When To Start Low Stress Training (LST) Your Autoflower

When and why to start low stress training your autoflower plants.
22 April 2020
17 min read
When To Start Low Stress Training (LST) Your Autoflower

Contents:

Low-stress training is a plant training technique used to train cannabis plants into the desired shape to maximize light usage and yields, among other benefits.

LST allows growers to control height and maximize yields without having to invest in new growing equipment and with relatively little work.

1. What is Low Stress Training? 

Low stress training (also known as LST) is a technique used to train your weed plant into the desired result using the lowest amount of stress possible. There are also High stress training (HST) techniques like topping or pruning but we won’t be talking about them here as they tend to stunt growing for a short period of time and cannot be used with autoflowers as they have a determined life cycle.

2. When to Start Low Stress Training

There isn’t an exact age or size to start LST'ing autos, in theory, you can start as soon as the first true leaves grow, we recommend start training as soon as your plant can reach the edge of the pot, around 10-15cm or 4 - 6 inches (use this as a guideline, it mainly depends on the structure of your plant more than the size).

You can start LST training as soon as your plant can reach the edge of the pot.
 

Before starting, you need to be sure you’ll benefit from it as it may have a toll on your autoflower, read a bit on how to LST autos, and always remember that you should not LST during flowering because it will stress your plant and decrease the yields.

Any kind of stress (even from overwatering) can ultimately ruin your harvest so make sure you really need to do it before starting any plant training method.

3. Why use LST?

LST is used to maximize output yield, maximize light usage, decrease the vertical space needed or just to control stretching using the least amount of stress possible.

 

Training MethodAdvantages
Tie-downGives you the ability to control stretch and mold your plant anyway you want and need.
SCRoGSuited to even the canopy and increase the number of bud sites.
SoGUsed to maximize limited growing spaces.

 

We recommend starting slowly training this autoflower at around week 3 and stop when you can’t notice any more growth, at this stage, she will only focus on bud production.

At Fast Buds we offer a wide variety of strains that perform outstandingly with LST, we particularly recommend one of our most popular strains to date Zkittlez Auto among others.

Zkittlez Auto
Zkittlez Auto
Genes
Mostly Indica
Genetics
Zkittlez Autoflowering
Flowering
9-10 weeks
Harvest
XXL
Height
70-100 cm
THC
23%
CBD
Very Low
Autoflowering
Yes
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €

She develops a large main cola and a few lateral side branches, she tends to take a lot of nutrients resulting in a sturdy strain that will respond nicely to training and will grow multiple hefty colas throughout the plant.

TIP: When performing LST, start slowly and be careful not to hurt your plants. The best way is to bend it a little each day in order to get the least amount of stress, be patient, and don’t overdo it!

Maximize Yield Output

The overall yield of your autoflower plant can be increased by using LST, more light will get to the foliage, thus producing more food and resulting in denser buds.

More Dense Buds

Normally LST is needed to make buds on the lower branches denser, if no LST is performed you would need another light source. This is one of two ways of maximizing the overall yield when harvesting and also saving a couple of bucks.

Get Light to Lower Branches

Getting light to lower branches is another way to maximize yield and is especially good to perform with autoflowers because they tend to be smaller and bushier so this would result in not only more bud but also a better-looking plant overall.

Low stress training techique helps to increase the yield of your cannabis plants.
 

Decrease Space Needed

Normally growers have a limited space to grow their autoflowers, this method is used to control the space your plant takes, especially if you have multiple plants in a small space. The best way to control space is by using the SCROG method and Tie down method will be explained in detail in the next topics.

Control Stretching

Sometimes when autoflowers don’t get enough light they tend to stretch and can get very bad, resulting in aery buds and can end up taking too much space.

Have in mind that you can also perform LST outdoors but usually is not needed because your plants aren't limited by space.

4. Additional Recommendations and LST Techniques

have in mind that there isn't such thing as the most effective LST for cannabis plants, there are several methods used when low-stress training such as SCROG, and the Tie-down method, and they should be used according to how your plants grow.

Both of them will have similar results and can be used for achieving what we covered earlier.

The Tie Down Method

The Tie-down method consists of making holes on the edge of your pot and use any kind of string (must be flexible) to bend and hold down your plant, usually starting with the main branch, your goal is to level all branches to the main cola.

