Cannabis cultivation is more than just a business or cool trend for homegrown buds. Much like gardening, it’s an art of its own, a form of ‘plant whispering,’ and a rewarding hobby for many enthusiasts. But how do they grow THCA flowers for the best results? Any aspiring THCA gardener should be aware of several basic considerations and tips. Without further ado, the process is way trickier than sowing seeds in the soil. Even though the THCA plant is technically a weed (hence the common term), and cannabis species are hardy enough to survive in a range of climates, harvesting flowers is a different story. You’ll have to tend to your babies and pamper them – exclusively the female ones that result in the coveted buds. How do you grow THCA flower for personal use? It isn’t easy or fast, but the game is worth the candle, provided it’s legal in your location. It may involve low-cost supplies and simple or high-maintenance methods. In other words, your home hobby growing can be as frugal or expensive as you are comfortable with. That said, choosing how to grow THCA flowers in your climate and surroundings isn’t always a matter of comparing various techniques and fun experimentation. Sometimes, you just have to stick to whatever lets you navigate legality issues or works best for the conditions, resources, and space available. Always remember this: Growing outdoors is a self-regulating option in terms of light, temperature, and humidity. Check whether you can do so in your state without jeopardizing your bushes. Greenhouse and indoor methods are safer, more discreet, and let you reduce environmental stressors that can damage your buds. Still, they require extra skill, control, and investment. Alternatively, you can grow THCA flowers on your balcony or terrace if you live in a cannabis-friendly area. This way, you can combine the benefits of natural light and ventilation with protecting your budding beauties from patches of inclement weather. Focus on the right genetics The same rule applies to selecting plant varieties and strains. Despite a plethora of choices, pick the ones that are easier to care for and likely to perform better within the space and conditions you have. The optimal genetics and seed quality are essential for novices and advanced green-thumbed enthusiasts alike, but even more so when growing THCA flowers in smaller spaces or trying to hide your crop from prying eyes. You may have seen the photos of bonsai-like marijuana bushes snuck into dressers and closets. Luckily, fewer home growers have to go to such extremes these days. Regardless of where you grow, it’s easier to attend to small, bushy plants (some compact strains reach only about 60 cm in height) than to a jungle of weed trees with massive vertical growth. Always opt for strains with species-specific characteristics suited to your climate and preferred growing technique. Also, ask local cultivators how they grow THCA flowers and what strains they would recommend. If you’re a beginner, it is best to go with smaller-size ‘autoflowering’ varieties because they are: Fast-maturing Less demanding Not dependent on specific light hours for flowering Male and female plants: What’s the big deal? Unlike hemp fibers, THCA flowers come from only female plants. When these are pollinated, they decrease their resin yield and then stop producing it to develop seeds. That’s why growers discard male plants – unless breeding their own strains – as they compromise the quality and potency of their buds. This comes as a surprise to many novices. Upon inquiring ‘how do you grow THCA flower,’ you may discover that optimizing bud density and cannabinoid content is a discriminative practice from seed to flowering. Since all hemp plants look identical until a few weeks into the growth cycle, the period when you can tell the ‘males’ apart from ‘females,’ there are two ways to offset their natural 50:50 ratio when grown from regular seeds. ‘Feminized’ seeds and cloning are the methods typically used by commercial THCA cultivators to minimize waste and the risk of male plants messing up their harvest. Growing THCA flowers from seeds vs. Clones As the medicinal and other sought-after properties are closely linked to the unpollinated female flower, plant breeders focus on the cultivation processes and techniques for producing seeds with mostly female genetics (up to 99%). When purchasing such ‘feminized’ seeds, you save not just the time for getting rid of male plants but also valuable space and other resources. This is of utmost importance with indoor growing and strict square footage or legal limits. However, ‘feminized’ seeds aren’t guaranteed to produce 100% female plants. This is why commercial growers prefer cloning, with cuttings taken from a mother plant to result in female-only and genetically identical ‘copies.’ While the seeds of the same strain are slightly biologically different and have some variation in their characteristics, cloning can do the trick for achieving a uniform crop and harvesting flower that is consistent in cannabinoid content. Which method is better? This depends on your: THCA flower cultivation experience Why you grow it in the first place The size of your growing area As a home grower, you will find seeds more accessible and easier to start your THCA project with. Though germinated seeds take longer to reach harvest time than clones, they produce healthier plants with a stronger root system and ample yield. The cuttings are fragile and harder to propagate, plus shipping them is often illegal. So, you are likely to see better results with seeds when getting your hands dirty for the first time but may enjoy experimenting with the vegetative clones of your existing plants or grabbing some cuttings from other hobby growers. If you are looking for a perfect strain – or have already found one – and want to keep the results consistent, clones will work better. If you enjoy a variety of flavors and effects, seeds are the way to go. Good luck on your growing journey!