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Trimming Fan Leaves While flowering


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#1 SweetJane

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Posted 01 January 2011 - 09:35 PM

I was wondering if trimming some of the fan leaves during flowering will increase my yield, I have heard a lot of mixed opinions on the subject.

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#2 Organic Gardener

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Posted 01 January 2011 - 10:22 PM

The only time to remove leaves is when they're 50% or more damaged. Otherwise they're doing what they're supposed to do.

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#3 Enlightened1

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 12:12 AM

Removing fan leaves will not increase your yield. Those leaves are like solar panels catching and storing energy for the plants metabolism. If you remove them, you are taking away the plants food stores. Ever notice how your plants leaves yellow when flushing? They yellow because the plant has used up all nutrients in the root zone and the only food left is its stored sugars. The only time I remove leaves is when the plants are crowded and the leaves are overlapping . When the leaves overlap they trap moisture between them and can cause powdery mildew. I would say removing the leaves would be counter productive because it will directly lead to loss of energy...Lower energy=lower yield.

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#4 Harvey_M

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 02:59 PM

I remove leaves. I don't do it for the yield, I do it for the quality. Without light directly hitting the buds, they will be nowhere near what they could be. The trichomes need light to develop. I've removed so many leaves from some of my plants that they were almost all buds, although usually I try to minimize the total amount removed, and maximize the strategic effect. I usually start doing this about 5-6 weeks in. My thing is trim the bottom crap off within the first 2-3 weeks of 12/12, top the plant, then after the buds start to swell, start trimming off leaves that are shading them. If you do this, don't do it all at once, you don't want to stress the plant into a hermaphrodite.

Maximizing the drug effect, which is a side effect of the plant's desire to survive, can be more effectively addressed directly (by exposing the buds) than indirectly (by increasing the overall plant health) in my opinion.

Everyone does seem to have different thoughts on this. And no doubt different plants respond differently. I started doing this after this one plant I was growing dropped most of it's leaves about 5 weeks in. I was annoyed, thought it was going to die, but it didn't. It thrived, the buds swelled up and got nice and crystally, and the plant had basically no leaves. I'm not growing that strain anymore though.

As far as how much this reduces the yield, that depends. Plants aren't as simple as some people think. They are alive, and adapt. Sometimes if you cut a plant, it will come back with a vengeance and actually outgrow the one next to it. Sort of like with muscles, when you lift weights, ideally your muscles are a little stronger next time. Stress isn't always a bad thing.

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#5 Organic Gardener

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 05:20 PM

I think proper training is a better and more efficient way to get light to everything than getting rid of leaves. to each his own though. ime though my lower buds were just as resinous as the colas just not as dense.

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#6 rootbound

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 05:35 PM

I think proper training is a better and more efficient way to get light to everything than getting rid of leaves. to each his own though. ime though my lower buds were just as resinous as the colas just not as dense.


My experience has shown the same. Also, I could be mistaken, but I always thought trichrome production was more influenced by humidity changes. Lower humidity produces more trichromes...

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#7 Organic Gardener

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Posted 02 January 2011 - 05:43 PM

I believe humidity influences it and if you add in UV with some black lights it kicks up trichome production also. I'm gonna see if my spencer's has t8 black lights and I'm gonna add in some of those.

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#8 DANKAYS

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 02:46 AM

I remove leaves. I don't do it for the yield, I do it for the quality. Without light directly hitting the buds, they will be nowhere near what they could be. The trichomes need light to develop. I've removed so many leaves from some of my plants that they were almost all buds, although usually I try to minimize the total amount removed, and maximize the strategic effect. I usually start doing this about 5-6 weeks in. My thing is trim the bottom crap off within the first 2-3 weeks of 12/12, top the plant, then after the buds start to swell, start trimming off leaves that are shading them. If you do this, don't do it all at once, you don't want to stress the plant into a hermaphrodite.

Maximizing the drug effect, which is a side effect of the plant's desire to survive, can be more effectively addressed directly (by exposing the buds) than indirectly (by increasing the overall plant health) in my opinion.

