Due to the legalization of Marijuana across many states in the USA and Canada, the cannabis industry is progressing at a massive rate and is heading towards becoming one of the fastest-growing business sectors in North America. At present, people have also started to take a swing at growing cannabis through the process of hydroponics because of its benefits, both medicinal and economic.
What is hydroponics growing?
Thanks to the internet and its reach, you can buy different variants of weed such as edibles, concentrates, flowers, CBD oil, and budget buds online. Or, you can grow your weed hydroponically at home.
Growing cannabis hydroponically refers to the process of cultivating and harvesting it in a water-based, nutrient-rich solution, avoiding the traditional means of using soil. This way, the plant roots have direct contact with the nutrient-rich solution, ensuring their proper growth.
Hydroponic weed growing: Advantages
You get a better quality of marijuana.
You can cultivate the strain of your choice.
Weed plants grow faster in the hydroponics medium.
There is no overgrowth of weed plants and hence, a lesser mess.
Your weed plants do not contract any soil-borne diseases.
This method allows you to harvest more copious amounts of weed.
Now that we know about what hydroponics cannabis growing is and its benefits, let’s start with the process.
Guide to growing cannabis hydroponically
There are different hydroponic systems that you can try to grow cannabis. Here are the most popular ones —
EBB AND FLOW SYSTEM – The simplicity and ease of use make Ebb and Flow system one of the most popular methods of hydroponic cultivation. In this system, you need to place the plants on a tray with a porous growing medium such as Rockwool or lava rocks to retain air and water. Followingly, place the tray on top of a reservoir and fill the latter with nutrient solution. An attached pump fills the growing tray with the solution from the repository. The fill tube drains out any excess from the growing tray.
AEROPONICS – Growing mediums aren’t required in this type of hydroponic system. Hang the roots of the weed plant mid-air within the aeroponics chamber at a humidity level of 100%. The highly oxygenated roots then absorb nutrients from the solution sprayed by sprinklers. This method allows weed plants to grow almost ten times faster than traditional soil cultivation methods as there is no loss of water through evaporation.
DRIP IRRIGATION – In this system, you must place the weed seedlings on a growing medium. Followingly, apply the nutrient solution to the root or stem of the plants drop-by-drop through droppers from above. This system is extremely efficient in saving water and nutrients. Again, the rate of evaporation is minimal.
DEEP WATER CULTURE – The DWC method of cannabis hydroponic cultivation is an ideal way for beginners to start. It is also one of the fastest and cheapest means of cannabis growing. You can practically build this system with simple items available at your home. Here’s how you can build your DWC system to grow cannabis hydroponically.
Procedure to build your own Deep Water Culture
The very first step is to gather your essentials, namely a grow tent, grow light, DWC tank, nutrients, and seeds.
Once you have your essentials in place, fill up your DWC tank with a nutrient solution. Followingly, suspend your weed plants so that their roots are in direct contact with the solution.
Add continuous oxygen supply to the water. This can be quickly done with the help of an air pump and some airstones to pump bubbles in the solution.
Light is essential for plants to grow and blossom. Make sure you place your hydroponic system where your weed can receive a minimum of 6 hours of sunlight every day.
If you are new to cultivating cannabis and want to buy weed online, there are a plethora of websites that you can choose from. If it is your first time at growing cannabis hydroponically, it is advisable to use live plants rather than seeds, also known as cloning. You can and remove the seedlings from the soil and container that it came in. Wash off any dirt to ensure that there is no contamination in your nutrient solution.
Use RO or Reverse Osmosis water for your nutrient solution and keep the pH levels in check. Make sure the pH level of the solution is within the range of 5.5 to 6.3, or else it could cause some severe damage to your plants.
Lastly, get the best nutrients for your solution so that your weed plants can have faster and healthier growth.
As a beginner, you may find it difficult to grow cannabis hydroponically. Start with a simple setup and then move on with the more complex ones. The results of hydroponic growing are very effective. Its users will feel no difference in the commercially available and the hydroponically grown Cannabis at home whether they use it in a glass percolator bong or make an edible out of it.
This article is an attempt to simplify the process so that you can yield the best quality weed at home. After all, smoking self-grown weed is one of the most satisfying experiences for a stoner!
Decarboxylate weed is the crucial step, especially if you are about to cook your buds (or shake – stems and leaves) to make weed edibles, which are a lot of varieties: CBD or THC tinctures, or THC infused candies, brownies, cheesecakes or whatever else eatable: find weed recipes in our cookbook app – anyway they all require the weed, the buds or shake – stems and leaves and they work good too, to be decarboxylated in advance, and packed into a butter or oil for storage and for further use in weed edible recipes.
