How to top Marijuana Plant



There are elements of growing marijuana plants that you likely knew would be part of the process even if you have never grown a marijuana plant just yet. You’ve bought cannabis seeds from Growers Choice Seeds, or perhaps you are planning to do so shortly. Find your favorite strains and order your high-quality seeds that have been lab-tested and hand selected. So what is involved in growing marijuana plants from the seed? Well, you have to get your seeds to germinate, of course, which is when they sprout. By the way, Growers Choice Seeds offers a germination guarantee on every order. You have to give your marijuana plants light, water, nutrients, and things of that ilk. There is a good chance you know that temperature and humidity matter as well.

Eventually, you harvest your marijuana plants. Does that sound like the long and short of it? Well, one thing wasn’t mentioned there, and that is topping your marijuana plants. Rest assured, you need to know how to top marijuana plants, as you should be topping every marijuana plant you grow. Topping marijuana involves cutting off a portion of your plant, which may sound strange on the surface. You want the biggest marijuana plants, right? You want the best yield, right? Of course, you do! So why would you cut off part of your plant? Why would you need to know how to top marijuana plants? Let us explain, and you will get why topping female cannabis plants is so worthwhile, and you will definitely want to know how to do it correctly as it’s key for cannabis cultivation.

Keep reading for more growth tips and bud production tips when topping cannabis plants.

Green cannabis plant with a white center and blueish leaves
Learn how to top cannabis plants properly and effectively for optimal growth
Source: Unsplash

Can cannabis plants be topped?

Topping a marijuana plant is different from trimming it, which is when you remove the buds. It’s also different from pruning a marijuana plant, which is the removal of sets of leaves and shorter branches that aren’t doing well or are dying. No, topping a marijuana plant is a specific thing, but why do you need to know how to top marijuana plants? Topping a marijuana plant is chopping off the top of the main stalk of your plant. Why do that? Well, it actually will help your plant grow the way you want it.

Should I top cannabis plants once, twice, or how often?

The long and short of it is that it comes down to personal preference. The decision to top cannabis plants once or twice depends on several factors such as the strain, growing conditions, and personal preference. If you decide to top your cannabis plants, do so with extra care to avoid damaging the once-healthy plant. Topping can be stressful for bushy plants, so it’s essential to ensure that it’s healthy and has enough time to recover before topping them again. It’s also important to note that topping can delay the flowering process, so it may not be suitable for indoor growers as well as outdoor growers.

Green cannabis plant with a white center and blueish leaves
Learn how to top cannabis plants properly and effectively for optimal growth
Source: Unsplash

What happens if you top cannabis female plants too late?

Topping cannabis too late in its lateral growth cycle can have different effects on the plant depending on how mature it is at the time of topping. If you top a cannabis plant too late in the vegetative stage, it can result in the mature plant becoming stressed and taking longer to recover, which can delay the flowering process. This can lead to lower yields and smaller buds, as the plant has less time to mature and develop its flowers.

If you top a cannabis plant too late in the flowering stage, it can cause the plant to focus on vegetative growth rather than flower production, which can result in a reduced yield and smaller buds. It’s generally recommended to top cannabis plants during the early stages of the vegetative growth cycle before the plant starts to flower. This allows the plant enough time to recover and redirect its vertical growth towards lateral branches, resulting in a bushier and potentially higher-yielding plant.

Where do you cut when topping marijuana plants?

Let’s say you just let your marijuana plants grow as they naturally tend to do. Alright, so you have a marijuana plant. What will happen is it will keep growing taller and taller but in a narrow way. All the energy is going to get focused on that main stalk. It will grow tall, to be sure, and at the top of that stalk, you will find one robust cola (cola is a collection of buds). However, because all the energy was focused on that one stalk, that’s about all the buds you are going to get. There may be a handful of other buds lower down the plant, but they will be of poor quality.

Does topping cannabis affect the size of its buds?

Topping cannabis can affect the size and tree shape of the buds in different ways depending on the effective technique used and the plant’s response to stress. In general, topping cannabis is known to increase the number of giant colas or main branches on the plant, which can lead to more bud sites and potentially larger yields. However, topping cannabis can also delay the flowering stage and increase the vegetative growth stage, which can cause the buds to be smaller than they would have been without topping. Additionally, if the plant is under stress during the topping process or if the topping is not done correctly, it can result in lower yields and smaller buds. We advise a low-stress training method to keep cannabis plants healthy.

Green cannabis plants with orange hairs
With proper topping, you can achieve high-yielding cannabis plants
Source: Unsplash

What happens if I don’t top cannabis plants?

If you don’t top your marijuana plants, you aren’t going to get the yield you want. When you top a marijuana plant, the energy gets divvied out. The side branches get a chance to actually grow and generate their own buds. These branches can also get more light distribution. Your marijuana plants grow bushier. Bushier plants are more desirable for cannabis growers as they have a higher yield. You will only get a busy marijuana plant when you top it correctly and pay attention to overall plant growth. Otherwise, your marijuana plants will grow tall, and narrow, and lack the sufficient quality of buds you are looking for.

What week should I top my cannabis plants?

Topping the marijuana plants in your grow space happens during the vegetative stage. Even if you have limited space, it’s possible to keep your plants as healthy as possible. If your plants appear unhealthy, give them recovery time before and after cannabis topping. You can do this with proper light penetration and a sufficient light source during the plant training technique. Access to light is key.

Keep an eye on the growth pattern of the main stalk of your marijuana plants, which are the stalks that evolve out of the seedling you see when your plants germinate. You don’t want to top your marijuana plants too early. If your plant isn’t robust enough, the shock of the topping could damage it. Your marijuana plant needs to have at least the 5th node on the main stalk before you top it.

Does topping cannabis plants increase yields?

Ideally, you will top your marijuana plants when they have six or seven nodes on the stalk. Don’t wait longer than that! Otherwise, you risk losing some of your potential yields. Alright, so you have a marijuana plant that is at six or seven nodes. Now you need to know how to top marijuana plants once they are that tall. It’s easy. Grab a sharp pair of scissors, specifically pruning scissors, and disinfect them. Find the 5th node of your marijuana plant’s main stalk. In one quick snip, cut the top of the plant off just above the fifth node. Remember, a properly topped cannabis plant leads to vigorous growth and stronger branch structures.

What are the next steps after topping cannabis plants?

After you top your marijuana plants, you will want to pay close attention to how they are doing. Even when they are big enough, topping still is a shock to the system for a marijuana plant. Make sure your plants get plenty of light distribution and water right after you top them. You need to know how to top marijuana plants because each plant will be topped at least once. However, you may end up topping your marijuana plants two or three times. When you top them after that first time, you might top the side branches as well, which can make your plants even bushier. With side branches, cut them off at the second or third node. Congratulations! Now you know how to top marijuana plants. You are ready to get maximum yield from all sorts of great strains. That includes these five favorites sold in seed form by Growers Choice Seeds.

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