Effects of harvesting early

Stone420

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Mar 4, 2019
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I'm on the final stages of a Northern Lights auto grow and have what appears to be a timing complication.

She is 11 weeks old now and most (75%) of her pistils are browned. I usually go by trichome coloration and see them turning from glassy to milky rather quickly on the calyx's. I may see one or two trichs showing a tinge of amber, but mainly she is more milky than anything....so getting close, and I'll say 7-10 days out as a best guess to be in my zone with 15% amber.

BUT, I need to be out of town the middle of next week and my business trip will be 10 days. If I chop this weekend I'll have time to dry and get into a position to begin curing while gone. I can get my wife to burp on a schedule, but she would be lost with a bona fide chop, trim and hang harvest.

With all going on, I can go ahead and chop knowing her trichs are mostly milky and just a few are beginning to tinge amber. OR...I can wait with what ends up being over 2 weeks from now to harvest. I know she'll be mostly all amber then and I call that way over ripe. Would most growers advise to go ahead and cut while milky....or wait 16 days when I get back?
 

niceneasy

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Jun 2, 2011
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I'm on the final stages of a Northern Lights auto grow and have what appears to be a timing complication.

She is 11 weeks old now and most (75%) of her pistils are browned. I usually go by trichome coloration and see them turning from glassy to milky rather quickly on the calyx's. I may see one or two trichs showing a tinge of amber, but mainly she is more milky than anything....so getting close, and I'll say 7-10 days out as a best guess to be in my zone with 15% amber.

BUT, I need to be out of town the middle of next week and my business trip will be 10 days. If I chop this weekend I'll have time to dry and get into a position to begin curing while gone. I can get my wife to burp on a schedule, but she would be lost with a bona fide chop, trim and hang harvest.

With all going on, I can go ahead and chop knowing her trichs are mostly milky and just a few are beginning to tinge amber. OR...I can wait with what ends up being over 2 weeks from now to harvest. I know she'll be mostly all amber then and I call that way over ripe. Would most growers advise to go ahead and cut while milky....or wait 16 days when I get back?
There's nothing wrong with a milky chop, but if you can wait the extra days then I'd say do it. I've never chopped one that is 'over ripe', personally I like to wait till nearly all amber. I don't think 13 weeks will spoil your product
 

Chester

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Jun 16, 2012
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I'd vote for wait til you get back but if it's big enough you could do a partial harvest now and then finish it off when you return … the most ripe buds are usually the tallest so you'd get the added bonus of being able to lower your light closer to the slower buds … sounds like you know what you're doing so after a decent cure you'd have the opportunity to decide whether you prefer early or late harvest Northern lights … Pictures would help …
:pass:
 

Bestbud

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Dec 19, 2018
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The best plan of action (IMHO) is the one that requires the LEAST amount of caretaking by your wife and secondarily provides you the crop you have been working towards. With that in mind I guess leaving them until you return would be the best course of action.
 

Stone420

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I've always been taught and have had the mind-set to wait until the trichs are nicely amber before harvesting. I've always done it this way - so I don't have any reference to the type of medicating effect the NL would give me if harvested earlier than mostly amber.

Obviously I have timing challenges as discussed, plus as @Bestbud says very wisely, the LEAST care I can ask my wife to provide will be to my best advantage. Leaving the plant in her hands (watering/checking) for a 10 day business trip is something I am not overly confident in doing.

With the trichs almost all milky now, I snipped a couple of small larf (popcorn) buds from the bottom of the plant and put them on a newspaper under a ceiling fan. The bud had dried enough to smoke the next day and it gave me a wonderful effect that I totally enjoyed. It was energetic but euphoric at the same time, and I didn't feel any narcotic couch-lock effects at all. This is my first NL grow, so I am not sure what the effects will be if she goes 2 more weeks from now.....BUT the smoke is awesome at this point.

I question if this should influence my harvesting decision? On the other hand, the effects may get EVEN better with two more weeks. Has anyone ever tried the effects like I have done to compare to the effects 2 more weeks will have??
 

Kostecs

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Jul 22, 2019
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Just chop them man ... I’m in the same situation with my Blue Cheese Autos ... id like to leave them an extra week but I have to go away on biz. I’ll be chopping on day 72 or 73.

I also have a ground hog who has moved into my back property and surely he is gonna find them. I have no fear when I’m home because I’m always back there doing stuff and he will stay away. But, once I go away and it’s quiet .. he’ll get em..


Chop before ..
 

Arthur

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Do they need to be trimmed up? I'm sure she could handle cutting and hanging the plant whole, in a predetermined spot. Hung whole they'll take a little longer to dry, you should be back in time to trim and jar.
 

Zamnesia Battle

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Feb 23, 2014
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i let an indica plant really amber up one time.....it was the most depressing all body no head high ever :frowny: was the shittest smoke of my life(no better than GAK) gak is the plastic/rubber/shoe polish shite ya might get palmed off with once in a while..i was thinking to myself how have i grown a dud when its all sparkly ? have i gone nuts why am i not high ?
now i cut when i see a single amber trich not 1% but a single amber trich.nice uppy head high,none of this my legs feel like lead zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
yes we lose a small % of weight cutting earlly and some folk dont like a racy high.
but like most things theres only one way to find out,and thats head first :footy:
good luck n keep er lit
:pighug:
 

Tejasdirt

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Dec 7, 2014
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i let an indica plant really amber up one time.....it was the most depressing all body no head high ever :frowny: was the shittest smoke of my life(no better than GAK) gak is the plastic/rubber/shoe polish shite ya might get palmed off with once in a while..i was thinking to myself how have i grown a dud when its all sparkly ? have i gone nuts why am i not high ?
now i cut when i see a single amber trich not 1% but a single amber trich.nice uppy head high,none of this my legs feel like lead zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
yes we lose a small % of weight cutting earlly and some folk dont like a racy high.
but like most things theres only one way to find out,and thats head first :footy:
good luck n keep er lit
:pighug:
I’m leaning with Archie.
Go ahead and chop it all
Put in cardboard box and let dry while your away.
Don’t depend on others to do your gardening.
This is your first auto grow.
Use it as a baseline