Durban Poison Cannabis Strain Week-By-Week Guide

Be prepared and know what to expect. Take a look at our Durban Poison week-by-week guide!
22 November 2021
8 min read
Durban Poison Cannabis Strain Week-By-Week Guide

  • 1. History
  • 2. Specifications
  • 3. Week-by-week guide
  • 3. a. Germination - week 0
  • 3. b. Vegetative stage - week 1
  • 3. c. Vegetative stage - week 2 
  • 3. d. Vegetative stage - week 3 
  • 3. e. Pre-flowering stage - week 4 
  • 3. f. Flowering stage - week 5 and 6 
  • 3. g. Flowering stage - week 7 and 8  
  • 3. h. Flowering stage - week 9 and 10
  • 3. i. Harvesting - week 11
  • 4. Terpene profile
  • 5. Type of effect
  • 6. In conclusion

If you’re planning on growing or are currently growing Durban Poison, here’s all you need to know about this wonderful strain. This week-by-week guide will provide what you need to make the most out of each plant and help you prevent any eventual problems, so read along!

1. History

Originally from the city of Durban, South Africa, this legendary strain has become more and more popular since the ‘70s, where Ed Rosenthal first discovered it. Back then, growers were surprised by the quick flowering time and eventually brought it to Holland, where it became adapted to rainy conditions but despite the Indica-like characteristics, it offers mostly-Sativa genetics.

So what really makes this strain stand out is the fact that it’s an original landrace strain that doesn’t have a lot of cross-breeding such as other popular strains. This happens because this landrace strain was discovered back when cannabis plants had little to no human interference, which also made it amongst the most popular for creating new strains.

2. Specifications

The world-famous Durban Poison offers huge yields, reaching up to 3 meters in height and yielding 650 gr/m2 of extremely resinous buds in around 8-9 weeks of flowering. This huge strain’s THC ranges from 16-25%, offering a full-on Sativa effect that comes hand-in-hand with a delicious terpene profile of lemon, licorice, and cloves that leaves your mouth watering after every puff.

3. Week-By-Week Guide

As you may know, the growing conditions play a huge role in the final quality of the harvest, so here’s the temperature, humidity, and overall growing conditions this beautiful Durban Poison was grown in.


Grow Specifications
Light Fixture:LEDNutrientsSynthetic
Grow Space:IndoorPH level:6.5
Temperature:18 - 25°CFlowering8 - 9 weeks
Humidity:45 - 80%SubstrateSoil


This serves to remind you that the same strain can exhibit several different phenotypes, meaning that this grow guide shows what you would get when growing in similar conditions to those shown in the table above, if you were to grow in different conditions the results could vary.

Germination - Week 0

As always, this grow guide starts with the germination of 1 Durban Poison seed directly in the substrate. We usually recommend letting seeds soak in a cup of water for around 12hs, once the taproot appears, transfer the seeds to a paper towel until it grows 2 - 3 cm and then plant it in the substrate so germinating directly in the substrate is not our recommended germination method but it definitely is the simplest.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 0

Durban Poison grown by CreamOfTheCrop.

You shouldn’t give nutrients yet, especially if your substrate already contains a bit of food, but you can definitely add mycorrhizae to help your plant develop roots faster. Once the seedling comes out of the substrate, the first you should be able to see is two tiny round leaves called Cotyledons, this initial pair of leaves are super fragile so make sure to handle your baby plants very gently.

It’s essential to remember that the relative humidity should be around 80% and the temperature ranging between 20-25°C; If good conditions are not maintained or if you overfeed before your plant can handle it, you’ll definitely see signs that your plants are not happy so make sure to be super careful during the seedling stage.

Vegetative Stage - Week 1

Once your plant has developed the first pair of three-fingered leaves, it’s officially in the vegetative stage. Throughout the vegetative stage, you’ll notice how the number of fingers increases as your plant grows and this is a good sign! But before you see the 5 or 7-fingered leaves, there are other things you should pay attention to.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 1

Durban Poison starting to develop the first pair of 5-fingered leaves.

Depending on if the substrate is amended or not, you will have to start feeding a really low nutrient dose for your plant to start absorbing nutrients and eventually grow into a huge plant so make sure to start with the lower recommended dose, see how your plant develops and increase the nutrient dose if needed. 

Vegetative Stage - Week 2 

In the second week of the vegetative stage, your plant should have grown quite a bit, making it the perfect moment to perform plant training techniques like SCROG, Sea of Green, or topping among others. Keep in mind that you should always have a gentle airflow so that the stem and branches strengthen up properly and can handle the dense buds during flowering.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 2

Explosion of growth on week 2.

Remember that proper airflow serves not only to strengthen your plant’s structure but also to help avoid bugs such as spider mites, white flies, and fungus gnats. Also, proper airflow can prevent mold spores from landing on the plants, saving your whole garden, so make sure you have at least one oscillating fan!

Vegetative Stage - Week 3 

By week 3 your plant should have started growing exponentially and become quite bushy, this is when you want to start increasing the nutrient dose to allow your plant to continue growing vigorous and healthy. This explosion of growth will also allow you to see the characteristics inherited by the parent plants; Sativa-dominant strains usually grow taller and thinner leaves while Indica-dominant strains usually grow shorter and wider leaves.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 3

Beautiful plant getting almost ready to start flowering.

