Fast Forward: How to Make Weed Plants Grow Faster?

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How to make weed plants grow faster
Author avatar By Derek LaRose
November 29, 2021
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‘How to make my weed plants grow faster,’ asks your impatient mind. Of course, you know that each growth stage has its purpose. The time you have to spend waiting is simply an effect of nature. 

Still, you might’ve noticed the weather acting up, have to repurpose your grow room, or have the very human desire to get curing as quickly as possible. Whatever the case may be, we have you covered

Today, we’re discussing why and how to grow weed fast. We’re focusing on ways that minimize damage to your cannabis plant and harvest potential damage. Let’s jump into it.

Cannabis flowers
Cannabis flowers

Why grow weed faster?

As we discussed in our ‘how long does it take to grow weed’ report, your little cannabis seed needs anywhere from three to eight months to develop into a mature, harvest-ready plant. 

That’s a long time to spend dreaming of delicious homegrown buds. Growing weed faster sure sounds tempting, doesn’t it? 

Let’s get one fact out of the way first to ensure you’re making fully informed decisions.

You can’t expect the same output without giving your marijuana crops ample time to grow strong, produce bud sites, and coat the colas in cannabinoids and terpenes. If that were possible, nobody would wait for a full weed growth cycle before collecting their buds!

This compromise is worth considering in some circumstances. Here are several legitimate reasons to grow weed fast:

  • Life gets in the way. Sometimes, you can no longer maintain your indoor setup, or there’s heavy rainfall expected throughout August. These situations are unfortunate, but it’s better to take what you can get than see months of hard work and dedication ruined.
  • Fresh buds become a necessity. Whether you’re smoking medicinally or recreationally, everybody overestimates their stash from time to time. Then suddenly, whoops. You’re out, and you need to get more.
  • Your impatience is growing. Maybe this is your first-ever marijuana plant or an exciting new strain. You can’t wait to get your hands on those sweet-smelling flowers. Growing cannabis is fun, and it’s okay to get eager about it.

In essence, provided that you know what bargain you’re making, any reason to grow weed faster is 100% legitimate. It’s your garden, your effort, and your pot.

Now, let’s discuss how to make marijuana grow faster.

What is the fastest way to grow weed?

Growing weed fast is easiest on a solid foundation. When you know you want your harvest ready ASAP, you can start making the right decisions from the moment you pick your weed seeds.

In that case, it’s much simpler to speed up the seed to harvest period without making too many compromises. Good practices in this context include:

  • Picking indica over sativa. Sativa cannabis originates from tropical regions with long, warm summers. It’s genetically predisposed to spend more time blossoming than its indica counterpart.
  • Choosing faster cultivars. Even among indica cannabis, some varieties take their time when compared to others. Look into the flowering times of different strains to find the fastest option (check our articles about fast growing autoflowers and fast flowering plants to get to know some).
  • Growing in hydro. Hydroponic growing and other soilless methods speed up the vegetative stage when compared to soil. Set yourself up for accelerated success with the right method. Check our report on the hydroponic grow schedule to learn more.

The seed type makes a world of difference when it comes to the fastest way to grow weed, too. 

If you’re striving for as much quality flower as early as possible, choose auto.

The autoflowering variant of your favorite strain finishes its entire growth cycle in the amount of time it takes its photoperiod equivalent to go through flowering alone. The yields are a bit lower, and the buds a bit less potent, though.

If you much prefer photoperiod cannabis, fast version seeds are another option worth your time and attention

These weed seeds have some ruderalis in their gene pool. These genes reduce flowering by around two weeks but maintain the same vegging length.

How to make a weed plant grow faster when you pick the best genetics? Practice cultivation techniques that help you reach the harvest window earlier. Let’s discuss the options for both indoor and outdoor setups.

Cannabis flower
Cannabis bud

How to make weed plants grow faster?

The ‘how to grow weed plants fast’ challenge varies with the setup. You’re the master of every environmental condition indoors. You need to get a bit more creative to make your marijuana crops finish their cycle earlier in the great outdoors. 

Either way, it’s not impossible. Here are some actionable tips for either option.

Note: Whatever you do to speed up the growing process, be sure to provide the optimal environment for your cannabis. That’s the best way to get an abundant, healthy harvest, and it’s essential for growing weed fast or slow. 

How to grow weed indoors fast

How to grow weed indoors fast? You can’t change the nature of this plant, but you can tweak the conditions so that it flowers sooner without too much of a compromise. 

Speed up vegging

Plants remain in the vegetative stage for as long as they’re under a light source for at least 14 hours a day. During that time, they dedicate their energy to growth and leaf development.

Are you wondering how to make marijuana grow fast? Start with vegging. Everything above 14 hours gives the plants more time to focus on stretching and thickening their foliage each day.

Most weed farmers use an 18/6 light schedule for vegging—18 hours of light and 6 hours of darkness. That’s ideal for most, but taking things one step further works for acceleration purposes.

