What Does Low Stress Training (LST) Mean?
Low-stress training, or LST, is a method of training plants, usually cannabis, to grow horizontally, rather than vertically. Horizontal growth can allow for stronger overall growth, and when done correctly, allows you to maximize your growing area and yields.
To carry out LST, growers simply tie plants down when they are young, forcing them to grow outwards instead of upwards. It can be considered a form of plant trellising.
Maximum Yield Explains Low Stress Training (LST)
Low-stress training begins when plants are young and more flexible. Simply bend them to the side, and then tie them down using anything from twine to plastic zip-ties. It's important not to damage the stem in any way, as this can lead to unhappy plants.
As the young plants begin to grow horizontally, a grower simply has to continue to tie them down. Some growers prefer to train their plants to grow directly out in a horizontal direction. However, others gently curve the main stem around the plant itself. This allows other tips to grow from the center, which can also be trained.
Typing plants down using the LST method ensures better light dispersion across the entire plant for improved health and more efficient use of the grow lights. Tying down can be done to the edge of the containers or grow beds, to a surrounding wall, or even to the irrigation system if necessary.
Finally, low-stress training also allows you to lower the grow lights in your gardening area closer to the plants than would be possible if you allowed the plant to grow vertically. This could allow for the use of lower-wattage bulbs and improved energy savings over time while still ensuring that the cannabis is able to absorb as much light as possible.
(To learn more, check out Topping and Low-Stress Cannabis Training)