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How To Get The Biggest Yields With Autoflowering Cannabis

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Autoflowers have finally earned the respect they deserve. More importantly, they have earned a place in your grow room. With our guide to achieving maximum yields, you will crop the biggest harvest possible from your autoflowers!

TAKING AUTOFLOWERING CANNABIS YIELDS TO THE LIMIT

Autoflowers grow blazingly fast and don’t rely on light hours to enter bloom. As they make growing weed a lot more convenient, autoflowering strains have become very popular as more high-quality strains appear on the market.

There are several things growers can do to encourage bigger yields from their autoflowers.

1. START AUTOFLOWERS IN THEIR FINAL CONTAINERS

Autoflowering cannabis will race from seedling to stash in a quick 60–90 days. When autos are stressed too much or their growth is otherwise slowed, they will still bloom at the same time, and your yields will suffer.

To max out yield, you should sow seeds directly into their final containers. Alternatively, you can germinate them using the paper towel method (or whatever your preferred germination method may be) and then put them straight into large pots. A healthy root zone must be fostered early.

2. USE BIGGER POTS

The bigger the pot, the more the roots will develop and the bigger your plant will be. If you constrain it in a pot that’s too small, your plant’s development and production will be reduced. It is recommended that you use 15–20-litre pots to maximise results without overwhelming your plants. A pot that is too big will be a waste of substrate and fertiliser.

3. CONSIDER POT MATERIAL

A healthy and strong root system means healthy plants with great yields. Consider “smart pots”, like the RQS fabric pot, to give you an advantage in this domain. With their ability to prevent plants from becoming root bound, fabric pots are better for overall development.

In addition, fabric pots make it nearly impossible to overwater your cannabis as they facilitate excellent drainage.

4. USE AN AIRY GROWING MEDIUM

Autoflowers grow fast and vigorously, and have only a limited time to do so. Because of that, you want to support their growth in every way possible. A loose and airy growing medium makes it easier for your autoflowers to develop a strong root system.

If the substrate is too compact, you can make it suitable for autoflowers by adding some perlite and coco coir. See our article here for more tips on the best soil for your autoflowers.

5. ADD A ROOT STIMULANT

Another way to support root development is by adding a root stimulant. One good way to do this is by introducing beneficial fungi into your growing medium. Mycorrhizal fungi increase nutrient and water uptake, protect plants from disease, and generally encourage an optimal growing environment.

Easy Roots – Mycorrhiza Mix

6. START SEEDLINGS INDOORS

Whether you are planning an indoor or an outdoor grow, make sure to start your seedlings indoors.

As you and your plants are on the clock from day one, you want to ensure your seedlings root well. A cool white CFL, appropriate LED, or even a sunny windowsill are adequate. Just make sure vegetative growth goes smoothly; ready or not, your autoflowers will bloom on schedule.

7. SUPPORT PLANT STRUCTURE

Staking or plant support of some kind may be needed to keep your plants upright and their buds healthy.

There are several ways you can go about this. Bamboo stakes and strings, trellis netting, or tomato plant cages can all be used to help a plant carry its heavy load. If you want more tips, see this article on five ways to support heavy buds.

8. OPT FOR 18 HOURS OF LIGHT

Opinions differ on whether keeping plants under a constant 24-hour light cycle is beneficial. 18/6 is still the most common, and will save you money on energy.

Indeed, you could potentially grow them with less light, but we are aiming for a huge harvest, so you’ll want to provide them with as many lumens as possible. More light, more buds. Easy.

When grown outdoors, your autoflowers will thrive in the fine summer weather. Sunlight for 18 hours is not essential because Mother Nature’s grow lamp is infinitely more powerful than any artificial bulb.

9. USE REVERSE OSMOSIS WATER

Your water may be fluoridated or chlorinated, or may contain other impurities that hinder healthy microbial growth in the soil. In short, if your domestic water is unsuitable for drinking, it won’t do good for your cannabis plants either. You can solve this by using reverse osmosis water.

Simply spoken, reverse osmosis is a filtration process that results in pure, ultra-filtered water. With this, you are in total control of the mineral profile of your water. This can benefit the growth of your plants and your yield.

10. DIAL IN NUTRIENTS AND PH

Autoflowers are usually smaller, so they drink and eat less compared to large photoperiod plants. If you’re using ordinary cannabis nutrients, a good idea is to start out with 50% or even 25% of the recommended dose.

