As an outdoor grower, you’ve been there…
The summer sun beating down on your cannabis crop…
A blazing heat, humidity, ultraviolet radiating cluing you in that the longest day of the year has arrived.
Growing your crops outdoors comes with its own territory during this time of year, and from outdoor nutrient schedule to watering schedules, it’s important to get everything optimized so spend the fall gazing at your most rewarding harvest yet.
First things first, let’s take a look at…
The Best Schedule For Your Outdoor Cannabis Plants
After the summer solstice, the days grow shorter, eventually triggering most strains to go into flowering.
Many seasoned outdoor growers tend to start their seedlings or clones in March or April to give them at least four weeks in the vegetative stage before being transplanted outside. This way, the plants continue to grow until July or August, gaining height and adding girth to the main stalk — although pre-flowering is sometimes visible during these summer months.
You can also check out our outdoor grow calendar for more information on how to schedule your crop cycle.
And this isn’t the only summer change affecting outdoor cannabis growers…
The sweltering heat also brings with it the most intense sunlight and stress for your plants. This is why from the summer solstice through late August – or even September in most parts of the US – your outdoor grow nutrient schedule is paramount for maintaining your crop’s health.
Now, growers often wonder about…
The Preferred Method for Fertilizing Cannabis Plants Outdoors…
And the reality is, the best option can depend on your growing conditions.
For example, guerrilla growers who don’t have access to clean water at their grow site might find it challenging to provide their plants with optimal nutrition. In this type of situation, a customized batch of liquid nutrients delivered via roots and foliar spraying is by far the most efficient way to feed their outdoor cannabis plants.
For remote growing, a granular fertilizer product that’s quickly solubilized into the root zone can also be a convenient option, provided you have your outdoor grow op well scheduled.
Just make sure to send precise nutritional elements directly into roots every time it rains, or every time outdoor cannabis plants are watered by hand or irrigation. Granules should dissolve quickly and be immediately available for uptake by the plants’ roots — it isn’t enough to prep the ground and transplant into fertile soil.
However, there’s a catch to granular fertilizers that you should know about…
If you apply them to your root zone in the months of May or June, they won’t be solubilized enough to feed your plants until July or August. And that isn’t soon enough.
For that reason, at this time of year you’ll want to fertilize cannabis plants outdoors with liquid cannabis nutrients.
What to Know When Fertilizing Cannabis Plants Outdoors
Now, when growing cannabis outdoors, the root zone is much larger than in an indoor grow, and may be exposed to drenching rains. Plus, added outdoor cannabis nutrients tend to leach out of the root zone, threatening to starve your crops of the elements they need to thrive. Because of this, you need to apply your fertilizer differently.
First off, when it comes to your outdoor grow nutrient schedule, always time your feeding so it occurs at the start or in the middle of a dry week.
You always want to check accurate weather forecasts and start watering your crop on the first day of a period when you know it won’t be raining for several days.
If you’re lucky enough to have a period of four to seven days of no rain, you can wait until the crop is thirsty in the middle of the dry spell before feeding on day three or four. Your parched plants will immediately uptake their liquid nutrients and transfer it throughout their tissues.
The Best Fertilizer For Outdoor Cannabis
So all this begs the question…
What are the best outdoor cannabis nutrients, and what’s the best way to use them?
With a reliable water supply outdoors, we recommend using at least a half-strength pH Perfect® base nutrient at every other watering. Soil-grown plants prefer a higher pH than indoor plants grown in rockwool, coco coir, deep water culture or soilless mix.
Using your pH Perfect base at half strength while also putting additives in with the nutrients water will assist in creating an outdoor cannabis root zone pH of 6.3–6.6.
You can also use Advanced Nutrients pH Up or pH Down and a pH meter to set the nutrients water into that soil target range.
Keep in mind that with outdoor cannabis gardens growing in the peak of summer, your plants are creating tissue infrastructure and dealing with stress from heat, wind, intense sun, or maybe even pests and diseases. These conditions necessitate some nutrient elements more than others.
And to round out your outdoor grow nutrient schedule, also consider adding…
- Rhino Skin® for its potassium silicate and stalk-strengthening properties
- B-52® for its B-vitamin complex and increased resistance to abiotic stresses
- OG Organics™ BigMike’s OG Tea™ to enrich your soil with compost tea compounds
- Bud Candy® for microbe-nourishing carbohydrates that promote bigger, more aromatic plants
- OG Organics™ Ancient Earth® for increased nutrient uptake from long-chain and short-chain humic acid
Deliver all of these Advanced Nutrients additives at full strength to your outdoor cannabis grow, and you’ll see lush, vigorous growth and abundant, flavorful flowers!
Alternative Nutrition For Remote Outdoor Cannabis Grow Sites
Peak summer is the time when your outdoor cannabis crop is building the height, side branches, leaves, stalks, and intracellular processes necessary to create structure large and sturdy enough to support buds the size of baseball bats.
Providing customized nutrition to your outdoor cannabis crop in the full heat of summer requires an ample amount of water, which is why we recommend a half-strength dose of the hydroponics base nutrients. This way, you don’t burn the roots with an overdose of nutrients.
The bottom line…
Determining the right outdoor nutrient schedule for your cannabis plants can depend on a variety of factors. But when you stick to the principles outlined in this article, you’ll be well on your way to growing bountiful, aromatic yields beneath the summer sun.