Everything You Need To Know About Flushing Your Cannabis Plants
When it’s time to harvest the cannabis plants you’ve worked so hard to care for, most people have the misconception that harvesting correctly is all that matters. However, there are other important aspects that need to be taken into consideration, one of which is flushing.
Flushing is an important step in harvesting, and the good news is that it’s really easy to do. Timing your flushing correctly is critical as well, as it can make or break the entire process.
What is flushing?
Traditional cannabis cultivation requires growers to supplement their plants with NPK (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) in order to boost the yield and growth of their plants. These nutrients also help strengthen the plant’s ability to grow even in tough environments but can still yield beautiful and potent buds. However, an uneven administration of NPK can have detrimental effects when it’s time for harvest and this is why flushing is important.
Flushing is the act of watering your cannabis plants with pure, unadulterated water that contains no nutrients. The purpose of flushing is to get rid of chemicals that may have accumulated in plant tissue so that the plants can absorb nutrients, and excrete the excess without storing other minerals that it no longer needs. Using neutral water is important, and because water is so powerful it can do magic for the health of your plant. Flushing away leftover minerals and nutrients will give your plants and the soil a chance to be clean and fresh again.
Keep in mind that checking the pH levels of your water will be beneficial to the flushing process. Using water that has a pH that is either too low or too high can impact the salt levels in the cannabis and hinder your entire process, making it seem like you never flushed at all. Even pure water may be free of additives but it still contains trace amounts of calcium and other nutrients that can impact growth.
Why should you flush your cannabis plants?
Smoking cannabis tells you if the plant has been flushed or not. Without flushing, cannabis may be harsh and taste of strong chemicals, and leaves black ash as opposed to the grey colored ash flushed plants should leave behind. The flower of unflushed cannabis plants may also be much harder to burn, which will only make it frustrating for the end user.
By flushing your cannabis plants, this makes sure that your plants haven’t been fed too many nutrients. Although unflushed cannabis might not seem like a big deal, it shows that a small error can affect your entire crop. Seasoned cannabis cultivators know the importance of flushing and that skipping this one step can spell the difference between mediocre and top-shelf bud.
Another important reason why you should flush is because it mproves the taste of cured cannabis. Many cannabis crops end up having a chemical taste, which means that it stored too many nutrients at the time of harvest or the grower failed to flush. By flushing, this ensures that your crop results in a taste that is as pure as possible while increasing the chances of a better, smooth smoke. Some growers also think that because they cure their cannabis, flushing isn’t necessary. The truth is that, while good curing can fix any mistakes with flushing, curing isn’t enough to substitute flushing.
Flushing is also important because it prevents nutrient burn. Once you see that your plant leaves change color from green to brown or yellow, this is a sign of a nutrient burn. If this happens you should consider flushing next time.
When should you flush?
The best time to flush will depend on how close you are to harvest time as well as your growing method. If you are growing cannabis in soil, most growers flush two weeks before harvest which is near the ned of the growth cycle although this greatly depends on the strain. This is also the time that you can observe the growth of trichomes on the plants. Trichome growth is generally a very good clue that the plants are ready to be harvested.
However, if you are using hydroponics, flushing is much more straightforward. In hydroponics, simply replace the nutrient bath of the plants with pH balanced water. Flushing is much quicker for hydroponics than soil growing, since it will only require a few days to get it done properly.
When cannabis plants have only a few white trichomes but a lot of clear trichomes, this means that it’s too early to harvest although it’s in the perfect conditions for flushing. Ideally, two weeks after flushing the trichomes should already change color.
How to flush
There’s much more to flushing than just giving your plants pH balanced water. You can use tap water as long as it hasn’t been treated but just to be safe don’t forget to test the water’s pH levels. As you flush your plants, give it as much water as the soil can store. Wait a few minutes, then add more water into the soil so that the initial pour is sent down. This is easy to see when you’re using a pot to grow your plants as the water will pour out.
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