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Hows & Whys Of Supercropping

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018, 2020 - Grow Journal of the Year: 2020 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018, Jan & Aug 2020 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018, Dec 2020 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018, Oct 2021
Hey Shed!
Just popped by to ask: what's supercropping with the pinching but without the bending?
Sorry, missed this post (along with a few thousand others :oops: ). I'd have to say that supercropping is the bending part. Without bending it it's just pinching!
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018, 2020 - Grow Journal of the Year: 2020 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018, Jan & Aug 2020 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018, Dec 2020 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018, Oct 2021
Has any one seen these in the US?
Seems like it could be a kinder, gentler way than cracking and crunching, lol!
I don't know if those are available for sale in the US, but they are more along the lines of LST. Cracking and crunching is part of the advantages of supercropping. The plant knuckles where the damage is and increases the number of pathways that nutrients flow through to the tops on that branch above the bend. Many growers find their biggest colas on the ends of sc'd branches.
 

syenite

Well-Known Member
I thought I'd share my double/zig-zagging supercrop --

So I have a very tiny cabinet with limited height and depth. I've been training the plant to take up "vertical canopy".

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The top two branches have been getting most of the plant's "apical resources" and so have needed slowing down. At the same time, I did not want to change the position or vertical trajectory of said branches.

I performed two successive supercrops, with a few days in-between.

The first supercrop, bending the top branches "backwards":

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The second supercrop, bending the same branches "forwards", and also clearing off the secondary growth along that stretch:

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Here is the recovery:

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And the overall result:

IMG_9137 sanitised.jpeg
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InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018, 2020 - Grow Journal of the Year: 2020 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018, Jan & Aug 2020 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018, Dec 2020 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018, Oct 2021
When I first saw that pic I though you had braided the branches. :eek: Excellent training! I remember @newty doing something similar a few years back so it's nice to see it again. Perfect for tight spaces.

I really need to get back to your journal. :rolleyes:
 

syenite

Well-Known Member
When I first saw that pic I though you had braided the branches. :eek: Excellent training! I remember @newty doing something similar a few years back so it's nice to see it again. Perfect for tight spaces.

I really need to get back to your journal. :rolleyes:

Cheers Shed!! Never any obligation to stop by, but you are also welcome any time.

Braiding the branches you say...... That would be something!!
 

Kodiak420

Well-Known Member
Hey Shed great thread, thanks for sharing :adore:
After reading through it generated a few questions, hope you don't mind.

even two weeks from harvest (#nolarf)!
No adverse affects when doing this? I was crawling under my plants the other day and noticed some larf the could be remove, but hesitated because I didn't want to add any undue stress.


And you can supercrop 3 weeks into flower,
Whats the latest you tried this ?

There is no downside to supercropping unless it's done so late in flower that the plant doesn't have time to repair the bend before harvest.
Going to have to make a point of trying this next season, not space restrictions but for the other benefits.

Thanks again for sharing,
:thanks:
 

Scottylikesbud

Well-Known Member
I have super cropped like three weeks into flower. It recovered. I don’t think I’ve done 4. But I had one branch super crop itself before and it was like week 6 into flower. And it recovered as well. But needed to be supported up with string and duct tape XD
I like removing my Larfy preflowers like two weeks into flower just so I can better see the smaller bud sites. Or was it two weeks before flower?
I think I may keep my larf this grow? Idk I’m on the fence myself with this grow lol
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018, 2020 - Grow Journal of the Year: 2020 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018, Jan & Aug 2020 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018, Dec 2020 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018, Oct 2021
hope you don't mind
Not at all! Sorry I wasn't around this weekend. Busy all day Saturday, UFC with my son Saturday night, bonked my head gardening on Sunday and spent most of the rest of the day in bed. :eek:
No adverse affects when doing this?
None. Any time you pull larf off the plant it will stop trying to make that larf into something. #nolarf
Whats the latest you tried this ?
I wouldn't recommend doing it after much after stretch as Scotty mentioned, but if you have a leader heading for the lights I would do it even later, as long as you support it. I've seen it done without damage later as well.

One of my Chocolope branches supercopped itself (like Scotty's) about a week before harvest. Those buds were heavy!
 

