Choosing Outdoor Seeds To Grow In Your Climate

Juanita la Lagrimosa

What kind of cannabis you choose to cultivate and where you sow the seeds will dictate your outdoor crop’s performance. Our breakdown of the perfect strains for each climate zone will help you grow fire marijuana throughout spring, summer, and autumn.

THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR OF CANNABIS CULTIVATION—GENETICS

Cannabis Genetics
Cannabis Genetics

Genetics hold the key to your cannabis seeds’ potential and that’s a fact. No matter what miracle nutrient formulation you apply or how perfectly you maintain the garden, results will be genetics-driven. If you start with bunko beans, don’t expect huge yields of high-grade. Only by carefully choosing high-quality, feminized seeds can the cannabis grower avoid the low-ceiling limitations of weak genetics. Outdoor cannabis cultivation requires an even more rigorous selection process.

These days, the vast majority of cannabis strains on the market have been specifically adapted and bred for indoor cultivation. Sure, in theory, any weed can grow anywhere. But in practice, this is absolutely not the case with all cannabis varieties. Most marijuana will thrive in a sunny southern climate. However, plenty of outstanding, hardy strains can be cultivated in cooler, northern latitudes.

It’s time to get our hands dirty with some old-school marijuana cropping in the great outdoors. Match up the right cannabis with the local climate and you’ve taken the first step on the route to a successful outdoor harvest.

EUROPEAN CLIMATE ZONES: HOW MUCH SUN IS YOUR GARDEN GETTING?

Climate zones
Climate zones

Job number one is to establish how much daily sunlight your cannabis plants are likely to receive during the growing season. Once you know the timeframe you have to work with, you can begin to consider which strains are the best fits. Keep an eye on the local weather forecast and do a little online research. Find accurate data on hours of daily sunlight, sunrise and sunset times, temperatures day and night, prevailing winds, and precipitation frequency.

Perhaps you are based somewhere around the Mediterranean. If so, you have the luxury of growing late-blooming sativas outdoors from around April to Croptober. Maybe you are living in Northern Europe and only have a short Spring/Summer 8-10 week window to squeeze in some tough ruderalis. Or you could be somewhere in the middle and need versatile hybrids for a summer crop.

Here is a breakdown of different climate zones with recommended cannabis strains you can grow outdoors:

COOL NORTHERN LATITUDES

Cold temperature colored cannabis
Cold temperature colored cannabis

Northern European growers from the west coast of Ireland to eastern Poland need to go with cannabis strains that can survive in less-than-perfect conditions

Photoperiod and autoflowering strains bred to thrive in colder climates can produce top-shelf quality outdoors. With their fast growth and shorter flowering times, you can harvest them much earlier than other strains. This way, you can beat the rain in fall and avoid mould taking hold of your precious buds. Still, you must time your crop right to avoid the most inclement weather, as no cannabis is invincible.

Remember to reference weather data before choosing your seeds. If you find yourself limited to less than three months total crop time, you really only have time to grow very fast autoflowers during late spring/early summer. To be on the safe side, grow in containers so you can take your plants inside if the weather takes a turn for the worse.

QUICK ONE

Quick One is one of the first market-ready autoflowering cannabis varieties, and was once one of the fastest strains you could grow. She is still blazingly fast, taking only 8–9 weeks from seed to harvest, which makes her an excellent choice for those with a short summer season. This compact plant won’t get taller than 50–60cm, yet will reward you with a decent yield of up to 150g/plant. She may not be the most potent cannabis, but 13% THC still produces a very relaxing stone. She has a fresh, herbal, and citrusy aroma and a pleasantly mild taste.

EASY BUD

Another great choice if you need a super-fast autoflowering strain to beat the bad weather is Easy Bud. Similar to Royal Dwarf, but with a few genetic differences, this girls shines with good yields and a moderate THC level. Plant your seeds, and she will soon be showing off her ripe, juicy buds in a short 8–9 weeks post-germination. With 12% THC, Easy Bud is just the perfect strain if you enjoy a mild high that won’t knock you out. Staying at a compact height of 60–100cm, the strain can yield as much as 80g of citrus-flavoured bud per plant.

HOT, DRY SOUTHERN CLIMATE

Small, private grow in California
Small, private grow in California

Southern European growers have a huge advantage over northern growers. An abundance of sunshine facilitates a long growing season that can be productive from March-November. The possibilities are endless. It really comes down to which kind of sticky green is your personal favourite.

Beginner growers can gain experience with some gourmet warm climate autoflowering varieties. In fact, the next-generation RQS auto hybrids are also a great option for more experienced growers looking to double-crop in a single season. Royal Haze Automatic and Northern Light Automatic immediately spring to mind as winners in a warm climate. All you have to decide is whether you prefer indica or sativa-leaning stash.

