Watering – Indoor Marijuana Growing
Every living thing on the planet requires water in some form, but, when working with marijuana, extra caution should be exercised. During the germination period, avoid inundating the marijuana plant with moisture. The top layer of soil should be kept moist, but even then it’s best to only use a few sprays of water from a spray bottle. When the plant actually sprouts, the area near the stem should kept dry. This is because moist conditions around the stem are often conducive to stem rot.
At this stage (and really any stage) it’s relatively easy to overwater marijuana plants. Using excessive water can cause major issues with the soil and major stress with the plants. As mentioned previously, the soil should not be too wet. Indeed, if you make the soil soggy by overwatering it, the roots will essentially drown as a result of the lack of oxygen. This is particularly true when watering small marijuana seedlings in large pots. These plants won’t need to be watered as much as bigger plants because they won’t need to take in as much water.
Unfortunately, it can be hard to tell if you are overwatering the plants, because the symptoms for overwatering and under-watering are exactly the same (i.e. the leaves will droop). Obviously, one way to check is by inspecting the moisture level of the soil. You can do this simply by testing the soil with your hand. If the soil appears to be damp, then holding off on watering your plants is the best recourse. It will still have plenty of water to draw from in the soil if it is still definitively moist. If the soil is dry, then adding more water is certainly advisable. As the plants grow, they will require more and more water to quench their thirst.
Overall, keeping the soil exceptionally moist or exceptionally dry for any long period of time will not be good for the plants. In fact, it actually needs to alternate between moist and dry to provide for better aeration in the soil.
Tap water is frequently used to grow marijuana, but many growers have concerns about its viability. Some municipal water systems put a lot of chlorine in the water which could kill beneficial bacteria around the plant. In general, chlorine isn’t going to be a huge problem and many plants grow and thrive using chlorinated water. There are solutions that are normally used for fish tanks but can work for growing a marijuana garden. Essentially, concerned parties add sodium to the tap water they are planning to use for watering. The sodium then bonds with chlorine in the water to make sodium chloride (a.k.a. salt). This won’t harm the plant, but if used in excess the soil could become too saline.
It’s also possible for your water supply to be infected with other minerals, which is a condition known as hard water. While hard water might be detrimental to your plumbing over a long period of time, it won’t have any negative effects on the plants. In fact, the minerals in the water actually help promote growth by adding extra nutrients. It is advisable to stay away from artificial water softeners during the growing period because they tend to put excess amounts of sodium in the water supply that make it unsafe for the soil and the plant. They also use a lot of other artificial additives that might not be good for the plant later on.