Marijuana develops even more swiftly under zero dark hours. Keep your herbs under continuous light, and they’ll extend to your desired size more quickly, letting you cut the vegging period.

Tip: If you notice your plant getting sick or stressed with constant daytime conditions, cut back to 18/6 until it recovers. 

Flip the lights sooner

Learning how to make a marijuana plant bud is on everybody’s indoor cultivation checklist. 

The flowering stage happens when your cannabis stops dedicating its energy to structural growth, focusing instead on flower production. In a grow room, you trigger this stage by flipping the lights.

‘Light flipping’ means that the number of light hours a day gets reduced to under 14. The plant perceives this as the shortening of days, and it flowers as a response. 

Tip: Resist the temptation to switch to flowering too early. The plant needs enough branches and potential bud spots for a worthwhile yield. 

Each week not spent in vegging is a week less in the seed-to-harvest period. Don’t let eagerness get the better of you, though. Make sure that your crops are large enough first, and shorter vegging is no longer that much of a yield diminisher

Reduce light hours in flowering

The fastest way to grow marijuana in flowering is to trick your plant into believing that winter is coming. As the cold months draw near, flora seeks to end its yield before the harmful frost. For you, it’s as simple as reducing the hours of light during flowering. 

Decrease gradually to avoid shocking the plants. You can go as low as 10 hours of light a day. 

These bits of advice counter the ones you’ll find in our ‘how to make buds bigger during flowering’ guide, but that’s the price you have to pay. The colas won’t fatten as much, but the harvest will arrive sooner.

Note: These how to make weed grow faster indoors tips string onto one another. Try only one or mix and match techniques. It all depends on how much of a hurry you’re in to harvest your bud.

Cannabis flower under grow lights
Cannabis flower under grow lights

How to grow outdoor weed fast

The question of how to grow outdoor weed fast is more challenging to answer. It’s a bit trickier to manipulate your crops and the outside environment, but it’s not impossible.

Note: Some of these suggestions are more general than the ones for indoor cultivation. In reality, there isn’t as much as you can do outdoors, but the tips below help nonetheless.

Trim regularly

How to make a weed plant grow fast? Help it focus its energy on the most important parts.

Topping, trimming, and pruning are essential for marijuana cultivation, no matter the setup. These practices double in importance outdoors, and especially with those bushy indica herbs.

Pruning encourages the crop to send nourishment to bud spots. Apart from chopping the excess foliage, extra stems that don’t seem particularly productive should go.

Provide the right nutes

Nutrients are essential to optimal growth and your answer to the ‘how to make marijuana plants grow faster’ discussion. If you’re using decent soil, you won’t need to supplement, but you still could. Extras (in moderation) are conducive to quicker development.

  • Choose an NPK solution with more nitrogen in vegging to encourage leaf and stem growth.
  • Up the phosphorus and potassium in flowering while diminishing nitrogen to boost bud development. 

Force flowering

You can’t change the sunlight hours with the flip of a switch, but you can still force flowering.

Clever feats of DIY are the name of the game with growing weed faster outdoors. You could place a frame around your plants and drape them with opaque fabric. Alternatively, cover them with a large bucket and check for light leaks.

When you start doing this, you’ll have to stay mindful of the schedule. Flowering crops might revert to vegging if days get longer all of a sudden.

If you’re greenhouse cultivating, you’ll have an even easier time with this approach. Get shaded panels and cut down on daylight hours by hand, with punctuality as your top priority. 

HMG organic nutrients
HMG organic nutrients

Bonus tips for the sake of necessity

The final two tips are more extreme, demanding, and risky for harvest quality. If fast flowering is a necessity, they can help.

You could move your potted plants indoors manually after a specific number of daylight hours. This approach is time-consuming, but it can trigger and speed up the flowering stage

How to make buds grow faster? Reduce light in flowering, as you would indoors. Do it with several containers for a smaller, quicker yield, followed by a larger one on natural timing (if the outdoor conditions allow it).

Yet another tricky method for growing weed fast is pollination. Once the flowers receive pollen, the pistils start drying and curling inward. You have several days before there are seeds in your bud. 

Handful bud
Handful bud

Final points about growing weed fast

Congratulations! You now know how to make weed plants grow faster, and you’re aware of the trade-off this process brings. 

In the end, it’s on you as the grower to decide whether a few weeks matter more than a few ounces of weed. You’re the one in control of your garden. If you decide to get your hands on those buds ASAP, these tips are your best bet for making it happen. 

Once you collect your buds, use your last ounce of patience on the curing process. Nothing ruins a fresh batch of flowers like botched drying.

Stay tuned to our blog for more handy guides such as this ‘fastest way to grow weed’ 101. Our educational resources are there to guide you through all things cannabis.


About the author: Derek LaRose

Also known as Kronic from The Cannabis Kronicles, Derek LaRose is a young ambitious cultivator and a staple educator for indoor cultivation.

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