Soil growers are advised to use lightly fertilised soil for autoflowering cannabis. Heavily fertilised soils will burn these babies. Aside from supplements like enzymes, vitamin B, and beneficial fungi, autoflowers don’t really require large doses of base nutrients during their short vegetative stage. Heck, with good-quality soil, your plants may do just fine without additional nutes all the way to harvest.

If you must add nutrients to the soil early on, do so sparingly. Generally, bloom nutrients and boosters are all that’s needed during their life cycle. Even in flowering, low to medium doses of nutrients will suffice. Over-fertilising plants is a common yield-thwarting mistake autoflower growers often make.

Easy Combo Booster Pack

If the pH is off, your plants can’t uptake nutrients even if they are present. The correct pH for your water when growing in soil is 6.0–7.0. With a few drops of pH up or down products, you can adjust your water to the correct pH window.

11. PRIORITISE CLIMATE CONTROL

Seedlings and young plants prefer a more humid environment, while flowering plants require significantly less humidity to avoid mould and rot.

At times, just a simple standing fan or leaving a window open is all that’s needed to create an optimal growing environment. If that doesn’t cut it, look into solutions such as a heater or air conditioner for your grow room.

12. USE CO₂

It is scientifically proven that plants use CO₂ as fuel for photosynthesis, and with more CO₂ in your grow space, there should be a noticeable difference in growth rate and size.

The thing is, it only makes sense to provide your plants with CO₂ if all the other conditions in your grow room are already optimal. If there are issues with temperature, humidity, water, or nutrients, address these first before looking into a more elaborate (and expensive) CO₂ system.

13. TRAIN YOUR PLANTS

Low-stress training (LST) is a non-destructive training technique that even beginners can use. As the name implies, it is a minimally invasive technique that doesn’t involve any major damage to plants.

All you do is carefully bend and tie down the stem and branches to encourage lateral growth. This way, more bud sites are exposed to your grow light, resulting in fatter nugs and bigger harvests.

If you’re an expert grower and not afraid to put a knife to your plants, you can see whether topping will work for you. Just ensure that everything else is under control before looking into these more-involved plant training techniques.

14. USE SEA OF GREEN (SOG)

The sea of green, or SOG, method involves growing many small plants in close proximity to max out space and yields. This is especially effective in otherwise small grow-ops, and there is no better candidate than autoflowering strains. Their fast growth and short stature essentially do everything for you. Plus, no pruning or excessive handling is needed.

15. USE PROGRESSIVE HARVESTING

It normally happens that the flowers at the top of the canopy mature faster than those at the bottom. Simply clip off the individual buds that are ready, and wait for the rest to ripen. Wait 1–2 weeks between each harvest and watch for signs that they’re ready to pick. Most autoflowering plants only require two cycles of progressive harvesting, but larger plants may need more.

16. DOCUMENT, REFINE, AND REPEAT

Nobody is born a master cannabis grower. To become an expert, you want to pay attention and carefully record each process used in your grow. Only this way will you notice which techniques render the best yields.

Something can always go wrong when growing cannabis. The key to high yields is swiftly and smartly identifying problems as they occur. As you refine your processes, the health and yields of your plants will improve over time.

THE TOP 5 HIGHEST YIELDING RQS AUTOFLOWERING STRAINS 2020

Perhaps more important than any other factor listed above, genetics have a huge influence on a given strain’s production potential. So, before we conclude our guide on achieving maximum yields with autoflowers, here is a list of the highest-yielding autoflowers from Royal Queen Seeds.

1. NORTHERN LIGHT AUTOMATIC

Northern Light is a legendary cannabis strain that derives from Afghan indica genetics. First bred in the 1970s US, and coming to Europe in the 80s, this indica is still a favourite among many cannabis lovers. The autoflowering variant Northern Light Automatic shines with all the goodies of the “big one”, without compromising on flavour and effect. Moreover, she is one of the highest-yielding autoflowers out there with a whopping 550g/m² indoors. She pleases with a sweet, earthy pine flavour and a cerebral effect that is happy and uplifting.

Autoflowering cannabis has come of age now both potent and productive. With our simple 10 step guide, your next autoflowering marijuana harvest will be huge.

