Cannabis technology is developing at quite a rate. It’s well-developed, effective, and simple to use, making marijuana better than ever.
It’s not only big-name manufacturers who benefit, either. Weed gardening is becoming common in American households. Many of these inventions are helping at-home cultivators achieve dispensary-tier yields.
Success is feeding the motivation to grow, and the cycle repeats itself. So why not jump on the bandwagon?
There are now countless sites where you can buy indica and sativa seeds. It’s time to take advantage of innovation for better cultivation.
Read on to discover the top seven technologies used by pot farming experts. Discover ways to incorporate them into your setup.
A Cleaner Cultivation Method?
When people think about weed gardening, they imagine plants developing in soil. And that’s how it’s traditionally been. You plant in pots or available land, watering and feeding by hand or irrigation systems.
The early 21st century saw a mass transition to indoor setups. Hydroponics emerged as a viable alternative to soil, offering a cleaner, controlled, and straightforward way to grow.
In simple terms, hydroponics entails keeping crops in water. Seeds go into an inert medium like Rockwool, and roots grow in a nutrient-rich solution.
Hydroponic setups are simple to establish, space-efficient, and much less variable than soil. As such, they eliminate most guesswork from cultivation. Beginners can follow a simple equation and achieve abundant harvests every time.
Modern hydro setups are super-diverse, but growers mostly rely on the following technologies:
- Wick systems
- Water culture
- Ebb and flow
- Drip systems
- Nutrient filming
No system is superior; they simply provide nutrients in different ways. They also vary in size and complexity, accommodating a variety of setups.
Higher Than Horizontal
Vertical farming is an advanced cannabis growing technique mostly adopted by large-scale manufacturers looking to optimize output. It can work just as well for tiny-space growers.
In essence, vertical farms are layers of horizontal containers stacked on top of each other. It’s a space-saving system that hinges on the basic principles of indoor growing.
This approach isn’t exclusive to marijuana gardening, either. Many US regions use them to handle scarcities in food deserts.
In the case of cannabis, growers purchase racks to lay against the walls. They install a cool, 360-degree lamp in the center of their space (usually powerful LEDs). Environmental control sensors are essential for success.
Soil and hydroponic setups both pair well with vertical farming. In either case, you want to keep crops short and foliage minimal by shortening the vegetative stage.
Any cultivar can flourish in these farms, but it takes know-how to wiggle a tall sativa plant into the rack. People mostly grow tiny indica strains in vertical setups.
Cozy Roots, Prolific Plants
Trends have shown that cannabis plants are the sturdiest and most prolific in warm media and cool air. These conditions make them compact, eliminate unnecessary branches, and boost bud production.
However, it’s tricky to raise soil temperature without scorching the room. As a result, several companies came up with solutions to specifically heat the root zone.
Notable technologies include:
- Radiant heating systems—heating the air below the plant shelves
- Tubing heat sources—flexible heaters surrounding the container
- Floor heating systems—space-saving tubing built into greenhouses
These heaters help growers maintain a 60–88°F soil temp range for higher-quality output.
Drop-By-Drop Against Drought
Excess heat and underwatering are omnipresent issues. It might seem obvious, but the right application of plain water can nip many of them in the bud. That’s where misting and fogging enter the picture.
Misting is the simpler of the two techniques. Growers universally use it on seedlings, spraying the leaves instead of watering the medium to avoid root damage.
It does wonders later in the growth cycle, too. Notably, dry-land cultivators often mist foliage and buds in the early mornings to promote development.
Fogging is an advancement of this cannabis cultivation technology.
Fog pumps release tiny droplets into the air. They settle on crevices and hard-to-reach areas between the branches, nurturing dry spots.
Foliar moisture aids growth, but that’s not all. Fogging offers the following benefits:
- Humidification—fog is a natural, affordable alternative to humidifiers
- Cooling—droplets reduce temperatures for a fraction of cooling unit costs
- Odor control—the fog evaporates and carries the scents of developing terpenes
- Disinfectant action—water deters pests and prevents fungus in thick foliage
Retrofit Your Old Greenhouse
Greenhouses combine the best aspects of indoor and outdoor cultivation in a single setup. Many existing facilities are outdated, though, yielding subpar cannabis for purely technical reasons.
Does that mean you have to build a new greenhouse from scratch to keep up, though?
Not anymore. American companies are mass-producing parts to let cultivators retrofit their units for greater efficiency.
You can optimize in several areas. For instance:
- Efficiency—rolling benches for walkability and ventilation for breathability
- Weed growth—roof glazing for better light penetration, supplemental lamps, and shading for consistent light cycles
- Environmental control—vents for temperature maintenance, humidifiers for air quality, side lamps to supplement the sunshine
- Cost control—air-tight sealing, energy curtains, energy-efficient LED lamps
In essence, several installations can make your 1960s greenhouse seem hyper-modern—and produce top-tier weed.
Smarter Grow Rooms
Any set of tips to grow cannabis indoors emphasizes the importance of climate control. It’s now your task to replicate the optimal outdoor conditions for crop development, including:
- Grow lamps (instead of natural sunlight)
- Exhaust fans (instead of air and breeze)
- (De)humidifiers (instead of rain and sunshine)
- Watering (instead of rainfall and soil moisture)
Gadgets let you tackle each factor and preserve an equilibrium. Doing it by hand requires plenty of time and attention, though.
Smart home solutions are coming to the rescue. Get the right apps, connect them to your devices, and maintain the optimal environment without leaving your living room.
These apps come in all shapes and sizes, too.
They might turn the lights on and off at appropriate hours for a consistent light schedule. You can also get systems for controlling temperature, ventilation, humidity, and CO2 contents. Mobile-controlled nutrient dosing and pH adjustment are also possible.
Automation reduces your daily workload and streamlines climate control. It also eliminates human error—like forgetting to turn off the lights and flipping your crop back to vegging!
Trim Your Trimming Job
Much of advanced cannabis growing revolves around optimization, but there’s also an element of ease. Machine trimming is in this category, preparing buds for curing without hours of manual labor.
Growers didn’t always favor this technique. Old-school trimmers would cut too much flower material and disrupt trichomes, damaging flavors, and potency.
Machinery’s come a long way over the years, though.
Today’s trimmers tackle buds with great care. Manufacturers use smooth materials and round designs to reduce friction and maintain trichomes. The results are neat and consistent.
What’s more, you no longer have to choose between wet and dry trimmers. Most devices are versatile enough to accommodate both, letting you harvest how you see fit.
Cannabis Technology: Growing More Accessible
These cannabis technologies are merely the tip of the iceberg. Weed tech firms are expanding, developing new gadgets and approaches, and making them available to everybody.
It’s exciting to see how cannabis cultivation can improve with technology. We can only expect higher-quality flowers in the coming years—from mass-scale manufacturers and modest farms alike.
If any tech trend from the list piqued your interest, why not try it at home? Buy seeds, grow cannabis plants, and see them work their magic in practice.
Douglas Kester is a seasoned cannabis grower at I49 Seed Bank with more than 10 years of experience. Douglas is well-versed in all aspects of marijuana, from its cultivation and species to its effects. When it comes to subtleties of cannabis law, he knows the ropes. LinkedIn