Outdoor Cannabis Grow in Italy: Week-by-Week Guide

Italy has the perfect weather, cannabis is not only consumed widely but also grown, even though it is not legal.
Author Enzo Schillaci
13 July 2020
14 min read
Outdoor Cannabis Grow in Italy: Week-by-Week Guide

Contents:

Weed is not legal in Italy, although you can find grow shops that sell everything you need to grow your own, paraphernalia and CBD flowers, you can get in trouble with the law if you don’t have a way to prove you are growing for your own consumption.

1. Climate regions in Italy

You should be cautious when starting to grow cannabis outdoors because the humidity, temperature, and light cycle can affect plant growth and yields.

Italy has six climate regions that go from the mountains all the way to the coast. Most of them are perfect for growing cannabis outdoors. Choose the right genetics and use a few tricks to maintain humidity to get great outdoor yields. You can achieve exceptional results with autoflowering strains.

To do so, first, you need to know what are the regions of Italy and how the temperature is changing throughout the year:

 

Climate regions in Italy for growing cannabis

Unless you're in the Humid Continental climates, Subarctic climates and tundra regions, Italy has great weather to grow cannabis, especially from June to August.

Hot-summer Mediterranean Climate (Csa)

The hot-summer Mediterranean weather is found in all coastal areas; the winter average temperature varies from 6°C in the north to 14°C in the south. 

During the dry and hot summers, the average temperatures are around 23°C in the north and can reach 28°C in the south.

This type of climate includes places like Sardegna, Sicilia, Calabria and Puglia.

 

Month Avg. High (C°) Avg. Low (C°) Average (C°) Rel. Humidity Sunlight Hours
 May22.612.117.370%14:15hs
 Jun26.215.620.969%15hs
 Jul29.318.023.668%15hs
 Aug29.517.923.768%14hs
 Sep26.315.320.871% 12:45hs

Best months to grow cannabis in the Hot-summer Mediterranean Climate.

Warm-Summer Mediterranean Climate (Csb)

The warm-summer Mediterranean weather is found inland, it is quite similar to the Csa climate but with wetter winters.

Average temperatures can reach 3-5°C in the winter (with a chance of snow) and up to 21°C in the summer.

The main places where you can find this climate are Lazio, Abruzzo, Molise and Campania.

 

Month Avg. High (C°) Avg. Low (C°)Average (C°)Rel. Humidity Sunlight Hours
Jun33.012.717.570%15hs
Jul36.815.420.668%14:45hs
Aug36.815.720.770%14hs
Sep33.212.717.274%12:45hs

Best months to grow cannabis in the Warm-summer Mediterranean Climate.

Humid subtropical climate (Cfa)

In the humid subtropical weather, the seasons are more defined and are found mostly up the valleys in the north.

The summers are more humid and hot, reaching up to 22°C and slightly cold winter, ranging from 1-3°C.

The main places where you can find this climate are Trieste, Ancona and Alessandrino.

 

MonthAvg. High (C°) Avg. Low (C°)Average (C°)Rel. HumiditySunlight Hours
May22.311.617.068%15hs
Jun26.215.420.868%15:40hs
Jul29.218.023.667%15:15hs
Aug28.517.623.070%13:50hs
Sep24.414.019.274%12:20hs

Best months to grow cannabis in the Humid subtropical Climate.

The transition between Cfa and Csa climates

Some regions of Italy have weather that cannot be defined as one or another, that is the case in places like Ferrara and Alessandria, where summers are not too dry or wet and the winters are cold but milder in other regions. This is because these regions are a transition between humid subtropical climates and hot-summer Mediterranean climates.

In this region, the average temperature in the summer is around 22-23°C and the winter ranges between 6-7°C.

 

MonthAvg. High (C°) Avg. Low (C°)Average (C°)Rel. HumiditySunlight Hours
May23.711.617.765%14:45hs
Jun27.715.021.462%15:30hs
Jul31.417.724.659%15hs
Aug31.517.724.660%13:45hs
Sep26.714.420.565%12:30hs

Best months to grow cannabis in the climate transition region.

Oceanic climate (Cfb)

The oceanic weather can be found mostly in the Apennines, where the average temperature in the summer ranges from 17-21°C and the winters from 2-4°C.

This climate can be found to the north, 400 meters above sea level and to the south, above 500 meters above sea level.

 

MonthAvg. High (C°)Avg. Low (C°)Average (C°)Rel. HumiditySunlight Hours
Jun25.312.218.762%15:30hs
Jul29.014.221.659%15hs
Aug29.114.121.660%13:45hs
Sep24.711.418.165%12:30hs

Best months to grow cannabis in the Oceanic climate region.

Humid Continental Climate (Dfb)  

This type of weather is found in the alps, with an altitude of 1000m or more. 

