Spliting an autoflower stem

I have two autos; White Widow ; in the same pot. So I screwed up from the start, but my first grow so it’s all an experiment. I LST’d the crap out of them so they are bent & twisted coming right out of the hydroclay ( oh yeah I’m doing hydro with them) there is just a ball of stem. Can I use a drill bit on them & stick a straw in the hole? Do you even do this on autoflower plants? When placing the zip ties do you just loosely place them? I was thinking that tight might kill the plant or at least slow its growth. They appear close to cutting all the buds an thought I’d try it.


Hey @jonkohler! Welcome!

Thanks for this as I had never heard of ‘stem-splitting’ before and just did some research on it!

That’s some aggressive training right there, but sounds like if you get it right the rewards are sweeeet!

I just googled it and found a great guide on RQS’s site (hopefully won’t get in trouble for mentioning their site here)

Are you planning on putting any pics up? I’d be really keen to see this in action!

Good luck! :four_leaf_clover:
CJ. :v:

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I am not exactly sure what you are asking. Are you trying to separate them or harvest them? If you are shocking them to harvest, sure drill away. Not sure of the benefit but I have tried it on an auto. Not sure what the zip ties would buy you. They are done growing.

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I couldn’t separate them if I wanted to, I screwed up putting them in the same pot, but I’m experimenting and along with learning comes mess ups. I didn’t know about phenotypes and figued they would grow at the same rate.I want to harvest the fast growing one without hurting the slower one which is going to be the better plant . The faster one has popcorn buds an the slow one has 12 er so actual colas. All of the articles I read say place zip ties above and below the cut, (in my case a hole) . I see that things people do to their plants don’t always apply to auotflowers so is spliting the stem appropriate for auto’s? the first pic is the plants one on left is the slow one taken three or so days ago an the tricomes is the slow one taken three weeks ago.

sorry the pic of the tricomes won’t upload for some reason (my suckyness with computers)

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I have not heard about using zip ties. About drilling autos, at the point it is ready for harvest in my mind there is no difference between an auto or photo. An auto’s life and flower cycle is more calendar based so when it is done it is done. In other words treat it for harvest purposes just like you would a photo. If you think splitting the stem will benefit the quality of the bud, by all means do it.
The delayed one has some nice buds on her. Some timely pruning along the way would have helped the other plant. ie getting rid of all the undergrowth that doesn’t amount to much and just consumes energy from the rest of the plant.

thanks I found that article and it sez " don’t do thiis to autoflowers"

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found this tells about it better than I could

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Jun '18


Welcome to ILGM
WE are all happy that you have chosen us .

Check this out I think it will explain everything.

Check this out on " STEM SPLITING "

Splitting Cannabis Stems

Splitting the stem of cannabis plants is a controversial technique buzzing around the cannabis forums of late. Outdoor ganja farmers in Colombia during the 1960’s and 70’s were reputed to “ring” cannabis stems a couple of weeks before harvest. A pocketknife is the only tool needed.

The practice is believed to have given Colombian Gold its golden nugget bag appeal. By inducing senescence to increase potency and break down chlorophyll, the method helped make the strain a legend, allegedly.

The splitting technique has been popularised by outdoor Dutch cultivators online. Splitting stems follows similar logic to “tree ringing”. Instead of completely removing a few layers of bark from the circumference of the stem you split it with a vertical cut through the middle. Make no mistake. This is extreme high-stress training.


When To Split Cannabis

If you are going to experiment with the splitting technique, timing is crucial. Splitting the main stem of a flowering female cannabis plant 7-10 days before harvest is the window that most growers favour. Inducing high levels of stress to force the plant to produce more resin and terpenes with a split is tricking Mother Nature. Marijuana will respond to this kind of stress negatively if you split too early.


Splitting cannabis plants stems doesn’t require brute force. Rather precision, preparation and the right tools for the job are what you need. Moreover, splitting is best suited to outdoor marijuana crops. Although, an indoor experiment can succeed following the same methodology.
1.First, gather up your splitting tools. Don’t worry, they are all easy to come by. You need a large, non-serrated, sharp kitchen knife, 3 pencils or kebab skewers if can get them, and some string. Next, size up your stem. Measure out an area approx 15-20cm long from just below the lowest set of branches towards the ground.
2.Wrap the string around the stem a few times. Tie off two pieces of string to mark the borders of the area to be split. One for the top and one for the bottom. Then carefully drive the blade through the stem.
3.With one hand on the handle and the other depressing the dull side of the blade slowly and as straight as possible split the stem. All the way to the lower knot. Don’t remove the blade just yet.
4.While the wound is still fresh and open with the blade wedged in the bottom, insert the 3 skewers to prevent it from closing. Slide out the blade and make sure your skewers are spaced out. That’s how to split the stem of a cannabis plant Dutch style.

How To Split Cannabis Stems


Splitting is reputed to increase the potency of marijuana and possibly boost flower production too. Hard data is difficult to come across to verify this claim. Unfortunately, all we have to confirm the effectiveness of the splitting technique is forum chatter and some YouTube vids. Albeit footage by skilled Dutch stem splitters.

In theory, this high-stress method works, and they are at least reporting positive results here in the Netherlands. Experiment with one cannabis plant as a test case if you are considering it.


Splitting, by its very nature, is rough treatment for cannabis plants. High stress close to completing the bloom cycle is risky. For auto-flower cultivators, this technique is best avoided. Similarly, novice growers should skip splitting. Unless you’re already hitting the potency barrier, the splitting technique is unlikely to push your marijuana to produces extra potent gooey buds.
He used string but most other blogs I’e seen used cable ties (zip ties) an he said not to do it on autoflowers, same as the article Calamity Jane suggested reading so I doubt I’ll do it this time around. Thanks


In here he refers to tree ringing. from my wood burning days you would ring a tree with a chainsaw and kill it then harvest it the next year or two for dry firewood. thats why I wondered about the tightness of anything around the stem chokimg off the flow of nutrients.

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There are also those that say don’t top them. I imagine that there are just as many that say go ahead do it. And they do it successfully.

I did FIM them, I saw in one of Roberts writings where he said to FIM an auto just be careful

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I just found this on utube & the guy uses a drill on his stem!

I think I will try doing it with my next grow looks more precise than using a knife.
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I dont think I’d try this on autos. Even though it’s done in the last couple of weeks…maybe grab a bag seed and try it

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Did it about 3 or 4 days ago I’m too impatient to wait severeal months. Like most 70 year old kids. The plant seems to be doing O.K. but buds now seem to be growing buds on top of buds. Might be normal, I don’t know cuz I’m an old newbie. When I reach 100 I’ll have this figured out.


[quote=“jonkohler, post:13, topic:56867”]
When I reach 100 I’ll have this figured out.
[/quote] :rofl: :rofl:

Just finished my first grow and I think I had the same thing occur. It was explained as “foxtailing”. When this occurs at the stage you are in, it is a good sign that the plant is almost finished. Keep an eye on the older calyxes as the new growth will always show clear trichomes. I found it very hard to know when to chop because I was seeing so much new growth.

Very pretty bud!

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Thanks I’ll keep an eye on the older ones. I look at all the older ladies now, sad but true. Ah hell I’m lieing I look at all of em, at least till they plant me I will.

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Thanks, I did as sugested & took out alot of the under brush. Looks more like most other posts I see.

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