Feeding Your Weed The Natural Way: Using Bat Guano To Grow Cannabis
Yes, you can go to your local hydroponics store and spend good money on dozens of bottled chemical fertilizers designed to bulk up your bud. But none of them work as well as an all-natural, organic product made by furry, flying mammals right across the world. We are, of course, talking about bat guano.
What’s So Special About Bat Guano?
Bat guano fertilizer is harvested from the decomposed droppings of bats. Yes, you read that right – the best organic fertilizer in the world starts as bat poop. Specifically, from cave-dwelling bats found primarily in Mexico, Jamaica and Indonesia.
Because these bats live in the same cave for generations, their excrement builds up on the cave floor and the organic matter quickly decomposes, leaving behind an amazingly rich blend of all the nutrients contained in the bats’ diet.
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Bat Guano And Cannabis: A Perfect Match For Plant Health
Although primarily used as a macronutrient fertilizer, using bat guano for cannabis is also great, as it contains suitable micronutrients that become readily available as they decay into the soil. Because bat guano is teeming with microbial life, it’s a great regulator of soil microfauna. This means bat guano in soil helps to make the nutrients more available, while also acting as an organic fungicide as the beneficial microbes attack the harmful fungus.
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Does The Source Of Bat Guano Matter?
Bat guano is made from whatever the bats are eating. Because of this, growers can tailor the specific bat guano fertilizer they give their plants during each stage of growth depending on the source of the nutritional additive.
Bat Guano From Mexico
Mexican bat guano is predominantly harvested from insectivorous (insect-eating) bats, such as the Mexican free-tailed bat. Thanks to their bug and insect-filled diet, Mexican bat guano has a high nitrogen content. This makes it perfect for fertilizing your cannabis during the vegetative stage of growth, as nitrogen is an essential nutrient for the plant’s ability to photosynthesize.
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Bat Guano From Jamaica
Jamaican bats, on the other hand, eat fruits and berries as well as insects. This is equally great for cannabis growers, as fruit and berries are one of the best natural sources of phosphorus, which helps cannabis plants during flower formation. All you need to do is wait until the first few weeks of flowering to feed your plant some Jamaican bat guano.
Bat Guano From Indonesia
Another place bat guano is commercially harvested is on the islands of Indonesia, where the bats are frugivores, meaning their diet consists solely of fruit and berries. Because these Indonesian bats are such picky eaters, the guano they produce has the highest ratio of phosphorus to nitrogen. With such a high ratio, using Indonesian bat guano for flowering is ideal, as the phosphorus helps plants with flower formation without any nitrogen, which would cause the production of unwanted foliage.
How To Feed Bat Guano To Cannabis
Some of the easiest methods of using bat guano for weed are pre-mixing into the soil, hand watering once planted, and direct soil application. Let’s quickly take a look at what steps need to be taken for each method.
Mixing Into Soil
Whether you’re using pots or planting directly into the ground, your cannabis plant will benefit from the slow release of organic nutrients provided by the addition of guano to the soil. To apply it, simply add two heaped tablespoons per 7 liters (1.8 gallons) of soil substrate and mix thoroughly. If time allows, it’s best to let this soil mix sit, covered, for up to a month so that the microfauna has a chance to make the nutrients available from day one.
Feeding As A Tea
Making a bat guano tea recipe for flowering or vegging is very simple – all you need to do is add 3 tablespoons of bat guano to 3.5 liters (1 gallon) of warm water and mix thoroughly. Once the guano is dissolved, let the tea sit overnight and feed your plants with it the next day.
Burying Bat Guano
An even simpler method of feeding bat guano to your cannabis is direct soil application, or burying it. To do this, the best way is to dig a shallow (5cm) ring around the trunk of your cannabis plant, halfway between the trunk and the pot walls. Next, scatter two heaped tablespoons of guano per plant, then cover it with soil and, if you’re using it, mulch.
Pre-Mixed Potting Soil: As Easy As It Gets
Luckily for us, there’s also another convenient way to get bat guano into your cannabis garden without even getting your hands dirty, and that’s with pre-mixed potting soil containing bat guano! Using this is the most straightforward way of ensuring your cannabis plant has access to the benefits of bat guano nutrients.
Happy Frog organic potting soil by Foxfarm is a perfect medium in which to grow cannabis, as it’s made with a premium, organic soil base that’s amended with earthworm castings and, most importantly, bat guano!
Another product from the Foxfarm line, Ocean Forest is an all-in-all potting soil for cannabis. Made with the same organic base as Happy Frog, Ocean Forest soil then has sea-going fish and crab meal mixed in, creating a cannabis potting soil that can be used straight out of the bag.
Go All Natural – Use Bat Guano
The continued success of bat guano for both home and commercial cannabis cultivation demonstrates how growers can utilize the power of naturally-produced and completely organic fertilizers to grow some of the best weed in the world. And you can, too! Use bat guano, and never again risk overfertilizing your cannabis or having any of the dangerous residue from chemical fertilizers in your final product.
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The continued success of bat guano for cannabis cultivation demonstrates how growers can utilize the power of completely organic fertilizers to grow some of the best weed in the world
Fatten your Buds with Guano
Fatten your buds with Guano; when you flip the lights on your plants to get them to flower, you’ll need to transplant them to their permanent flowerpot and you’ll also need to prepare more substrate for your plants flowering phase.
People generally use chemical fatteners on their plants, such as Monster Bloom, Brutal Buds and the like. When you use organic fertilizers there’s not a very large range of products to choose from that can guarantee fat and heavy buds.
When you grow using organic fertilizers, they are absorbed slower than others and you’ll need to water properly so the plants can drink them up. Growth and flowering fertilizers are usually absorbed in about a week after using it in the irrigation, but there are other fertilizers that take much longer to be absorbed like guano.
Bat guano is extremely slow releasing, and your plants won’t begin absorbing it until after about a month of applying it. If you mix it with the new soil that you’re going to be transplanting too, once your plants begin fattening their buds they will have a high natural PK level that will fatten and harden your buds up just as much as if you were using chemical fatteners. You’ll need to mix two big spoonfuls per 7L of substrate in the flowerpot.
If you’re growing indoors with seasonal strains then you just have to use it once when flipping the light schedule to 12/12 and transplanting. For autoflowering versions, you can apply it to the soil in your plants definitive flowerpot from the start, although for outdoor seasonal plants you’ll need to use it at least twice; once when you’re transplanting, and then again a month later by spreading it on top.
For that second dosage you should really dig a little sort of moat around the trunk, maybe around 10-15cm away from it, and in that moat place two big spoonfuls of guano per 7L of substrate. This is the last time you’ll need to use it on quick flowering strains; if your plants are going to be at it until November-December then you can repeat this process once, even twice more.
We can guarantee that you’ll have extremely similar results to chemical products, and the taste will be exactly the way you want it to be rather than affected by the chemicals and minerals. When growing organically, you’ll always have a much higher quality result than with chemical products and fertilizers.
Remember, never use more guano than is recommended as this fertilizer is quite strong and you might end up burning your plants. Also, never apply it more than the amount stated here or the soil will end up too saturated and your plants might get over-fertilized.
Once the guano is in the soil all you’ll need to use is a flowering stimulant until you see the buds, and then a flowering fertilizer base like BioBloom or Bio Flores, and you should be ready for a spectacular harvest.
Author: Javier Chinesta
Translator: Ciara Murphy
Fatten your buds with guano, a slow releasing fertilizer that is 100% organic and guarantees thick, dense buds all over your plants.