Is Indoor CBD Flower Better?
We grow indoor CBD flower so of course my answer to that question is yes, obviously! But the reality is that both can be very good. It all boils down to how attentive the grower is being to the needs to their plants. I have seen some amazing outdoor buds and on the flipside I’ve seen some not so great indoor buds.
Most indoor grows are relatively small compared to outdoor grows that can be multiple acres. That smaller size means that the grower can spend more time caring to each plant, ensuring that every plant is getting the maximum amount of light, water, nutrients and love that they each need to grow to their full potential. Large multi acre farms can produce a decent quality product, but as the number of plants increases with the size of the grow operation the amount of care that can be given to each plant goes down drastically. Many hemp farms end up growing hemp as if it were any other crop, maximizing yield per acre while while inevitably sacrificing quality.
At Clara Jane we are utilizing our available grow space in small steps. Each time we harvest we start the next grow with more plants and more lights than the previous grow. We are learning and refining our grow practices, getting higher CBD numbers and better quality bud with each harvest. Our goal is to continue to produce the absolute best quality smokeable buds available anywhere. The focus is and always will be on quality over quantity!
Indoor grows allow the grower to play mother (or father) nature. We are in control of virtually all of the inputs… when the lights come on and when they go off, temperature, fans, rain (watering), seasons even! During the vegetative stage plants need 18 hours or more of light. Once they reach a month or two old they are ready to be ‘flipped’ to flower. Changing the lighting cycle to 12 hours on 12 hours off signals the plants to start flowering. This light cycle mimics the end of summer outdoors and tricks the plants into thinking its fall and its time to flower.
Cannabis grows best in moderate temperatures. It’s super easy to give them exactly the environment they love and can thrive in when all you’ve got to do is set the thermostat!
We control the wind – fans are necessary to keep air circulating to keep the plants healthy and free of mold and other pathogens. A gentle breeze that has the plants waving in the wind also helps the plants grow stronger stems so they can support bigger buds.
Watering and feeding a warehouse full of plants is a big job, but its far easier than irrigating multiple acres (or praying for rain). Hemp is a thirsty plant, but it doesn’t like to be over watered either. We hand water each of our plants every few days only after checking the soil to make sure they need to be watered. Every other watering is a feeding day. We feed our plants only organic nutrients – we’ll be writing more about why we choose to be organic soon (we’re also working towards becoming certified organic this year).
Cannabis is a super efficient bioremediator – that means that it readily absorbs whatever is in the soil… the good and the bad. Growing outdoors its really important to have the soil tested to make sure it’s pesticide and herbicide free. Its much easier to know that you’re growing using clean soil when you buy organic soil from a reputable source and fill pots that your plants will be going into.
If you’ve ever been around a flowering cannabis plant you’ll know that they are very sticky. Any dust or bugs or bird droppings that land on an outdoor plant is there for good. Any caterpillars or other crawlers that find their way into outdoor bud will likely still be there when you go to smoke that bud. Indoor can have bugs/pests too, but they are much easier to control and keep to a minimum.
In our grow facility we are only a few steps away from our drying room. We can harvest a plant and have it hanging to dry almost immediately. Any extra handling of buds means that precious trichomes (where all the good cannabinoids are) are being knocked off. The least amount of handling/transport means more trichomes on the finished product, which means more cannabinoids and terpenes on each bud.
While there are some exceptions to the rule, indoor grown flower is typically higher quality than outdoor grown buds. Being able to control all of the variables related to growing combined with having fewer plants to care for gives indoor growers a major advantage towards creating amazingly high quality CBD flower.