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Top And Bush Plants For Maximum Yield


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#1 MCOne

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 05:03 PM

I was speaking with MGG earlier and we happened upon the topic of maximum yield as resulting from topping and placing multiple colas at the canopy where light is the most intense. As I have written before, intense light helps aid trichome production as a form of 'sunblock' for the bud. Intense light at the canopy will also result in bigger denser flowers because we don't have to worry about light penetration. Now lets look at a case study. This is a 3x5 foot tent with a 600w air cooled lamp. In the past I have run three, five foot plants in here un-topped with side branches getting light. I have since found that by running five, shorter, topped and supercropped plants in the largest soil containers possible (10 gallon was what fits five) that I can increase my yield 2x because I am not loosing a lot of buds to hash production because of their lack of size and density.. Here are 5 plants in the 3x5 space. It is essentially a SOG with 3 foot plants and between 14 and 6 heads per plant with the "second shelf" of tops not far below. Attached File  3x5-1.jpg   126.75KB   257 downloads Attached File  3x5-2.jpg   132.03KB   307 downloads Attached File  3x5-3.jpg   90.25KB   296 downloads Attached File  3x5-4.jpg   126.27KB   232 downloads What I do to achieve this is top the cloned female plants early at the 4th node (I don't like stressing un-sexed seed runs this early and wait longer) and once they form multiple branches I bend their branches out and down. Two days later the branches will be growing up and towards the light again. Veg them until they are like multiple plants coming from one stalk, them supercrop (pinch and bend over) all of the tallest shoots (away from the center of the plant to increase light penetration) the day you flip them into flower. This will help the secondary branches and below catch up with the tops before the branches become rigid to support buds. Sometimes, if you are growing multiple strains you might need to repeat the supercropping on the tallest plant at another location on the tallest branches to keep an even canopy. In the pictures above you can see the plant on the far right is stretching should have been supercropped twice. Yield will suffer from the uneven canopy in the example, but runs of the same strain and clones are much easier to control. I do not remove any lower branches other than those for making clones. You can see in the photos there have been enough clones taken to increase airflow down low. All of the shoots I removed were 8" or smaller and would have been the bottom most branches where light is the least intense. I keep the rest of the branches and use all of the wispy lower buds (and anything smaller than a us quarter coin) for making hash and edibles. If you choose to do any "limbing" or additional topping remove shoots 1 week prior to flowering as to not interrupt the flower cycle and maximize your time in 12/12. With the density of the plants using this method you will need to make sure you are circulating air above, below, and within the plants. I use one oscillating tower fan the height of the plants and one smaller fan below the canopy to circulate air down low and around the root-zone. I will add more pictures to this as time goes on. Please ask any questions you have. Also refer to my article "maximizing your medical garden," the link in my signature for further information. Thanks. Peace and prosperity. flyingsmiley.gif Glossary of terms as I use them: Supercrop - to pinch a branch and cause a weak semi-flat point at which you bend the plant shoot over shifting branching energy to lower branches making them think they are all meristems. (see video below for technique) FIM - a form of topping which leaves 15-20% of the top node intact. This method creates is advantagous because it promotes more than just two main shoots to grow. (see video below for technique) Top - removing the entire top node forcing the plants to branch at the leftset below and form two main 'plant like' shoots Plant like shoot - when topping a plant early in its life cycle the plant can grow to produce 2 shoots of such large size they appear to be two cannabis plants but in actuality they originate from the same stalk.

Edited by MCOne, 15 March 2011 - 08:44 PM.

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#2 MCOne

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Posted 12 March 2011 - 03:39 AM

Here you can see a clone that has been topped low to form three 'plant like shoots' from a single stalk. This triples the yield potential of this plant. Attached File  3x5.jpg   137.47KB   330 downloads Here you can see my technique for supercropping the tallest tops outward and away from each other to both encourage branching and to increase yield and light penetration. Attached File  3x5-2.jpg   112.1KB   315 downloads
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#3 kittypup

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Posted 12 March 2011 - 07:10 AM

Great info MC.... Thank you
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#4 kendog000

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Posted 12 March 2011 - 08:01 AM

Great read Mc, and ofcourse pics to explain your method and end result. Long ago i saw a video of Soma, doing this very same thing. Ever since then I have followed suit with awesome results. I very rarely grow a plant untopped, or not supercropped. I think many of us here at GP realize that sacrificing the monster main cola, for many more smaller tops, will indeed increase yield. I alos find that by doing this topping and cropping, the lowers or secondary tops, will be much denser in the long run. Nice job with this MC, it will open the eyes of some younger growers, new to our passion. Thanks for takin the time to write this up for all to see. Ken
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#5 DogFaceDude

