What is Cannabis and what you should do to grow it. If you want to grow better cannabis, the best way to do it is to grow companion plants near them. The idea of companion planting dates back 6,000 years when Native Americans used a companion planting method called Three Sisters.
The Three Sisters method used three different types of plants — corn, squash, and beans. The Native Americans knew that these three plants grow in abundance when planted near each other.
The corn’s purpose is two-fold. Since the corn plant grows tall and pole-like, the leaves provide plenty of shade for the squash, and the stalks provide a climbing structure for the beans. The squash’s large leaves block the sunlight from hitting the soil, thus preserving microbial life. As a result, the legumes beans fix nitrogen from the atmosphere by working with the microbes.
The Three Sisters method’s idea is to grow companion plants that work well together and provide some benefits to each other.
What is Companion Planting?
Companion planting, as mentioned, is growing companion plants near or next to other plants to make them grow better. The method makes your garden healthy and lush. When growing cannabis, it’ll do the same. The cannabis plants will be taller and fuller, and the buds will be rich and potent.
Although cannabis grows well as a mono-crop (one type of plant growing in an area), it does extremely well as a poly-crop (different types of plants growing in an area). Planting poly-crops with companion plants is the best way to ensure that your plants thrive.
What are the Benefits of Companion Planting?
Companion planting is a form of permaculture, meaning it’s a way to provide sustainability and self-sufficiency. For cannabis growing, you need a closed-looped system. A closed-looped system is how you keep all of the nutrients and other resources within the marijuana farm’s boundaries. To do this, you should plant companion plants around your cannabis plants. Using this method, you’re providing a barrier that will keep nutrients in and pests and disease out.
There are four ways the closed-looped system of companion planting is beneficial. They are the following:
Provides Food and Natural Remedies
Companion planting provides one essential benefit — food. When you grow companion plants, your garden produces healthy fruit and vegetables that you can eat. This is called sustainability and self-sufficiency.
Additionally, some companion plants are used as natural remedies in teas or tonics.
Having different types of plants gives your garden biodiversity. This biodiversity creates a rich soil environment for microbes to grow, which is essential for cannabis plants to thrive.
A biodiverse garden or farm offers shrubs, flowers, and vegetation from which wildlife and pollinators can benefit as it creates a hiding spot for these creatures. This helps decrease the chances of the spread of disease. If you have a poly-crop with companion plants surrounding the marijuana plants, it’ll prevent diseases from taking over your crop by creating a buffer.
Companion plants offer protection for your cannabis crop. Not all wildlife is suitable for a marijuana garden, so you must grow plants that will deter creatures that aren’t beneficial. Acting as a natural insect repellent, some companion plants release foul odors to get rid of bugs. However, some companion plants release pleasant odors to deter wildlife away from your cannabis plants. Larger types of plants offer protection from harsh weather. For example, tall sunflowers and tomato plants protect from wind, thus preventing them from snapping off.
Provides Soil Health and Nutrients
Rich and healthy soil is vital to growing a lush and healthy cannabis crop. Without the microbes in the soil, cannabis can’t grow abundantly. These microbial colonies, located at the roots of the plants, allow for the absorption of nutrients. The roots release sugary exudates that attract bacteria and fungi. For example, Mycorrhizal fungi fuse with roots to help them exchange sugars for nutrients. Bacteria also love these sugars. When the fungi or bacteria die, nutrients are released from the roots.
3 Excellent Cannabis Companion Plants
Three cannabis companion plants that can help your cannabis crop are the following:
Magic mushrooms are fungi. That said, we know that fungus fuses with roots to help them produce nutrients from sugars. The magic mushrooms decompose sawdust and grain into nutrient-rich soil, which acts as a natural slow-release fertilizer.
Magic mushrooms Canada is an excellent way to produce this natural fertilizer, giving you a healthy and prosperous cannabis crop.
To protect your marijuana plants against aphids, whiteflies, slugs, and snails, plant ever-beautiful and towering sunflowers. The sunflowers draw attention away from the cannabis plants, keeping the creatures out. Use sunflowers as barriers and borders.
How to Plant for Your Cannabis Crop:
Where: At the borders of your crop or near containers, plant as barriers, windshields, and shade cover.
The blossoms of Marigold, or Calendula officinalis, produce vibrant orange and yellow flowers and a pleasant aroma. These aspects of Marigold help to mesmerize and deter aphids from your cannabis garden or farm. Besides preventing aphids away from your marijuana plants, Marigold helps to eliminate pests, such as cabbage flies and cabbage moths. Simply, these pests don’t like the taste of them.
How to Plant for Your Cannabis Crop:
Where: Plant in between cannabis plants 20 centimeters apart for small plants or 30 centimeters apart to grow to their full potential. Place 1-2 plants in large containers next to your garden.
When: February – April
Companion plants are the best way to keep pests and wildlife out of your cannabis crop. It allows your marijuana plants to flourish, as important nutrients are also kept in your soil. Knowing how to companion plants is essential to growing a successful cannabis garden.