With more people growing their cannabis stash at home, they’re using cultivation techniques to boost yields. If you raise weed crops indoors, you’ll know how important maximizing your space is. Enter ScrOG, aka Screen of Green.
In contrast to the popular SOG (Sea of Green) method, this technique makes the most of a small setup by utilizing every inch of the area available. If you’re debating over SOG vs. ScrOG and can’t make up your mind, read on to find out all you need to know about scrogging.
In this ultimate guide, you’ll discover what the term means, why it’s worth the effort, when to ScrOG, and a whole lot more.
What is the ScrOG method?
Scrogging cannabis is a yield-boosting method many growers implement to train their plants. The technique requires setting up a lightweight mesh or screen, like a trellis, to encourage your plants to develop horizontally.
Cultivators weave branches through the gaps, taking great care not to damage leaves and nodes. When plants make their way through the holes, growers pull them back down and under the mesh again. They repeat the process many times to get the desired effect.
When the crops get used to developing horizontally, the upper canopy becomes thick and blocks almost all light from the lower levels. This environment allows for more airflow among the stems, and all the plant’s energy focuses on the bud-laden canopy.
If you get scrogging marijuana right, your crops will produce high yields. The idea is to reap a harvest as big as one from multiple plants, but instead, you got it from just the one. When growing indoors, you can potentially get three times more weed without jeopardizing the quality with ScrOG.
Why ScrOG marijuana plants?
You know what scrogging is, but is it worth the extra effort? Definitely. The ScrOG method has many benefits, including:
- Excellent airflow through stems and branches. This factor helps to reduce the risk of mold and pests damaging your crops.
- Structural support for the heavy buds. Without the trellis, bigger nugs can weigh branches down and cause them to snap.
- More light exposure for more branches. The horizontal ScrOG setup means all your buds will have more exposure to light, boosting their size and juiciness.
- Easy to maintain. Checking on your plant is simple with this technique as the branches spread out, and you can attend to them all easily.
- Improved yields—up to three times as much bud! Your plants will grow sideways and produce more nugs.
Who should ScrOG?
Still not sure whether to use this technique or something else? Let us help. ScrOG growing is ideal for those who:
- Only want to grow a few crops. Some US states only allow you to grow five plants or less at a time. Despite having only two or three crops, you could yield the same amount as nine.
- Want to maximize yields. With scrogging, you get the most bang for your buck. With just one plant, you can enjoy huge yields.
- Are growing indoors. Trying to squeeze a load of plants in your grow room isn’t going to work. Use the ScrOG method to make the most of the space you have.
When to ScrOG your cannabis plants
Knowing when to ScrOG will help you get the most from this method. When you set up your mesh or trellis, position it around 8 inches (20 cm) from the base of your crops. The rate your plants grow will determine when you begin to ScrOG cannabis.
Once the crop’s apex starts to move through the screen, you need to start “tucking” it back through. Wait until it’s a couple of inches above the mesh. As you pull each shoot through, you need to direct it toward the next square or hole. Ensure you guide each branch in the direction you want it to go.
You need to stay on top of this tucking and weaving process throughout the vegging stage. The idea is to fill the Screen of Green before your weed reaches the flowering stage and growth slows down.
When not to ScrOG
Some growers are eager to start ScrOG training, but you’ll only be giving yourself more work. If they enter the mesh before they’re ready, like in the early vegetative stage, you run the risk of your herb growing far beyond the screen. You might even run out of room altogether.
How to ScrOG and increase yields?
Humongous yields are every cannabis gardener’s dream. If you know how to ScrOG right, you’ll get just that. Luckily, setting up your mesh is pretty easy, as long as you have everything prepared beforehand. Gather the following for your DIY ScrOG kit:
- Mesh or screen with holes about 4–5 inches in diameter. Cotton works best for this.
- Plant ties or string to hold your crops in place.
- Young weed plants that don’t need more transplanting.
- Your grow space.
Once you’re ready to put it all together, use our step-by-step ScrOG tutorial for the best results.
- Position your mesh about 8 inches above your young plants and secure it in place. Ensure it’s close to the light source but that there’s also enough room for the nugs later on.
- Aim to leave room for 12 square inches per crop.
- When your herb starts to grow and break through the mesh, carefully tuck them back through.
