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Accidental Re-Vegging

What does it mean to accidentally “re-veg” a cannabis plant? “Re-veg” is short for “re-vegetation” and refers to what happens if a plant that has started flowering re-enters the vegetative stage. The majority of cannabis plants are photoperiod strains, which need long nights in order to make flowers/buds (indoor growers typically give 12 hours of uninterrupted darkness a day). If the plant starts getting light during its night time it responds by re-vegging.

Sometimes even just a little light like a blinking LED in your grow tent is all it takes to interrupt your plant’s beauty sleep.

Re-vegging happens when flowering plants get light during their 12-hour dark period. A few interrupted nights or even a small light leak can start a re-veg!

Re-vegging cannabis plants show odd leaf symptoms such as:

  • smooth leaf edges
  • buds stop developing
  • long leaves or new stems grow out of bud sites
  • main stem sprouts 1-point leaves (just one “finger” per leaf instead of the typical 7 or 9 for adult cannabis leaves)
  • curling leaves (may look like heat stress)
  • wrinkled, twisted, or unusual growth

This plant was put outside too early in the Spring season, which caused it to start flowering due to the short nights. As Spring progressed the nights grew shorter and it began revegging, growing these oddly smooth leaves directly out of the center stem.

Unusual single-point leaves started growing out of the developing buds of this plant in the middle of the flowering stage. The grower didn’t realize that turning the light on for a few moments during the dark period could cause a problem. If the plant is getting light at night, it only takes a few days to “flip the switch” and initiate the re-vegging process!

Some revegging symptoms include wrinkling, curling, or twisted leaves. These symptoms may be confused for watering, heat problems, or even broad mites, when they’re actually a sign the plant is going through major internal changes. Notice the wrinkled leaves in this picture are more smooth around the edges than typical leaves. That’s a key sign this plant is re-vegging.

This plant was already flowering indoors, but when it was brought outside in the spring, the short nights caused it to start re-vegging almost immediately.

These clones were recently taken from a flowering plant and have started re-vegging, causing odd growth and some smooth-edged leaves. Like many of the other cases of re-vegging, you can also see several single-point leaves among the new growth.

This outdoor plant started re-vegging, resulting in odd, twisted growth as well as smooth single-point leaves with long stems

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This plant was given a 12/12 light schedule after germination and buds (white hairs) started to form. The grower realized he wanted a bigger plant so he switched to a 20/4 light schedule so the plant would re-veg. Buds stopped developing and single-point leaves started growing out of the buds. Although you can still see a few white hairs, it is almost fully back into the vegetative stage at this point.

The leaves of a re-vegging plant may look different depending on the environment and particular strain. Ultimately, you know it’s the symptoms of re-vegging when the leaves appear more smooth than typical leaves. There really aren’t any other cannabis problems that cause that particular symptom.

Each cannabis plant expresses re-vegging a little differently!

Sometimes marijuana growers choose to re-veg their plants purposely, for example monstercropping (taking a marijuana clone from a plant in the flowering phase in order to change the clone’s initial growth patterns) or to harvest a plant for a second time (put it back into the vegetative stage and grow the whole plant out again after harvest, sometimes used by outdoor growers in warm climates to get a second harvest in a year).

Unfortunately, most of the time a grower sees the tell-tale leaves of a re-vegging plant, it’s an unwelcome sight!

What to Do About Accidental Re-Vegging

When a plant is revegging, you basically only have two choices.

  1. Let it re-vegetate completely if you actually want the plant to be in the vegetative stage, or…
  2. Correct the light periods by getting rid of any possible light leaks and giving plants 12 hours of interrupted darkness a day (to get them to go back into the flowering stage).

Plants that are far in the flowering stage can take a month or more to re-veg, while a plant that has only just started flowering re-vegs much faster. That goes both ways. If a plant has been re-vegging for a long time, it may take a few weeks to get the plant back to flowering and developing buds.

Luckily, a little time and proper care will get your plant growing normally again!

This cutting was taken off a flowering marijuana plant and put in a cloning device so it would re-develop roots and grow into a new plant. After a few days of growing, it started producing the typical rounded leaves of a re-veg.