Growers there suffer from cold climates ranging from -7 to -3°C and mild summers ranging from 13-18°C.

Subarctic climate (Dfc)

Around 1600-1800 m, in the alpine valley, winters are super cool, ranging from -12 to -5°C and summers are a bit cold also, around 10-12°C.

Tundra climate (ET)

Above the subarctic weather, when you reach the Tundra climate all year long there’s an average temperature around 8°C.

3. Growing cannabis in Italy: week-by-week

Imagine you live in Florence and are planning to grow an autoflowering strain outdoors, like Lemon Pie Auto.

What should you have in mind before germinating your seeds? 

Before even germinating your seeds it's essential you know the weather for the next couple of weeks, the humidity, temperature, and sunlight will have an effect on the growth and outdoor yield of your plants. 

The temperature, humidity and sunlight hours cannot be changed outdoors, so it’s good to plan ahead when growing cannabis outdoors, this way you guarantee a good harvest and good outdoor yield.

Depending on the type of plant you're planning to grow cannabis (auto or photo) you can use techniques such as light deprivation to reduce the light they receive and keep them vegetating for longer, the plastic tarp you use for light deprivation can also be used as a cover to keep rain off.

Lemon Pie Auto
Lemon Pie Auto
Genes
Mostly Indica
Genetics
Lemon Pie Auto
Flowering
8-9 weeks
Harvest
450-550gr/m2
Height
80-100cm
THC
Up to 24%
CBD
Very Low
Autoflowering
Yes
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
 

It’s really good to know the weather you’ll have in the next couple of months so you can plan and prepare your growing methods.

For example, there are a couple of days in March which have an extremely high humidity level, this means you can already start thinking about LST to improve airflow to avoid mold and bugs.

 

Outdoor Cannabis Grow in Italy: (LST) Low stress training

The tie-down method is an LST technique that can help you increase outdoors yields.
 

By knowing the weather to come, you can potentially improve outdoor yield and avoid problems that come with high humidity, cold climates, and choose when your plant will be in the flowering stage so she’s getting more light. 

In the charts below, we can see that in March you would get 11hrs of sunlight while in May you can get up to 15hs, even though it seems like 2hrs is not a lot, it can have a big difference in the development of your plants.

For example, if you are planning to start growing in March, below we'll explain what you can expect from your plant's lifecycle week-by-week:

Week 1 - Germination (March 1 - March 7)

If you were to germinate a couple of seeds (which takes 9 weeks from seed to harvest) and plant them on March 10, you would expect to harvest around May 2, by having an approximate harvest date you can have an idea of the weather you'll have through your growing cycle.

 

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: germination

Climate in Florence1 in the first week of March.
 

Seeds can take up to 7 days to germinate, so if you want to plant it for example, on March 10 we would have to start the germination process at least on March 1-2, remember this depends solely on the seed, some seeds take around 72hrs and others can take up to a week.

Have this in mind when planning your outdoor grow because plants are living things, you cannot accelerate their natural processes and even have in mind that they can take a bit more than what you planned.

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 1 of plant growth

1. Crystal Meth Auto from our grower Ladyblazed, 2. Girls Scout Cookies Auto from our grower GSCFan and 3. Cream Cookies Auto from our grower DudeGrowsWeed on week 1 from GrowDiaries.
 

As you can see, in the first week your plants will sprout and develop the first pair of true leaves, this is a sign they are developing correctly.

Week 2 - Seedling Stage (March 8 - March 14)

After your plant has emerged from the medium, it can take around 10 days for the first pair of true leaves to appear.

At this stage we should maintain a high humidity level, so by taking a look at the chart, you can expect a relatively low humidity with the exception of a couple of days.

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: the seedling stage

Climate in Florence1 in the second week of March.
 

This means you should place a dome on top of the seedling to help maintain the humidity levels and spray water often, so the humidity levels don’t decrease. You need to maintain humidity as close as possible to 60% so the seedling doesn’t dry out and die.

Having gone through germination and seedling stages in March, in April your plant will be entering the vegetative stage. 

 

 Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 2 of plant growth

1 & 4. Zkittlez Auto from our grower Shinsimilla, 2. Girls Scout Cookies Auto from our grower Just1leaf and 3. Purple Lemonade Auto from our grower Alex1515 on week 2 from GrowDiaries.
 

In the second week of plant growth, your plant will start to develop more leaves and will start to thrive.

Week 3 - The Vegetative Stage (March 15 - March 21)

In the vegetative stage you need to keep a relative humidity of around 50%, although the chart shows a couple of days with 25% and 30% relative humidity, you should be ok.

Another thing you must adjust is the temperature. If you look at the chart, there are a couple of days where the temperature drops drastically.

 

Growing cannabis outdoors in Italy: week 3 of the vegetative stage

Climate in Florence1 from March 15 -21.
 

