5 Reasons to Grow Autoflowering Cannabis

By Michael Coffey
Published: June 8, 2020 | Last updated: April 19, 2022 11:49:59
Key Takeaways

When it comes to easy-to-grow cannabis, autoflower is a no-brainer according to Michael Coffey. If you’re a cannabis grower seeking fast growth, big buds, and several crops per year, autos are for you.

2020 will be the year of the autoflower. Contemporary autoflowering cannabis is bigger, stronger, faster, and appeals to every kind of grower from novices to grand masters. Moreover, autoflowers are increasingly alluring to commercial cultivators, especially those ganja farmers blowing flowers into oils and other extracts. Not to mention the raw biomass potential of modern autoflowering cannabis.


Then of course there are the homegrowers all around the world, even in regions with colder, wetter climates and short summers. Autoflowering cannabis is the answer and the solution for those seeking sustainable recreational and/or medicinal cannabis self-sufficiency. Make no mistake, now is the right time and this is the right article to help you grow outstanding autoflowering cannabis this year.

Fast Track to Fat Cash

Sixty days from seed to weed is ridiculous! Speed is the number one attribute of autoflowering cannabis. It grows faster than rooted clones and isn’t triggered to flower by light deprivation like a traditional photoperiod plant, either. Autos are the fast track to a fat stash and will race to harvest much sooner than even the earliest blooming photoperiod strain. Even if most of your marijuana will be coming from photoperiod-dependent weed trees cut down in Croptober, you still need a stash in the meantime. Autoflowering cannabis can deliver dank without delay as the countdown to harvest begins at germination.


Beginner-Friendly Big Buds

You don’t need to be a veteran cannabis cultivator to harvest an amazing stash of autoflowering cannabis in two to three months indoors or outdoors. Autoflowering strains are endowed with many desirable attributes and don’t require special attention or particularly heavy feeding to perform. There is a lot to be said for keeping it simple in the cannabis garden and autos are as close as you can get to genuine set-and-forget seeds. Though if you got some green-fingered game in the grow-op, most modern autoflowering cannabis strains respond positively to pruning and training like topping and LST.

Less really is more with autos. Lightly fertilized soils and low doses of nutrients are recommended when cultivating autoflowering strains. Transplanting can be avoided altogether if you pot directly into the final container. Cover the basics of cannabis cultivation and autos will reward you with resinous reefer.

Exceedingly gooey varieties such as Sweet Gelato Auto and Auto Whiteberry have high flower to leaf ratios, high resistance, and high THC. Rising no taller than just over three feet, most home growers can easily accommodate squat branchy auto hybrids in a grow tent or outside on a sunny balcony or backyard. Plus, there are plenty of beginner-friendly, high-yielding Super Autos or XL Autos for those with larger grow spaces that can rise to almost five feet in height and even outperform the heavyweight photoperiod competition.


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Out-of-Season Sensimilla

Photoperiod cannabis strains won’t begin to bloom until sometime after the summer solstice on June 21. Gradually, as the days get shorter and the nights get longer in late summer/early autumn when the natural 12/12 schedule arrives, the flowering commences. Most outdoor growers germinate seeds in spring when there is 15+ hours of daily sunlight and spend months vegging plants. A majority still need to resort to light deprivation to accelerate the flowering phase to finish with a Croptober harvest. Altogether that’s six to nine months of outdoor cultivation and hopefully no rain in the days running up to harvest to ruin the reefer.


There is an alternative. You could complete double or perhaps even triple the amount of cannabis crops in the same timeframe if you grow fully auto instead of photoperiod or perhaps even a mix of both. Furthermore, autoflowering cannabis can weather extreme climates and difficult conditions better than the hardiest of photoperiod strains. Best of all, autos are not dependent on a reduced light cycle to flower. And autoflowering seeds germinated in April can be ready for harvest in June.

Similarly, for those outdoor growers getting a late start germinating autoflowering beans in July can expect to harvest a little less from smaller plants during September. Double tough dank strains like Jack Herer Auto provide a genuine gourmet ganja, out-of-season alternative for southern growers and a sticky green lifeline for growers in northern latitudes.

Six Crops Per Year for Commercial Growers

Indoors the growing season lasts all 12 months of the year for commercial cultivators. With the right selection of strain or strains an experienced indoor master grower could successfully bring six crops of autoflowering cannabis per year to harvest. Bear in mind, no alteration of the light cycle would be required and therefore no need for separate grow spaces for plants in vegetative growth on an 18/6 light cycle and those in bloom under 12/12.

The optimal light cycle for indoor autoflowering cannabis is an uninterrupted 20/4 from seed to harvest. Light leaks and disruption during the dark period are to be avoided but aren’t as detrimental to the development of autos as it would be for photoperiod strains.

Total per annum autoflowering cannabis yields could potentially significantly exceed that of the standard three or maybe four photoperiod crops per year.

Overall savings from reduced fertilizer use and reduced attrition due to mold could also be significant for large producers. Consistent stable autoflowering strains like Red Poison Auto reliably produce impressive premium frosty purple Kush nugs in nine weeks or less.

Autoflowering Cannabis is Connoisseur-Grade Ganja

Modern autoflowering cannabis strains often contain just 10 per cent or less ruderalis genetics so there is no reason to fear inferior-quality cannabis. Instead, highly potent and highly resistant plants in a compact fast flowering package are to be expected. In temperatures as low as 6°C and as high as 38°C autoflowering cannabis is often the only cannabis that will endure and produce a stash fit for a connoisseur. Devastatingly potent autoflowering cannabis strains like Stardawg

Auto are packing 22 per cent THC and the loudest terpene profile with the most intense pine and diesel aromas you ever whiffed. There’s no good reason not to grow some dank autoflowering cannabis in 2020.


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Written by Michael Coffey | Cannabis Cultivator, Writer, Photographer, & YouTuber

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Michael Coffey, aka Top Shelf Grower is a cannabis cultivator, freelance writer, photographer, and YouTuber originally from Dublin Ireland. These days he’s on the loose creating dope content from an off-the-grid location somewhere. In 2018 he self-published his first book, Cannabis Cultivation a 21st Century Guide, available on Amazon.

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