According to recent studies, around 6% of American cannabis consumers grow their weed at home.
If you’re one of them, you probably know that your plants will need the right amount of light and water throughout their life cycle. But what about the dirt that they grow in?
Believe it or not, this can be one of the most vital components when it comes to cultivating healthy cannabis plants. And plain old potting soil just doesn’t cut it.
We’ve outlined what you need to know about the best soil for growing cannabis. (Hint: it isn’t MiracleGro).
The Best Soil for Growing Cannabis
Like all other plants, your marijuana’s final yield will rely on the proper balance of nutrients throughout its life cycle. This varies greatly from stage to stage, with entirely different requirements for sprouting seeds, growing, budding, and beyond.
At the beginning of your plant’s life, moist soils are essential, allowing the seed’s tender shoot to push up toward the surface. Then, during its vegetative growth phase, it will require a large amount of Nitrogen. This essential element will help your plant grow tall, and support proper photosynthesis during the leafing phase.
However, once your cannabis plants have matured, soil that is too rich in Nitrogen can become problematic, burning the tips of your leaves and damaging the plant’s flowers or buds.
In the later stages of growing cannabis, other nutrients like Phosphorus and Potassium are far more important, as are Calcium, Magnesium, and Sulfur. These elements will help deliver a higher yield and a healthy harvest, focusing on your final crop rather than a beautiful leafy green plant.
RELATED: Legalization Nation: Homegrow laws
What About MiracleGro?
While you might be used to seeing this common household brand succeed when it comes to other houseplants, it generally doesn’t work well for cannabis plants.
MiracleGro soil uses a time-released nutrition system to deliver a steady stream of Nitrogen throughout your plant’s life – including the flowering stage when it can become harmful. It also lacks a number of the essential elements that your plants will require to produce big, sticky buds rather than more leaves.
This is true of many pre-mixed potting soils that include time-released nutrients, not just MiracleGro. Additionally, some MiracleGro products and other potting soils might also contain pesticides that are best left out of your home harvest.
Ready, Set, Grow!
By strategically improving the life of your cannabis plants with the proper nutrient-rich soil selections, you should start to see your plants thrive.
If you already have some plants growing in the wrong kind of dirt, don’t panic. This crop might not be your very best – but your next one will surely thrive with these improvements.
If you haven’t started cultivating yet, there’s far more to consider than the right soil for growing cannabis. Check out our guide to backyard grows to help ensure a successful harvest.