How To Revive Sick Cannabis Plants
When your cannabis plants are sick and stressed, it’s important to immediately identify the problem. That’s when the real process of reviving your cannabis begins. Here’s what to do to help your plants recover and thrive after a major setback.
Your plant is wilting, you notice the leaves turning yellow or forming unsightly spots, or maybe it’s refusing to grow altogether. There are many reasons why cannabis plants can become sick, from issues with watering to pest infestations, inadequate lighting, heat stress, and more.
No matter the reason for your plant’s sickness, the first thing you’ll want to do is diagnose the problem. When you have addressed the cause(s) of your plant’s condition, you obviously want to revive it as fast as possible. Here are some things you can do to help plants recover from infestations, illness, and more.
PROBLEMS IN YOUR GROWING ENVIRONMENT
If your plant appears to be dying or suffering hard, it is unlikely that a minor issue is occurring. Most of the time, a rapid descent in the health of your plant signals a fundamental issue or invasion. This can involve problems with environmental conditions, microscopic infestations, and other culprits.
CHECK TEMPERATURES AND HUMIDITY IN YOUR GROW ROOM
If you’re growing indoors, the first step to reviving your plants is to check the temperature and relative humidity of your tent or grow room. The ideal temperature for cuttings and seedlings is between 20–25ºC. As the plants get older, they can tolerate a bit more, up to 28ºC. Everything above this is excessive and causes stress, which will make it much more difficult for your plants to recover.
Likewise, the humidity levels of your room must be kept within a certain range depending on the phase of growth. An optimal humidity level for flowering plants is 40–50%. Plants in the vegetative growth phase can tolerate a more humid environment, from 40–70%. If the humidity is too high, you need to look into better ventilation for your grow space. A dehumidifier is the best, albeit expensive option here. Your sick plants will have a hard time recovering if their environment is not stable and optimal.
AVOID HEAT STRESS OUTDOORS
Despite cannabis loves plenty of light and warm temperatures, if you grow outdoors in the summer, heat stress and excessive sun can be a problem, especially for plants recovering from illness. If you have your plants in pots and they look stressed from too much heat, move them to a shadier location. Less heat and direct sun will make it easier for sick plants to get back up to strength.
LOWER YOUR LIGHT LEVELS
Cultivators normally keep their wattage levels as high as possible to encourage plants to grow faster. More light means the plant is working harder and will likely produce a greater yield. On the other hand, a plant that is working extra hard is more susceptible to deficiencies and other problems. One way to give your sick plant a break is to decrease the light intensity. Move your lights higher up and further away from your plants, or decrease the wattage.
When you grow indoors with your lights on a timer, you can also cut down on the daily light hours your plants receive. When you reduce the light hours for the vegetative phase to only 17 or 16 a day, this will give your plants more time to “rest” and recover.
FLUSH YOUR PLANTS
Many problems with sick cannabis plants can be due to overfeeding. When your plant can’t take up the nutrients that you provide, salts and minerals will accumulate in the soil over time. This will change the pH level at your plant’s root zone, making it more acidic—beyond the small pH window that cannabis has for healthy growth. As a result, your plant is not able to take in nutrients, even if they are present in abundance. When this happens, further feeding only makes it worse.
In almost all cases where your plants show signs of nutrient deficiencies or nutrient burn, you should give your plants a solid flush. Flushing means that you rinse out the excessive salts with pure, pH-balanced water to restore the optimal pH of the growing medium.
To flush your plants, drench the growing medium with water numerous times. It should be ample enough that liquid comes out from the bottom of the container each time. For example, if you grow in 7l pots, flush your plants with 14l of water. When you grow in soil, your water should have a pH of about 6.5pH. After the flush, you can begin giving nutrients again, starting with ½ or ¾-strength doses. You can slowly work your way up from here to avoid putting plants under any additional stress.
REPOT YOUR PLANTS
Repotting your cannabis plants into new, larger containers with fresh soil can also help bring them back to life. Choose a container that has plenty of room for the roots to grow. If your plant is severely damaged due to overwatering (root rot) or various fungi, consider trimming its foliage. When the roots have fewer leaves to support, they can recover faster.
KEEP PESTS AWAY
Plant infestations from spider mites, fungus gnats, fruit flies, and other insects are all too common when you grow cannabis. When you have finally gotten rid of the pests, you want to make absolutely sure that they don’t return. Pest infestations can really ravage a plant, so it certainly needs optimal care and time to be revived.
In terms of keeping the pests away, there are natural insecticides like neem oil that can be highly effective. You can even use it as a foliar spray, applying it to your leaves every 2 or 3 weeks. However, be careful during the flowering phase as you do not want the overbearing taste of neem oil on your buds! For fungus gnats, you can also set up yellow sticky traps, which will catch most of them.
Neem oil serves as a completely natural way to protect your cannabis plants against pests.
Neem oil serves as a completely natural way to protect your cannabis plants against pests.