Everyone does seem to have different thoughts on this. And no doubt different plants respond differently. I started doing this after this one plant I was growing dropped most of it's leaves about 5 weeks in. I was annoyed, thought it was going to die, but it didn't. It thrived, the buds swelled up and got nice and crystally, and the plant had basically no leaves. I'm not growing that strain anymore though.

As far as how much this reduces the yield, that depends. Plants aren't as simple as some people think. They are alive, and adapt. Sometimes if you cut a plant, it will come back with a vengeance and actually outgrow the one next to it. Sort of like with muscles, when you lift weights, ideally your muscles are a little stronger next time. Stress isn't always a bad thing.


i do about the same as Harvey_M and i do think the more light that hits the bud helps alot to harden the buds up. i do alot of half leafing an bending them over. most all the leafs that are on the plant when its in veg are gone by 6 weeks. i leave the top 4 or 5 fans leafs on the plant. an most of the time thats were i do the half leafing.

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#9 puffinmeown

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Posted 03 January 2011 - 05:05 AM

I just tuck the fan leaves down, it usually works. Nothing prettier than a large fan leave with a nice crytally bud poking through it. When the fan leaves yellow its time to go as the energy has been used up.

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#10 Green Bastard

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 03:58 PM

Really depends on how densely planted your room is, and how intense the light is. If there are heavily shaded budsites, then I say that some leaf removal essential, otherwise you will be trimming lots of little annoying buds. If your crop is small, you may not be bothered by this. My rooms are very intensely lit. I remove most large leafs that are nearest to the light, and have no loss of size, but an increase of size of buds deeper in to the canopy. Just don't overdo it and let light all the way through and onto the floor or walls. Any light that ends up not hitting a plant first is mostly wasted....

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#11 Ganja_Guru

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Posted 05 January 2011 - 11:13 PM


Quote:
I remove leaves. I don't do it for the yield, I do it for the quality. Without light directly hitting the buds, they will be nowhere near what they could be. The trichomes need light to develop. I've removed so many leaves from some of my plants that they were almost all buds, although usually I try to minimize the total amount removed, and maximize the strategic effect. I usually start doing this about 5-6 weeks in. My thing is trim the bottom crap off within the first 2-3 weeks of 12/12, top the plant, then after the buds start to swell, start trimming off leaves that are shading them. If you do this, don't do it all at once, you don't want to stress the plant into a hermaphrodite.

Maximizing the drug effect, which is a side effect of the plant's desire to survive, can be more effectively addressed directly (by exposing the buds) than indirectly (by increasing the overall plant health) in my opinion.

Everyone does seem to have different thoughts on this. And no doubt different plants respond differently. I started doing this after this one plant I was growing dropped most of it's leaves about 5 weeks in. I was annoyed, thought it was going to die, but it didn't. It thrived, the buds swelled up and got nice and crystally, and the plant had basically no leaves. I'm not growing that strain anymore though.

As far as how much this reduces the yield, that depends. Plants aren't as simple as some people think. They are alive, and adapt. Sometimes if you cut a plant, it will come back with a vengeance and actually outgrow the one next to it. Sort of like with muscles, when you lift weights, ideally your muscles are a little stronger next time. Stress isn't always a bad thing.



I concur.

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damm...check out the capitate-stalked trichromes on her.




#12 LabRat

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 11:47 PM

The big fan leaves should be left on right up to the end of the stretch period.

After that, take off any that are blocking light from the forming colas. Any behind the colas make sure they are up to catch any light missed by the colas.

As said before, once they are 50% yellow it's OK to take them off in any case. I prefer to leave them on until they are brown so the plant can absorb all the nutes and sugars in the leaf. As long as they aren't blocking light. Plus the fan will knock them off and I can save time by sweeping them up instead of picking them off!

Us lazy, old farts create progress by finding the easiest, softest ways to get the job done. AA taught me that! lol

The big fans are the solar collectors and very important during the vigorous growth stages of the plant. Once stretch stops the plants needs for light and nutes diminish rapidly as only the flowers are growing and forming new plant material.