Decarboxylation (as it follows from the name) is a chemical process that removes a carboxyl compounds and mainly releases from the cannabis plant carbon dioxide which is CO2. The reverse reaction is called carboxylation and is basically a part of photosynthesis, which is the addition of CO2 to a compound.
When you cure cannabis it is decarboxylation that happens, when the THCA acid (where “A” stands for “acid” and it is not yet a THC) which dominates in trichomes in a raw plant, slowly turns to be a THC. You smoke – this is the same chemical process, but we need now to make the half-way, to generate THC, and keep it, but not to burn or otherwise destroy it. This is a simple yet comprehensive guide on how to activate THC in your stuff for cooking the best cannabis edibles from it.
Why do I need to Decarboxylate weed?
Sometimes referred as “to decarb” – sort of a fancy word:
— Hey dude! for how long d’you decarb in the oven, man?
It is already a very well known information that it’s heat you need to activate THCA in cannabis, by burning it down you convert THCA into THC, consequently the latter one is affecting the consumer’s brain in the desirable way but not THCA itself. Technically speaking there are two processes running when you bake it, firstly the THCA-molecules turn to be a THC (decarboxylation) and then secondly under more heat THC changes from solid state into gas (vaporization) and you puff it and it absorbs into body and then blood delivers it into brain and finally it hits into your mind! Bham! The same release of water and carbon dioxide naturally occurs during the drying process (curing) and the same runs but instantly when you burn one down.
It’s alright when puffing, yet it’s still recommended to decarboxylate weed for smoking too, and this is called to cure. Why so? Because it’s a waste of material: burning in flame in a blunt is too fast and too hot, a whole lot of your THCA does not react. When you cure before smoking you get more of THC in the same blunt, which evaporates completely kind-of skipping Phase-I. It’s also important to worry about trichomes’ colour when you grow as it is milky or amber by the reason.
For the edibles decarboxylation is even more critical, and without it it’ll be waste of time and material. Unless you want just a yummi, but obviously you’re not for that reason here. Long story short, the Decarboxylation will allow your edibles and tinctures to be potent.
How to Decarboxylate weed?
Basically it’s heat that your need. Not too hot to prevent THC from being destroyed and this temperature limit is 350℉ (176℃), neither too cold in order to ignite the THCA conversion into THC compound. And you wish to hold it around 220-235℉ (105-112℃) during the entire process. Because the heat regime is sooo critical, I’d recommend using your own calibrated cooking thermometer (the one used for candy-making or steaks) and be in charge when doing, consider rolling in advance before you start, hahahaha ))
The note is that the main factor is temperature. Prepare everything ready in advance, grind buds gently, do everything with care – and keep an eye on temperature. Since its value lies between 220-235 Fahrenheit (104-112 Celsius) and all will be fine. Do not hesitate to use a cooking thermometer, maybe the most useful gear for cannabis edibles. And a quick stir every 10-15 minutes may be helpful for the best decarboxylation too.
Step 1. To start it – Grind your stuff. Unless this is a trim or shake by itself already, which btw can fit to all your CBD/THC edibles very nicely (and recommended at times!) with the pretty same effect but just a bit more of stuff you need to get the same high amount of THC or CBD whatever of these two you’re chasing, or both XD
Step 2. Preheat the oven to 220 Fahrenheit which is about 105 Celsius. It is always preheated for marijuana edibles. For regular edibles it is very often too (as soon as you start being a gourmet, and you are! because you read this page). Some sources state 240℉ as the main temp, anyway it is lower than a cannabis vaporization point. Keep it below 240℉, and starting from 220℉ is just safer.
Cooking slowly is always the proper approach for the cannabis edibles as soon as they are sooo critical to heat you’d better still do experiments bravely but applying some caution. Keeping notes is another perfect idea to master your skills.
Step 3. Place a sheet of parchment paper on your baking sheet and spread your cannabis trim out over it into a one fairly thin layer. It may not dry out properly if you crowd it.
Step 4. Place the baking sheet into the oven and let it hang out for 25-35 minutes. Always stay below 235℉ (112℃) it’s important. If a trim is dry enough it rarely takes longer than 20-25 min, but for a completely raw plant, it may take even a double amount of time. As many 420 Chefs, as many tricks and opinions, and you try experimenting by yourself to discover the best way of your own. It’s only you who knows your stuff well, an it’s you having preferences for your favourite CBD edibles.
Once the cannabis appears nice and dry in the oven, take it from there, and let it rest in room temperature until being entirely cooled. Now you can use your great decarboxylated weed for whatever cannabis cooking application!
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