Why Should Beginners Grow Autoflowers?

Why Should Beginners Grow Autoflowers?

Created: 04.12.2018

For years together, growers avoided growing autoflowers. An autoflowering plant was akin to a new kid on the block with no friends. On top of that, the first autoflower – Lowryder – had remarkably low THC levels.

However, that quickly changed, and now autoflowers are considered the best strains, even for beginners. So, how did that happen? How did an autoflower manage to come full circle from being avoided to becoming a grower’s favorite? Well, that’s science for you. Plus, it’s the hard work of many breeders that worked countless hours to improve autoflowers.

The autoflowers released today not only have mind-blowing amounts of THC, but the yields are surprisingly as good as photoperiod plants. Despite their short height and compact nature, they produce great yields, proving to be perfect for home-growers to produce their buds pretty quickly.

Now, autoflowers are fantabulous, but why should beginners grow them? There are several reasons. And considering that beginners always look for something easy and quick, there’s nothing better than starting with autoflowers. If you’re a beginner, continue reading to understand why autoflowers may just be the one you’re looking for.

  • They are super fast

Most people start growing cannabis only because they want to smoke amazing buds fast. Nobody has the patience to wait for months together to harvest a few buds. And the fact that it takes longer to dry and cure buds adds to the waiting time.

So, it’s neither uncommon nor unreasonable for beginners to look for strains with rapid flowering times. Autoflowers are derived from Ruderalis – a strain that grew primarily in the northern hemisphere. While photoperiod plants rely on light to begin flowering, autoflowers do that with time.

As soon as the plant reaches a specific height or grows a few nodes and branches, the plant automatically starts flowering, which is why they are aptly named autoflowers. Photoperiod plants require at least 4 months to complete their vegetative and flowering periods successfully, but autoflowers can be harvested in just 2 months. It can’t get any faster than that, right?

Here’s a video that explains why you should grow autoflowers:

  • Produces more harvests

Since photoperiod plants flower after a change in the season, they can be grown only twice or maybe thrice when grown outdoors. Unless you live near the equator where plants can be grown throughout the year, you can’t grow a lot of plants.

However, autoflowers come to your rescue even in this area because they don’t need a change in the season to start flowering. They don’t depend on shorter days, longer nights or any other specific rule to grow some gorgeous buds we all love.

As a result, they can be grown in any season outdoors. As long as the temperatures don’t dip below 15°C or go above 35-40°C, they perform well. Most plants don’t perform in extreme temperatures, so you can’t blame autoflowers since they too are regular plants.

  • Allows you to harvest perpetually

Most of us love growing as many plants as possible even with small grow rooms. It’s just human nature to get the maximum from everything around us. The sample applies to cannabis plants and growers try to stuff their grow rooms with an enormously high number of plants.

But, how do you do that? How do you set up a system that allows you to sow seeds and tend to seedlings even before the previous plants are harvested? This process is called perpetual harvesting where you start growing another batch of plants along with the previous ones.

But, with photoperiod plants, there’s just one problem. It’s a little difficult to grow two batches of plants at the same time because they depend on specific light cycles to start flowering. For instance, if you grow 5 plants in one batch, you’ll be forced to wait until they are harvested. This is because they will be under the 12/12 light/dark cycle with 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness.

If you plan to introduce new seedlings in the grow room, they will need an 18/6 light/dark cycle to grow in the vegetative stage. To overcome this problem, many growers keep separate vegetative and flowering rooms. Of course, you can grow 10 plants at the same time, but growers with smaller grow rooms can’t afford to do so.

Since seedlings don’t require too much space, it becomes easier to grow them in the same room with a previous batch of plants, but it can’t be done with photoperiod plants. Therefore, beginners should look at autoflowers that don’t have such demands. Taking the same example of 5 plants in a grow room, you can introduce a number of seedlings in the grow room even if the previous plants aren’t harvested yet.

