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Grow Calendar: Australia

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Outdoor Cannabis Grow Calendar: Australia
October 01, 2020
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We are now living in the Information Age. For example, if you want to grow marijuana outdoors, all you have to do is look for a comprehensive guide online. You will, for sure, find countless websites detailing the process. You just have to sift out the junk and isolate the most reliable sources.

The thing is, nearly all the information is tailored to growers living in the Northern Hemisphere. And if you are from countries down south – such as Australia – it can be frustrating. After all, it is not as simple as reversing the grow calendars. There is the local weather, climate, and geography to think about, too. How on earth do you tweak the existing growing schedules to suit your situation?

You don’t have to. That is where we come in. If you are from Australia and want to cultivate your own homegrown buds, we’ve got you covered. It does not matter if you are from north, east, west, south, or central Oz. Our outdoor marijuana grow calendar will surely get the ball rolling – and help you reap the harvest of your dreams.

When Is the Ideal Grow Calendar for Australia?

Australia’s seasons are typically the reverse of what is happening up north. In the United States, for instance, growers usually jumpstart the process anytime between March to April. But in the land down under, that is the time to wrap up the months-long growing season. In general, the growing schedule in Australia runs from August to April.

Due to its large geographical size, Australia experiences a wide array of climates and seasons. The northern region, for example, generally has a tropical climate. In the central areas, you would mostly find deserts and bushes that are dry and receive little rainfall over the year. Finally, in the southern section, it tends to be temperate.

One thing is for sure that you can expect – Australia receives plenty of sunshine, making it the perfect place to grow cannabis outdoors. Having ample light also ensures that the buds will be as fat, dense, and potent as can be. On the flip side, it can get blistering hot, too, so you would have to take extra care to keep the plants amply-hydrated. The calendars below are divided into two – the first covers east, west, south, and central Australia, and the second focuses on the northern region.

Note: Try to stick to Sativa-dominant varieties as they thrive in warm, equatorial areas with a long growing season – conditions that are pretty similar to Australia’s. In contrast, Indicas hail from colder regions, which is why they have a shorter growth cycle. But do not dismiss them entirely. Research beforehand and look for strains that best match your situation – particularly the climate and weather.

East, West, South, and Central Australia

Southern Australia generally experiences four seasons, with summer falling from December through February. Most days, you can expect the climate to be warm, temperate, and pleasant. In the mountainous southeast, however, it is usually colder and wetter. Not to mention, the winters can also be harsh, and the highest peaks are sometimes snow-capped all-year-round.

The situation is also a bit different in the central region – the largest part of Australia. Characterized by deserts and a semiarid climate, the temperature in this area tends to climb higher. It also experiences the hottest days of the year. In other words, you would have to irrigate the plants more often – and in greater volumes.

Note: The average day length and temperature values are based on Melbourne, Perth, and Brisbane.

August

  • Average Day Length: 10.5-11.5 hours (11-11.5 hours in the desert)
  • Average Temperature: 8-18°C (7-23°C in the desert)

August – the last month of winter – is the perfect time to pop the seeds. If you follow this simple germination guide, the seeds should take root within a couple of days.

Once the taproot has emerged from the seed coat, it is time to get planting. Seedlings prefer a slightly warm temperature of about 20-25°C. During August, it would still be too cold outside. So, it is best to start indoors, preferably on a window sill. Heaters or heating mats can also help keep the young plants warm and comfortable. If you want to grow exclusively outdoors, you would have to wait until the weather is sufficiently balmy.

If you plan on cloning, start growing the mother plants indoors as well.

September

  • Average Day Length: 11.5-12.5 hours
  • Average Temperature: 9-20°C (11-27°C in the desert)

Come September, you still have time to germinate the seeds. Again, make sure to provide the seedlings with the much-needed warmth.

There are also light requirements to think about. Ideally, they should receive at least 12 hours of light per day. If the sunlight exposure falls short, complement it with a grow lamp. Fluorescent lights – such as CFL and T5 – are recommended. Indoors, you can cover the walls with reflective materials to maximize light availability.

Observe the budding plants. If the stems appear pale, thin, and elongated, they might not be receiving enough light. If so, try affixing the lamps a bit closer.

October

  • Average Day Length: 12.5-13.5 hours
  • Average Temperature: 11-22°C (15-32°C in the desert)

As October sets in, the days will start getting longer. By this point, you might not need to supplement natural light with grow lamps anymore. If you can, target a minimum of 13 hours of sunlight per day.

Once the daytime temperature reaches 21°C, you can place the plants outside. This rings especially true for those living warmer regions. At night, the plants thrive in slightly cooler temperatures of around 18°C – any higher than that could stunt growth. Most likely, October evenings would still be too cold for the flowering plants, so you may have to bring them inside.

