Like all crops, cannabis is prone to attack by a variety of pests. Pests come in two categories: Bugs and Wild Animals. Growing cannabis in a controlled, indoor environment will drastically reduce pest interference, and eliminate problems with wild animals altogether. Bugs will only appear if they are brought into your grow area (in soil, for example). If you do choose to grow outdoors, there are ways to combat pests.
- Wild animals that can harm your outdoor grow include snails, rats, deer, coyotes, gophers, moles, bear, wild boar. Choose a location for your grow that is as far as possible from wild animals.
- Cultivate your plants in a properly constructed space.
- Construct fences to help to keep animals out.
- A durable greenhouse eliminates the interference of wild animals altogether.
- Bugs that threaten plants include aphids, caterpillars, spider mites, thrips, and white flies. A variety of effective products for controlling infestations are available at hydroponic and gardening stores, but it is prudent to avoid any non-organic sprays and pesticides, as harmful chemicals can end up on your finished product, and are a health hazard.
- Care for your soil. Soil (and coco) can be pretreated and washed with a natural product called Azamax. Azamax is essentially a chemical called azadactrin, derived from all natural neem oil, which causes bugs and insects to stop eating and reproducing. Azadactrin will not kill the infestation, but diligent application of it will cause pests to eventually starve and go away.
- Remove and quarantine any infected plants from the rest of your grow area to prevent bugs from spreading.
- Introduce beneficial bugs such a ladybugs and predatory insects that do not affect plants.
- It is essential not to spray your plants with anything during their flowering period. Doing so will deteriorate the quality of the buds and trichomes and lower the potency of your medicine. In addition, remember that whatever is sprayed onto your budding flowers will more than likely stay on them after you harvest your plants.