Stages of Cannabis Plant Growth

Cannabis plants, like all living things, go through a series of stages as they grow and mature.  From the humble seed, they grow and thrive into a plant capable of being made into clothing, construction material, paper, and endless other wonderful and biodegradable things.  Of course, they also turn into our favorite little magic herb that makes our lives better by helping us relax, easing our pain, and generally lifting the worries of the day off our shoulders. 

So How Does Cannabis Growth Happen?

If you’ve never looked into growing your own ganja you may be wondering exactly how this miracle of nature happens.  Contrary to what your deepest highs may have imagined they don’t magically appear when the bud fairy comes to town. Instead, it all starts from a seed (or cloning, but that’s for another article) and goes through various stages.

At each stage of the growth process, the plant will need different amounts of nutrients, light, and water as well as different training and pruning techniques.  It’s also quite helpful if you’re able to determine the sex of the plant as there are different requirements each one has to grow strong and healthy.

The Four Stages of Cannabis Growth 

  • Germination – This period begins with the Cannabis plant in a seed state.  A little dirt, water, and time and it will start to open up and throwing out sprouts and roots.  You can tell if a seed is ready to be planted by whether or not its still green or white. If it’s hard and brown, it’s plantable. It takes about 5-10 days to pass through this stage and by the end of it you should be seeing the fan-style leaves forming.
  • Seedling – Once the planet enters the seedling stage it will start to produce more of the characteristic leaves.  Initially, they’ll only have a single blade on them, but as the plant continues to mature it will have leaves with up to seven blades in most cases.  More blades are not unheard of, however.  
  • Vegetative – Once your plant starts producing new leaves that start with five to seven blades it will be considered in the vegetative state.  If the plant is healthy it will be a bountiful and vibrant green. The biggest risk at this stage is mold and disease, so don’t overwater it and be sure to keep the area around it clean.
  • Flowering – Everyone’s favorite stage of growth is the flowering stage, and why not?  It also is the stage where you can tell whether you’ve got male or female plants.  The males are immediately separated from the females to prevent pollination. During the first three weeks in this stage, pruning is avoided, and the plants get trellised so they have the support they need.  Blooming nutrients are a good addition at this stage to maximize production.

So there you have it, a quick and dirty guide to the various stages of marijuana growth.  If you’re thinking of starting your own crop then this guide will give you an idea of what to expect during the growing period.  We suggest researching further so you can get a solid understanding of nutrition and risks to your plants. Good growing!


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