Hydroponics Gardening Versus Organic Gardening: Which Grows The Best Cannabis?

Does the method used to grow cannabis affect its quality and the level of high? Many people are asking themselves this question regularly, and the debate not likely to end any time soon. Turns out, the medium used does affect the quality of the bud. But how do you know which is the best medium between organic/soil based versus hydroponics? There are a number of factors that you should look into before settling down for a specific medium, and we're here to help.

What Do We Mean by Hydroponics and Organic Mediums of Growing Cannabis?

Before we go into their differences and how they affect cannabis, it is important to learn what the two mediums are from the outset. Basically, hydroponics involves the artificial setting in which plants rely on nutrients added to the water they're fed, since these nutrients are not naturally available to the plant.

Organic growing is the exact opposite. It utilizes the naturally occurring nutrients in the soil for the growth of the plants. Soil contains organic materials, minerals, water and air.

Depending where you decide to grow your cannabis, you will notice variations on a number of elements, as we outline below.

Cannabis Yield Expected

Yield relates to the amount of weed you will harvest from your gardening activities. On this aspect, organic gardening in the clear winner. This is mostly due to the fact that weed that grows in the open has the capacity to explore its full capacities in terms of height and size. It’s not surprising to find strains growing over 4 feet in the outdoors. These can provide up to 400 grams of bud per plant! Outdoors, the plant has the space to thrive. It can form strong roots and grow really tall.

Hydroponics' yield is limited because of the single factor: space. There is just not enough space to allow plants to thrive and grow at that same scale. The yield will therefore be less compared to the organic ones grown within the same square footage. Developments in gardening in this space and form have become really advanced over the years, and it is possible to find people harvesting the same amount of weed per square feet using hydroponics farming as they would if they went the organic way.

For small scale farmers or beginners, the best way to go if you are looking for a higher yield would be with organic gardening.

Quality of the Weed Needed

In terms of quality, hydroponics most certainly takes the prize. There are just too many parameters and moving parts in the organic gardening that it would be almost impossible to really guarantee perfect quality with any sort of consistency. With hydroponics gardening, all factors are well-monitored and controlled indoors, making it easy to plant and come up with truly quality buds.

The humidity, temperature, wind, nutrient content and oxygen is well monitored and controlled using the hydroponics medium. Since the medium employs the use of water to the largest extent, chance of having soilborne pests and diseases that would affect the quality of the buds is lower compared to the organic form of gardening.

The Amount of High Needed

This is also an important consideration before you choose the medium to plant your cannabis in. Do you want a mild form of high to keep you awake, but still level-headed? Or do you want the type of cannabis high that will blow your head off?

Because of the controlled environment that cannabis grown through the hydroponics medium undergoes, they usually have a very high THC content. Some have recorded up to 28% THC content on one strain!

Flavor of the Cannabis

Which one tastes better, cannabis grown through the hydroponics model, or one grown organically, in the field?

Naturally, weed grown organically will have a better flavor compared to the weed grown hydroponically. The soil contains numerous pre-existing macro and micro nutrients that are easily broken down and absorbed by the plant. The plants grown indoors through the hydroponic process will have to take whatever form of nutrients they are given, and sometimes, more nutrients does not necessarily mean better plants, or better taste. If a slight mistake is made in giving these nutrients to the plants, the change in PH might result in bitter tasting buds.

Cannabis plants rely on three basic form of nutrients, namely nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium, commonly abbreviated as NPK. When you head out to buy these nutrients, you need to check the ratios noted on these bags, as this is what determines the amount you will award to a specific number of plants. These nutrients naturally exist in the soil. There are other micro-nutrients such as copper, magnesium and iron that can also be contained by using the soil medium. You would have to purchase these micro-nutrients if you are doing hydroponics.

The Cost Factor

In terms of cost, hydroponics will be more expensive on the same square footage compared to the organic gardening type, although there will be labor involved in both mediums, including pruning, training and trellising. Irrigation can be automated through a drip system in the hydroponics medium, but you would have to incur extra cost or time to irrigate plants grown organically.

The materials needed to create a good hydroponic system could be costly, depending on space. You'll need to determine what you need and assess whether it's worth it in the end.

Tips on Growing Cannabis Through These Mediums

Whether you decide to grow cannabis through the hydroponic way or through organic gardening, here are a number of pointers that can come in handy:

Pointers on organic gardening:

  • Ensure you have great quality soilprepare the soil well and ensure that there are no toxic substances lying around. Buy only the best quality seeds—you cannot really expect any good quality from cheap and low quality seeds.
  • Ensure that the land is well-hydrated but not over-watered.
  • Harvest in the right momentdo not harvest too early or too late.

Pointers on hydroponics gardening:

  • Get a checklist of the items you needyou will need a number of items, so make a checklist and tick them off as you buy them.
  • Understand what kinds of nutrients are needed and in what quantity.
  • Harvest in the right momentdo not harvest too early or too late.

Our Verdict

We think organic grows the best-flavored cannabis. There are a number of organic-grown cannabis diehards who would never think of using anything but cannabis grown organically. Despite this, we still think that cannabis grown through the hydroponic system is the way of the future, and people should probably start to embrace it.

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