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Posted 12 March 2011 - 08:11 AM

Great thread, MC. Thanks for the info It's much appreciated and a great contribution to the GP family.
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#6 teddys head

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Posted 12 March 2011 - 12:18 PM

cracking post m8 :super:

makes sense :Einstein: and with pics :bananas:

fair play MCOne for taking time to do this for all, your a whole goodin flyingsmiley.gif


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#7 MCOne

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 01:59 AM

Thanks everyone. You are correct ken the secondary and even third and fourth levels of buds will be more desirable because they will all be closer to the light and be getting a better angle of light as well. Here is a look at that same flower room with a second supercropping to level the canopy for the final time. I would not recommend supercropping during mid flower for others but this canopy was out of control and it needed to be done. You can kill tops by trying supercropping this late if you're inexperienced in this method. Attached File  3x53.jpg   201.69KB   178 downloads Here is an update on the plant we supercropped the tallest tops outward on 2 days ago, you can see how the canopy has spread out and evened itself naturally by forcing the lower branches into overdrive when we pinched and bent the tops over.. Attached File  3x54.jpg   109.43KB   201 downloads How many plants do you think take up this 2x3 foot area? If you guessed 1 plant then you're correct and it has the potential to yield huge just like a ScrOG would but achieved more naturally. No branches were even tied down on this plant to spread it because stem training was completed at the proper times and it allowed for the plant to grow large, wide, AND strong. Attached File  1vortex.jpg   179.55KB   210 downloads Here is an example of what I do to a clone in order to achieve multiple plant like shoots from a single stalk. This female clone (remember this is a great deal of stress and could force a unsexed plant to go male) was grown out to 8inches and then FIMmed off at both of the uppermost growths after transplanting into its finishing container with supersoil. I then supercropped the top over to force the lower branches to grow as main stalks. This plant will result in 7 or so main plant like shoots and something like 20 top heads and 50 main cola sites with the third shelf not far behind (identical to the 2x3' vortex above). Photos were taken 2 days after supercropping and you can see the FIMmed top shoot now growing back up towards the light behind all of the other LOWER branches! Attached File  toppedSupercroppedBubba.jpg   257.15KB   258 downloads Attached File  toppedSupercroppedBubba2.jpg   130.44KB   199 downloads

Edited by MCOne, 13 March 2011 - 04:17 AM.

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#8 teddys head

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 06:58 AM

very clear pics m8 :rock on:

big mamma vortex rasta.nana.gif

early to start seems to be the way to go actionleaf.gif

our girls can do with out da stress lol rasta.nana.gif


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#9 kendog000

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 07:25 AM

Rock on MC, rock on, teach the masses Ken
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#10 DogFaceDude

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 08:11 AM

I'd like to see if I'm clear on this, as I'll be starting a new grow and don't want to screw it all up. We top at around 30 days and then super crop after sex is shown in early flower? Super crop is where you lightly roll the stem between your thumb and index finger and then gently pinch one side to lay it down?
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#11 MCOne

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 03:44 PM

Yes for un-sexed seed runs of plants I top after the males naturally preflower around 35+ days in,
supercrop at the same time you top, and then continue to veg them until the desired size. Then I supercrop the tallest tops again the day I switch them into flower. I feel this takes advantage of the stretch by filling out the canopy with lowers instead of letting your tops soar sky high and disrupt the canopy.

I do not pinch and roll the stem anymore. I did alot of damage doing this, and even killed a few tops. Instead i just pinch to flatten the branch, and then bend it over at the flat point.
I never bend the branch again where it was supercropped because tampering with the 'joint' formed in the branch during healing can easily kill the top.

Here is a photo of a top that was 'pinched and rolled' instead of just pinched and bent over.
Attached File  pinchAndRollGrinspoon.jpg   82.88KB   136 downloads

Here on the other hand is a photo of a branch that was pinched flat and bent. The photo was taken after harvest and you can see how much stronger the branch became at this 'junction'.
Attached File  supercropped.jpg   56.82KB   127 downloads

Keep asking questions. Thanks, peace.

I'd like to see if I'm clear on this, as I'll be starting a new grow and don't want to screw it all up.

We top at around 30 days and then super crop after sex is shown in early flower?

Super crop is where you lightly roll the stem between your thumb and index finger and then gently pinch one side to lay it down?


Edited by MCOne, 13 March 2011 - 06:14 PM.

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#12 MCOne

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 03:56 PM

I feel like the best way to teach this is to show yall live in livin' color.