- You can use string or plant ties to hold the branches in place if necessary.
- Continue with the ScrOG technique and training until it covers most of the screen. If you’re growing a sativa strain, aim for 60% coverage. With indicas, your goal is 80%.
- Once you’ve reached the desired amount of coverage, you have to switch the light cycle to trigger flowering.
- Your plant will grow slower now but continue to fill the remaining spaces.
- Stay on top of maintenance and prune the lower levels often. This way, all your crop’s energy will focus on producing fat, juicy buds.
ScrOG maintenance tips
Your cannabis ScrOG setup doesn’t end when you tuck the branches under and through the mesh. Maintaining the grow area and plants is essential to get the best yields possible. Stay on top of the methods below to keep your crops happy.
When you ScrOG marijuana, pruning techniques are vital. Once your plants reach 12 inches tall, you need to start topping. Snip off the top of the main stem to encourage your plant to develop two colas instead of one.
This method helps your crop become bushy and stops it from getting too tall—ideal for scrogging. Just make sure you let your herb grow for a week between topping, or you risk it getting stressed.
Scrogging cannabis is all about getting the most weed for your small setup. Growers use this method to increase the number of delicious buds. When you prune the nodes, you encourage the crop to focus all its energy on forming fat nugs instead of lots of little popcorn ones.
For any indoor setup, humidity and air circulation play an important role. When you ScrOG, you create a tightly packed bunch of plants with thick bushes. Mold and mildew are far more likely to attack in this environment.
To prevent issues, install a dehumidifier and keep your grow room as well ventilated as possible. Implement air conditioning and fans to maintain a light breeze circulating the green canopy.
Overwatering can also invite mold and pests to your ScrOG setup. However, underwatering can also lead to problems, like wilting plants and poor overall health. Only water your crops when the soil is almost dry—not completely.
You can tell it’s time to add more moisture by popping your finger a couple of inches into the soil. If it’s still wet that far down, don’t water. Try again after 24 hours. Keep the pH in your soil around 6.3.
How much does the Screen of Green yield per plant?
There’s no one size fits all answer regarding the Screen of Green yield per plant. Each strain grows differently—some produce huge harvests and others not so much. What we do know is that you can expect anything from a 20% increase in yields and up to three times as much bud.
Screen of Green vs. Sea of Green method
When comparing Screen of Green vs. Sea of Green, you need to look at your growing goals. Neither is particularly better than the other—it all depends on your space, the amount of weed you want to grow, how much time you have, and other factors.
Take a look at this table to see how they differ:
|Great for growing just a few plants at a time.||Best for a large number of crops.|
|Makes use of your space for larger harvests.||A quick and efficient way to boost yields.|
|Works well for beginners.||Best for advanced growers who can deal with issues that might arise.|
6 best strains for ScrOG
If you’ve read up to here and are sure you want to ScrOG weed yourself, we bet you want to know the best strains for this setup. Don’t worry; at Homegrown, we’ve got a huge range of top-quality cannabis seeds and have some excellent recommendations for you.
All the following delicious cultivars thrive when using this technique. We present our top six best strains for ScrOG.
1. Amnesia feminized
This sativa-dominant cultivar revels in a ScrOG setup. Amnesia feminized is aptly named—it’s potent and may just cause some short-term memory loss. The psychedelic high isn’t for the faint of heart.
When you implement the ScrOG technique with this powerhouse, you can expect to reap up to 24 oz. per m2 after nine weeks of flowering. That’s pretty impressive for an indoor setup!
|CBD||Less than 2%|
|Effects||Psychedelic, mental, high intensity|
|Flavors & Fragrance||Fruity, wood, haze|
|Genetics||Haze x Afghan|
2. AK47 feminized
AK47 feminized is an excellent choice for your ScrOG weed setup. Ithas the potential to stretch up to a whopping 200%. You can expect your buds to flower within 8–10 weeks, by which time your crop will emit a super Skunky scent.
When you consume this military-named strain, make sure your couch is close by. Be warned, new users—the euphoric rush is intense. With just a puff or two, your creative doors open, and you become much more talkative.
|Effects||Creative, euphoric, relaxed|
|Flavors & Fragrance||Earthy, woody, Skunk|
|Genetics||Columbian, Afghani, Thai, and Mexican|
3. OG Kush feminized
If you’re looking for a medical marijuana strain, OG Kush feminized is a top contender. Users report help with chronic pain, stress reduction, and many other ailments. It’s pretty potent and a fan favorite in the 420 community.