Top 5 High-THC Autoflowering Strains (2020 Update)

Autoflowering strains suck when it comes to potency, right? Wrong. At RQS, we’re proud to announce a whole new line of autoflowers that’ll put even some of the most potent photoperiod strains to shame.

For a long time, autoflowering strains have been criticised for producing lower levels of THC than photoperiod varieties. But with our new line of autoflowers, that’s all changed. Below, we shine a light on our fresh roster of super potent autoflowering cannabis strains.

ARE AUTOFLOWERING CANNABIS STRAINS WORTH IT?

We get this question a lot, and the answer is yes; autoflowering strains are definitely worth it. They are super easy to grow and can produce some spectacular bud, especially if you plant them in big pots under strong lights.

Plus, the fact that autoflowers don’t need to be pruned or trained makes them ideal for beginner growers. Their short stature allows them to fit into small indoor grow rooms or stealthy outdoor grows, and their short flowering time means you can typically pump out multiple harvests throughout the year.

TOP 5 HIGH-THC AUTOFLOWERS FOR YOUR 2020 GROW-OP

And now, thanks to our new line of genetics, autoflowering strains can finally stand up to their photoperiod competitors in terms of potency. The strains listed below are capable of producing up to 24% THC!

GREEN GELATO AUTO

In 2018, Gelato was named “Strain of The Year”. Green Gelato Automatic is our very own unique autoflowering version of this beloved hybrid. This is one of our most aromatic strains, and it produces massive levels of THC that’ll give even a top-shelf Haze a good run for its money.

Green Gelato Automatic boasts everything you love about our photoperiod Green Gelato strain in a neat autoflowering package. Like the original strain, Green Gelato Auto boasts balanced effects that combine a relaxing, physical stone with cerebral euphoria.

This strain is first on our list for a reason; Green Gelato Automatic can produce up to 24% THC, making her one of the most potent autoflowers on the market. You’ll only need a few hits to feel her powerful effects.

Many find Green Gelato Auto to be a great strain for creative exploits. Consider giving her a try while painting, writing, or composing music, or while socialising with friends at parties.

Green Gelato Auto is an absolute fiesta when it comes to flavour and aroma. On the nose, she’s fruity and citrusy, while boasting super sweet, slightly earthy flavours. Green Gelato Auto is also super easy to grow. She reaches a maximum height of 120cm and is typically ready to harvest 70 days from germination.

Green Gelato Automatic
Green Gelato Automatic
Green Gelato x Cookies Auto
375 – 450 gr/m2
70 – 120 cm
7 – 8 weeks
THC: 24%
Sativa 55% Indica 40% Ruderalis 5%
100 – 175 gr/plant
100 – 120 cm
9 – 10 weeks after sprouting
Clear, Physically Relaxing

AMNESIA HAZE AUTOMATIC

Amnesia Haze Automatic brings autoflowering properties to this classical sativa variety. Featuring 50% sativa, 20% indica, and 30% ruderalis genetics, this strain has been finely tuned for your growing and smoking pleasure.

Every smoker loves a packed bowl of sativa when a task needs doing, or when they feel their creative side emerging. The downside of some sativa varieties is the length of time it takes them to mature.

Although some growers might have the patience and resources to see a photoperiod sativa through to harvest, others grow under more restrictions. For these people, they will be pleased to realise that Amnesia Haze Automatic explodes from seed to harvest in as little as 10 weeks!

So, aside from its lightning-fast growing speed, what else can Amnesia Haze Automatic bring to the smoker and grower? Well, when harvest time arrives, you will be greeted by resinous buds that contain 18% THC. That is some pretty strong bud. Amnesia Haze Automatic flowers also contain decent amounts of CBD.

If you grow indoors, you can expect your plants to reach a height of 100cm and produce a yield of around 350–400g/m². If you live in a warm and sunny climate and decide to plant your green babies outdoors, you can expect them to reach a height of 120cm and kick out a yield of approximately 180g/plant when dried.

When smoking your Amnesia Haze Automatic harvest, you will experience a mixture of sweet and spicy taste sensations, accompanied by the classical taste of Amnesia strains. This will be complemented by a cerebral, uplifting, and motivating psychoactive high.

