Cannabis cultivation: The factors that affect yield


When it comes to cannabis cultivation, yield is a crucial aspect for home growers seeking a bountiful harvest. Various factors come into play when determining the yield of your crop, ranging from temperature and lighting to nutrients, humidity, and space. However, it’s important to note that genetics also play a significant role in determining the potential yield of a strain. Additionally, different methods of cultivation, whether indoor or outdoor, present their own advantages and disadvantages in terms of yield. Indoor yields are typically measured in grams per meter squared, while outdoor yields are measured per plant. It’s worth mentioning that the wet yield, measured before drying and curing, is considerably higher than the dry yield. For those looking for high-yielding strains, both indoor and outdoor, options like Super Silver Haze, Bubba Kush, Big Bud, Peach Puree CBD, Super Skunk, Chocolope, Blue Dream, Medical Mass, Auto White Widow, Auto Mazar, and Auto Night Queen can deliver impressive results.

Factors that affect yield in cannabis cultivation

Yield is an important factor for home growers when growing cannabis. The amount of cannabis that can be harvested from a plant is directly influenced by several factors such as temperature, lights, nutrients, humidity, space, genetics, indoor vs outdoor cultivation, the method of yield measurement, and the difference between wet yield and dry yield. By understanding these factors, growers can optimize their cultivation practices and achieve higher yields.

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Temperature plays a crucial role in cannabis cultivation as it affects the overall growth and development of the plants. Cannabis plants thrive in a temperature range of 70-85°F (21-29°C) during the day and slightly cooler temperatures around 60-70°F (15-21°C) during the night. Temperature fluctuations outside of this range can significantly impact yield. High temperatures can cause heat stress, leading to reduced growth, impaired photosynthesis, and decreased yield. On the other hand, low temperatures can slow down the metabolic processes of the plants, affecting nutrient absorption and overall growth.


The type and intensity of lights used in cannabis cultivation have a direct impact on yield. Cannabis plants require adequate light to perform photosynthesis, which is essential for plant growth and yield. When growing indoors, growers often use artificial lighting systems such as high-intensity discharge (HID) lights, fluorescent lights, or LED lights. Each lighting system has its advantages and disadvantages, and the choice depends on factors such as cost, energy efficiency, and the specific needs of the plants. Providing the right spectrum and intensity of light throughout the different stages of cannabis growth is crucial for maximizing yield.


Proper nutrient management is vital for achieving higher yields in cannabis cultivation. Cannabis plants require essential macronutrients such as nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K), as well as micronutrients like calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), and iron (Fe). A well-balanced nutrient solution or soil mix is necessary to ensure that the plants receive adequate nutrition throughout their life cycle. Nutrient deficiencies and excesses can lead to stunted growth, decreased flowering, and reduced yield. Understanding the nutrient requirements of cannabis plants and providing them in the right proportions at the appropriate growth stages can significantly impact the overall yield.


Humidity levels in the cultivation environment can affect the growth and yield of cannabis plants. High humidity levels can increase the risk of mold and mildew growth, which can damage the plants and reduce yield. On the other hand, low humidity levels can lead to excessive transpiration, stress the plants, and affect nutrient uptake. Maintaining a balanced humidity level, preferably around 40-60%, can promote healthy plant growth, prevent pest and disease issues, and ultimately result in higher yields.

Photo by Budding . on Unsplash


The amount of space available for cannabis cultivation also impacts the yield. Whether growing indoors or outdoors, providing adequate space for the plants is essential to ensure optimal growth and yield. Overcrowding plants can lead to competition for resources, disease susceptibility, and limited light penetration, resulting in lower yields. Proper spacing allows for better air circulation, light exposure, and access to nutrients, enabling the plants to grow vigorously and produce higher yields.


Genetics play a significant role in determining the potential yield of a cannabis strain. Different strains have varying genetic traits that influence growth patterns, flowering times, and overall yield potential. Some strains are naturally more prolific yielders than others. By selecting high-yielding strains and practicing proper cultivation techniques, growers can maximize their yield potential. It is important to research and choose strains that are known for their high yields to achieve the desired outcome.

Indoor vs Outdoor

Indoor and outdoor cannabis cultivation have their own advantages and disadvantages when it comes to yield. Indoor cultivation provides growers with better control over environmental conditions, such as temperature, lighting, and humidity, resulting in more consistent yields. Indoor yields are typically measured in grams per meter squared, allowing for greater precision in estimating and improving yield. On the other hand, outdoor cultivation benefits from natural sunlight, which is free and provides the plants with the full spectrum of light. Outdoor yields are typically measured per plant, and while they may be more challenging to control, they can potentially result in larger overall yields depending on factors such as climate and growing conditions.

Photo by Budding . on Unsplash

Yield Measurement

The way yield is measured can vary depending on whether the cultivation is indoor or outdoor. Indoor growers often measure yield in grams per meter squared, as it provides a standardized measurement that allows for easy comparison between different cultivation setups. This measurement takes into account the total weight of dried and cured buds harvested from a specific area. Outdoor growers, on the other hand, typically measure yield per plant. This method gives a more individualized perspective on the productivity of each plant, but it may be less accurate in determining the overall yield of a cultivation area.

Wet Yield vs Dry Yield

When measuring yield, it is essential to understand the difference between wet yield and dry yield. Wet yield refers to the weight of the harvested cannabis immediately after harvest, without any drying or curing process. Wet yield includes the weight of the water content in the plant material, which can be as high as 75% or more. On the other hand, dry yield refers to the weight of the cannabis after it has been properly dried and cured to remove the moisture. The drying and curing process can result in a significant decrease in weight, with dry yield typically being around 20-25% of the wet yield. While wet yield may initially seem more substantial, it is the dry yield that truly matters as it represents the usable and marketable product.

High-yielding Indoor Strains

Several cannabis strains are known for their high yields when grown indoors. Super Silver Haze, Bubba Kush, Big Bud, and Peach Puree CBD are examples of strains that consistently deliver significant harvests. These strains have been selected or bred for their vigorous growth, generous bud production, and high resin content. By choosing these high-yielding indoor strains and providing optimal growing conditions, growers can maximize their indoor yields.

High-yielding Outdoor Strains

Outdoor cultivation also has its own set of high-yielding strains. Super Skunk, Chocolope, Blue Dream, and Medical Mass are renowned for their impressive yields when grown outdoors. These strains have demonstrated adaptability to various climates and growing conditions, allowing them to thrive and produce abundant harvests. Outdoor growers can benefit from selecting these high-yielding strains and leveraging the natural sunlight to achieve optimal growth and yield.

Autoflower Strains

Autoflowering cannabis strains, which do not require a change in light cycle to trigger flowering, have gained popularity among growers due to their ability to achieve high yields in a relatively short time. Auto White Widow, Auto Mazar, and Auto Night Queen are examples of autoflower strains known for their impressive productivity. These strains have been specifically bred to combine the fast flowering traits of ruderalis genetics with the high yield potential of traditional cannabis strains. Autoflower strains allow growers to harvest multiple times in a single growing season, resulting in increased overall yield.

In conclusion, several factors influence yield in cannabis cultivation, including temperature, lights, nutrients, humidity, space, genetics, indoor vs outdoor cultivation, yield measurement methods, wet yield vs dry yield, and specific strains chosen. By understanding and optimizing each of these factors, growers can increase their chances of achieving higher yields. Whether growing indoors or outdoors, selecting high-yielding strains and providing optimal growing conditions are key to maximizing yield in cannabis cultivation.



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