pruning lower branches~~~is it worth it??

kctats13

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hello everyone,
ive got a question....should i bother trimming the lower branches that arent getting too much light or just leave them??
my plants are 2 weeks into flower and even though the lower branches arent getting much light theyre still growing pistils and starting to form crystals.
should i just let them grow? in this situation do the buds even form enough to be good enough to smoke?
should i trim them?
or just let em grow and make hash or butter out of them?
 

D3

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Different strokes for different folks. I dont trim much at all. I think you should leave them alone & let them do there thing. Later Man
 

flaboy88

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kctats13 said:
hello everyone,
ive got a question....should i bother trimming the lower branches that arent getting too much light or just leave them??
my plants are 2 weeks into flower and even though the lower branches arent getting much light theyre still growing pistils and starting to form crystals.
should i just let them grow? in this situation do the buds even form enough to be good enough to smoke?
should i trim them?
or just let em grow and make hash or butter out of them?

the bottom of the plant is more popcorn nugs and alot of ppl use those nugs and clippings from the bottoms to make some hash.. if they are fan leaves i would not clip them.. fan leaves are the ones that take in the energy for your plants to grow.. but IMHO i would leave it.. harvest it.. and make some hash.
 

surreptitious

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i just read an article in the Jan/Feb 2010 edition of Urban Garden that's called The 'Sweet Zone' - Pruning Indoor Plants for Larger Yields.

the "Sweet Zone" is defined as not too near and not to far space under the grow lamp that receives the most light energy without being so close to the lamp that the heat from the lamp interferes with the plant's health and metabolism. The aim of the indoor gardening game is to shape and position your plants so that many growth tips / fruiting sites are basking in the 'sweet zone'

Whenever a plant grows (roots, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits) it takes energy. The rate of a plant's development is limited by the amount of light (energy) it receives. This energy is distributed throughout the plant in order to grow and bloom. The aim of pruning is to focus this energy to where it's most needed - the fruiting sites in the 'sweet zone'

then it talks about the 'clean-up'. if left "un-cleaned", a light loving plant grown indoors will generally produce many small, low quality fruits and flowers, especially on the lower branches. The best time for the clean up is immediately after the initial stretch in flowering, but before the plant has shown much sign of fruiting. If too much is pruned off too soon, the plant will stretch even more and become somewhat leggy. If you clean up too late, you will be removing green matter that the plant has already invested a lot of energy into, some of which will be small fruits or flowers. The later you prune into the flowering stage, the more the plant is focusing its energy on generative growth instead of fruits. A good rule of thumb is to "clean up" the plant in the second week of flowering just as the first smalls signs of fruit appear and after the plant has stretched a little.

There is a fine line between pruning off too much and ending up with a very sparse canopy and a loss in yield, and leaving too much on an lowering the size and quality of the fruits.

Generally, I'm trying to prune off all branches lower than halfway up the plant. As the plants start to flower you should be able to crouch down and peer right through your garden underneath the dense canopy, but i've heard of people keeping only the top 3 nodes and cleaning up the rest.

not only will this focus the light energy on the tops making bigger, better quality fruits, but it also allows for better circulation throughout the garden.

while this article was not written about marijuana specifically, it's logic is sound to me.

http://www.marijuanapassion.com/forum/showthread.php?t=50787&page=3
here is my latest batch of clones that have been in flower for about 10 days and you can see how i'm doing it. my last batch of clones that i flowered got over 5 ft tall after the stretch. i have done some LST training on these guys, used bushmaster to reduce the space between the nodes (most of the tops it's hard to see the stem between the nodes, that's how close they got, i'll try to take a picture tomorrow to show how close they are) and put them into flower after they were only about 12 inches tall or so.
 

flaboy88

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surreptitious said:
i just read an article in the Jan/Feb 2010 edition of Urban Garden that's called The 'Sweet Zone' - Pruning Indoor Plants for Larger Yields.

