How to Increase THC in your Cannabis Plants?

How to Increase THC in your Cannabis Plants?

Created: 12.01.2020

One of the main reasons you smoke cannabis is just so you get knocked out. Sure, there are medicinal cannabis users that prefer CBD, but for recreational users THC is king. There’s nothing more satisfying than smoking or ingesting cannabis that blows your mind. But, the caveat is that not all strains make you high.

Cannabis users love that elusive THC that sends their creative minds thinking. And, cannabis growers are always looking for ways to increase THC. It’s not child’s play, but it can be done. So, today, we’ll teach you exactly how to increase THC in your cannabis plants.

Why increase THC?

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You’ll rarely find someone that doesn’t love some dank potent cannabis. Almost every recreational smoker loves THC – Tetrahydrocannabinol. The higher, the better. Whether you’re growing for personal or commercial purposes, everybody appreciates some hard-hitting cannabis. As long as you don’t overdo it, THC can actually work wonders. Like CBD, THC also contains medicinal properties, but that’s a topic for another post.

How to increase THC

There are several ways to increase THC in the plants you grow at home. And, they include:

1. Genetics

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Do your homework before you purchase seeds. For instance, Gorilla Glue is pretty famous to knock you down. Some tests reveal that it comes with a whopping 24% THC with low levels of CBD. That’s the kind of strain you should be looking for. Another strain that packs a punch is Girl Scout Cookies. No matter what you choose, make sure you educate yourself about THC levels of the strains.

As you can surmise, your quest to increase THC begins before you even purchase seeds. If you buy seeds that’s guaranteed to produce high amounts of THC, half of your work is done already. Keep in mind that the way you grow plants also determines the levels of THC. Beginners usually don’t get yields with high THC because you need experience, but if you continue without getting disappointed, you will be able to grow buds that are nothing but THC machines!

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2. Health

Okay, now that you’ve bought some high-THC strains, what next? Well, the next thing is to pay attention to the health of the plant. It’s no secret that happy and healthy plants with amazing genetics produce high levels of THC. And, that’s what you should be focusing on.

But, how do you make sure that the plant is healthy? Firstly, you need to take care of the roots. Start by choosing good containers that help the roots breathe and branch out. Smart pots and airpots are perfect for this because they are designed to aerate the roots.

Next, do not over-water. It’s okay if you don’t water too much, but cannabis plants with their feet wet constantly will either wilt and die or produce small yields with little to no THC.

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3. Light

Cannabis plants love loads of light. They just can’t do without it. Autoflowers, for instance, grow with even 12 hours of light but you will notice a huge difference if you provide 18 hours of light and 6 hours of darkness. Some growers go by the 24/0 light cycle but that’s not necessary. Like humans, plants need some rest and a lot of light will deter their progress!

There are so many varieties and types of lights available in the market today that you’ll be spoiled for choices. Read the manufacturer’s instructions and pay attention to the wattage of the light. Obviously, the more the wattage the stronger the light, but you should also purchase lights depending on the space you have.

Generally, the plants will be happy with about 40 to 50W of light per square feet. Keep this in mind before purchasing lights. If you have a small place, set up a lighting system accordingly. Additionally, make sure you set up lights that have UV light in them. Many LEDs have this option along with Infrared. Basically, cannabis plants produce high amounts of THC when they get ample light.

4. Use training techniques

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The point of using training techniques is to stress the plant. But why would you stress the plant? Well, cannabis plants produce more THC when stressed. Generally, plants work harder when they get stressed. You can also reduce watering to stress the plant more. This way, it will produce a lot more trichomes.

So, what are the best training techniques that stress the plant? You can start with topping. FIMming will also work. When combined with LST, the plants will more produce so much resin that the leaves look like crystals studded with sugar (now you know why they are called sugar leaves).

While topping is a process where you cut off the top of the plant after it produces 2-3 sets of true leaves, FIMming also produces similar results. Not only will you help increase the number of colas, but the resin production will also increase.

When LST or Low Stress Training is used along with topping, the results can be dramatic. LST, as the name suggests, is a training technique to stress the plant, but it doesn’t overdo it. It also ensures that all the parts of the plant get more light. By bending the tops of the plant towards the sides of the container, even popcorn buds at the bottom of the plant get more light.

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It’s key to remember that you shouldn’t stress the plant too much. Doing so will not only hamper the growth but it also reduces THC. You can also decrease the humidity of the grow room so that it produces a lot more resin to protect itself from harsh environmental conditions. In the wild, cannabis plants produce more resin as a way to protect itself. If you apply the same logic while stressing the plants, it’s a guarantee that the plants will produce more THC.

Here's a video to show you how to train autoflowers:

5. Harvest at the right time

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Cannabis plants produce a lot of THC if you actually harvest at the right time. To know when to harvest, take a close look at the trichomes of the plant. In the beginning, you’re going to have to look at the pistils. As the plant matures, the pistils that look clear at the beginning turn white and then proceed to become amber during the last stages.

When the pistils turn white, use a microscope to check out the trichomes at the same time. Many growers also use a jewelers loupe to do the same. Any microscope that can zoom from 30 to 100x will do the job just fine.

So, once you look at the trichomes, you’ll know whether they are clear or cloudy. Once they are clear, you’ll need to keep an eye on them every other day. As soon as the trichomes start to appear a little milky, it indicates that the plant has matured.

You need to check different bud sites because the tops usually mature much before the other parts of the plant. This is because the tops usually get a lot more light compared to the rest of the plant. This is also why you use training techniques like LST so that the light spreads in an uniform manner to all parts.

Once the trichomes look opaque or milky white, you can begin harvesting the plant. However, if you wait a lot longer the milkiness turns amber and the THC is broken down into CBN. If you see a majority of the trichomes turning opaque, it means THC is at its highest.

In conclusion, you can apply all these methods to get more THC, but it’s important to choose strains that are already proven to produce more THC.