Removing leaves can improve light penetration, allowing lower buds to develop properly and achieve better yields. Cutting foliage on lower branches will improve airflow and help prevent mold and insects. Removing fan leaves can redirect energy from the plant to the buds, resulting in better quality buds. Pruning during flowering should be extremely light and limited.
An example of proper pruning would be the removal of fan leaves that shade healthy bud sites. The pruning of damaged, diseased or dead plant tissue can be done throughout the vegetative and flowering cycles. Yellow (chlorotic) or brown tissue allows invading microorganisms and pests to thrive. Remove these leaves to ensure that they do not fall off and are absorbed into the growing medium.
If this is your first time, we recommend defoliating only the lower half of the plant. If you have any doubts about removing a particular sheet, play it safe and leave it in place. Do not remove more than 10 to 15% of the foliage from a single plant. As legendary crop expert Kyle Kushman points out, fan leaves are like the solar collectors of the cannabis plant, so growers must be very careful when removing them.
Fan leaves play an important role in collecting sunlight for the photosynthesis process. They also contribute directly to the size and overall health of the cannabis plant. The only time the leaves should be removed in the flowering phase is if the leaf shows signs of a disease or pest, or if necessary due to space limitations. If you grow cannabis in a small space, the leaves can be pressed against the walls, creating the same problems as leaves that are placed on top of each other.
According to Robert Connell Clarke, an expert in cannabis cultivation, trimming the central stem represents one of the most common pruning techniques. If you want to microdose your cannabis, or if you want the effects of CBD more than THC, those fan leaves and sugar leaves can provide you with the perfect balance. If you run a commercial operation, you should always work with a licensed cannabis waste management service provider. If you've already uprooted a cannabis plant too aggressively, but it's still in the vegetative phase, you can help solve the problem by letting the plant stay in the vegetative phase longer than originally planned.
Cannabis growers should avoid pruning cannabis plants before the flowering stage and definitely during the flowering stage. In California, for example, growers are exempt from the law requiring most cannabis companies to leave their waste unusable and unrecognizable, but there are still a number of specific regulations that must be followed. Outdoors, cannabis plants need additional leaves to store nutrients and create an additional defense wall in case the plant is attacked by pests or loses all its leaves. Cannabis waste laws are myriad and complex, and failure to comply with them can jeopardize your license or impose massive fines on you.
To date, there have been no official studies on whether or not the advantages of defoliation of cannabis plants outweigh the disadvantages. Those temperatures are too low for cannabis plants to survive, and there's no way to speed up the flowering process as much as you seem to need it. Cannabis plants evolve and develop at the will of the growers and, by the choice of the grower, adapt to their producers to ensure that they survive. After trying these fan-leaf management techniques, you're sure to better understand the cannabis plant and why it grows in the shapes it does under different conditions.
Cannabis plants grow from bottom to top, with new buds appearing at the top of each knot and new nodes growing at the top of the plant. The best time to prune cannabis plants is at the beginning of the cultivation process, preferably in the first or second week of the vegetative growth stage. .