Temperature drops can stress our plants so if you can predict this, you can make the correct adjustments so your plant doesn’t stress out. You must maintain a temperature between 22-25°C for your plant to grow well.

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 3 of plant growth

1. Bluea Dream'matic from our grower AngryBird, 2. Blackberry Auto from our grower Thejusepas and 3. West Coast O.G. Auto from our grower 416fireman on week 3 from GrowDiaries.

On the third week of growth, it is probable the cotyledons fall, you don't have to worry because it is normal and when that happens the plant will start to feed on the nutrients you give her.

Week 4 - The Vegetative Stage (March 22 - March 28)

Even though plants outdoors can grow with 14 and 16 hours of light, they will develop better with at least 18 hours of light.

Growing cannabis outdoors in Italy: week 4 of the vegetative stage

Climate in Florence1 from March 22 -28.
 

You should also provide 18 hours of sunlight for your plant to grow well, although in some places you don’t get that much, so you should plan to grow your cannabis plants when you get the most amount of light in your region. 

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 4 of plant growth

Gelato Auto on week 4 from our grower ReYcOs42 from GrowDiaries.
 

At this stage, you're taking good care of your plant she will start growing 1 pair of leaves per day, it is essential you don't stress her too much so she can grow properly.

Week 5 - The Vegetative Stage (March 22 - March 28)

This is the last week before entering the pre-flowering stage, at this stage, you should start your trellis for Scrog and start removing the ties if you LST'd your plant. 

Growing cannabis outdoors in Italy: week 5 of the vegetative stage

Climate in Florence1 from March 29 - April 4.
 

At this stage of cannabis growth, you should slowly start decreasing the amount of vegetative nutrients and start gently adding flowering nutrients, this will provide what your plant needs to start flowering.

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 5 of plant growth

1. Tangie'matic from our grower Piernaslocas and 2. Cream Cookies Auto from our grower S1993 on week 5 from GrowDiaries.
 

On week 6 your plant is almost ready to enter the pre-flowering stage, it should only take a couple of days before you see the white hairs appearing.

Week 6 - The Flowering Stage (April 5 - April 25)

Around April 10 our plant will start to show signs (white hairs) she’s entering the pre-flowering stage.

 Growing cannabis outdoors in Italy: week 6 of the vegetative stage

 

Climate in Florence1 from April 5 - April 11 .
 

When you see the white hairs starting your plant is officially entering the flowering stage.

The relative humidity should be around 45% and slowly start decreasing until we reach around 40%, by taking a look at the chart below you can have an idea of what to expect.

 

 Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 6 of plant growth

1 & 2. Lemon AK Auto from our grower Resin_Randy and 3. Purple Lemonade Auto from our grower Chubbs on week 6 from GrowDiaries.
 

White hairs (pistils) are a sign that your plant is mature enough to start flowering and will take around 1 week to start developing flowers.

Week 7 - The Flowering Stage (April 12 - April 18)

In the pre-flowering stage, your plant can start to smell, it's a good idea to install the carbon filter or other ways to mask the smell now.

Growing cannabis outdoors in Italy: week 7 of the vegetative stage

Climate in Florence1 from April 12 - April 18.
 

The humidity levels will be quite low so maybe you’ll need to use a humidifier or other methods to increase humidity in your growing space.

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 7 of plant growth

1 & 2. Lemon AK Auto from our grower Resin_Randy on week 7 from GrowDiaries.
 

On week 7 your plant will start to fatten up the buds and you will see a lot of white hairs throughout all the bud sites, at this stage you should already be feeding her good quality blooming nutrients to ensure high yields.

Week 8 - The Flowering Stage (April 19 - April 25)

In the last two weeks before harvesting you should start flushing, washing the roots 2 weeks before harvesting will remove the excess nutrients and will result in a better tasting and smelling flowers.

Growing cannabis outdoors in Italy: week 8 of the vegetative stage

Climate in Florence1 from April 19 - April 25 .
 

You can also prepare to adjust the temperature, although in this example you don’t have to because by having an average low of around 11°C and an average high of around 22°C, the average will be around 17°C.

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 8 of plant growth

1. LSD-25 Auto from our grower Butterstotch, 2. Lemon AK Auto from our grower Resin_Randy and 3. Girl Scout Cookies Auto from our grower DJKY71 on week 8 from GrowDiaries.
 

The best choice of strain will be an Indica dominant hybrid that takes cold climate very well, so unless you suffer from extremely cold weather (less than 13°C) you won’t have a problem.

Week 9 - The Flowering Stage (April 12 - April 18)

In the last week, your plant will mostly ripen and dense the buds a little bit more, it's crucial you harvest at the right time and have the drying room ready for your harvested plants.

 

Growing cannabis outdoors in Italy: week 9 of the vegetative stage

Climate in Florence1 from April 26 - April 2.
 