It would be a shame not to dabble with some fine photoperiod strains in a warmer climate. How about some organic, soil-cultivated OG Kush or Sour Diesel goodness to have your ladies growing into great ganja trees for some truly monster yields? But do keep an eye out when growing in these hot climate zones, as the scorching sun can be too much for plants to handle in excess. Shade, rather than shelter from rain, may be required. Watch out for heatwaves! Here are our favourites when growing in a hot and dry climate:

ROYAL HAZE AUTO

Our Royal Haze Auto brings simplicity to the Haze family! Being an autoflower, she does away with a major inconvenience that growers encounter with photoperiod Hazes—their long flowering time. Instead, Royal Haze Auto moves from seed to harvest in a short 10–12 weeks. She is also a great choice if you want to harvest several Haze crops over one summer season—something you can’t accomplish with photoperiod strains. Get ready for a great smoke with citrus and herbal flavours and a cerebral, uplifting Haze high.

NORTHERN LIGHT AUTO

Bred from Afghani genetics sometime in the 1970s, Northern Light has become one of the most popular strains among cannabis enthusiasts. Our autoflowering variant of this popular indica hybrid isn’t just a great indoor strain, but makes a formidable figure outdoors as well. Not that the photoperiod version isn’t awesome already (she sure is!), but there are cultivators who cherish the 9–10-week life cycle of the automatic version. And, let’s be honest, who likes to wait for awesome weed? Smoke Northern Light Auto to enjoy a relaxing physical stone with just the right amount of uplifting stimulation.

OG KUSH

Not much needs to be said about OG Kush, one of the most iconic cannabis strains of all time. This super dank specimen, a 75% indica, is just ideal to grow outdoors under the sun. Here, a single plant can yield 500 grams in a short 8 weeks of flowering. Once you can finally set her buds ablaze, you will enjoy delicious citrus, pine, and fruit flavours. Her extremely relaxing indica effect makes OG Kush the perfect nighttime strain for chilling and watching movies.

SOUR DIESEL

Sour Diesel is another legendary cannabis strain that any “serious” cultivator shouldn’t miss out on growing. With roots in sunny California, she’s well adapted to dry and sunny climates. Here, the plant can grow to its full potential. This 70% sativa can reach a height of 2m and flowers over 10–11 weeks. Despite the slightly prolonged flowering period, she can provide an epic yield of up to 600g/plant. Among her highlights is her trademark fuel-like aroma and taste, which is highly sought-after by cannabis enthusiasts. She provides a relaxing but clear high.

WARM-WET COASTAL CLIMATE

Warm climate cannabis
Warm climate cannabis

Sun, sea, and outstanding outdoor sinsemilla. If you are living around the Mediterranean, you are also spoiled with choices. Although, cropping cannabis strains resistant to bud mould is probably advisable, especially if you’re a novice cultivator. Unfortunately, thick, tight colas and high humidity don’t mix.

For these climates, high-calibre Hazes are recommended. Their slightly looser flower formation and greater tolerance for humidity make sativa hybrids the perfect choice for the coastal cultivator. Of course, sativa genetics will add a few weeks to bloom, even for autoflowering Hazes. Then again, you have from April to October, so you’re not really in a rush. Plenty of time to harvest the finest headstash!

But don’t get too complacent with sativa genetics as they too can succumb to mould and fungus. Check the weather and be at the ready to harvest from September onward should the rain come early. Here are our recommended Hazes to grow in a hot and humid climate:

AMNESIA HAZE

Derived from old-school Haze seeds and considered one of the best variants, Amnesia Haze by RQS is a great choice for growing in hot and humid conditions. This 70% sativa, which can reach a height of 210cm, keeps the risk for mould low thanks to her airy leaf-to-flower ratio. But know that growing Amnesia Haze isn’t something for the impatient. Expect about four months of growing and then another two weeks of drying and curing before you can finally enjoy this outstanding strain. On the other hand, getting 700g/plant in good conditions—and a spectacular head high powered by 22% THC—will absolutely make you forget the long wait. Well, just look at her name... duh!

SHINING SILVER HAZE

Shining Silver Haze is another formidable Haze Royal Queen Seeds is proud to have in our collection. Based on one of the first-ever Haze classics, the legendary Super Silver Haze, RQS further enhanced the sativa to please even the pickiest of connoisseurs. With a loose leaf-to-flower ratio that ensures good air circulation, greatly reducing the risk for mould, she is well suited to humid outdoor environments. This plant can reach a height of 220cm, flowers over 9–11 weeks, and will yield as much as 650g/plant. When smoked, she induces an instant head high that goes straight to your brain thanks to 21% THC. In addition, she delights the smoker with sweet, citrusy, and earthy flavours.


MORE GREAT GUIDES FOR OUTDOOR GROWERS IN DIFFERENT CLIMATE ZONES

If you want to learn more on growing cannabis outdoors in your climate zone, here are some other great guides to check out!

Cannabis Monthly Grow Guide: Northern Europe, USA & Canada for tips on growing outdoors in colder areas of the world.

Cannabis Monthly Grow Guide: Southern Europe & Southern USA for growing the ideal crop in Southern Europe and the Southern US.

Cannabis Grow Guide: Central & South America for growing high-quality cannabis in Latin America.

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