This is part 4 of our week-by-week series on growing marijuana in the Vegetative Stage using hydroponic methods.
In this Episode, you will see the following:
- The benefits of using different size pots as the plant grows
- When to transplant into a 3-gallon pot
- Tips for watering in a 3-gallon pot
What Size of Pots are best for Vegetative Stage of Marijuana?
When you are growing marijuana indoors, it is best to size your containers according to the size and stage of your plants. This is particularly important during the Vegetative Stage, when your plants are young and immature. It is during this stage that you set up the plant’s future potential.
So when your plants are small, you will use small containers. As your plants grow, you will transplant into larger containers. We will show you some examples.
In the last episode, you saw our plants vegging in small half-gallon pots. That’s because, at that stage, those plants were small and had just been transplanted from the EZ-Cloner. Our plants spend two weeks in the EZ-Cloner, and then two weeks in Half-Gallon Pots.
Now, having completed four weeks total in the Veg room, we are transplanting our plants into 3-Gallon pots.
Why we use 3-Gallon Pots during the Vegetative Stage
First of all, it’s important to realize that it’s the size and stage of your plants that matters, not necessarily the age. So we transplanted into 3-gallon pots after four weeks in the veg room. Two weeks in the EZ Cloner, and two weeks in half-gallon containers. The reason for transplanting was not so much the magic of Week 5 of Veg, but just the fact that our plants were ready.
As you can see, the roots had a healthy stretch going on inside the half-gallon containers. That is a good thing. We want the roots to stretch, and grow deep.
But we do not want the roots becoming bound up and knotted, having run out of room. We think this is a good time to take these babies into a larger container. And so that’s what we did.
If you are growing at home, we like to recommend a similar protocol, as well. You should have one container size for either your seedlings or newly cut clone.
That first container could be a red solo cup or small pot. From there, you want to increase your pot size to maybe a half gallon or full gallon. And then finally, you will want to transplant into a larger pot to prepare for flowering.
We have flowered plants in 3-gallon, 5-gallon, and 7-gallon containers. We have settled on the three gallon containers, because they are adequate for the size of plants that we flower, and they allow us to put more pots on a table.
In the past, we used longer veg times, and therefore would be placing larger plants into the flower rooms. That is why we used 5-gallon and above. But so far, we get great results flowering in 3-gallon pots, so we use 3-gallon for the second half of our vegetative grow cycles.
How much to water plants in 3-gallon containers during vegetative stage
We grow in Coco-Coir, which is a hydroponic medium. We like coco because it is a good medium made out of renewable resource, and it is good for the environment. As far as a growing medium, it retains a good amount of water for the day, but does allow drainage and evaporation.
For this reason, you will want to check your pots daily to determine how wet or dry they are. If your pots are dry, you will want to water, and get them back to that heavy feel.
While in the vegetative state, we water our plants based on feel. After we water a three-gallon pot, it is heavy. You can pick it up and feel the weight. Over the course of the day and into the next day, that water will evaporate as well as drain out through the bottom (since coco is a porous medium).
You want to let the pot dry out, but not dry out completely. This may sound complicated, but basically means you don’t want your plant to dry out, but you do want to allow it to soak up what you gave it.
In the next episode, we will continue through the remainder of veg as we prepare these plants to transition into the flowering rooms. Stay tuned!