieve when you use our products, just bring the unused portion, along with your original sales receipt, back to the place of purchase within six months, and ask for your money back. Find out more about our Grower Guarantee here.

Advanced Nutrients has spent many thousands of man-hours developing a technology that automatically balances your pH for you — putting it in the “sweet spot” and holding it there for one week.

And the technology is so “smart” that it can account for many of the aforementioned variables in your grow room. Our proprietary pH buffering agents and stabilizing mechanisms became the foundation of a new system aptly called pH Perfect® Technology. Learn all about it here.

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