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Growing weed has become more common than ever. Both professionals and beginners can grow different weed strains at their homes legally by following a proper routine and maintenance. Each weed strain comes with its unique properties. Some strains grow tall, while some are short with dense branches. The flowers, buds and leaf shapes and colors of the strains also vary.
To grow weed efficiently for a great harvest, one should consider several factors such as the type of soil used, lighting, temperature, humidity, etc. Did we forget something? Oh yeah! Pest control!! Pest control is a crucial factor to consider for healthy weed growth and higher harvesting.
Why pest control in weed growing is important?
Just like every other plant, weed plants also attract harmful insects, pests and plant diseases. To keep your plant healthy, you have to keep a constant check on it. Pests can be less threatening to your weed plant in the early stage. But, as days pass, you may start to see your plant’s stem, leaves, flowers and buds getting affected because of pests.
If left untreated, the pests can take a toll on your plant’s life. This is why ‘Pest control’ is an important aspect of growing weed. Every weed grower should consider pests as a potential threat and make all the efforts to prevent pests.
Some weed strains have natural powers to defend themselves from pests. But, only to a certain level… They may not easily attract pests like other strains, which easily attract pests. Yet, if pests grow in a large number, they will have a major impact on the plant’s overall growth and harvest.
Pests can affect both indoor and outdoor weed plants. So, prevent pests and take appropriate measures if you find your weed being infected with annoying bugs and insects.
Harmful pests to your weed plant
Some of the commonly affecting weed pests include Eurasian hemp borers, spider mites, Corn earworms, aphids, thrips, cabbage loopers, Hemp russet mites, whiteflies, and more. Apart from these, weed can be affected by fungal infections, molds, and plant bugs. Powdery mildew and Looper caterpillars, called budworms can also affect your weed.
Each pest can destroy the weed in different ways. Example: A Eurasian hemp borer can affect weed flowers. They can also live on the stem and create tunnel-like holes and cause damage. This will give way for other insects to affect the plant. Aphids can excrete fluids that are sticky and can cause fungal infections. They suck up fluids from the plant; reproduce asexually by laying eggs on the weed plant’s leaves and flowers. These eggs will grow up to be adults and destroy the plant.
Now, let us see how to prevent pests from destroying your plant.
5 Ways to Prevent Pests on Your Weed Plants
‘Prevention is better than cure. This quote never gets old! Preventing infestation on your weed plant or any plant is the most effective way to shoo away bugs and insects before they affect the plant. Most weed growers follow the regular way to grow weed indoors and outdoors and catch pest infestation on one fine day.
As a weed grower, you must know, you should take certain precautionary measures from Day 1 of your weed cultivation to prevent insects and bugs. Some weed strains are prone to pests. These strains need extra care and maintenance to keep pests at bay. Quarantining your plant for a week and checking for infestations can also be followed.
Here are the 5 effective ways to prevent pests on weed.
- Maintain a clean garden
‘Stay Clean, Stay Healthy’ is not just for you, but for your garden as well! There couldn’t be a better time to talk about cleanliness and sanitization. By now, we all know how swiftly diseases can spread and cause irreparable damage. Plant insects and diseases can spread quickly before you even notice them. So, it is always recommended to keep the surrounding of your weed plant clean. Remove trimmed leaves, and stagnated water regularly.
When you use plant types of equipment, sanitize them after usage using alcohol or hydrogen peroxide solution. Always wear gloves while touching the plant for maintenance. If you suspect you might carry pests or insects from outside and infect the plant, remove the shoes outside and keep a pair of clean shoes in your garden and use it while you handle the plant.
- Use quality medium to grow
Over 70% of the pest problem starts with the medium. If the medium in which the plant is grown is poor and not thoroughly inspected before usage, pests can spread easily. Soil is the common medium opted by many for growing weed. As you know, soil can easily attract insects. Some soil types are highly prone to bugs and worms. Therefore, know the source of soil and its pests-related properties before purchasing it. You might have heard your fellow weed growers complain about pests and discover them using the same soil. Soils of certain types have a high chance of getting infected.
Hydroponic mediums are on the rise in recent times. These mediums are best suited for weed growth, as they rarely attract any insects. Mediums like clay pellets, gravel, and rock wool will never attract pests.
If you want to be on the safer side, it is best to choose these types of mediums for your weed strains to prevent them from infestation. This doesn’t mean, pests won’t affect your plant at all. It may affect in other ways. But, you can prevent pests through a medium by opting for safer and quality mediums.
- Choosing the best environment
Just like we all have our homes to feel secure and lay down, our plants need a safer home too! If you are opting for indoor growing, it is comparatively safer than outdoor, concerning pests. The outdoor environment can easily attract insects and plant diseases. In an indoor space, your plant will be protected from external attackers.
