When do people trim leaves off of autoflowers?

So i have heard many times, that I should not trim the leaves off of autoflower plants… So when does everyone that grows autoflower plants trim off leaves that they do not want on the buds??? It is a lot easier and better to trim/manicure leaves off while plant is still growing, I think… I was thinking I would trim most of the leaves off that I do not want on the buds, right before, or the day that I am going to put the plant in the dark? Right before I harvest the plant. Is this a good time to do it?

Putting the plant in the dark is going to shock it anyway! Right? That is why the trichromes go all crazy, and mature or turn amber/darker faster, it is because the plant kinda goes into shock or survival mode, and tries to mature asap, so ALL the seeds would/will be ready to grow, or be mature enough to grow, except my plants do not have any seeds…? Can not trim leaves off after putting the plant in the dark while it is still alive, because one has to be able to see to trim leaves off, and one needs light to see, and the light will make the plant suck the moisture/water, (with a little bit of nutes still in the soil and roots), from the roots back into the buds… Right?

So, if the things I have written above in my beginner type way are basically true, the main question here is: When does everyone that grows autoflowers trim the leaves off of their autoflower plants, and the buds?

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If you are going to trim a auto flower plant, you should do this before it flowers.


Thanks @MAXHeadRoom! So u do NOT trim any leaves before or around harvest time? U trim all/most leaves on autos after u cut the plant away from the root ball? Before drying process?

Opps, meant to write “u do NOT trim any leaves before or around harvest time…” Sorry… @MAXHeadRoom!!!

I think I misunderstood you. I am talking about trimming your plant before flowering.
You are taking of trimming around harvest time.
I have trimmed the fan leaves off a day or two before harvest. Just don’t get to crazy


no sense in putting autos in the dark… but they need a good flushing just like photos

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I start trimming off larger fan leaves about a week before harvest.

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Thanks @basementstealth!!! I am just a beginner at this really. Have not grown is a really long time. Things were very different then!!! lol Why does it not make sense to leave or put auto’s in the dark right before harvest? A bunch of people told me, that I should put them in the dark for a day or two or even three, right before harvest. I am clueless, and trying to figure things out as I go. Perhaps some of my assumptions or statements in my first post on this topic are incorrect? Sure would like to learn about the “science” about doing this, and other things as well!!! lol

putting photos in the dark has a great affect but autos dont care about light hours. they flower according to their genetics


Thanks for the reply @basementstealth! I was told to put these auto plants, (all pot plants), in the dark right before cutting the plant down… People say this has two effects on the plants…

There are reasons to put them in the dark, but since you’re already very ripe, you have to figure out what to do. You need to weigh the options.

Do you really need to put it in a dark period to trigger it to drain itself, which in turn causes it to freak out & throw out/ripen its trichomes even more?

Or do you just need a good flush & dry?

The dark period is not a necessity. It is an end of harvest final effort to increase/ripen trichs.

As long as you harvest just before lights on, your plant will have had a sufficient dark period to keep nutes and such at the root zone.

Your plants are ripe. You don’t need to do anything to help that. A proper flush is all you need, then let it dry a few days, then harvest. If you had more time, you’d do a slow flush over a couple weeks.

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Thanks @blackthumbbetty! Ah, now we are getting somewhere! lol Do you happen to know how long it takes for the water/nutes. ect… to go back down to the root zone? I am on 20 hrs. on, and 4 hrs. lights off… Is 4 hrs. enough time? I assume it would be, but what do i know!!! lol Need to learn waaaay more! lol

I couldn’t find a definitive answer when I looked, but I think I read somewhere it takes at least 6 hours of darkness. I wish I remember where I read that.

I tried it out when I harvested my Blue Dream after she had only 7 hours of dark, and she’s one of the most delicious things I’ve ever tasted.


Thanks again @blackthumbbetty!!! Hmmm. I put the really ripe one in the dark late last night… at 1 or 2 am ish… Maybe I should take her out, and cut her off/down now? That would be enough time for sure, sounds like? I had to make a move on that one asap, so just put her in the dark… That room is not as dark as I had hoped during the day though, but prob. just as dark as a full moon night on a clear night, maybe darker than that. A little light gets in on side of door and bottom of the blinds…

How many hours in dark?

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Also, try to chop her down in the dark, too.

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Hmmmm, more than 12… hrs… now

Chop it! I’d chop it!

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can cut her off in the dark, and then after cut away from root ball, then can be in light while I trim some more…? Is fairly bright light ok then? Normal kitchen table lighting? Did not get to trim as much as I wanted yet… Thanks @blackthumbbetty!!!

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That’s fine.

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