Flower formation is still going on so the proper ratio of nutrients and bud enhancers must be maintained but at lower levels as nute burn can be indicated by browning and crisping of the older fan leaves leading to the same in mid-sized fans and even to the sugar leaves in the colas.

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#13 Doobie Brother

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Posted 30 November 2011 - 04:54 AM

Have to agree with Labrat and OG, I do not remove fan leaves unless they are damaged or chlerotic.

It would be interesting to set up an experiment with a bunch of clones: half have their fans removed at a specific point into flowering, the other half would have the large leaves tied back and/or left alone. I would think the plants with attached fan leaves would do better.

It's the leaves that drive the plant's life cycle, not the flowers.

Just my 2 cents worth...

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#14 Sir.Ganga

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Posted 30 November 2011 - 07:25 AM

You are right! Everyone has their own reasons for what they do. I say do what you think is best and your girls will tell you what to do.

IMO though, I have always watched the stems on the larger fan leaves, once they start to turn purple I remove them. I also watch bud sites and overlap and remove accordingly.

My thought on the purple stem thing comes from a conversation I had at a show with a tech. from Advanced Nutrients, He commented that when a stem starts to turn purple the leaf is no longer a storage device for the plant but now is drawing energy from the plant when it needs all the energy for bud production. In most strains the stem starts to change color when the uptake of the plant changes, its the start of the yellowing phase of the leaf.

I have used this technique now for a number of years and am happy with my outcome.

Each to his own though, do what works for you.

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#15 thiaty

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Posted 30 November 2011 - 01:47 PM

Hello, new user here.I have a question for you guys and gals.
I Recently received my license and has since started growing. Right now my crop is purple kush and is looking beautiful. Very pungent odour yummy!
My concern is in the flowering time. I am thirty three days into flower and already I am noticing cloudy trichromes which are swelled and bending over. I am told these are indicators of a ripe bud. Do I top the buds now or wait two weeks for the whole thing to go. I have not yet started my flush cycle either I am worried the top buds will taste like crap! What to do?

Thaity

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#16 Nozmirk

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Posted 30 November 2011 - 02:24 PM

Hello, new user here.I have a question for you guys and gals.
I Recently received my license and has since started growing. Right now my crop is purple kush and is looking beautiful. Very pungent odour yummy!
My concern is in the flowering time. I am thirty three days into flower and already I am noticing cloudy trichromes which are swelled and bending over. I am told these are indicators of a ripe bud. Do I top the buds now or wait two weeks for the whole thing to go. I have not yet started my flush cycle either I am worried the top buds will taste like crap! What to do?

Thaity


Post this under your own thread, it's not cool to hijack someone else's thread.

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#17 Doobie Brother

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 05:30 PM

My thought on the purple stem thing comes from a conversation I had at a show with a tech. from Advanced Nutrients, He commented that when a stem starts to turn purple the leaf is no longer a storage device for the plant but now is drawing energy from the plant when it needs all the energy for bud production. In most strains the stem starts to change color when the uptake of the plant changes, its the start of the yellowing phase of the leaf.
Vaper


I'm sure that's true for most plants SG, although I have some WRxTrainwreck in veg right now, that are already developing nice purple lines on the stems. Then again, this is the first time I've seen purple this early smile

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#18 vitalstock

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Posted 19 March 2013 - 05:11 PM

hello. i have been doing this since 1986. i can tell you that trimming big fan and bud covering leaves on any variety at 30 days into flower is key. i do this because i am not growing leaves. just as you can snip the sucker branches at 21 days flower: the little lowest branches that are over stretched. light is most important for every bud sight. the leaves around each bud are more than enough to deliver all needed sugar production for each site. it takes more energy for a plant to keep all those big honkin fans alive than they are worth. time is your friend and enemy. pump them girls like a pimp pumps his ho's cause they have a limited time to work. bigger yield and a stronger finishing plant that can hold up its bud weight. leave the top two to four fans on each branch. the rest can be taken at day 30 flower.
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