the "Sweet Zone" is defined as not too near and not to far space under the grow lamp that receives the most light energy without being so close to the lamp that the heat from the lamp interferes with the plant's health and metabolism. The aim of the indoor gardening game is to shape and position your plants so that many growth tips / fruiting sites are basking in the 'sweet zone'

Whenever a plant grows (roots, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits) it takes energy. The rate of a plant's development is limited by the amount of light (energy) it receives. This energy is distributed throughout the plant in order to grow and bloom. The aim of pruning is to focus this energy to where it's most needed - the fruiting sites in the 'sweet zone'

then it talks about the 'clean-up'. if left "un-cleaned", a light loving plant grown indoors will generally produce many small, low quality fruits and flowers, especially on the lower branches. The best time for the clean up is immediately after the initial stretch in flowering, but before the plant has shown much sign of fruiting. If too much is pruned off too soon, the plant will stretch even more and become somewhat leggy. If you clean up too late, you will be removing green matter that the plant has already invested a lot of energy into, some of which will be small fruits or flowers. The later you prune into the flowering stage, the more the plant is focusing its energy on generative growth instead of fruits. A good rule of thumb is to "clean up" the plant in the second week of flowering just as the first smalls signs of fruit appear and after the plant has stretched a little.

There is a fine line between pruning off too much and ending up with a very sparse canopy and a loss in yield, and leaving too much on an lowering the size and quality of the fruits.

Generally, I tend to prune off all branches lower than halfway up the plant. As the plants start to flower you should be able to crouch down and peer right through your garden underneath the dense canopy, but i've heard of people keeping only the top 3 nodes and cleaning up the rest.

not only will this focus the light energy on the tops making bigger, better quality fruits, but it also allows for better circulation throughout the garden.

while this article was not written about marijuana specifically, it's logic is sound to me.

yeah.. idk.. somethin seems a bit off about clipping and pruning your plant 2nd week into flower.. it seems logical that if it works for 1 plant it must the other but ima stick wit wut i kno..
 

surreptitious

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flaboy88 said:
yeah.. idk.. somethin seems a bit off about clipping and pruning your plant 2nd week into flower.. it seems logical that if it works for 1 plant it must the other but ima stick wit wut i kno..

no problem. i was just offering my advice and had some evidence to back up my theory. the plant only has so much potential energy..i'm just trying to focus that energy into the tops of the plants because thats where all the light is.

keep an eye on my grow journal and you'll see how it turns out.
 

bluealein56

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everyone is going to have their own opinion. But you should experiment,. If you dont try something knew then you will never even know what you dont even know.
DOnt be scared of making ur plant trip out and hermie. Its ok to do a bit of trimming while in flower, assuming that you have a steady female. Trimming a plant that is a undercover hermie will only speed up the time in which it hermies.
I like to keep all scrably limbs trimmeed up like the article says. WHen i put into flower I like to trim all the lower budding sites. Notice i said budding sites. Its not necessary to trim those precious fan leaves and entire branches off, especially in flower. Its ok to cut the bud sites as this will send more budding power to the buds in the "sweet zone". You will experience not necessarily a larger yield , but what you do harvest will be of better smoking quality and will be much more budded up into larger nuggets as opposed to if you left it untrimmed.
 

hugs4nuggs420

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surreptitious said:
no problem. i was just offering my advice and had some evidence to back up my theory. the plant only has so much potential energy..i'm just trying to focus that energy into the tops of the plants because thats where all the light is.

keep an eye on my grow journal and you'll see how it turns out.

I'm also interested in seeing how your grow turns out. I also feel weird about trimming my fan leaves two weeks into flower. The fan leaves are the ones that absorb most of the light.

Also IDK if i wanna cut the plant while in flowering, it seems like the plant would have to focus its energy in repairing the damaged branches instead of focusing on flowering and bud production.

Def keep updating in your grow journal man, I wanna see how this plays out.
 

Growdude

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I remove lower branches up till about 2 weeks in flower, the lower branches just make a bunch of small buds that never are as good as your main tops.