It may not be clear at first glance but you’ll definitely see the leaves growing bigger and bigger, with more fingers each time. In fact, if everything is going correctly, the flowering sites should start turning light green and the growth rate should be so fast that you can see a big difference from one day to another. This happens because your plant is getting ready to transition into the flowering stage, which means that the long-awaited time has come and your plant will soon start developing the flowers.

Pre-Flowering Stage - Week 4 

The pre-flowering stage starts as soon as your plants start developing white hairs. Obviously, you decide when to start flowering when growing indoors, but outdoors you just have to let your plant do its thing. Anyways, the pre-flowering stage marks the beginning of the transition from the vegetative stage to the flowering stage, this means that you should start slowly changing from Grow to Bloom nutrients in order to provide what your plants need to develop fat buds.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 4

Durban Poison transitioning from veg to flower.

Depending on the growing conditions, it may take a couple of days for the white hairs to become visible, but it will definitely happen if you’re growing feminized seeds. If you’re growing regular Durban Poison seeds, then make sure to be on the lookout for possible male plants and remove them from the grow space as soon as possible.

Flowering Stage - Week 5 and 6 

Make sure to be on the lookout for signs of deficiencies when switching from Grow to Bloom nutrients, identifying and correcting these deficiencies fast will prevent more serious problems throughout the grow cycle. Week 5 and 6 is also when you’ll experience the “flower stretch”, which is a growth spurt right after switching to 12/12. 


Durban poison week-by-week: week 5 and 6

White Hairs (stigmas) on healthy Durban Poison.

During this flower stretch your plant will need more nutrients than ever, so make sure to keep your garden well-fed. Also, if you’ve performed plant training techniques, such as tying down the branches, now it’s the time to remove the ties because continuing with plant training may end up stressing your plant, so be careful.

Flowering Stage - Week 7 and 8  

By weeks 7 and 8, your plant should be in full-flowering mode and you should be able to see lots and lots of trichomes starting to appear. The increased trichome production means that you’ll have to install a carbon filter anytime now because the smell will only get stronger and stronger. Also, remember to keep the growing conditions on point.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 7 and 8

Durban Poison in full-flower mode.

Bugs and mold love to feed on cannabis plants and they can make them unsafe for consumption, easily infecting the other plants around so remember to always check your thermometer and adjust the conditions if needed. Bud development requires a lot of energy so at this point you should already be feeding a full nutrient dose, always making sure to not overfeed your plants. Other than that, just let your plants grow and do their thing, they should be ready in no time!

Flowering Stage - Week 9 and 10

Week 9 and 10 marks the last week before harvesting. As your plant gets closer and closer to harvesting day, you’ll see the white hairs starting to turn brown and wilt, and an extremely delicious smell. It’s super important to check your plants daily because these bugs love this delicious smell and a bug infestation can ruin your harvest at this stage.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 9 and 10

Big fan leaves starting to fade.

Before harvesting, it’s highly recommended to flush thoroughly. The flushing process consists of feeding plain water for a couple of days (up to weeks) to remove the excess nutrients in the substrate. Just remember that flushing is not obligatory and it’s optional depending on the type of nutrients you’re using.

Harvesting - Week 11

Week 11 marks the last week of this Durban Poison week-by-week guide. If you’ve flushed your plants, remember to let the substrate dry before chopping your plant. If done properly, the leaves should slowly wilt and die, this is a sign that you’ve flushed properly and your plant is ready for harvest day.


Durban poison week-by-week: week 11

Durban Poison from GrowDiaries.

As you may know, drying the flowers is the next step so a couple of days before harvesting have your drying room prepared and get your tools ready. You should use latex gloves to avoid contaminating your plants and a clean pair of scissors to trim the excess foliage off the beautiful buds. Remember there are several different ways to trim your plants so make sure to get your dry room ready in order to know the conditions and understand what suits you better when it comes to trimming and drying.

5. Terpene Profile

Durban Poison is a mostly Sativa strain that contains a mix of the following terpenes: Terpinolene, Myrcene, Limonene, Pinene, and Caryophyllene, resulting in a unique flavor that makes it super sought-after by growers and consumers.


Durban poison week-by-week: terpene profile

Durban Poison average terpene profile.

This terpene mix results in an overall hazy aroma with spicy undertones and lemon, aniseed, and licorice hints that slowly reveal after every puff.

6. Type of Effect

Along with the pungent terpene profile comes a potent uplifting effect that improves your mood and stimulates social skills and creativity. The perfect daytime strain, ideal for those who want to start the day focused and energetic without getting couch-locked or too relaxed.

7. In Conclusion

Durban Poison is a must for Sativa lovers. This excellent landrace strain will definitely be amongst your top 5 Sativa strains due to the delicious flavor and unique psychoactive effect, old-schoolers will definitely fall in love with this one!


If you’ve grown Durban Poison seeds before, feel free to help fellow growers by leaving your tips and tricks in the comment section below!

22 November 2021