5 Tips For Mastering The Indoor Sativa
Growing a true sativa is becoming a lost art. A true, unadulterated sativa is simply not a commercially viable crop. They take more electricity to produce indoors, and they often take twice as long as indicas to flower, leading to fewer harvest per year. As such, they are an extremely rare item to find on a dispensary menu, and if you can find the real deal they are extraordinarily expensive. In order for a discerning craft cannabis connoisseur experience that euphoric sativa high, chances are you are going to have to get your hands dirty and grow your own. Here are some tips to help you achieve sativa perfection indoors.
1. Don’t overfeed.
Sativas generally like lighter, steady feedings throughout their extended growth period. Slowly build up nutrient strength gradually over the flowering cycle. If growing in organic soil, you’re much better off using half the nutrient strength in a container that is twice the size; generally 10 gallons or more.
2. Keep humidity and temperatures up.
Sativas are adapted to humid and tropical climates and will flourish in a jungle-like environment. The heirloom African Sativa pictured in the photo above (mother of our African Ice strain) was grown at 80-85 degrees Fahrenheit and 75% humidity throughout the entire bloom phase. Unlike indicas with thick foliage and overlapping fan leaves, a true sativa is far more mold resistant and can handle a hot and moist environment without rotting on the stem.
3. Don’t skimp on light.
Growing a great sativa requires plenty of lumens. They will also grow faster and develop more exotic cannabinoid profiles if given more light from the blue spectrum. If you’re growing with classic high pressure sodium bulbs, supplement with a metal halide bulb in the 6000-9000k colour range to achieve this effect.
4. Use plenty of support and training.
Many sativas grow tall, lanky, and floppy. By supporting their structure with horizontal trellising and bamboo stakes you will spread the plant out over a much more balanced canopy for even light distribution and spectacular yields. If left to grow straight up they can get so tall that the bottom buds will never develop properly as they will be too far from their light source. As the top buds pack on size, they too will fall over if unsupported, ultimately losing valuable lumens as they droop away from the light.
5. Don’t rush perfection.
Avoid using high phosphorus bloom boosters in an attempt to speed up the ripening process, you'll only burn your plants and slow down their growth. And never harvest a sativa too early. Many growers shy away from sativa dominant strains because they believe sativas yield poorly. However in many cases a seemingly low-yielding sativa will continue to grow absolutely mammoth sized colas if given sufficient time to ripen. I've had sativas go 18 weeks that more than doubled their yield in the last four weeks of growth. Give them the time they need to reach their full potential and you will be rewarded with a massive harvest of electrifying bud that is extremely euphoric, clear-headed and uplifting.
If weather permits, bring your indoor sativa outside for some natural sunlight occasionally. Even just a week of accumulated sunshine will have a profound effect on the potency and cannabinoid profile of a tropical sativa. This will pay off big dividends in your smoking pleasure.