Published: February 8th, 2016
Categories: Cannabis Cultivation
It is important that you know when to admit defeat and try to save what you can. There may be a time when the spider mites or aphids might win, overwhelming your cannabis crop and destroying any chances you had of a successful grow. As heart wrenching as it may be, it is important to know when and how to deal with this.
In most cases this will mean a complete cull of your cannabis plants – you do not want to risk taking any pests with you.
If you are growing outdoors, the process is quite simple. Forget you old crop, move to a new area, and start from scratch. It may seem hard, but there is nothing for it, you do not want to be anywhere near the previous infestation.
If you are growing indoors and are insistent on taking some clones from your current crop, then set up a small grow room/nursery somewhere away from you main grow room to store them in temporarily, as mentioned though, this can be quite a risk – be very thorough in de-bugging them before you move them.
Next comes the cleansing of your current grow room. Firstly take all of the non-electrical growing equipment to another room and soak them in a water and bleach solution. Leave them fully submerged and soaking for at least a day. Careful here though, bleach is very irritant to the skin, even in a diluted form – wear some washing up gloves, or something similar.
Tho clean the electrical equipment, all you can really do take it out the room and wipe in down with a cloth. Introducing liquids to your electrical grow equipment is only going to end badly. You could consider using anti-bacterial wipes around electrical equipment casing, but never on the buttons or anywhere liquid could get into the inner parts.
Next comes the grow room itself. Start with the walls. Wash them down with a bleach solution to make sure everything that is on them or in them dies. If you have used foil or Mylar, throw it away and replace it with new stuff after the entire cleaning process is complete. Do not reuse them, some pests can find ways to attach themselves to it and go unseen. If you painted your walls then there is a good chance you will have to re-paint them once the walls are dry. Work you way down, covering all corners, pipes, holes, extraction fan exits etc, until you reach the floor. Once here mop the floor with your bleach solution, lifting the floor if and where possible to get underneath it. Next wipe down tables fully, tops, underside and legs with your solution – as well as any other furniture that may be present.
The next phase of your total pest extermination will involve buying a pest smoke bomb. These will smoke the room, getting everywhere, into every nook and cranny, ensuring all larvae and pests are dead. Bear in mind though that these will not normally kill eggs. Follow the instructions carefully; the process usually takes 8-10 days. Once this is complete, consider washing down your room again with bleach – you can never be too careful, it only takes a few eggs to ruin your room again.
Your indoor grow room should now be pest free, make sure everything is dry and clean, then start setting up your grow room once again for use.
Now return to your marijuana cuttings that you took. It is vital that you thoroughly check them for any pests. If you miss anything, you run the risk of reintroducing the pest and making the cleanse you went through pretty much pointless. If you are happy with them, then take cuttings from these cuttings, just to be safe. These are what you will check over again and introduce back into your original grow room. Grow these cuttings away from your cleansed grow room for a few weeks, checking them daily for any signs of trouble. Consider spraying with them pesticides even if you don’t see anything. Once you are happy with them and are confident that there is nothing wrong, reintroduce them into the main grow room. Once here, keep a keen eye on them. If you have done everything thoroughly then you should not encounter another pest problem.
Whilst this all sounds a bit extreme, it is worth following very closely. It is a last resort, scorched earth tactic that you will hopefully never have to use. This is not to be done at the first sign of an infestation, you should hopefully be able to fight most of them off – it is for when you get to a point when know that no amount of pesticide is going to win your war, and you need to start over.
It is also worth noting that some breeds of pests lay their eggs within the cannabis plants themselves, meaning no amount of pesticide or cleansing is going to solve your problem. If the above has failed and this is the case, then you will have to start with a cleansed grow room and fresh cannabis seeds.
Always remember the number one rule for pest prevention indoors: Never take anything from the outdoors into your grow room. This is the single and best way to prevent infestations – prevention is much better than cure.