Cloning? Now is the time to take stem cuttings from the parent plant.

November

  • Average Day Length: 13.5-14 hours
  • Average Temperature: 13-25°C (18-35°C in the desert)

By November, it should feel like the peak of spring – or the onset of summer. In other words, it is warm enough for the plants to be outside – all day long. Just ensure that the temperature does not drop below 15°C at any given time. This could shock the plants – or even kill them overnight.

If you want to grow auto-flowering plants, November is also the ideal month to get started. This way, you can harvest towards the end of summer – or by early February. The life cycle varies from strain to strain, though. Make sure to do your homework before getting down to business.

December

  • Average Day Length: 14 hours
  • Average Temperature: 15-27°C (20-36°C)

December marks the arrival of summer in Australia. During this time, the daylight hours and the temperatures will keep on rising. This is also when the plants begin experiencing a spurt in vegetative growth. That is to say, the roots mature and expand, the stems and branches grow sturdier, and the leafage becomes lusher. More than that, the plants will also become noticeably taller.

For those growing autos, the flower production should be well underway.

January

  • Average Day Length: 14 hours (13.5 hours in the desert)
  • Average Temperature: 17-28°C (23-39°C in the desert)

During January, the days will become progressively hotter -, and this trend should continue until February. For those who grew regular or non-feminized cannabis seeds, this is the time to figure out the sex of the plants. This entails observing the pre-flowers – the miniature version of adult buds. Being small, you would have to use a magnifying tool to view them properly. They appear at the node or the intersection between the main stem and the side branches.

Generally, about half would turn out to be males. It is critical to isolate or discard them immediately once identified. You do not want them to pollinate the female plants, which would drastically lower the potency, smoothness, and overall quality of the buds.

The male pre-flowers are shaped like the spade symbol. Eventually, these grow into clusters – like a bunch of grapes. The females, on the other hand, are long and pointed, later sprouting a couple of white, wispy hairs at the top.

February

  • Average Day Length: 13 hours
  • Average Temperature: 17-28°C (22-37°C in the desert)

February is when cannabis plants begin flowering. During this time, they prefer a comfortable room temperature of 20-26°C and relative humidity of 40-50%. The plants can reach their full potential at these ranges, resulting in large, dense, and trichome-packed buds.

Never go beyond 26°C. This could interfere with bud production, as well as cause the degradation of terpenes. When consumed, the nuggets would have markedly weaker potency, smell, and flavors. At the same time, too-cold temperatures are just as problematic, lowering the quality of the flowers.

March

  • Average Day Length: 12-12.5 hours
  • Average Temperature: 16-27°C (18-33°C in the desert)

March signals the beginning of autumn – and the end of the growing season. It will still be warm, but the temperatures will begin dropping – gradually. The daylight hours would also shorten from 13 to about 12 hours. At any rate, make sure to collect the colas before it gets even colder.

Before harvesting, keep an eye on the trichomes – the crystalline outgrowths coating the buds and leaves – using magnifying tools. They should appear cloudy or milky white – a sign that the resin production has reached its peak. Do not wait until they darken into an amber shade – especially if you want potent psychoactive effects. If so, the THC would start breaking down to CBN, resulting in a weaker, deeply narcotic high.

April

  • Average Day Length: 11-11.5 hours (11-12 hours in the desert)
  • Average Temperature: 13-23°C (13-28°C in the desert)

By April, the growing season has officially ended. If you still have not harvested the nuggets, do it now. You do not want to wait for the cold and moisture to settle in, or the risk of bud rot increases. This type of fungus that damages the buds from the inside out spreads fast, too. If left unaddressed, the infection could affect and devastate the rest of the crops.

Northern Australia

The upper half of Australia experiences a tropical climate all-year-round. More importantly, it only has two seasons – dry (April to November) and wet (November to April). Incidentally, the growing schedule falls on the wet season. During this time, marijuana plants are more susceptible to mold and mildew – most notably, bud rot and powdery mildew. Be vigilant.

Even in rainy seasons, though, heat is abundant. In warmer regions, in fact, the temperatures can skyrocket to 30-50°C. The daylight hours, though, are noticeably shorter than the southern areas. Make sure that the plants are receiving enough light at all times.

Note: The averages are used on Katherine and Darwin, as well as two cities from the Northern Territory.

August

  • Average Day Length: 11.5-12 hours
  • Average Temperature: 17.5-32°C

August is the time to get planning. Buy the seeds if you still haven’t. Not sure what to get? This catalog of high-quality cannabis seeds for sale can help you decide. This diverse collection categorizes the seeds depending on different characteristics, such as potency, recreational effects, therapeutic benefits, and flavors. Preferably, the chosen strain should also have increased resistance to mold and mildew, such as Amnesia Feminized, Hindu Kush, and Jack Herer Autoflower.

