Outdoor Harvested Buds Were Not Dense, Airy Flower Harvest

First outdoor harvest. The colas looked great on the plant, but after harvest and trimming the buds were airy and about half as dense as what you would want or expect from a dispensary. The buds were also more leafy than I would have expected.

I’m thinking that the light cycle may have been interrupted too many times due to the back porch light being turned on 1-2 times a week during most of the flowering stage, or it could have been that the plants were dehydrated several times with 90 degree plus temps and were wilted many times but never came close to dying or dropping any significant amount of fan leaves.

For some reason, the autoflower Green Crack plants seemed to not be affected with the same harvest issues and the buds were not as dense as I’d like, but came out pretty nice with density and aroma. Since the autoflowers are not affected by an interruption of light during flowering, this may be the problem but I’m not sure.

I’ve read that nutrient issues could cause it as well, but I don’t think this did it since there were dark green leaves the entire flowering period and no nutrient burn.

First image is harvested buds the night of harvest but not dried at all.

First image is outoor plants, the extreme right is Red Headed Stranger at 6.1 feet height.

Second image is Strawberry Cough, the biggest cola, still not very dense (photo taken on harvest day) though it looks great in the photo.

Third image is Red Headed Stranger bud.

Fourth image is Read Headed Stranger smaller buds from the plant.


Powdery mildew perhaps? I doubt the light played a part. It could be soil or nutrient

No mildew seen on the plants or bugs, except there were several green caterpillar looking worms on some of the bigger flowers during harvest day.

So an interrupted flowering light schedule wouldn’t produce airy buds? I was thinking as much, because it seems like the buds would just be smaller and not have a density issue. It sure looked great when wet, that’s what she said).

Soil was Miracle Grow Cactus/Palm Tree Mixture from Home Depot. Very similar to Fox Farm’s mixture which has vermiculite and drains very well. The pots were 5 gallon fabric pots that prevent root rot. Fertilizer was liquid Fox Farm Grow Big and Tiger Bloom with a little bit of Miracle Grow flowering powder. The water is a little hard with Calcium.

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im no expert but i think your problem may have come from the miracle grow. ive grown quite a bit using miracle grow and every time the buds look amazing then at chop and after drying they look depressing and light. verry fluffy and not much density. just something to throw at the think tank. @spacey

I think this is pretty typical of outdoor grown weed personally. It is in my area anyway. The light would have maybe caused plant to go hermaphrodite if anything. If it did, you would more than likely have a bunch of seeds.

It can, but I’ve seen tight buds grown under street lights so I doubt that’s it.

I have also seen buds infected with mildew mold etc lose alot of leaf and make airy buds. It could be genetics, disease, insects and a thousand other things but my bet is the dirt. Just my two cents.


I would think the sativa dominance, especially the strawberry cough, would also lean toward a more open bud structure.

I had three outdoor plants this year. Two GG4s and one tangy dosidos.

The GG4s looked good on the plant but buds were small and larfy.

The tangy dosidos was sticky and dense with lots of medium sized nugs.

Same soil, same light, same nutrients so I am leaning towards genetics as the culprit in my case.


I’m with u buddy. Most autos I’ve grown out come out looking stellar but the end results are depressing lol. The taste and smell and high are all there but it is nothing nice to look at lol. Loose airy buds for sure I don’t dial back light power towards the end and I’m wondering if they just get like heat stressed or something that creates the airy effects. Sorry to hear this it happens to me also. Got fem photos or reg photos and u’ll love the outcomes of them babies. Rocks for sure if u have good lights lol. Lighting make s a world of differences in bud quality also


Congratulations on that Beautiful bud

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My outdoor photos are always denser than my indoor grows ever were. My GDP this year consisted of 1.5 lbs of rock hard nugs when dry. I’ve never had luck with autos being anything but airy.

I also harvested a couple of colas of a blueberry photo that are not nearly as dense but incredibly more sticky/aromatic than the GDP. I’m going to cut the rest early next week - it’s not a closed bud structure but the stuff I already dried and tasted is insanely potent and flavorful already.

I’ve given up almost entirely on autos.

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just out of curiosity, how long have they been curing in jars/grove bags (whichever you’re using) since drying? My girl scout cookie SEEMED airy and she WAS even harvested a little early, trichs were close, due to starting to hermie on me… the longer it cured in jars (been near 3.5weeks now) the more it “shrunk up” or tightened up if you will and got tight and more like buds you’re used to seeing. ALSO smells A LOT better. More like what it did on the plant. Maybe it just needs to cure more?

I won’t use it again, I had run out of FoxFarm liquid fertilizer and thought what’s the harm? At least not using it will cut that out of the equation.

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Found 3 seeds total in 6 plants. I had read that the sun has double the energy than any LED grow light. I remember all those High Times outdoor photos that had massive buds from outdoor plants. Hmm, maybe vegetative outdoors and then flowering indoors?

Hmm, I thought Cactus soil was a good idea for drainage. What soil do you use?

Possibly, but I’m judging it off of how dense the buds are at local dispensaries around here, someone is growing these Sativas the right way, indoors or out, not sure.

Could be, except that I had one Indica outdoors with them and it was just as bad or worse with density.

It could very well be heat stress / dehydration. In the flowering stage, there were several days I was out of town and they weren’t watered properly. Once quite a bit of leaves dropped off, but new ones seemed to take their place / I also cut off several branches.

They’re over two weeks old now and I screwed up the curing process on most of the plants by letting them dry too fast. I really messed this harvest up lol.

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