Increase your culture with the SCROG method
The SCROG method (Screen of Green) is a technique of training and improvement of the culture. It's kind of the equivalent of SOG but smaller. SCROGING is usually done with a net or wire mesh. This growth technique aims to significantly improve the productivity of your crops. The principle is the same as SOG, i.e. small plants are grown uniformly while trying to maximize the number of buds for a given area. Here is the guide to SCROG cultivation made easy.
By analogy with SOG (screen of green), we call SCROG a technique of cultivation mainly dedicated to indoor cultivation. The SOG method has been popular for years, however the SCROG method is based on the same principles. Growers add a screen net that will maximize light exposure. This is how SCROGING is defined.
To do this, place a fence over the plants. When they reach the level of the fence or a little above, we bend them to force them to stay under the fence. Then we go into flowering. Then we continue to hold the plant under the matrix, until the growth stops and the buds start to swell. If the job is done right, you have a canopy of leaves and a field of buds ready to explode.
The advantages of SCROG
Optimization of interior space : The interlacing of the leaves allows the deployment of the branches with a uniform size. Under these conditions almost no space will be present on the top layer of vegetation. With a net, you can achieve the most effective results in terms of optimizing interior space. And this is the most important parameter of the SCROG method
Uniform canopy & level control : One of the most common problems growing cannabis in a closed space is keeping your plant uniform while growing. Despite the understandable desire for growers to provide for wild growth and fill the room with a very large flower, it is important to remember that it is necessary to maintain a distance from the light source. Especially when it comes to an HPS lamp that can burn all your growing hopes within hours.
Maximum exposure to light : The SCROG device naturally exposes all the stems of your germinating plants. For these reasons, the meshes of the net considered as a multitude of receptacles exposed to light make it possible to accommodate the buds.
Branch support : this positive point is the physical support of the net. This support is essential, especially during the flowering phase when the same massive branches develop within a few weeks.
Weaknesses of SCROG
Long-term growth - The SCROG method has an inherent need of at least 4 to 6 weeks in order to have growing branches deployed correctly above the net. Of course, the parameter of the number of plants is important. Thus, 2 plants will take longer to cover an area of one square meter compared to 4 plants.
The problem of mobility - During the first weeks of cultivation, you can usually handle the plants and do proper maintenance. But once the branches emerge through the slits in the net, it will be difficult for you to reconfigure your growing medium. This obviously does not negate the necessary maintenance, you will need to use a sprayer to wash your plants or fight against pests with this one. Show a little ingenuity and inventiveness.
Use cuttings or feminized seeds – Today, the majority of Homegrowers use feminized seeds or cuttings. In the case of the SCROG method, it is an obligation! Unless you are a veteran, you will need to establish a homogeneous culture, the cuttings therefore being in high demand.
All basic equipment is needed for SCROGING – i.e. lamp, ventilation, culture medium, controls, etc. But we will add a few essential elements:
Cannabis plants - SCROGING generally involves 2 to 4 plants per square meter. But sometimes you can go up to more than 6 or more plants. As long as the right growing conditions are not corrupted, plants will shorten the vegetative transition time and their flowering period.
The grid or net – the net is in fact the only external equipment (almost) necessary for the implementation of this growth technique. In hydroponic garden stores, one can get netting that conforms to the canopy design. Most of the ingredients can be found in specialty stores for construction, farm animal treatment etc.
Nylon net – easy to use and highly maneuverable as needed.
plastic net – not the best choice… Make sure of the quality.
chicken wire mesh – the cheapest, most available and widely used. Its main drawback is that it is difficult to work with, and rusts… Eventually, it can damage the plant.
Fishing Net - Although this is a relatively strong material, it is also quite accessible and available. But many growers complain that the mesh is too thin, and what's more would tend to cut the plant.
String - suitable mainly for the assembly of small spaces.
Metallic mesh - you can buy ready-to-use metal chains and arrange them like a net. However, it is recommended to ensure that the metal is coated to prevent rusting.
Fibers : Another possibility is to form a network of threads with fibers such as cotton, jute, sisal (Agave), coconut, hemp… We can improvise from almost any material whose characteristics correspond to the size of the holes, ie 5 to 15 square centimeters.
To install the desired height of the net is necessary to establish only the walls of the growing cavity. Because of this, you can do this using the installation legs, wooden frame or simple nails (depending on the type of net and the convenience of the tower). The recommended location of the height of the net is between 25 and 50 cm (from base plants).
The general steps of the SCROG method
The vast majority of the SCROG web: 75% to 85% is covered with vegetation. To achieve this situation, it is important that the branches spread out on the network during the growth period. Therefore, a few general steps are necessary:
1. Scrog network installed at the desired height, above the plants
2. seedlings grow and reach the net
3. The plugs are distributed through the mesh
4. Now the “magic of SCROG” take each of the branches and expand your network.
Move them gently to the next hole and in the desired direction.
Illustration of the action:
5. Continue the implementation of step 4 to cover a specific area
6. After the flowering phase, contemplate the result and pay attention if some branches do not overflow your growing space.
It should be noted
During the deployment of vegetation on the net, identify the main branches and redirect to the outer frame. This is to allow the less developed plants to obtain better lighting. In addition this prevents your upper branches from being injured by your lighting device.
In order to maximize the rate of coverage of the net by your plant and this in order to optimize the production offered by SCROGING, many producers tend to integrate other breeding techniques. They are particularly practicable in the first half of the growth cycle:
Cut - the size of the plant during the first weeks of its life is important. It is usually performed after the bifurcation of the third or fourth branches. Then we will get two new growths, which helps to promote growth across the width.
Pruning - one of the most important actions during the SCROG method. Pruning involves removing any vegetation in the lower third of the plant. This makes it possible to strengthen the development of the upper regions. Pruning takes place during growth, but it will be even more necessary when your plant is in the flowering stage, no light will wait for the lower part.
Links – The technique reveals more of the art and a certain mastery of SCROGING. However, it allows you to create the desired shape, via ligatures that will be imposed on the branches.
Recommended strains for SCROG
Another very important parameter for the success of SCROG is a selection of suitable cannabis strains. In general, we will take those that react well to this growth technique. The main characteristics we look for are those with laterally spreading growth and flexible branches.
The varieties of cannabis that meet these characteristics are usually Sativa strains. But as their long flowering period is a handicap (10 to 12 weeks), we preferred the hybrids indicated for SCROG cultivation. Some of the most commonly used strains include Satori, AK47, Lemon Haze, and C99. Do not hesitate to consult community producers using the SCROG method, to find the right strain of the moment.
The “V” SCROG
One of the most interesting ideas to improve the SCROG, is to establish a curved network. This leads to a larger area of exploitation, and therefore a better harvest. Idea graph:
SCROG half vertical
Of course, here you can make your grow matrix grow vertically, the bulb is in the middle:
Of course, here you can take it on vertical growth in full quantity The bulb is in the middle:
It should be noted that the more sophisticated SCROG methods are not recommended for beginners. It is best to start with the simplest format (flat), repeat it until you have mastered it completely. SCROGING is a technique, which necessarily leads the experimenter to professionalization.