It’s perhaps the single most commonly asked question among cannabis home growers looking to increase the quality of their crop. While plant size, health and bud generosity will always be important, a true connoisseur will argue that nothing matters more than getting THC Potency as high as possible. Buds that are weak in THC are always disappointing and for the most part never look nearly as pleasing as their potent counterparts. Nevertheless, there’s a great deal of confusion with regard to whether or not it is actually possible to do anything at all about THC concentrations with your own plants. And if there is, how to go about it.
THC Potency, Does It Really Matter?
In terms of whether or not it’s really worth bothering with such efforts…well, the answer comes down to your own personal priorities. Nevertheless, if you are interested in things like aroma, flavour, potency, smoke quality and so on, then yes – increasing THC Potency is something you should be very interested in!
Get it right and you will be looking at a series of substantial benefits, which include:
- A harvest that will go exponentially further as you will get the exact same high from a much smaller amount of buds.
- Alternatively, you’ll have the option of smoking as much bud as you normally would and enjoying a much more intense and long-lasting high.
- Higher THC content has in medical marijuana circles been linked with much more effective relief from pain, nausea, muscle spasms, insomnia and mild anxiety.
- If you are looking to make money from your growing efforts (or simply impress your buddies), there is nothing quite like an extremely high THC content to get the job done.
Of course, depending on your priorities you may not be particularly interested in increasing THC to its highest level. After all, stronger and more powerful buds aren’t always what you’re hungry for. But in this instance, we’re going to assume that you do in fact want to raise THC levels to their highest possible peaks, so what’s the best way of making this happen?
Understanding Influential Factors
Well, before even thinking about getting to work on your own plants, it’s a good idea to think about exactly what it is that makes a difference to potency and THC levels. There are a few things that can make a big difference to the THC your buds will produce, which include the specific marijuana strain you decide to grow and its respective genetics, how well you look after your plants during each growth phase, when and how you harvest your product, the curing process you adopt (if any) and so on. And of course, there’s nothing to say you cannot combine as many of these influencing factors as you like, in order to take things as far as realistically possible.
Strain & Genetics
The single most important factor of all when it comes to determining potency is the strain you choose in the first place. The genetics of the strain you choose to grow will determine the very maximum THC you can expect, if you get everything right along the way. Which in turn means that if the strain you choose states that it has a maximum THC concentration of 15%, you cannot realistically expect any more than this. It also means that if it states a maximum THC concentration of 25%, there’s every chance you might still come out with 15% if you don’t give your plants everything they need.
What’s important to remember when choosing your strain is that exactly how difficult it is to grow the strain you choose will also play a role in determining THC content. For example, you may choose to grow a strain with a maximum THC content of around 22%, but given the fact that it is an extremely fickle strain, you might come out with 13%…or dead plants. Which in turn means you may have been better off going for a 15% THC strain that’s as easy as pie to grow successfully.
But again, it all depends on your priorities and preferences.
Outside the strain you choose, the second most important element of all when it comes to determining THC content is when exactly you decide to harvest your buds. If you give your plants any longer than they need, each and every day will result in existing THC content and quality in general slowly but surely diminishing. Likewise, if you give in to your own enthusiasm and harvest your buds too early, the will not give them sufficient time to reach their maximum potential in terms of THC content.
Exactly what to look for in terms of signs it is time to harvest will vary in accordance with the strain you decide to grow. As such, it’s important to look up a professional growing guide for your chosen strain and to know exactly how to recognise when and where the time does come to pull those buds.
Plant Health & Care
Unsurprisingly, the way you look after your plants at every stage during their life cycle will also make an enormous difference in terms of THC content and overall quality. There are so many easy mistakes to make along the way, of which the vast majority will not give you any indication whatsoever that you have done anything wrong. Overwatering on a regular basis, not quite providing enough water, nutrient problems, irregular light sycles and so on – all the kinds of mistakes that build cumulative damage behind the scenes, though generally escape your knowledge.
Light levels play a particularly important role in determining THC content, along with the quality of the light provided and exactly how long your plants are provided with lights and darkness. A solid eight hours of strong sunshine each and every day are required to ensure THC concentrations hit their peaks. If you are growing inside, you need to think carefully about replicating the strength and brilliance of real sunlight with extremely high quality grow lights.
Curing for Increased THC Potency
Last but not least, the subject of curing in terms of an approach to improving THC Potency is highly debated to say the least. Nevertheless, there’s really no denying the fact that quality curing can certainly do a lot to improve the perceived strength and potency of marijuana, given the way it works wonders for the bud’s aroma and flavour profile.
As such, while you can’t expect curing to make the biggest difference in the world to THC concentrations, anyone you smoke it with will have every confidence in your ability to grow seriously Grade-A products.