Here is a video of step one.
FIM + SUPERCROP THE MERISTEM
Ideally we would be working to increase the production of a known elite female clone.
This can happen at this age for seed plants, but I would wait until preflowers show.


Edited by MCOne, 15 March 2011 - 08:48 PM.

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#13 MCOne

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 04:04 PM

Part Two
Supercropping the young plant once it branches.
After this you can grow it to its desired height with multiple heads.


Part Three
Leveling the canopy
Day one of flower and spreading the shoots outward once again

Edited by MCOne, 15 March 2011 - 08:50 PM.

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#14 Papaw49

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 04:27 PM

cool i am anxiously waiting :rolleyes:
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#15 GeeGee

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 05:14 PM

Cool info MC. Will make it a sticky. Keep it coming!
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#16 MCOne

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 06:06 PM

Thanks folks Here is a shot of the 5 foot chernobyl plant I grew using this method in a 5 gallon square pot Attached File  stalkChernobyl.jpg   56.95KB   58 downloads Fourth generation vortex clone that was branched in the same method Attached File  stalkVortex.jpg   75.45KB   79 downloads And here is a Black Dahlia female clone that I topped early and will FIM and supercrop both plant-like-shoots of soon. Attached File  bcs2.jpg   120.88KB   73 downloads

Edited by MCOne, 25 March 2011 - 01:04 PM.

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#17 DogFaceDude

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 06:30 PM

Very informative thread, MCOne. I see you got part two and three now, and it's dynamite. As you know I'll be setting up a new tent that is 47"X47". Will I be able to do this and comfortably fit 4-5 plants in 5 gal. pots? Having three in my 2'X4' tent is too crowded and I'd like to do two this run in that older tent. 4-5 in the newer one. Ya think? Thanks again MC!
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#18 MCOne

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 06:44 PM

Two in this method sounds good for the older space. You new space is basically 4x4 feet, I feel like 4 plants grown large how I am showing would be perfect to fill the entire space with 3 vertical feet of primo buds and 3.5-4 foot of plants

Edited by MCOne, 13 March 2011 - 06:47 PM.

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#19 capthook

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Posted 13 March 2011 - 09:08 PM

Thanks for the great infor MCOne. I like the videos too real good .Keep it coming.Later
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#20 MCOne

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 02:02 AM

Follow up of the secondary supercropping on the 5 in the 3x5 - day 20 flower Remember to go very easy on secondary supercropping if you do it because there is always the chance of killing and the top. JTR Attached File  jtrCropped.jpg   155.05KB   96 downloads Attached File  JtrSecondaryTops.jpg   123.17KB   111 downloads Spacebomb Attached File  spacebombCropped.jpg   131.38KB   93 downloads

Edited by MCOne, 14 March 2011 - 04:11 PM.

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#21 kittypup

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 06:04 AM

Looking Great MC... .... Thanks for the great info also...
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#22 Guest_Markus_*

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 03:54 PM

really good info!

#23 Suzycrmcheese

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 04:48 PM

I do low stress training using opened plastic coated paperclips with velcro that sticks right to my smart pots. What are the advantages or disadvantages to using the super cropping technique over low stress training? I've been curious about the super cropping, and the videos are great!!!
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#24 lauren888

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 06:41 PM

thank you for sharing both the pix and the video. That REALLY helped me grasp the concept.
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#25 MCOne

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Posted 15 March 2011 - 12:33 PM

I would like to see pics of your method as well Suzy.
You are working towards doing the same thing as I am with your paper clips and that sounds great.

I might suggest using garden ties (the stretchy green plastic 1" wide band that looks like semi-clear green tape) because it is more gentle on the branch by spreading out the stress point and may not disrupt growth as much.

Disadvantages:
1) I feel like when you use string to tie branches down the plants grow weaker structurally because they dont have to fully support all their weight in the wind against gravity. I still tie down an occasional branch every now and then on dense plants, but only when I want to spread the plant out before flowering.

2) In nature animals will trample plants while running or moving through the brush. These plants either die or grow stronger as a result.
I am making my plants grow stronger each time I stress their branches.

3) On a lateral top branch every bud will be a top cola. instead of only one.
____

This hasn't been proven but I also need to stake up plants earlier than those who have been trained.
__

Sounds like you have a method that works for you, I would only suggest adding a single 'supercropping' of the meristem prior to flower to induce branching and increase canopy density.

I do low stress training using opened plastic coated paperclips with velcro that sticks right to
my smart pots. What are the advantages or disadvantages to using the super cropping technique
over low stress training? I've been curious about the super cropping, and the videos are great!!!


Edited by MCOne, 15 March 2011 - 08:55 PM.

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