Though there are a lot of different hydroponic methods for growing marijuana, many growers still decide to stick with the tried and true soil grow. Marijuana can do great in many different soil mixtures as long as it is provided with the proper nutrients and growing environment.
There are many advantages to be had from choosing to grow marijuana in soil, but there may also be some disadvantages that the prospective grower should consider. If you need help deciding, then read on below for some of the biggest pros and cons of using soil as a grow medium.
The Pros of Growing Marijuana in Soil
One of the main reasons that growers choose to grow in soil is that it is quite simply the easiest method. It is perfect for both those who are just starting out and those who have spent many grow cycles perfecting a soil growing technique that works for them. Soil is the natural growing medium for any plant, and so getting started on a soil grow requires little besides placing a seed in some soil and waiting for it to pop up.
Soil is also an extremely forgiving medium for mistake such as overwatering, forgetting to water enough, not providing enough nutrients, or even providing too many nutrients. The soil acts as a kind of buffer and gives the grower some time to nurse the affected plant back to health.
Finally, many growers and users alike argue that marijuana grown in soil ultimately ends up tasting better than marijuana grown in a hydroponics set up. This is probably due to the fact that soil contains organic substances known as humates, which many believe not only result in a better taste, but which also provide the cannabis plants with some important nutrients.
The Cons of Growing Marijuana in Soil
Though there are many perks to growing marijuana in soil, there are also some drawbacks. The two biggest disadvantages of a soil grow is that, when compared to hydroponics, plants tend to grow slower and produce a smaller yield, even when given the same lighting and nutrients. So, while a soil grow may be simpler, it does take more time and offers less in return.
Cannabis plants grown in soil are also at greater risk for various pests and diseases, though this risk can definitely be reduced depending on the soil you use. Soil grows also make it harder to control the exact amount of nutrients that your plant is getting, as the soil contains some nutrients already. Furthermore, if pests, diseases, or nutrients do cause any problems, it may take long for your plant to show any signs.
Finally, a soil that doesn’t drain well could result in root problems such as root rot or a nutrient lockout, so you must take special care to ensure that your soil is porous enough to allow for drainage. Thankfully, this can easily be achieved by mixing in some perlite or vermiculite.
If you’re still not sure what medium you’d like to grow your cannabis in, you can always take a look at our Ultimate Marijuana Growing Guide and see what other options are available!