This makes for much bigger main cola's, less trimming and popcorn buds.
 

Tact

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Growdude said:
I remove lower branches up till about 2 weeks in flower, the lower branches just make a bunch of small buds that never are as good as your main tops.

This makes for much bigger main cola's, less trimming and popcorn buds.


I do the same thing, I get my advice from DOS. The amount of work that 13 jammed together plants causes with things you wouldn't even think of, like watering, rotating, inspecting, airflow, are all dramatically alleviated by trimming the bottom 1/3rd of the plants at the appropriate times, by the appropriate amounts. I personally did not want to deal with 13 plants worth of popcorn buds, and instead would rather have those buds consolidate in the upper portion of the plant (even at the loss of say net 5%-10% or something) simply due to making it all less to deal with. That being said I have not made hash. Look at pruning as a way to alleviate an over-packed garden, or if you don't want a bushel of less-developed popcorn buds you have to trim (but would be great for hash and probably to smoke as well). If I only had a few plants I would not have pruned them how I did, but my grow area was a jungle, I could barely get in there and water them without breaking branches anyway.

I believe the theory is, energy consumed by the plant in the majority goes to the upper most 1/3 of the plant. When you cut off select bottom branches of the plant you are causing the plant to send the even more growth hormone, and subsequent growth further up the plant, starting at the first intact nodal branch(s), and on up (etc). Saying its that simple would not be taking into account the stress and the fact that no one really knows quantitatively what gain, if any, is truly received by the top growth of the plant following the pruning of the bottom 1/3. With absolutely no evidence, it seems like it might be a wash? Any gains in the top 1/3 are replacing losses just cut off from the bottom 1/3, but they are at least more consolidated. Very likely you take an overall loss then if you had not pruned, but a hell of alot less stress in pruning multiple dozen(s) of plants if you have a large, packed, grow. I imagine strain and environmental factors complicate a clear-cut answer one way or the other, you will be fine either way.

Like I said, no scientific evidence at all to back my thoughts.
 

Herm

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I removed a lot of the lower branching this time around and I also topped a lot more aggressively to make the branching that I did leave the same hight as the main "top". Its only my 3rd time around but I have to say its the best looking bunch I have done yet.
 

benamucc

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I take the lower branches for clones, but I bonzai and really concentrate on focusing potential energy into specific branches. I like to split the plant into 4 major branches, and then "pinch" the potential energy back into the center of the plant.
I've been told the bottom 1/3 can go in this type of strategy. So far no complaints. According to the book of Jorge the bottom branches contain more hormones that help clones root faster. Up to 2 weeks...
 

nouvellechef

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Overhead lighting should focus on canopy control for maximum yield. Vertical rooms, leave them be and get that bulb right up to them.
 

Brouli

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if there is any caind of light hitting the lower branches and tey are not all brown i would leave them be, even in a small matter they are helping ur plant get some light "power" :), but if they are cut of light acces by top of ur plant then u can no difference there.
 

PencilHead

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I'm a big fan of lollipopping, and like GrowDude, I'll pop until a couple of weeks into flower. But also, I prefer bud over hash, so there you go.

Watch out for Botrytis though if you're doing severe lollipopping in humid climes.
 
L

legalize_freedom

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my last time pruning lower sucker shoots that don't amount to anything is done in the second week of flowering. You will have no problems pruning up until this point...I try not to do anything to them after 2 weeks, because then I feel like I'm takeing away from bud development after. Forcing the plant to heal wounds instead of makeing buds.

I hate to qoute books here...but most grow guides suggest prunning up until the second week of flower also.

Like the others have said it also frees up the bottom of your grow to get some air moving through there, and lowers your risk of PM or mold.
 

Budders Keeper

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I always trim out lower third 2 weeks into flower. Both for air flow and convenience. If it also makes more bud(I think it does) that's another bonus.
 

kctats13

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thanks for the replys everyone. im gonna go ahead and trim them off.
 

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