I was listening to a podcast recently on the the topic of auto strains. Apparently the Auto segment of the industry is the fastest growing. One company, Mandalorian claims to have the best autos, they claim to not have stunted growth. They use the lowryder strain as an example of “first generation” autoflower strains.
He also claims that “modern” auto flower strains are hardy. He told a story how he went out of town and left his Auto in total darkness with no water for 16 days. And he got a decent harvest off it.
I’m going an auto and it’s beyond finicky.
So, what would you rather grow, a photo period plant or an auto flower?
I’m starting to think autoflowers are good for growing outside since you can get 2-3 grows in a summer whereas it takes an entire summer to grow a photoperiod crop. By getting several grows in a summer I’ve built my stash for lean times. The photo periods grown outdoors will have a big payoff assuming nothing bad happens to the plants before they are harvested, but they aren’t going to be ready before mid October regardless of when you start them.
I wouldn’t waste my time growing autoflowers indoors unless I was totally out of pot and needed something quick, photoperiod are a much better use of limited resources.
All my plants get their own QB 135. They’ve all been under Qb 288 v2 3000k boards but I just swapped them out for Qb 288 r-spec boards a few weeks back so time will tell how they do.
As for the seeds, I’d grow some out and see how you like them. A lot of people here prefer autos. I still have 16 blueberry auto seeds and like I said, they’re going out in the elevated garden and I’m going to let nature do her thing.
During the past year I grown 16 autoflowers. 10 WW, 3 AH and 3 blueberry with a average yield of 3 oz / plant. I currently have 4 northern lights photos in the tent. I am finding I get more enjoyment from the photo. I started with autos as a new grower. I tried a little LST, topped some of them too. Just learning and getting a feeling for the plant. So maybe it is being able to apply what I learned from growing autos to the photos that I find rewarding.
I have 3 jack herer autos in starter pots now. I also have 5 strawberry kush soaking and 4 (hopefully) will go in the tent when the NL are finished.
Autoflowers are definitely very popular these days and many breeders are jumping on the bandwagon.
Both types of plants have their own pros and cons. I really like doing both for perpetual grows. Sometimes I choose one because the particular strain I want is only offered in one type.
There’s a ton of myths and misconceptions about autoflowers (small, fragile, unpredictable to name a few) that continue to get perpetuated. If you really want to learn about them, I suggest checking out the autoflower network.
I think you will find that Mephisto is widely considered the best autoflower breeder in the world. There is a Mandalorian section at the autoflower network if you want to read up on them, but I would also recommend checking out the other breeders like FastBuds and Night Owl.
As far as to which for you to grow? I would suggest trying a few strains of each type and see which you prefer. You may decide to grow both types.
Photo period hands down. This is just marketing. Auto flowers grow to whatever size they want, flower whenever, and you can’t clone them.
Personally I’ll grow the few seeds I have, but I grew one auto flower, cool, I grew it, but I didn’t enjoy it.
My first grow was photos. Harvested it in August. This grow is autos. I was just in the tent checking them out and cleaning up some lower leaves not getting enough light. I am not pruning these at all. What I noticed is how fragile these are. The leaves and stems are just not as strong and it doesn’t take much to bend or break them. And I am giving them silica. While it is fun to see them flower so fast, the photos flowered just as fast. As I was piddling around in the tent my exact thought was this: This is the last time I will grow an autoflower.
I rather prefer the photos and being able to manipulate them much more with less chance of harming them. I loved trying FIM, topping, supercropping, and tying down on the photos. I like that hands on approach. There is just not a whole lot for me to do with these autos.
Admittedly their pace of growth is often unpredictable, training and certainly pruning options are more limited, but this one is growing in an uncontrolled light environment so it gives me the opportunity to grow another plant, experiment a little and have some fun.
I tried, am trying, some autos this year mostly on a whim and out of curiosity. They’re a crapshoot that frankly doesn’t gain one anything if you’re already geared up to effectively flower your space imo. But if it helps get someone to try growing I’m all for it. I see a lot of first timers confused by the unpredictability and odd growth habits which I think might be frustrating to folks with no horticulture experience.
One thing I find useful at my latitude is you can get more than one harvest outdoors if you space them out.