Is light deprivation near the end of flowering autoflowers a good process to increase trichomes
I think this came up just yesterday.
The consensus was no. If anything its probably detrimental to trike development and a cause for degradation. If I can find the thread I will link it.
Taking away a plant’s light removes its energy source to grow and maintain trichomes.
This is the concept that I think about when people ask about defoliation.
They say " I want the plant to use It’s Energy to make buds."
Its Energy is the phrase that bugs me. What energy? The light is the energy source. Yes the plant will produce carbohydrates (sugars) and store them in the roots, But those sugars were produced in the leaves. The only reason a plant doesn’t die from Lollipopping is anything with chlorophyll will perform photosynthesis. So even the stalk and branches can make sugars for the plant to grow. And the first thing it does when you pull off all the leaves is grow new ones. So most of the carbs go into growing more leaves. We talk about plants sometimes like they actually think and make decisions. But the reality is certain things trigger certain reactions.
So the working theory on darkness is that under extended total darkness the plant is tricked into reacting to certain death and will produce more resin to protect itself. But your reply, and its so simple its genius, is there is no energy to do this. What sugars that are stored for growth will be used to keep plant cells alive and without light it will start to consume nutrients from other areas to keep itself alive. So resin glands could only be a food source and not increased by darkness.
Great point Midwest.
The whole darkness thing was originally to improve smokeability of the finished flower by allowing the plant to store salts in the roots (which it supposedly does anyway) so that the user isn’t consuming harsh salts. It sort of morphed into “increasing trichomes”.
Cool. I did not know this.
I also just chop during the “daytime”. Tried both, Didn’t see much of a difference. Also just followed the lead of a lot of great growers in the forum, and many do not use the 72 hour darkness rule. And you cannot argue with some of their outcomes
To increase trichome production in late flowering here are some things I have come across while also researching this topic.
All of these are typically done in the last 3 weeks.
- Add UV light to your set up.
- Sugars, starch and probiotics - I use molasses but I found a lacto tea…I am going to try this instead of molasses on the grow I am doing now
- 1 part sea salt
- 3 parts organic brown sugar
- 10 parts organic brown rice
- Water (10mL per gram of rice)
- Lower humidity if you can down to 30-40%
I read that 48 hrs dark before harvest is a trigger to plant that winter is here and pushes it to use stored energy to finalize trichome maturation. Prolly some bro science but I do it, hasnt had any negative effect Im aware of.