The cultivar develops a decent space between nodes, making it perfect for scrogging. After 8–10 weeks in the flowering stage, you’ll harvest fat neon green nugs covered in trichomes. Once you light up, you’ll glide into a pure state of bliss.
|CBD||Less than 2%|
|Effects||Stress reliever, euphoric, relaxed|
|Flavors & Fragrance||Earth, pine, citrus|
|Genetics||Fire OG x The White|
4. Heavy Mist feminized
Heavy Mist feminized got its weighty name for a good reason: if you treat it well in a ScrOG setup, you get rewarded with enormous yields. This hybrid is the ultimate energizing strain, thanks to its parents’ buzzing traits. Expect your mind and body to ignite with motivation.
It’s a popular cultivar with both beginner and novice growers. Heavy Mist is a sturdy plant, and almost anyone can harvest a lot of fat buds after 8–10 weeks of flowering. Then it’s time to enjoy the smell of freshly squeezed lemons as you tear the nugs apart.
|Effects||Happy, relaxed, talkative|
|Flavors & Fragrance||Citrus, diesel, wood|
|Genetics||Bruce Banner x Kali Mist|
5. Pineapple Haze feminized
If you love everything fruity, pick Pineapple Haze feminized for your Screen of Green. It’ll cover your mesh and fill the air with tropical aromas that leave your mouth watering in anticipation of harvest.
You need to be patient with this one, though, as flowering can take 10–12 weeks. It’s worth the wait—expect to be soaring in the sky after a blunt of this sweet strain. Your creative juices begin to flow, and your artistic impulses take over.
|CBD||Less than 2%|
|Effects||Happiness, relaxed, pain reliever|
|Flavors & Fragrance||Pineapple, floral, earthy|
|Genetics||Pineapple x Haze|
6. Jack Herer feminized
Last but not least is this stretchy sativa that’s a real breeze to cultivate when scrogging. Recreational and medical users love Jack Herer feminized for the pick-me-up effect it provides to get you through your day.
Once the 8–10 week flowering period is up, expect heavy yields. Take your buds to a party, and everyone will be chatty in no time. This one can easily replace your morning cup of joe for the ultimate wake-and-bake cultivar.
|CBD||Less than 2%|
|Effects||Stimulating, mental, focused|
|Flavors & Fragrance||Incense, haze, citrus|
|Genetics||Jack Herer x Secret Hybrid|
FAQs: The Screen of Green method (ScrOG)
What size container should be used when using SCROG method?
This depends on the size of your grow area. You want no more than one plant for every 12 square inches of screen but you want a big root system. You should be fine with 5 or 7 gallon pots.
Will scrogging guarantee heavier yields?
When executed correctly, yes. But don’t compromise on environmental conditions. You need to get as much right as possible no matter what growing method you choose.
How close can I keep the lights?
As close as is safe! Light burn can be very damaging so keeping your lights close needs constant monitoring.
How high does the screen need to be?
One to two foot is standard for SCROG height, but this is down to you – your preferences, your needs. Just remember, the higher the screen, the more pruning you’ll need to do below.
Can you make your own screen?
Making your own SCROG netting is pretty simple – check out our video below!
Can you set up an outdoor SCROG?
Yes, simply follow the same principles as an indoor SCROG.
Can you ScrOG autoflowers?
Yes! Check our article about autoflower ScrOG for more details.
Get scrogging your weed
If you’re cultivating indoors in a tight space but want to get the most from your herb (up to 300%), it’s time to consider ScrOG growing. This easy technique is fast to set up and is suitable for any level of cannabis gardener.
Now you’re armed with tricks to ScrOG right, knowledge of when to implement it, and the six best ScrOG strains, it’s time to try it for yourself.
Do you want to try other growing tips and tricks to boost yields and get the most delicious buds in town? Check out our cultivation techniques page for other informative articles to get you on the right track.
About the author: Parker Curtis
Parker Curtis has around a decade of cannabis-growing experience, specialising in soil-less and hydro grows. He’s mastering outdoor, greenhouse, and indoor grows.