For this plant training method we highly recommend trying out our Lemon Pie Auto, this high yielder can produce up to 550gr/m2 and develops a great structure with great internodal spacing that allows you to comfortably tie down the branches, increasing the yields.

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
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €
 

By properly bending down the branches and shaping your cannabis plant, you will reach a structure similar to what you would get with a SCRoG net.

She is so heavy had to lay the plant on its side to cut and remove trellis so her branches and even main stem did not split. Sticky as she can be, had to clean hands and trimmers (eyes once lol) many times for just a light trim. Easy trim Excellent plant Fast Buds... - HisHope

The tie-down method doesn’t necessarily need to be used to even out your canopy, you can shape your plants either way you want, even just for controlling their height if you have a limited growing space.

Doing it properly will allow your plant to develop multiple bud sites that get equal amounts of light and result in better quality and bigger yields.

Pros

  • Easy and cheap.
  • No planning necessary.
  • No problem when moving your plants around.

Cons

  • You will have to tie each branch individually throughout your plant’s vegetative stage, which can be time-consuming.

The Screen of Green (SCROG) Method

The Screen of Green consists of using a net or type of screen, similar to a volleyball net, used to maintain branches to the same height by bending and holding the branches down.

 

When low stress training, use SCROG technique to achieve better results.
 

This is a great method to spread out the canopy and take full advantage of your growing space, by spreading out the canopy your plant will develop bud sites that will get just the right amount of light to fatten up nicely.

One important element when talking about SCROG is genetics, depending on the plant structure you can have different results because some strains work better in this type of setup.

When Scrogging, it’s better to use one strain at a time and preferably a strain that grows shorter and with a lot of flowering sites.

Vertical SCRoG

A vertical SCROG is the best way to maximize your growing space, this method works by having a SCRoG net vertically that extends on to the sides of your growing tent.

By doing it this way you allow your plants to grow more bud sites and absorb all the light emitted by your light fixture, reducing light waste and enhancing your yields even more.

I have also used some more paper clips (XL sized ones) to pull side branches to the main stem, it works pretty darn well in keeping the plant upright because these buds are getting extremely heavy - some of the branches could not hold them up anymore. This also sort evened the canopy out a little, which is great of course... I think this will be a good harvest! - FrankieBones

Orange Sherbert Auto performs extremely well with LST techniques thanks to her Sativa heritage, perfect for vertical Scrogging. This lady is one of our tallest hybrids reaching up to 150cm (around 60in) and yielding up to 600 gr/m2 (1.3lb) therefore low-stress training is not only advised but recommended.

Orange Sherbet Auto
Orange Sherbet Auto
Genes
Mostly Sativa
Genetics
Orange Sherbet Auto
Flowering
9-10 weeks
Harvest
500-650gr/m2
Height
110-150cm
THC
up to 24%
CBD
Very low
Autoflowering
Yes
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €
 

This will help to control stretching (especially for indoor growers), open her canopy, and increase yields even more. This autoflower has no problem growing tall and quickly develops extremely resinous large-sized buds.

Pros

  • Doesn’t need much work other than putting the tops under the net.
  • SCRoG also supports branches when flowering.

Cons

  • You won’t be able to move the plant around because the net is fixated to your growing tent.
  • Requires planning ahead because you need to place the net at the correct time.

Sea of Green (SoG)
Sea of Green (aka SoG) works similar to the SCRoG method but instead of growing fewer plants with multiple sites, you want to grow more plants with fewer bud sites.

Have in mind that when doing a Sea of Green you will have to grow the same strain or strains with similar statures so they don’t overshadow the plants around and all develop at the same rate, so we highly recommend our OG Kush Auto for this kind of growing.

OG Kush Auto
OG Kush Auto
Genes
Mostly Indica
Genetics
Og Kush Autoflowering
Flowering
9 weeks
Harvest
450-550gr/m2
Height
70-110 cm
THC
Up to 23%
CBD
Very Low
Autoflowering
Yes
1 fem
9,00 €
2 fem
16,00 €
3 fem
24,00 €
5 fem
40,00 €
10 fem
70,00 €
25 fem
150,00 €
50 fem
250,00 €
100 fem
420,00 €
500 fem
1 450,00 €
1000 fem
2 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
24,00 €
 

This strain grows very homogeneously and with a compact structure while yielding up to 550gr/m2, making it easy to fit as many plants as you can, perfect for this type of growing.