SUPPLEMENTS TO HELP YOUR SICK PLANTS RECOVER
There are certain supplements you can give to your sick plants to reduce stress, support their development, and increase their resistance.
For those growing in soil, compost teas are an excellent supplement to support the recovery of sick and stressed plants. Compost teas can make your plants grow faster and more robust, making them less susceptible to diseases and deficiencies. Some cultivators make their own compost teas at home, although they can also be purchased at most well-sorted grow stores.
Silica has properties that strengthen the cell walls of your plants, which makes it helpful for increasing their resilience. Furthermore, it makes certain minerals and nutrients more available while protecting the roots as well.
Seaweed contains minerals and other micronutrients, and has been shown to help reduce plant stress. While its mechanism is somewhat unknown, seaweed has long been part of the weed grower’s arsenal.
With the above tips, we hope you are able to revive your precious cannabis plants and make it to a hefty and healthy harvest.
In this guide, you'll learn how to help revive your sick and stressed cannabis plants after infestations, nutrient deficiencies, and much more!
How to Fix Wilting and Drooping Leaves on Cannabis Plants
Wilting and drooping leaves on a marijuana plant are usually a result of too much or too little water arriving in the roots. For the plant to continue growing normally, the problem has to be fixed right away, otherwise plant growth can be compromised. To learn how to fix a marijuana plant that has begun wilting or drooping, read this article.
A cannabis plant with wilting or drooping leaves is quite a sad looking one, and it’s important to keep your plants looking happy. A case of wilting cannabis leaves can happen to any grower and there are ways out of the situation if you find yourself in it. These two problems are generally caused by overwatering or underwatering your plant and are easily avoidable if you pay close attention.
So new growers should have no fear. Wilting cannabis leaves are not the end of your marijuana garden, but if you want to ensure a good yield, you should attend to the problem straight away.
The difference between drooping and wilting cannabis leaves
It’s important that you don’t confuse wilting cannabis leaves with drooping leaves, because they have completely opposite causes. Wilting is what has happened to your leaves when they have begun to curl at the tips. The tell tale sign that your leaves are wilting is that they have also started turning yellow on the tips that are curling under. On the other hand, drooping is distinguished by the droopiness of the entire leaf, rather than just the tips. When your plant is drooping, you will not see yellow tips on the leaves. Drooping leaves are also firmer than wilting leaves, which just look tired and lifeless.
The Secret Relationship Between Mycorrhizae and Your Roots: How Fungi Can Help Your Cannabis Plants
Before you go on trying to fix your cannabis plant, it’s important to know whether your plant is wilting or drooping. The action you take to rectify this will all depend on this factor, so observe carefully.
Overwatering marijuana plants
Overwatering cannabis plants is a common mistake among growers, and it results in drooping leaves . However, overwatering has not occurred as a result of using too much water, but rather that the plant has been watered too often or it is being grown in a pot without appropriate drainage. In this scenario, the problem is actually at the roots, where they begin to rot. Too much water stored at the roots can impede the access of oxygen within the soil to the plant, causing rot and drooping.
This problem can also be caused by the kind of pot and potting mix used. It is essential that there is proper drainage in the pot you are using to grow marijuana and the same should apply to your potting mix. Actually, it is common to let marijuana plants dry out a little bit between waters, and drooping is a clear sign that this hasn’t happened.
If drooping has occurred to your marijuana leaves, lift up the pot and make sure that water is draining out from the bottom. If not, you might have to move your potting mix around a little to ensure that it is not too tightly packed in there, disallowing the flow of water. You don’t need to lower the amount of water you are giving it, but rather the frequency of waterings needs to drop. You will know when your plants need watering by the first couple of inches of soil. When they are completely dry, it’s time to water it again. However, while the soil is still dark and moist, the plant does not need more watering.
Addressing this issue quickly is best, and it will usually happen overnight. When your plant is over watered, it becomes much more vulnerable to other diseases, so it is important to get your roots back into shape quickly.
Underwatering your cannabis plant
Underwatering your marijuana plant is usually the reason that the leaves begin to wilt. Wilting cannabis leaves look much sadder than drooping leaves, have curled at the ends and have begun to turn yellow. In fact, they look lifeless and it can make a grower completely freak out. Wilting means that the roots of your plants are bone dry. They will grow much slower under this condition; so the sooner this is fixed, also the better.
At this stage, you should consider watering your plant more often, and at the beginning perhaps giving it a little bit of extra water to compensate. Be careful not to throw the plant off balance again by continuing to overwater it. Don’t mix any of this water with fertilizer, as it won’t assist with the problem of wilting. You just need to ensure that the water is pH balanced, and use it purely for the purpose of rehydrating your plant. After some time they will start to look happy again and you can go back to using your nutrient-rich water.
Is your marijuana plant looking tired and unhealthy? Does it have drooping or wilting leaves? Wake it up again with this tutorial!