After harvesting and trimming you'll need to dry your plants for around 2 weeks and then cure the buds for a minimum of 2 weeks.

 

Outdoor cannabis grow in Italy: week 9 of plant growth

1. LSD-25 Auto from our grower buuuuuzy and 2. Blue Dream'matic from our grower AngryBird on week 9 from GrowDiaries.
 

When your plant is ready for harvest most growers leave it for 48hrs in complete darkness, this will make your plant know she's going to die and will frost a little bit more.

4. Tips for growing outdoors in Italy

The best medium

If you live in a very humid place you can add perlite to help oxygenate the medium whereas if you live in a dry place coco fiber can help hold the moisture in the medium.

Choosing the appropriate genetics

It’s a good idea to choose the appropriate genetics for the weather you'll be growing in, in general, Indica dominant for lower and Sativa dominant for higher temperatures.

Masking the smell

If you are growing in a balcony, an abundance of aromatic plants can help mask the smell.

Guerilla growing cannabis

If you are planning on guerilla growing, make sure you look for the perfect spot. A place when your plant will get a good amount of light with a water source nearby and far away from bugs and animals that can eat your plant.

Animals like gophers and moles can eat the roots and are hard to spot because they live underground, you should look for holes in the ground or eaten plants before choosing where to plant your cannabis.

 

Top tips for growing cannabis outdoors in Italy

Top tips for growing cannabis outdoors in Italy

Harvest bigger buds

To get denser and bigger buds outdoors you can plan ahead so your plants are flowering when you get more sunlight, this will result in a bigger outdoor yield and better flowers.

Best nutrients

Organic nutrients will not only keep you from burning your plants but will also result in better tasting and smelling flowers. Obviously, you can use synthetic nutrients but you should be careful to not overfeed your plants.

5. Is Cannabis legal in Italy?

The answer is no

Grow shops and growers, used to benefit from a legal “grey area” but a recent supreme court decision established that it no longer is a crime to cultivate cannabis at home (in minimal quantities) and for personal use only.

This decision states that public health is in no way compromised or endangered by the individual who decides to grow cannabis for himself and criminal actions cannot be applied as you follow some requirements.

The italian supreme court decided that as longs as it is a small-scale domestic cultivation with a small number of plants, a low yield, without using professional equipment and exclusively for the personal use of the grower without indications of commercialization to the black market. 

Because there’s no law prohibiting THC they are allowed to sell paraphernalia, growing equipment, CBD products, and even flowers with less than 0.2% THC (considered hemp) although it is more expensive and worse than what you can get from a dealer or by growing your own cannabis.

Have in mind that in the last official document3 the Ministry of Health does not consent the sale of CBD products to the public, so even though you can buy or grow cannabis at home, if someone calls the police on you (because of the smell, for example) you can get in trouble.

If you’re growing cannabis, having too many plants, scales or ziplock bags can be used as proof that you’re commercializing cannabis and the judge may find you guilty.

6. In Conclusion

Even though you can grow almost all autoflowering strains multiple times a year, by knowing the climate for the next couple of months in your region you can optimize our grow cycle.

By knowing the amount of sunlight you not only can improve the plant's yield but also avoid stressing her and avoid problems related to high humidity levels.

We hope our week-by-week guide will help you plan and organize your outdoor grow successfully. If you've already done it tell us in the comment section what were your main problems that you've confronted. 


This guide has been updated for the 2020 outdoor season based on the months with the best weather in Italy.


EXTERNAL REFERENCES

   1. Servizio nazionale di previsione neve e valanghe (Meteo Aeronautica):

 http://www.meteomont.gov.it/infoMeteo/jsp/mwablx812I.jsp 

   2. La repubblica: Cannabis, la Cassazione: "Coltivazione in casa non è reato"

https://www.repubblica.it/cronaca/2019/12/26/news/cannabis_la_cassazione_coltivazione_in_casa_non_e_reato_-244430759/?ref=search&refresh_ce

   3. Richiesta di parere sulla commercializzazione di prodotti contenenti THC: 

http://www.salute.gov.it/imgs/C_17_pubblicazioni_2761_allegato.pdf

Best recommended strains to grow outdoors in Italy

Gelato Auto
Gelato Auto
Our most powerful strain yet. 26% THC lab reports, and distinct Ice cream flavours. 
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
Gorilla Glue Auto
Gorilla Glue Auto
A platinum strain, with more than a million sold all over the world!
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
Jack Herer Auto
Jack Herer Auto
Big yields, Amazing flavors and high potency in memory of a legend!
Buy seeds from 9,00 €
Northern Lights Auto
Northern Lights Auto
Incredibly resilient and low maintenance indica dominant delight.
Buy seeds from 9,00 €
OG Kush Auto
OG Kush Auto
Next level potency and delicious Kush flavor
Buy seeds from 9,00 €
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