September

  • Average Day Length: 12 hours
  • Average Temperature: 21-32°C

In northern areas, the month of September officially kicks off the growing season. Begin by germinating the seeds using damp paper towels. There are other methods, but this one is one of the easiest and most reliable.

After taking root, transplant the seedlings in a solo cup. Place it carefully on a windowsill or another well-lit spot. They would need a minimum of 12 hours of light per day. If there is not enough sunshine, make up for the remaining light requirements with low-intensity grow lamps.

October

  • Average Day Length: 12-12.5 hours
  • Average Temperature: 25-35°C

Once October comes along, the daytime hours will start increasing. It would be safe to move your cannabis plants outside at this point. The temperatures could soar to up to 35°C, though, so ensure that the plants remain well-hydrated at all times. Poke a finger 1-2 inches into the topsoil. If it feels dry, it is time to drench the plants.

If you plan on propagating clones, you can start taking healthy cuttings from the mother plant.

November

  • Average Day Length: 12.5-13 hours
  • Average Temperature: 25-35°C

Generally, November is one of the hottest months in northern Australia. As it happens, this is also when the rainy season begins. Remember, more moisture means the higher likelihood of mold and mildew, so watch out. Expect these weather conditions to stretch until December.

At any rate, the plants will start thriving during this time. Equip them with everything they need – including the right sunlight exposure, moisture, and nutrients – to support this maturation.

If you intend to grow autos, start popping the seeds now. This ensures that the harvest period would fall in February.

December

  • Average Day Length: 13 hours
  • Average Temperature: 25-34°C

By December, vegetative growth should be in full swing. It would not be uncommon for the plants to gain a few inches of height within a day. Aside from vertical growth, they would also expand outwards, with the foliage becoming thicker and more abundant.

As for autoflowers, they should start budding sometime within the month.

January

  • Average Day Length: 13 hours
  • Average Temperature: 24-32°C

In northern Oz, January is the wettest month of the year. This, of course, also means that marijuana plants are at the greatest risk of mold and mildew. Keep an eye out for any warning signs of an infection. Bud rot, for example, usually causes the buds to wither and discolor during the early stages. On the other hand, powdery mildew manifests itself as a layer of white, powdery mold on the leaves.

January is also when the cannabis pre-flowers pop up. In other words, plants grown from regular seeds would begin displaying their gender.

Monitor the bud site at the base of the leaves. If the outgrowths resemble a cluster of tiny balls – you are looking at the males. As for female plants, their preflowers sport a tapered teardrop shape. Later on, these would sprout one or two white filaments – also called the pistil – at the tip.

February

  • Average Day Length: 12.5-13 hours
  • Average Temperature: 24-32°C

Once February arrives, the daylight hours will begin to decrease. In a few more weeks, photoperiod plants would be ready for collection.

Meanwhile, autoflowers should be all set for harvest at this point. Start by snipping off the colas. Remove the fan leaves before hanging each stalk upside down to let them dry. After the drying process – which can take anywhere between 5-15 days – comes curing. It ensures that the plant matter is properly aged and dried before consumption.

March

  • Average Day Length: 11-12.5 hours
  • Average Temperature: 23-33°C

By March, the days would start getting shorter than 12 hours. Generally, now is the time to harvest the coveted buds. Some strains, though, might take a bit more time. Also, those in the tropical areas typically extend the growing season for a few more weeks.

Either way, flush the plants – or give them only plain water – about two weeks before harvest time. This forces them to use up the remaining nutrients and chemicals, significantly enhancing the flavor profile, smoothness, and overall quality of the nuggets.

April

  • Average Day Length: 11.5-12 hours
  • Average Temperature: 22-33°C

April ushers in the drier seasons. Expect temperature and humidity to be on the higher end – conditions that attract mold and invite bud rot. So, make sure to harvest the buds as soon as possible.

Growing Marijuana in the Land Down Under

Australia is a fantastic place to cultivate marijuana plants outdoors. It is sufficiently warm, for one. Some areas even receive liberal amounts of sunshine nearly all the time. Proper timing, though, is critical to make the most out of the grow.

Know that some problems might be more common in certain areas. This includes mold and mildew, heat stress, insufficient light, and so on. So, before getting started, make sure to assess your local climate and weather conditions. Plan accordingly so you would know how to prevent and address such problems. Providing your plants with optimal growing conditions is a given. Another is to start with top-quality and highly stabilized seeds.

Finally, be aware that while marijuana is becoming more accepted in Australia – it is still mostly illegal. Know the legality of the plant in your specific state and territory – including the criminal offenses and penalties of growing it. If it is too severe, then it might not be worth breaking the law.

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