The Screen of Green (ScrOG) method uses a horizontal screen above the canopy of your cannabis plants to help you to guide the plant growth into a wider flatter canopy structure. The result, bigger yields and fatter buds.
In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to ScrOG like a pro—from building your screen to the best time to start the process. We’ll also tackle key topics like plant spacing, weaving techniques, and post-harvest tips.
What is the ScrOG technique?
The Screen of Green (ScrOG) technique is a low stress training technique that involves using a horizontal screen or net to guide the growth of your plants during the vegetative stage. It allows you to weave the branches through the net as they grow pushing some wider into unused space. The end result is a wide plant structure, a flatter canopy and come the flowering stage you will have more bud sites and much better light distribution and airflow among your plants. The ScrOG method is Ideal for indoor grow spaces with limited vertical space, as it creates a flat canopy maximizing both yield and light efficiency. It’s a great yield boosting technique if you are new to growing and not quite confident enough to try your hand at high stress training methods such as topping, fimming or manifolding.
Step by step how to ScrOG marijuana plants
- Install the Screen: Place a horizontal screen about 20–30 inches above the base of your plants. The holes in the screen should be around 2 inches wide.
- Vegetative Stage: Let the plants grow through the screen until they reach about 10–12 inches in height.
- Weave the Branches: As branches grow through the screen holes, gently weave them back under the screen to spread the canopy.
- Trimming: Remove any branches or leaves that don’t make it through the screen. Focus on maintaining a single, even layer of foliage.
- Switch to Flowering: Once 60–70% of the screen is filled, switch to the flowering light cycle (12/12).
- Monitor and Adjust: Continue to weave new growth under the screen. Trim any unnecessary growth beneath the screen.
- Check Bud Sites: Make sure each bud site gets enough light and air. Adjust branches if needed.
- Harvest: Once buds are mature, carefully remove the screen and proceed with your normal harvesting steps.
When to start scrogging your plants?
With any plant training technique timing is important but when you start using your ScrOG net depends if you have topped or fimmed your plants or if you are only using a ScrOG net.
Only using a ScrOG net
Before you can start weaving the branches of your cannabis plant through the net they need to have grown some height first. So, its best to position your net about 20cm above the pots, once they begin to grow to the height of the net you can then begin to weave and bend the branches through. It can also help to use the ‘Tie and Bend’ LST method earlier than this, so begin to tie some of the early branches down into a wider growth pattern before they reach 20cm tall. That way when they reach the height of the net you will already have set the branches growing on the right trajectory.
After topping or fimming
Some growers prefer to top or fimm their cannabis plants, if this is you then you should wait until after you have made all of the cuts you want. And you have multiple side branches to then weave through the screen. You can start scrogging as soon as you have topped or fimmed your plants, the earlier you do this the better.
When not to ScrOG
Knowing when not to ScrOG is just as important as understanding when to start. You should avoid ScrOGging during the flowering stage, as manipulating the plant during this phase can induce stress, leading to stunted growth or even hermaphroditism. By the flowering stage, the branches of your plants will be thick and sturdy, bending them this late can cause breakages and lead to stress related stunting. Also at this point the plant has already begun to produce its bud, you should be doing everything possible to allow it to focus on producing its flowers without any distractions. Similarly, if your plants are showing signs of disease or nutrient deficiencies, it’s best to resolve these issues before implementing any form of stress training.
Plants that are already struggling will not respond well to the added stress of ScrOGging. You should also be more careful using the ScrOG method on autoflowering strains. Autoflowers have much shorter vegetative stages than photoperiod plants, so they don’t have enough time to recover from any stress that might be cause before they start flowering. While scrogging is a low stress technique, if you make a mistake and damage your plant it will cause stress.
Does ScrOG increase yield?
Yes, ScrOG, or Screen of Green, is a cannabis growing technique designed to increase your yield in some cases by over 100%. By using a horizontal screen to guide plant growth, you expose more bud sites to direct light, encouraging a more even canopy and higher bud production. The method allows for optimal light penetration and air circulation, resulting in larger, denser, and healthier plants reducing the risk of bud rot.
Pros and cons of using scrog to grow cannabis
The ScrOG method comes with its own set of advantages and drawbacks, and understanding these can help you decide if it’s the right approach for you.
- Maximized Yields: ScrOG optimizes light distribution, hitting more bud sites and boosting yields.
- Improved Light Penetration: The screen helps spread the canopy, allowing light to penetrate deeper, benefitting lower buds.
- Better Air Circulation: A more open canopy promotes air flow, reducing risks of mold and mildew.
- Resource Efficiency: ScrOG can make better use of space and lighting, which can be particularly beneficial for indoor grows.
- Labor Intensive: Initial setup and ongoing maintenance like tucking and weaving branches require time and attention.
- Not Suitable for All Strains: ScrOG is best for strains that naturally grow bushier and have multiple bud sites.
- Risk of Stress: Incorrectly bending or weaving can stress the plant, affecting its health and yield.
- Time Consuming: The method can extend your plant’s vegetative stage, delaying the time to harvest.
How to use the ScrOG and LST techniques together
Combining ScrOG (Screen of Green) and LST (Low Stress Training) can create a dynamic duo for maximizing your cannabis yields. Here’s how you can effectively employ both.
Step 1: Start with LST
Begin by bending the young plant’s branches gently towards the soil. Use soft ties to hold them in place. This exposes more bud sites and encourages lateral growth.
Step 2: Install the Screen
Once your plant is a few weeks into the vegetative stage, install the ScrOG screen about 20 to 25 inches above the soil. Ensure the screen’s holes are evenly spaced.
Step 3: Weave the Branches
As the branches grow, gently weave them through the ScrOG screen. Continue to use LST to direct growth horizontally rather than vertically.
Step 4: Continue Tucking
As the plant continues to grow, keep tucking the branches beneath the screen. This allows for more light penetration, promoting a denser canopy.
Step 5: Flip to Flowering
Switch to a 12/12 light cycle to initiate flowering. Stop tucking and weaving a week or two into the flowering stage.
Step 6: Maintenance
Even after you stop the weaving, continue to adjust ties and remove any leaves blocking light to bud sites. Make sure not to stress the plant during its sensitive flowering stage.
Using ScrOG and LST together maximizes your control over the plant’s shape and light exposure, leading to better yields and healthier plants.
Which strains work best with the scrog technique?
Certain strains of cannabis are better suited for the ScrOG technique due to their growth patterns and branch structure. Let’s dive in.
Indica vs. Sativa for Scrog
Generally, Indica strains are compact and bushy, which makes them naturally more amenable to the ScrOG approach. Sativa strains, being taller, can also work but may require more attentive training.
Best indica strains for Scrog
- Northern Lights: Known for its resilient nature.
- Blue Cheese: Features robust side branching.
Best sativa strains for Scrog
- Amnesia Haze: Requires more tucking but yields well.
- Jack Herer: Known for its manageable height and good lateral branching.
Best Hybrids for Scrog
Hybrids often bring the best of both worlds. Strains like Girl Scout Cookies or OG Kush provide the right combination of height and branching ideal for ScrOGging.
Autoflowers can be ScrOGged, but be cautious. They have a shorter vegetative phase, which gives you less time to train the plant. Choose auto strains known for longer vegetation periods, like Auto AK47.
You’ve got the full scoop on how to ScrOG your marijuana plants! From selecting the best strains to optimizing your yield, you’re now equipped to take your grow game to the next level. Apply these expert tips for a more organized and productive grow space. Ready to reach for the canopy? You’ve got this! Don’t forget to like and share this article.