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It Happens To Every Grower!

As the buds from my last harvest slowly finish curing, I like to reflect on the grow I just finished as well as our past grows.

There are many lessons for growers to learn and I've learned a lot of them the hard way! But today, I want to share one of the most important lessons I've learned in my time growing cannabis:

Don’t be ashamed when you run into problems!

No matter your age or level of intelligence, as humans we continue to learn every day. And the fact of the matter is that every grower - no matter how naturally skilled - will run into problems at some point, some big and some small.

Remember, cannabis plants are living breathing things with their own needs. It's only natural that their needs vary which can cause problems for growers, especially when combined with other unexpected events. 

Those 'unexpected events' can be something like:

  • Seeds don’t germinate

    What have I wrought?!

  • Leaves get burnt, discolored or otherwise deformed

  • Young plants die unexpectedly

  • Space and growth problems

    • Plants grow too big or tall way too fast

    • Plants grow slowly, sickly or stay small and you don’t know why

  • Plants get dropped, accidentally broken or fall over

  • Lower yields than expected

  • Poor taste or smell in buds, or undesired effects (like racing thoughts)

Every serious grower will encounter at least one of these problems at some point:

  • Mold, Mildew or Bugs

  • Nutrient deficiencies

  • pH issues

  • Unexpected pollination (seeded buds)

    • Hermies (pollen sacs appearing on female plants)

    • An unrealized male plant

  • Grow area and environmental problems

    • Indoors: Electricity may go out, a piece of equipment fails

    • Outdoors: Bad weather or temperature will damage your plants

  • Having to move or drastically change your growing operation

  • And probably something even more unexpected!

Remember, what makes a great grower is the ability to bounce back from problems and learn from them. Every cannabis grower is going to run into problems, it’s how you deal with them that separates the average from the spectacular.

We're no exception to this rule by any means; we've run into more than our fair share of problems over the years! If you want some proof, just check out this gallery of problems we personally experienced...as in, these pictures show OUR plant problems!

Root Rot - Learn how to get rid of root rot

A closer look at root rot in cannabis in a hydroponic DWC setup


Seed sprouted but just didn't grow - was trailing behind the other seedlings - it happens…

This cannabis seedling sprouted, but never grew much bigger than this


Stunted Growth - These plants are all the same age (note the two tiny seedlings on the right). Yet even though the seeds were all germinated at the same time in the same environment, the "Super Lemon Haze" seeds on the right just never got past the seedling stage, even though the "Full Moon" seeds on the left were exploding with growth. In this case the problem was that the Super Lemon Haze seeds were old, but sometimes you won't be able to figure out why healthy plants aren't growing!

All these plants are the same age!


From one of my first grows, leaves are nutrient burnt -

Burnt brown tips of cannabis leaves means nute burn - this plant is in the flowering stage, which is when nute burn becomes more serious


These buds were toasted by a too-close LED. When using an LED, make sure to know how far away it should be from your plants! It's not just a matter of heat; most LED manufacturers suggest you keep LED grow lights at least 12-18" away from the tops of your plants to prevent bleaching and light burn.

These buds were toasted by a too-close LED


White Powdery Mildew (white flour-like dust appears on leaves in spots)

WPM up close - a closeup of a spot of white powdery mold on a cannabis leaf


Hermies - Hermies are plants with both male and female traits, which can result in seedy buds.

This is a 'banana'; a sign that the plant has hermie traits


This plant had nutrient deficiencies everywhere -

Cannabis plant has nutrient deficiencies everywhere


Plain and simple neglect! This is a plant that didn't get the attention it needed!

This plant has been neglected to the extreme

Despite all the problems we’ve run into over the years....

We still harvest more bud than we can use, even after we make a bunch into oil and hash!

I hope we can help inspire you to push on when you encounter problems, and most importantly, never be ashamed!



Some other big lessons I've learned:

  • Take time to really look at your plants every day

    • Doing a simple check on your plants will make a world of difference, so much can happen in a couple of days if you're not paying attention

  • React quickly to problems:

    • Don’t wait until this afternoon or tomorrow unless you actually have to. I know I’ve let laziness get the best of me a time or two, and I've regretted it every time.

  • Not every problem has a obvious solution:

    • Sometimes there will be certain plants that have a problem that you just can’t figure out. Sometimes you’ll realize what the problem was later after you’ve gained more knowledge and experience, but some problems will always remain a mystery...and that’s okay!

  • Other people may know things you don't:

    • You'd be shocked at how often we're learning new things from people who write in to the website.

  • Always keep learning!

    • Whether you just got started or have been growing for 30 years, there’s always more to learn about growing. If running this site has taught us anything, it's that there is a TON we don't know.




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