About two weeks later, the plant is growing (mostly) normal leaves. Cannabis plants tend to grow a lot of stems and get bushy immediately after a re-veg, which can be seen heree. Although the growth patterns were odd at first, from this point on, the plant usually has relatively typical growing patterns.

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Re-vegging cannabis pictures by Don B

If you see your cannabis plant re-vegging, don’t panic! Figure out whether you want your plant to be in the vegetative or flowering stage and act accordingly. A little time is all it takes after that to get your plant in tip-top shape again.

Plant Symptoms

This page is part of our Plant Doctor series. You can use our tool to filter by symptom and help diagnose your plant.

Basics of Gardening in Houston, TX

 For crops that grow well in Houston, full sunlight is recommended.

Watering Schedule

January-March: Water 3 times weekly

April-May: Water 4 times weekly

June-September: Water daily if possible

October-December: Water 3 times weekly

NOTE: There is no need to water if it rains. Rain water is best for plants because it contains many nutrients and minerals. You can gather rain water in a bucket and use it to water your plants (this will help keep your garden even healthier). If you cannot collect rain water, regular tap is fine. When you’re done watering a bed, you should be able to scrape back an inch of soil with your finger and still see moist soil, if you see dry dirt, keep watering.

Starting plants

All plants can be started from seeds, but starting plants from seeds will be more time- consuming because seedlings require more care. Although buying small plants from a nursery is more expensive than buying seeds, the plants are already established and it will be easier to grow plants with a higher production rate.

If you start plants from seeds, you can either plant them in a smaller pot and leave them somewhere separate from your larger outdoor garden, or you can plant the seeds directly into your garden. When planting seeds, you should water them immediately upon planting them and then continue to gently water them every 2 or 3 days. Once the seed sprouts, cautiously water them so you do not knock the plant down or break its stem. If you start your seedlings in separate containers from your garden, you should move them to your garden when they are 2 or 3 inches tall

Planting Schedule

Houston doesn’t get cold until late November/December, so we must plant our fall crops much later than recommended in most planting guides or on seed packets. We don’t really plant for a winter season because Houston’s temperature is relatively warm and not suited for cold-weather plants.

Spring and summer crops can be planted 1-2 months earlier than recommended (depending on the temperature recommendations on the seed packets), and fall plants need to be planted 1-2 months later than recommended (depending on temperature).

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Spring: Lima beans, asparagus, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, lettuce, onions, spinach, tomatoes

Summer (Plant in April): Peppers, watermelon, eggplants, okra, beans, snap peas, cucumbers, cantaloupe, squash, tomatoes, gourds, sweet potatoes.

Fall (Plant in Oct.-Dec.): Collard greens, mustard greens, bok choy, pok choy, leafy Asian greens, cabbage, carrots, beets, turnips, onions, radish, kale, lettuce, peas, arugula, chard, spinach.

NOTE: Most of these plants will last well and produce well out of their season. Feel free to leave your plants as long as they are still producing. Many winter plants (like greens cabbage, bok choy, pok choy, Swiss chard and lettuce) will continue producing well into the spring.

Herbs

Many herbs will grow year-round in Houston, such as basil, rosemary, lavender and lemon balm. You can always cook with/consume your herbs raw, but if you want to dry them out, the best time to do so is right when they begin to flower. You will begin to see small flowers and seeds/seedpods form on the herb, which is an indicator that the plant is about to flower and throw its seeds.

This process is called “bolting.” When the plant begins to bolt, it has the most oil it can produce. This is the optimal time to take cuttings from the plant to dry. You can either uproot the whole plant (then cut the roots off) or just take clippings of the stems and leaves. Tie the herbs into bundles. Then hang them upside-down in a closet to dry. The drying process should take approximately two weeks. If you are worried about dust gathering on your drying herbs, you can cover the hanging herbs in brown paper bags (but make sure to slit holes in the bag for airflow purposes). After the herbs have dried, you can place them whole into a jar or bag, or crumble them. If you saved the seeds from the bolting herb, you can plant those next growing season.

Weeding

Weeds will rob the nutrients from your plants, so weeding is a necessity of gardening. If you spot weeds daily, you will be able to control the weed population more successfully. When weeding, make sure to remove the entire plant (root included) so it doesn’t grow back from the root. Also, make sure you are not weeding a smaller plant you may have started from a seedling.