So, if the previous plants are in their 8th week of flowering, you can sow new seeds and grow them all in the same room. By harvesting perpetually, you’re not only saving time, but your yields will increase as well.

Although autos cannot yield as much as photoperiods, like say, a Sativa that grows too huge, for example, their size allows you to plant more plants in the same space. Most photoperiod plants yield about 600-700 grams per square meter while autos produce 300-400 grams on an average.

If you compare the two, photoperiod plants obviously give you more yields, but if you dig deeper, you’ll realize that autos fetch more buds since they allow you to harvest them perpetually.

  • They are super easy to grow

There’s nothing more alluring to beginners than growing plants that are easy to grow. Seriously, who wants to grow plants that are complex in nature? Nobody. Sure, experienced growers love new challenges, but beginners always look for something less intimidating.

Autoflowers are seriously easy to grow. Forget the Lowryder and its descendants that made an appearance early in 2000. They were difficult to grow because growers couldn’t understand the science behind autoflowers. But now, 18 years later, things have changed a lot and there’s nothing easier than growing autoflowers that don’t demand much from you.

Autoflowers don’t need loads of light, but they will amaze you if you provide 18/6 cycle with 18 hours of light and 6 hours of darkness. You don’t even need to change the cycle to 12/12 in order to induce flowering because they are automatic. Simply sow the seeds, turn on the lights, and they will grow to the best of their potential without you having to constantly spoon feed them.

  • Highly resistant to pests and diseases

Apart from programming autoflowers to flower automatically, breeders regularly work on them to make them resistant to a variety of diseases and mold. Whether it is mildew, fungus or even pests commonly known to attack cannabis plants, they are extremely resistant to a variety of problems. For beginners, autoflowers are a perfect choice since it’s pretty difficult for beginners to overcome problems.

  • Perfect size for small grow rooms

Another advantage of growing autoflowers is that they are small in size. Even the biggest autoflower like Zkittlez grows only up to 3.5 feet, making it very easy to manage for growers with compact grow rooms. It’s not legal to grow cannabis in most countries yet, so it makes sense to invest in seeds that don’t grow too tall.

Zkittlez Auto
5 of 5
Fruits
Taste:
Fruits
From €9
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Room: Indoor | Outdoor
Gender: Feminized
Genes: Mostly Indica
Genetics: Zkittlez Autoflowering
Flowering: 8-9 weeks
Harvest: XXL
Height US: up to 40 inches
Height EU: 70-100 cm
THC: Very High
CBD: Very Low
Autoflowering: Yes

The size of autos allows you to save on nutrients since they don’t take up as much as photoperiod plants. Also, it becomes tough to manage plants that grow too big indoors. From managing the vertical height to the horizontal space, it takes a lot of planning to grow huge plants. Since autoflowers are pretty small, it doesn’t take too much to grow autoflowers.

For growers that need big autoflowers, a variety of training techniques can be employed. Once the plant produces at least 4-5 nodes, it can be topped. Alternatively, a technique known as “FIM” can be used to increase the number of colas per plant. 

  • Save a little more money

Autos grow perfectly in an 18/6 cycle. One doesn’t have to change the schedule in order to make them flower, but you can do so in order to save some money. By reducing the number of hours per day, you’re not only saving on electricity bills but even other equipment including the air conditioner, fans and lights will perform for longer periods of time.

In fact, some growers grow autoflowers in a 12/12 cycle right from the beginning to save as much money as possible. While this may reduce the yields to a certain extent, you do save a lot of money. With photoperiod plants, it’s not even possible to grow the plants by providing 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness because the plants need at least 18 hours of light during the vegetative stage. With autos, you have a choice, so make a wise one.

Most people only worry about the plants, but it’s important to pay attention to the other devices supporting the growth of the plants as well. After all, everything is dependent on them, so take care of them! And with so many advantages offered by autos, it’s apparent as to why beginners should choose them.