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Autoflower Watering Schedule: How It’s Properly Done

watering autoflowers

The autoflowering subspecies of cannabis are best known for their rapid growth and development, and because of this these varieties definitely require large quantities of water.

Although autoflowers enjoy frequent watering, giving them too much water is undeniably detrimental and can result in negative consequences such as fungal infection and stunted growth.

Water is absolutely essential for cannabis plants, as it plays a crucial role in the development and it makes around 80 percent of the plant’s weight.

When a cannabis plant is watered, the water is responsible for dissolving the much needed nutrients which is then transferred through the root system and into the upper parts of the plant.

This water move from root to leaves is generally known as the transpiration stream, and it’s called like this because once water reaches the cannabis leaves, a great portion of water just evaporates, while the remaining section of the water is utilized by the plant for photosynthesis.

The Best Type of Water for Autoflowers

An important aspect of watering autoflowering plants is opting out for a specific type of water.

Most growers don’t overthink and simply use tap water for their cannabis plants, but it’s also possible to use rainwater, as it’s free from salts and other chemicals found in tap water.

If you plan to use tap water, it’s a great idea to keep the water in an open container for a few days. This helps the water to reach the needed optimal temperature, since watering your autoflower plants with cold water straight from the tap can result in shock.

Another reason why it’s great to keep the tap water for watering in an open container is that this process also diminishes the levels of chlorine from the water.

Too much chlorine can have a negative impact on your plants, and you’ll be able to notice small bubbles forming on the water container during the first day or so.

Once there are no more bubbles forming, the water is ready for use.

Finally, your water should also have PH levels of around 6.5 to 7.0, although it’s not too detrimental if the levels are slightly above or below.

The Ideal Time to Water Autoflowers

The watering schedule needs to be personalized, since growing conditions greatly vary.

The factors that greatly influence the watering schedule include the size of the growing medium, the temperature, humidity, and of course the overall size and phase of the development of the plant.

In the continuation of this guide we will offer some basic guidelines for each stage of the autoflowering development.

How to Water Before Germination 

In order to adequately germinate the seeds you will need to completely saturate the soil with water, which is generally executed by pouring way too much water, and let the residue water seep from the bottom of the medium.

This aggressive approach is required since the roots will have a hard time if the soil has any dry spots or pockets. This method is also beneficial as it allows all of the nutrients from the soil to become available.

flushed soil
flushed soil

Once you’ve finished flushing the soil with excess water, you need to wait for a couple of hours (usually between 3 and 5 hours), so that the soil can become a bit more dry, before placing the seed into the pot.

Watering During Germination

Since autoflower plants are generally considered as pretty fragile during germination, it’s very important to avoid overwatering them during this stage.

The ideal watering method during this time is to keep the soil relatively moist, ideally with a water sprayer.

Also, make sure to avoid watering the stem directly, as this can lead to too much moisture and make it moldy. Keep the stem healthy by watering the soil around it.

Post Germination Watering

As soon as the plant exits the seedling stage, this is the time when the cannabis plant can take considerably more water.

The ideal method of watering during this stage is to wait for the upper part of the soil to become dry, and once it happens water the plant again.

You’ll notice runoff water on the bottom of the growing pot, which will tell you that you’ve poured enough water.

Finally, it’s also optional to use a meter for measuring the humidity levels of the soil, but this isn’t really standard practice for new growers, and it definitely isn’t necessary.

Avoid Over Watering Your Autoflower

One of the biggest mistakes of growing any type of cannabis plant is to over-water them.

This is easily avoided if you give your plants sufficient time to use up all of the water that you already gave them.

The most damaging part of over-watering is that the roots will experience oxygen deprivation, which causes the plant to turn yellowish.

Another risk of over-watering is the development of both mold or other types of detrimental fungus, so it’s always advisable to moderately water your autoflower plants.

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