Professor Sprout's Guide To Managing Heat Stress In Your Outdoor Cannabis Garden: Part 3
To conclude this 3 part series of posts (Part 1 here, Part 2 here) on keeping your cannabis cool during the peak heat of the summer season, here are a few more tips to help you manage temperature stress in your outdoor gardens this year:
Make your own shade: If all else fails, and the heat gets extreme, consider setting up a shade cloth to shield your plants from the intense afternoon sun. You can find this lightweight porous fabric at most garden supply centres. It looks and feels a lot like fabric softener sheets, and is often labeled as “floating row cover”. Suspend this material over your crop such that is provides shade during the most intense heat of the day (between 2:00 and 6:00pm) while still allowing bright morning sun to reach your plants directly.
Cool Mist: Another option that can be especially helpful for hot and arid climates is to set up some misters around your garden to help bring temperatures down via evaporative cooling. You can usually find cheap misting sprinklers at home depot in the garden centre. Essentially they are just pvc plastic stands with a couple of misting nozzles threaded into the top. You attach them to a garden hose and they spray a very fine mist through the air that brings the temperature down into a much more comfortable zone for your plants. Note: Do not use this method after the third week of bloom. If moisture gets trapped inside the buds it will lead to rot.
Planting locations: It is important to take into consideration the microclimates of your potential planting location when planning your outdoor grow. While planting next to walls and privacy fencing can benefit your plants in the spring when temperatures are cool and your plants need the extra heat reflected by these structures; these same locations can become a virtual furnace in the heat of the summer. Make sure to plant in a location that will provide plenty of breezy airflow, and if possible, late afternoon shade. The Showgirl plant in the photo above was planted in a location with an almost constant cross-breeze, allowing much more efficient cooling. Open lattice paneling was added to the fence to obscure the view from prying eyes without obstructing airflow.
If you follow these tips on managing heat stress, your cannabis will thrive during the peak heat of the summer bringing you to a rich and bountiful harvest in the fall.