Cannabis Cultivation

Cannabis Low Stress Training (LST)

image that beautifully illustrates the Low Stress Training (LST) method in cannabis cultivation, focusing on the gentle manipulation of branches through bending and tying.

Grow cannabis using Low Stress Training has many benefits for the marijuana grower. This is a method that a grower can use for their cannabis plants in order to train them to grow like a small bonsai tree. This article will help you to decide if Cannabis Low Stress Training can work for your marijuana grow room and increase cannabis yields.

This method of growing involves trimming the tops of your plants and bending and twisting them to grow flat at the top of the growing room and even with the lighting in the room. This is a great growing method for cannabis, as it can give more light to your buds, more top flowering without changing your growing setup, and also larger fuller buds at harvest time.  Most of all and most importantly it will increase your harvest, sometimes by as much as 50%.

Large Plant Low Stress Training
Large Plant Low Stress Training

How Low Stress Training Works growing Cannabis Plants

When you do low stress training for your cannabis plants, you are twisting, tying and bending your plants to make them as low as possible before you start to flower them. You can grow one 9-foot cannabis plant in a normal 7 foot grow tent by using this cool method of growing cannabis.

Low Stress Training is normally done during the vegetative growth stage of the plant. The plant is easier to work with at this time in its growth process. You don’t want to do this type of training in flowering as it will slow the plants flowering growing time.

The best time to start LST is when the plant has reached two to three nodes or plant branches. This type of growing method also works very well for Autoflowering Cannabis plants as you only have two to three months to work with.

Low Stress Training Cannabis
Where to tie Down your Plants

What is the difference between high stress training and low stress training of cannabis?

High stress training of cannabis involves much more trimming of the plant, breaking of limbs to make them fit in your grow. With Low stress training of cannabis your goal is to do much less of this while still maintaining a low relatively flat, even canopy of cannabis flowers. You goal with both types of training is to keep the plant low and flat and to expose as many grow sites to the grow light as possible.  Most of all as a grower you will want to slow the grow of the plant as little as you can. High stress training will slow your plant more then low stress training. Be gentle with this type of training on your plants.

Benefits of LST with Cannabis Plant

 Cannabis Plants tend to grow in a style know as “Apical Dominance”, This means that the plant will grow from the top most bud, it will grow straight up with side branching at every node (where the sets of leaves meet the plants stems). This type of growth will result in the top node of the plant using the majority of nutrients and plant hormones to help it grow. This will create smaller side branches, and result in a cannabis plant that looks like a Christmas Tree.

When using LST to grow your cannabis plants, you are encouraging the plant not to grow from its main node at the top of the plant.

The benefit to growing this way is that the plant will have a flatter canopy at the top of the lights. It will also distribute the nutrients and hormones, more evenly across the top of the plant. This will result in more flowering tops, and also larger flowering tops on the plant.

How to do LST on Cannabis Plants

Low Stress Training Tying Down Plant
Low Stress Training Tying Down Plant

To do low stress training on your cannabis plants you will need something to tie or twist to holed down your plant’s branches. You can use plant tape, rubber-coated wires, even pipe cleaners if that is all your have available.

Here are the steps to LST your cannabis plant for the first time. You can either top you plant a week before hand, to help grow out the side branches, this isn’t necessary for this type of plant training but it may help.

  1. Place holes evenly around the outside of your plant pot, try to line them up as much as you can with the way the cannabis plant’s branches are coming from the plant. This will make your job easier later in the process.
  1. Depending if you had topped the plant or not you will have one or two stems at the top of your plant. On the two sides of the pot were the holes line up, tie the single or two top stems to the holes in the sides of your pots. You will want to put these top/s down as close to the sides of the pots as possible. Make sure you bend the shoots outwards away for the main growing stem.
  1. Next take the next two side branches from the top and do the same thing with two new holes in the pot. Make sure to bend the branches as gently as you can, you don’t want to break your plants branches in the process. If a plants branch does break, have some tape on hand, you can use that to repair the branch if it is still attached to the plant.
  1. Pull all the lower branches away from plant’s main stem to the sides of the pot. Some growers will have them circle the plants pot and make like a snake shape around the pot. The main goal Low Stress Training is to keep the plant level at the top. So, all your main side branches are at the same height.
  1. As the plant keeps growing your will want to continue to tie and shape the plant to keep it even on top. Once you start to flower the plant you can also defoliate the plant (Removing some of the main leaves). Most growers like to have 7 to 8 main flowering tops by the time they start to flower the marijuana plant.

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