Learn in this guide how to Scrog your marijuana grow op. Scrogging is essentially leaning your plant on a trellis or net so that they can have enough support to grow tall and steady on their own. The term itself “Scrog” is short for “screen of green”, as well as “sea of green.” This is a great technique for Sativa strain varieties that tend to grow taller than other strain types.
Scrogging Table of Contents:
- Why Scrog Marijuana Plants?
- When to Start Scrogging Marijuana Plants
- Scrogging Marijuana Outdoors
- Scrogging Marijuana Indoors
- Additional Scrog Tips & Tricks
Why Scrog Marijuana Plants?
Scrogging is the stretching of marijuana plant branches in the form of a screen, creating an even canopy. Scrogging is beneficial to marijuana plants because it provides more light exposure to its branches, meaning production of more buds and higher yields. Scrogging also provides air flow through the plant more, helping to reduce mold and pests. Scrogging also ensures that each branch gets structural support so that the heavier buds don’t weigh down the plant and cause any breakage or damage to the plant.
Scrogging also makes it easier to tend to since all of the branches would be spread out. All branches above the screen—the canopy—will fill out with thick buds, while most of the foliage below the screen will be covered by the shade. Pruning the bottom branches and dead leaves below the screen are a good idea so that you’re not stuck with subpar buds on the lower half of the plant. By cutting off these lower branches, the plant can focus its energies above the canopy, producing its higher-quality buds up there.
When To Start Scrogging Marijuana Plants
Scrogging works best you plan to stay ahead of your own plants schedule. Best case scenario, you’ll want to set the screen so branches grow into it, as opposed to having to push branches into it after. It is also helpful to monitor your plants on a weekly basis and help branches through the screen as they grow. If you do need to set a screen after the fact and put branches in it, no need to worry about it, they’ll just need to be handled with a gentler hand.
Marijuana branches should be in a screen after plants are done getting topped, but before flowering. If you haven’t topped your plants they will take a different shape, so they shouldn’t be in a screen yet; and you want branches set in a screen before flowering so as not to disturb plants while they are producing buds.
Another thing to consider when Scrogging is that is works best when combined with topping your branches. Topping will help keep branches a similar length and keep the canopy even so light can hit buds sites evenly.
It is also wise to space your plants evenly, the branches of one cannabis plant should slightly interlock with the branches of the plants next to it—generally speaking, this means about 1-2 ft. between pots. A better way to gauge spacing is to stretch out the longest branch of a plant toward the plant next to it—if it reaches the middle of the next plant, it’s too close; it should overlap with the longest branch of the adjacent plant by about 6”.
Scrogging Marijuana Outdoors
Scrogging outdoors the easiest way to trellis your plants. First, it is best to buy a tomato cage or some other pre-made structure for plant growth and put it around the plant when it is young. Your cannabis plant will grow into it and as it does, you can help branches along by pulling them through different points of the “cage” area.
Depending on how big your marijuana plants are or how big your crop is, it may be easier to build a frame or set posts around all the plants. Outdoors, you can plant stakes in the ground and set up the parameter of where your plants should be scrogged. Ideally you’d want to stretch a screen over the posts, slide it down to the level of the plants, and either let them grow into the screen or pull the branches through it.
Scrogging Marijuana Indoors
You can build a frame or structure around plants when growing indoors as well. A common indoor trellising structure is a frame made from PVC pipe (if you’re on a budget that is, there’s actually premade indoor scrog structures if you have a little extra to spend on it).
Indoor Scrogging involves reading a plant to see what it needs and usually involves some minute adjustments. With just a little time and effort, this training technique will keep your marijuana plants healthy and give you bigger yields.
For Indoor & Outdoor Scrogging: Try to fill each square of the screen with a single branch—avoid putting two branches in one square and try not to leave a square empty. This will ensure each branch gets enough space and light and that the screen is utilized to its full potential. The more sunlight/grow light each branch receives, the bigger buds will get.
Additional Scrog Tips & Tricks
- Start at a corner and work your way around the edges, getting the middle of the screen last. This is just easier than starting in the middle and tangling your branches and breaking them off.
- Stretch out the longest branch of a plant toward the plant next to it so that it overlaps with the longest branch of the adjacent plant by 6” or so.
- Try to work in order by putting all branches of one plant into the screen before moving on to the next plant, also, working by plant height is ideal as well.
- Stretch a branch out as far as it can go, pull it up through the screen, and rest it on the screen. If it falls through, pull it back one square closer to the center of the plant.
- Scrogging can stress a cannabis plant out, and you’ll probably notice that the plants look a little rough or wilted afterward. Don’t worry, this is totally normal and just means your plant needs more light exposure and water to feel back to normal.
- It’s a good idea to water plants within 24 hours of Scrogging to give them a little boost to get past the stress of the procedure.
- It’s also a good idea to check the Scrog 2-3 days later to touch it up. The plants will have grown into the screen a little bit in those couple of days, and you’ll have a better sense of where each branch wants to go and where buds will develop.
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