Amnesia Haze Automatic
Amnesia Haze Automatic
Amnesia x Ruderalis
350 – 400 gr/m2
50 – 100 cm
7 – 8 weeks
THC: 18%
Sativa 50% Indica 20% Ruderalis 30%
130 – 180 gr/plant
100 – 120 cm
11 – 12 weeks after sprouting
Clear, Uplifting

FAT BANANA AUTOMATIC

Fat Banana is a super aromatic RQS strain that produces big, dense, and resinous buds. Fat Banana Automatic is her autoflowering cousin. Indica-dominant, fast-flowering, and capable of producing up to 22% THC, Fat Banana Automatic has to be one of the most potent autoflowers available today.

Like the original, Fat Banana Automatic produces a hard-hitting body stone. She’s best enjoyed in the evening while watching a movie, listening to your favourite record, or just before bed. Don’t be fooled into using this strain during the day, as it’ll likely affect your ability to focus.

In terms of flavour and aroma, Fat Banana Automatic is very similar to the photoperiod original. She boasts a big, tropical fruit aroma with bold notes of banana and hints of mango. When smoked or vaped, Fat Banana Automatic is very sweet and smooth, making it hard to put her down.

Thanks to her short flowering time and short stature, Fat Banana Automatic is super easy to grow. She takes just 9–10 weeks to go from seed to harvest and reaches a height of just 100–120cm. Despite its size, this strain is still able to produce heavy harvests of up to 450g/m² indoors and 175g/plant outdoors.

Fat Banana Automatic
Fat Banana Automatic
Fat Banana x Cookies Auto
375 – 450 gr/m2
70 – 100 cm
7 – 8 weeks
THC: 22%
Sativa 20% Indica 70% Ruderalis 10%
90 – 175 gr/plant
80 – 120 cm
9 – 10 weeks after sprouting
Calming, Clear

ROYAL GORILLA AUTOMATIC

The word “gorilla” in a strain is a mark of its potency. The pummelling power of a gorilla is certainly the only comparison that comes to mind for our Royal Gorilla Automatic. This autoflowering version of Royal Gorilla incorporates qualities of ruderalis, sativa, and indica.

While skewing mostly toward indica, there will also be a cerebral head high to look forward to. Plus, it will be ready for plucking only 8–10 weeks after germination. This strain is also adaptable to both indoor and outdoor cultivation. The resulting bud won’t disappoint with its THC content of over 20%.

This strain will bring on a wave of happy feelings, with a head high that gives way to couch-lock. This sensational journey also comes with a rich array of flavours. The diesel edge to this plant’s aroma is complemented by traces of pine, citrus, and forest fruits. Royal Gorilla Automatic has to be among the most satisfying of our autoflowering cultivars.

Royal Gorilla Automatic
Royal Gorilla Automatic
Gorilla x Cookies x Ruderalis
325 – 400 gr/m2
70 – 100 cm
6 – 8 weeks
THC: 20%
Sativa 30% Indica 50% Ruderalis 20%
120 – 170 gr/plant
80 – 140 cm
10 – 12 weeks after sprouting
Heavy, Physically Relaxing, Stoned

HULKBERRY AUTOMATIC

Hulkberry Automatic is our very own autoflowering version of the award-winning sativa Bruce Banner #3. We started by crossing Ghost OG with Strawberry Diesel to create a strain with the potency and unique terpene profile to match the original. We then crossed the result with Auto Ghost OG to pass on the autoflowering gene without driving down potency. The progeny is Hulkberry Automatic, a super aromatic and potent autoflower (she boasts up to 21% THC) that produces an exceptional creative high.

This strain produces strong, uplifting, and alerting cerebral effects. It’s a great daytime smoke as it won’t hinder your productivity or focus, and it goes particularly well with any kind of creative activity (like painting or writing). Like Green Gelato, this is also a great social smoke to share with friends.

Besides its uplifting high, Hulkberry Automatic also boasts exceptional aromas and flavours. On the nose, this strain smells of fresh, sweet strawberries reminiscent of Strawberry Diesel. When smoked or vaped, however, Hulkberry Automatic is spicy and earthy, with unique woody undertones. This strain is particularly high in the terpenes limonene, linalool, and myrcene.

Finally, like any good autoflower, Hulkberry Automatic is super easy to grow. She reaches a height of about 100cm and is completely harvest-ready in 65–70 days, producing decent harvests of 450g/m² indoors and up to 100g/plant outdoors.

Autoflowering strains have long been criticised for their potency. But things have changed. Here are 5 of the most potent autos on the market.