You can also choose to grow tents and greenhouses to house your weed plants. In these, the plants will be much safer in the right conditions and free from pests. This doesn’t mean you cannot grow weed outdoor. You can, but with utmost care and caution. While growing weed outdoor, you need to constantly monitor your plant for any bugs.
Even outdoor, you can provide a sealed space for weed alone, to keep it free from pests.
- Seeds vs Clones
Weed can be grown using two popular ways. Either you buy seeds, or you get clones. Here is a clear understanding of seeds and clones. Seeds are readily brought from stores or suppliers and do not come contaminated with pests or diseases. Seeds are completely safe to use.
Coming to clones, many prepare clones of rare strains in a large scale manner. While indulging and exporting in a large scale manner, there are high chances for pest infestation. Some clones can arrive with insect eggs, or pests. You might not notice this until they grow in large numbers and entirely infect the plant.
We are not against clones. But, to use clones you have to keep some things in mind. Always purchase clones from a trusted supplier. When you buy clones from an unknown supplier, you never know how it was cultivated. If you make clones at home on your own, well and good! That’s safer. Seeds or clones, the choice is up to you. But, understand that seeds are much safer to use compared to clones, as they don’t come contaminated.
Some rare weed strains are available only in clones. So, if you choose them, get them from a trusted supplier to prevent any pest contamination.
- Pests prevention tools
Have you heard of fly strips? Fly strips are used to detect the presence of insects in your plants. You can use certain tools to identify pest infestation in your weed. Fly strips are one of them. Just buy them and place a fly strip near your plant. Insects or bugs will naturally go near the strip and stick themselves to the strip. In this way, you can check if your weed plant has any insects or bugs in it. If you find any insects on the strip, you can remove them at an early stage before they spread throughout the plant and make bigger damage.
While these are preventive measures, if you had found your weed plant already infected with pests, we will tell you what to do.
Pest Control – Release Beneficial Insects
Beneficial insects are insects that are safer to be released on plants and are used popularly in pest control. The beneficial insects feed on the bugs, worms and other insects affecting the plant. This will eliminate the problem causing insects from your plant. Precisely, you are going to kill the insects with the insects. This method is not just suitable for weeds, but also other plants.
Ladybug is one of the best choices! Did you know? A single ladybug can eat more than 40 aphids in a day. Sounds crazy, isn’t it? Ladybugs will also feed on other pests like spider mites, whitefly, and small soft insects. They love to eat the larvae of other insects. If you are interested to engage in organic pest control without using any chemicals on your plant, you can try releasing ladybugs or lacewings. These insects feed on smaller insects.
Purchasing these insects from the right source is very important. Go for Native American ladybugs. Do not buy the Asian ones. Releasing beneficial insects on weed is suitable for both grow tents, greenhouses and outdoor spaces. If your indoor space is too small, then beneficial insects are not a good option for pest control.
Ladybugs may fly off if you release them instantly after purchasing. Keep them in your fridge until evening. This will not cause them any harm. They will stay alive and their metabolism will be reduced. After sunset, release the ladybug on the wet plant. Make sure you place them near any insect-like aphids.
You can use lacewings in the same way. Except that, most lacewings are sold as eggs. This is due to their fragile body. You can release the eggs on your plant and wait for lacewings to appear. Unlike ladybugs, lacewings won’t fly as they are released as eggs.
As these are beneficial insects, they will only feed on other insects and not on plants. So, it is completely safe to release them on your plants.
Other Common Methods for Pest Control
If beneficial insects are not your preferred method to get the pests out, you can opt for other methods like
- Pest control sprays
Pest control sprays are available in various stores. You can also get them online. The spray should be sprayed upon your plant to kill pests. As not all sprays are effective, we recommend you purchase from a trustworthy source. Go through reviews and check the spray ingredients before placing an order.
The best idea is to make your pest control spray at home. It is safer, trustworthy and free of chemicals. Many use neem oil to make the spray. There are many ways to prepare this spray. You can check out the spray recipe online.
- Insecticidal soaps
You can also use Insecticidal soaps to get rid of pest infestation. The soap is prepared using potassium salts. Garden lovers always keep stock of this to kill plant insects. These soaps are completely safe to use on plants.
- Temperature & Heat control
Some insects can be killed by controlling the heat and temperature. By decreasing temperature, you can stop spider mites from reproducing. They cannot reproduce in a colder environment. Similarly, every insect has a certain tactic.
Altogether, pests are irritating to deal with. This is why it is best to prevent pests before they take over the plant. Unfortunately, if the pests have already infected your plant, do not worry, as you can still save the plant from further damage by following appropriate measures.
A rotating team of writers and editors dedicated to providing reliable information for the readers of American Promise. We’re all passionate about cannabis and actively engaged in this “budding” industry.