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Don't Top Autos

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  • Don't Top Autos

    Hi folks. Just thought I'd post these pics. I've always been told not to top autoflowering strains. Well, I did just recently, totally by accident - I just got two different plants confused.
    Anyway, the accidentally topped auto grew out two new tops in no time and I thought that I would make a post saying that it was OK to top autos. But now that the buds have started to form.... check out the difference in bud size with these two plants. Both AK48 Autos, both planted the same time, fed exactly the same, the other AK48s are doing just fine.

    See the difference in bud size! The topped plant is just making popcorn whereas the other is doing really well. About 5 weeks or so to go on these, high expectations for the AK48s, but not the topped one.

  • #2
    Hey Sat, I have always topped and am new to auto's. I've no idea but would think that topping slows the process a bit? Watch your tric's and let us know of any changes occur.

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    • #3
      I've seen topped autos before. I think what happens is that with autos the clock is always running. Topping means that the plant has to redirect its energy resources into repairing mode. This takes them away from the very important job of creating buds. I have seen it done maybe half a dozen times and every time the result has been as seen here - very week growth on the two new heads.
      The same principle applies to topping regular plants when they are in flower, although if these have had time to veg for a bit they will be more robust and better able to repair and flower at the same time. This is not true with autos.

      Update.

      I remember seeing a youtube video about this once and just went to search for it to illustrate this point. However I found this instead. So it obviously works OK sometimes for some people. This guy's auto is massive. Growing weed is always full of surprises. To be honest though, if it were me, I'd stick with the experiences I've seen myself and never top autos.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kGoAFOxIjVQ

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      • #4
        All my plants are auto's and I topped every one of them when they were young. I try for 4 to 6 mains, these in turn branch. After I get to that point I only pic leaves to open the plant for more light. Now, I've been away for some time and this auto thing is new to me but my results are looking good. I am not disputing your findings but I am wondering when you quit topping? If you are still topping during bud time or just before - well - then I understand so.........when did you quit topping?

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        • #5
          Hi Slo. Thanks for the feedback. I just topped it once at about 2 weeks. They've still got a month or so to go so there may still be time for it to right itself. As of now though, the difference in bud production is very clear. I'll post more pics as we go and see how it turns out.

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          • #6
            Hey guy's, I had posted that I made the same mistake about a month ago and the plant just didn't do that well after I cut it when it had reached the third node? The buds were small and I finally pitched it out. If I am going down for pot plants they better be big! I have several freebie autos in my collection and will devote all of them to one grow and be done with them. I know they are great for some, but I do not care for them. Well I am glad that someone else has spoken up about these and a good discussion has ensued. I had wondered what I had done wrong? Good luck to you! Mega Nute

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            • #7
              Still a massive difference between the topped and untopped autos (AK48s). Will post comparative pics soon.

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              • #8
                Well hell, I just can't help myself, I've just got to play with my girls. I suppose from your pics that might have been a bad idea but wonder what is the difference between one big bud and two medium buds? Now I can't say a bunch on this auto flower thing and even wonder it's benefits? When your growing in a small area I would think that many buds would be mo betta. Are you trying to tell us that one bud that's big is better then 6 small buds - I can't get around that - I say this because the train wreck I grew in a small place was topped until I had the amount of tops I wanted for the space - then went for the flower stage. The buds ended up a tad over my middle finger in length and is killer weed. This tells me that auto flower plants are not for me. I think you end up limited in your grow and limited in your yield as well. So.........what are the benefits of an auto flower?

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                • #9
                  Hi Slo. The reason you can't really top them is that the clock is always running. The time it takes to the plant repair itself comes off the total life time.
                  Having said that though, in the end there wasn't a massive difference between the yields of the topped and untopped plants, although the ones with single heads definitely yielded more than the topped one. I didn't weigh them out plant by plant but it looked quite clear.
                  In general though I kind of agree with you. Autos were good to learn on but at the end of the day they are quite limiting. They have been useful in my current grow as a kind of filler and I would recommend them for that. If you have your lights on 18/6 whilst vegging your big girls, why not fill some of the space between them with autos. They will be ready after about 10 weeks when you can flip your big girls to 12/12 and harvest the autos to give you a wee crop whilst waiting for the big one.

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                  • #10
                    Hey back Sat - you have a point there for sure. I am in the process of building a new room and will consider that when it is ready. So they are on a definite time line so what if your other plants aren't ready to flip? seems you have to pay attention to what your doing - damn - I hate that payin attention stuff but will pass it to my mentor and maybe we can do some experimenting and see what up. Thanks for contributing all I'm learning so much I need a new hat - slo

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                    • #11
                      Hey folks! I'm growing 1st time, DWC first time.. Didn't realize I had an Autoflowering plant until 5 weeks in. It started producing little buds and I just thought that's what happens when it's ready to bloom. I let that go on for a week before I realized what was happening. It's supposed to be an 8 week plant. Industrial. So @ week 6 I started adding the neuts for blooming, then realized there were only 2 weeks left and upped neuts to the last 2 weeks of the feeding schedule. Using the organic SOUL brand. Here's a pic from today. Buds are small and tri combs are just starting to develop. Also I stressed it out the first 3 weeks with improper water changing practices. Wondering how bad it's messed up. Anyone think there's hope for some kind of yeild?

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                      • #12
                        Hi Damo. My advice to you here would be to watch the plants, not the calendar. For a start, the time given by the breeders will refer to the time flowering takes, not the time from seed. Even a top pedigree auto will give itself a few weeks to get going before starting to flower. Just watch the flowers. My intuition says you may have a few weeks to go and you may get a much better yield than you are looking at here. Maybe another 4 - 6 weeks to go.

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