How Long Does It Take to Grow Weed Indoors

Want To Grow Your Own Weed? How Long Does It Take to Grow Marijuana We get asked this a lot;

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Want To Grow Your Own Weed? How Long Does It Take to Grow Marijuana

We get asked this a lot; how long does it take to grow weed indoors? How long does the whole process actually take?

Well, no matter who you ask, you will not get a straight answer. The responses you receive will range from anything between 2 to 7 plus months, which is a huge range and not particularly helpful.

Truth be told, there are so many factors involved that answering how long does it take to grow marijuana indoors is difficult. Factors including the strain, your growing setup, how big you want your cannabis plants etc all come into play.

To give you a more focused estimate of how long does it take to cannabis indoors, how would 3-5 months sound?

This would give you plenty of time to grow your marijuana plants from seedlings to the time they’re ready for harvest. It also provides you with a couple of weeks or so to cure your marijuana buds after you’ve harvested; they’ll be better smelling and stronger with this curing process.

If this is your first grow, you’ll need to factor in the time needed to source and set up your equipment and seeds.

As mentioned above, how long it takes to grow marijuana is ultimately down to your strain, your harvest size and how you want your end result. Here, we aim to give you enough information on how long it takes to grow cannabis for you to get started.

Here’s a basic timetable:

Weeks 0 to 4. This is your pre-growing phase. It’s the time to source your seeds and equipment.

Days 1 to 7. Depending on how long it takes you to get your cannabis seeds, the following 7 days can be spent on germination.

Weeks 3 to 8 plus. This is the vegetative phase when your cannabis plants are growing stems and leaves. The average vegetative phase for growing weed indoors is 4 to 8 weeks. After around 3 weeks you will see signs of flowering, but these will be very small, so most growers tend to opt for longer vegetative stages. Having said this, you may choose to grow a larger quantity of smaller buds to get the same yield; it depends on your setup.

Weeks 5 to 16 plus. This is the flowering phase and its length heavily depends upon your strain. Your strain may have a very short flowering stage of around 8 weeks (3 weeks to start flowering and a further 5 weeks to harvest). Different strains can take considerably longer: up to several months. As a general rule of thumb, the longer the flowering phase, the higher the yield. This is due to the buds having longer exposure to light and more time to grow. Weeks 2 to 4. This is your post-harvest phase. This is the time when you will have the signs you love; the smell, taste and look. Once you’ve harvested your buds, they’ll need to be dried out and this usually takes around one week. When dry, they need to be cured in glass jars for another 2 weeks. This will give you improved taste and smell which will also give you a perceived increase in potency. So, make sure you don’t skip this phase as doing so could halve the quality of your yield. Get things right and in 3 months after germination, you could be enjoying the fruits of your labor.

Time Spent Before You Start Growing Weed – Up To 4 Weeks

What you’ll be doing in these initial weeks:

Pre Growing Stage

If you need to get equipment it could take up to 2 weeks, including delivery time if you’re purchasing online. Having got all your equipment, you’ll need to set it up. Waiting for delivery is usually the longest thing, so depending on this you could be set up and ready to go in a day or in a couple of weeks.
To source and get a hold of your seeds could take anything up to 4 weeks. If you know a reliable grower in your local area you’ll be able to get them straight away, but getting them from a seed bank will take time, particularly if you’re buying from overseas.

Growing Stage

The total amount of time you will need to grow your cannabis plants from seedling to harvest is between 2 and 5 months.

The seedling stage of their growth should be in the order of 10 days to 2 weeks. This includes up to one week of germination and just under this for them to sprout. If you are using clones, this second stage can be skipped.

Next is the vegetative stage of growth. This normally lasts 3 weeks up to 2 months plus. The duration is down to a matter of personal preference, but most strains will need a minimum of 3 weeks in the vegetative state. After this, it is up to you when the plants enter the flowering stage.

How do you switch to the flowering stage?

Even auto-flowering plants have a vegetative stage of around 3 weeks. If you are not using auto flowers the length of the vegetative stage is down to you; most people vegetate anything from 3 weeks to a few months.

The size of your overall yield will depend on the amount of time you keep your buds in vegetation, with bigger plants producing greater yields. Keep in mind, though, that you need enough light to keep all your buds covered or they won’t be able to develop.

It is possible to put your seedlings into flower straight away if you want a quick harvest. This could be the case for a discrete grower using a small secret site such as a computer case. Here, the grower would want to keep the buds as small as possible to constrain the growth of the roots and keep them within the confines of the container.

Four weeks minimum is our recommendation in the vegetative state with at least 18 hours of light each day. Forcing a flower under four weeks and you will not yield much compared to what you could yield and certainly not compared to the amount of time and effort that you’ve put in. Having said that, there are certain benefits to having small plants.

From the point you put your plant into the flowering stage, it will roughly double in size during this stage. This is referred to as the Flowering Stretch and it gives you an indication at what point to remove it from the vegetative stage; about half the height you want from the fully grown plant. Knowing this means your plants should never outgrow their planting space.

Flowering Stage

The Flowering Stage can take anywhere from 5 weeks to 16 plus weeks and has a rough breakdown similar to the following:

  • The transition from Growing to Flowering. Weeks 1-2
  • Budlets start to form. Weeks 3-4
  • Buds fattening. Weeks 5-6
  • Buds ripen and pistils start to darken. Weeks 7-8 (some strains can take longer than this, so do your research first)
  • End of flowering stage and harvest. Weeks 8-12

As already mentioned, the flowering stage depends a lot on the strain of cannabis that you are cultivating. When you have switched from the vegetative stage to the flowering phase, your plants will undergo the flowering stretch, form buds and become fattened.