The right structure will make it easy to fill your whole growing space with as many plants as you can and using smaller pots, usually resulting in harvesting earlier and without much trouble, due to the shorter stature your plants will have.

Pros

  • Faster harvest than with other training methods.
  • The best method for limited growing spaces.

Cons

  • Relatively easier to get mold or bugs due to the high number of plants.
  • Having a lot of plants can be dangerous where cannabis is illegal.

5. LST over HST

Your plant will end up with a similar aspect either with LST or HST, as you may know, there are several ways of training your cannabis plants, and all work just great but with autoflowers it’s recommended you only use low-stress training techniques.

 

 

In this video you can see how training your autoflowering plant will affect its growth, when done properly you can shape your plant to the desired height and structure, but be cautious because cannabis plants can easily get stressed, especially autoflowers.

This happens because autoflowering plants have a limited amount of time before starting to flower, when plants are stressed they can need up to 7 days to fully recover and continue growing normally so performing high-stress techniques on autoflowers can ultimately result in lower yields.

Now, you can perform HST such as topping or fimming on autos but it’s not recommended for beginners and even more experienced growers should be careful.

6. In Conclusion

Low stress training is not hard but like in everything, you have to get the hang of it. Try both techniques mentioned before and adjust your LST style. We recommend trying LST with a number of different strains you can find at Fast Buds, preferably strains that take a bit more to grow so you have time to train it properly.

 

This post was most recently updated on September 14, 2020.

Top 10 Strains For LST

Amnesia Haze Auto
Amnesia Haze Auto
The world’s favorite Haze…
Buy seeds from 9,00 €
1 fem
9,00 €
2 fem
16,00 €
3 fem
24,00 €
5 fem
40,00 €
10 fem
70,00 €
25 fem
150,00 €
50 fem
250,00 €
100 fem
420,00 €
500 fem
1 450,00 €
1000 fem
2 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
24,00 €
Blue Dream Auto
Blue Dream Auto
What Cannabis Dreams are made of.
Buy seeds from 11,00 €
1 fem
11,00 €
2 fem
20,00 €
3 fem
30,00 €
5 fem
45,00 €
10 fem
80,00 €
25 fem
175,00 €
50 fem
300,00 €
100 fem
490,00 €
500 fem
1 650,00 €
1000 fem
2 800,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
30,00 €
Gorilla Cookies Auto
Gorilla Cookies Auto
The Stickiest Cookies in the Game
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
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Gorilla Glue Auto Glue Auto
Gorilla Glue Auto (Glue Auto)
A platinum strain, with more than a million sold all over the world!
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €
Lemon Pie Auto
Lemon Pie Auto
Lip-Smackin’ Lemon Lush.
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €
Orange Sherbet Auto
Orange Sherbet Auto
Super Sour, Orange Flavored Terp Monster
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €
Six Shooter Auto
Six Shooter Auto
The highest calibre of craft cannabis in the game.
Buy seeds from 11,00 €
1 fem
11,00 €
2 fem
20,00 €
3 fem
30,00 €
5 fem
45,00 €
10 fem
80,00 €
25 fem
175,00 €
50 fem
300,00 €
100 fem
490,00 €
500 fem
1 650,00 €
1000 fem
2 800,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
30,00 €
Stardawg Auto
Stardawg Auto
The cream of Chem crops.
Buy seeds from 11,00 €
1 fem
11,00 €
2 fem
20,00 €
3 fem
30,00 €
5 fem
45,00 €
10 fem
80,00 €
25 fem
175,00 €
50 fem
300,00 €
100 fem
490,00 €
500 fem
1 650,00 €
1000 fem
2 800,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
30,00 €
Strawberry Pie Auto
Strawberry Pie Auto
The Frostiest Buds We’ve Ever Created
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €
Zkittlez Auto
Zkittlez Auto
The new standard for autoflower genetics
Buy seeds from 13,00 €
1 fem
13,00 €
2 fem
24,00 €
3 fem
36,00 €
5 fem
55,00 €
10 fem
99,00 €
25 fem
215,00 €
50 fem
365,00 €
100 fem
590,00 €
500 fem
1 950,00 €
1000 fem
3 400,00 €
Pack
3 fem
Add to Cart
36,00 €
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