If you are not too sure which strain you want to cultivate just yet, here is a list of some of the most popular cannabis strains. They’re listed by the length of time they remain in the flowering stage:

Short Term Flowering (6 to 8 weeks).

  • Northern Light. This strain is best known for its ease of growing. Ideal for beginners.
  • Critical Mass CBD. This is a high yield strain that has a high content of CBD and medium levels of THC.
  • Quick Critical +/-. This is based on its predecessor, Critical Plus, but this version has a much quicker finish.
  • Blue Cheese. This strain is not just fast in the flowering stage, Blue Cheese plants also grow quickly. It is recommended that the plants be switched to flowering when they are around one-third of the final desired size. This is because they have a flowering stretch that triples their size, reducing the time required in the vegetative stage.
  • Frisian Dew. You will easily distinguish this plant as its buds turn a shade of pink or purple. It is one of the best strains to use if you are growing outdoors.
  • Shiskaberry. A little gem of a strain from Barney’s Farm. The ‘head high’ you get from this strain of cannabis is said to give you a lift. Users of this recommend it as a great means of relaxation after a hard day or to get you into a creative thinking mood.
  • Seedsman Fast Collection. Seedsman offer seeds from a variety of seed suppliers, or breeders. They also have their own line of Seedsman strains. Their Fast Collection consists of three of their most popular fast flowering strains and they take around six or seven weeks in the flowering stage. Seedsman has a great reputation, so you can be sure to get exactly what they claim; a very reliable strain of cannabis.
  • Auto-Flowering Ultimate. This has the highest potency of almost all of the auto-flowering strains. It will be ready roughly 10 weeks after germination, giving it a 7-week flowering stage. This plant delivers high yield and it is an overall healthy one. This strain, like most other auto-flowering ones, will be ready to harvest in a mere 3 months from seed.

Medium Term Flowering (8 to 12 weeks).

  • Original Amnesia. This strain of cannabis will give you great effects. It is a very easy strain to grow.
  • Supreme CBD Durban. This is a medical strain of cannabis with a CBD to THC ratio of 1:1.
  • Pineapple Chunk. This is an award winning cannabis strain that’s described as fruity and strong. It is not particularly high yielding, but this is made up for by the incredibly high quality of its buds. Many people who have grown this enjoy it immensely and return to it for subsequent grows.
  • Liberty Haze. Another award winning strain. This, uncharacteristically of haze strains, is quite potent and the great thing about it is that it doesn’t take an age to finish flowering.
  • Get OG. This hybrid strain is a mix of Gelato and OG Kush. These are two of the most popular strains of cannabis on the west coast of the USA. It is quite quick to finish and its yields are pretty good. t is also quite potent and smells great.
  • Wedding Gelato. Another Gelato hybrid. This strain is produced from a combination of Gelato 33 and Wedding Cake.
  • Strawberry Lemonade. With a high level of potency and the uplifting effects it produces, this cannabis strain is as pleasant as its name suggests. Thrown into the bargain, it’s simple to grow.
  • Gorilla Zkittlez. This is another one of America’s west coast favorites. It produces beautiful crystal and trichome covered buds and also gives you a high yield.
  • Peyote Critical. This cannabis strain is getting fantastic reviews from everybody that gives it a go. The buds, which quite often change their color to purple, produce really potent effects.

Long Flowering Term (12 to 14 plus weeks).

Long flowering strains include many of the haze strains and also some of the Sativa strains. Any strains that have their origins close to the Equator will also generally be long flowering strains.

Arjan’s Ultra Haze #1. This is a hybrid of some of the best strains of cannabis to come out of Southeast Asia. If you are looking for something a little different and something that is not easy to find in America or Europe, this could be the strain for you. It will produce psychedelic results that seem far beyond its cannabinoid content. The only issue is that it might be too potent for you.

Generally speaking, most strains other than auto flowering strains are medium-term flowers. Of course, this is not an exact science; there is a window of around two to three weeks in which to harvest your plants.

Keeping your cannabis plants in the flowering stage for a little longer tends to give you better yields. This is due to plants bulking up on their flowers when they become ripe. So, if you want to have the opportunity of increasing your yield by something in the region of 10-30%, try waiting a bit rather than harvesting at the earliest possible moment.

Post Harvest Stage

After you’ve harvested, there are some things you need to do before smoking your weed. The total amount of time you will need for post-harvest activities is between 2.5 weeks and 1.5 months plus.

This time period breaks down roughly as follows:

  • Drying time (4-10 days). If you have a good crop of cannabis buds, drying them can take as little as 4 days. Ideally, though, you will want to make this process much slower. Make sure you thoroughly dry your plants to reduce the chances of the mold but take care not to overdry them.
  • Curing time (2 weeks – 1 month plus). Curing can reduce the ‘speed’ effect of cannabis, making it more suitable for medical purposes. So, better for treating the likes of pain, anxiety, and depression. Curing also eliminates the smell of newly cut grass, harsh taste and other unpleasant traits associated with newly dried buds. As the curing process continues, the real smell and potency will develop in your buds. The absolute minimum time that you should cure for is 2 weeks, with one month being a popular minimum time frame for many growers. Your buds will continue to improve for this length of time, maybe even longer.

So, after you’ve gone through all of the processes and stages above: you’ve bought your seeds and equipment; you’ve grown your plant from seed; you’ve flowered your plant; you’ve harvested your plants, and you’ve cured your plants. You should now be in a better position to answer the original question: how long does it take to grow marijuana?