Konks Dirt Empire

Well-Known Member
Busy all day Saturday, UFC with my son Saturday night, bonked my head gardening on Sunday and spent most of the rest of the day in bed. :eek:
Wow, highest of highs and lowest of lows. Hope you feel better!
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018, 2020 - Grow Journal of the Year: 2020 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018, Jan & Aug 2020 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018, Dec 2020 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018, Oct 2021
Thanks Konks! I have post-concussion syndrome from a major concussion I got back in 2012. Even the slightest bump to the noggin (what most folks wouldn't even think twice about) can take me out of commission for a few hours at least. Except for dinner (which is Brooklyn 99 time!) I spent the rest of Sunday watching (and sleeping through) recorded soccer games from UEFA Champions League and Barnwood Builders reruns.
 

Kodiak420

Well-Known Member
Not at all! Sorry I wasn't around this weekend. Busy all day Saturday, UFC with my son Saturday night, bonked my head gardening on Sunday and spent most of the rest of the day in bed. :eek:
No worries, answers are all ways at your earliest convenience. Sh!t bro were you in the ufc ring :11:..


Stay safe, and feel better my cannabis growing compadre. :love::green_heart:
 

Konks Dirt Empire

Well-Known Member
Thanks Konks! I have post-concussion syndrome from a major concussion I got back in 2012. Even the slightest bump to the noggin (what most folks wouldn't even think twice about) can take me out of commission for a few hours at least. Except for dinner (which is Brooklyn 99 time!) I spent the rest of Sunday watching (and sleeping through) recorded soccer games from UEFA Champions League and Barnwood Builders reruns.
Oh my, good to hear you rested and made it to dinner.
Like those Barnwood Builder lads and have slept through some great nascar races!
 

Dan Dark

Well-Known Member
Anyone interested in a bit on supercropping? Here is my introduction to the technique. I don't deal so much on the actual way to perform a supercrop, but the reasons and places to do it:

DISCLAIMER: This is high stress plant training and I do not recommend it for an autoflower plant. Not that you won't see people do it to theirs, I just don't recommend it. It definitely slows down the plant while it recovers.

Supercropping is a technique where you bend the stem at something close to a 90º angle, snapping the internal fibers of the plant in the process. It can be done in flower, though it's usually performed in veg. There are loads of videos on how to do it so I won't go into a detailed description. Generally, you squeeze the stem where you want the bend to be until you feel the plant's tissue give way, and then lay the upper part of the branch over at a right angle.

With thinner or woodier stems that are harder to crush, I rock them back and forth over my thumbnail until they soften enough to lay over.

The stem eventually forms a "knuckle" at the bend, and it increases the nutrient pathways to the top part of that branch. That's not usually why we do it, but it's another positive result. And if done early in flower (like at the end of stretch when you know who are the leaders), it can result in larger buds on that branch.

Now let's talk about why we supercrop our plants. The traditional reason is that it keeps the plant canopy level, making all your potential bud-sites the same distance from the lights. In this instance, the leaders are bent at the level of the rest of the canopy, usually toward the outside edge of the tent so as not to cover lower growth.

But there are other reasons to use this technique, for both indoor and outdoor growers (who don't need a level canopy).

Besides leveling the canopy, here are two additional reasons to supercrop.

First, to greatly increase the number of bud-sites. Every time you flatten a branch, everything that would have been larf can now become a new top. Here is where I bent an AK-47 branch:

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And here is how many new tops were created by that one bend:

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All of that lower growth will now head directly toward the light.

[Note that when you are thinning your undergrowth, keep the supercrop option in mind. If you strip everything underneath there will be no shoots to grow new tops. So if you plan on supercropping, thin with the future in mind.]

And second, supercropping to make room for other supercropping! In this example I bent branch that has no lower branches to grow up, but I've bent it away to clear room to bend a different branch that does have lower branches that I want to expose. (Read the boxes in numbered order so it makes sense.):
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If I had just bent the top branch it would have covered the bud-sites on the lower branch, so I bent that out of the way first.

And I will often bend a branch into the middle of a plant so the plant doesn't get too wide, as long as there is an empty spot to fill in, or some weak growth below you will be pruning at some point anyway. You can see an example of that here:

Top left was supercropped inward to keep it within the existing outer circle of the plant, and middle left was cropped outward to fill in the space.

One last trick, for those crops that refuse to stay down, attach a small binder clip to a paper clip and hang that from the branch (you can just make out the paper clip at the arrow):
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Two final pics. This is an AK-47 where I used all these techniques:

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e

6.3 ounces and Plant of the Month!

Questions welcome. :Namaste:
Great post, thank you. I have 6 plants now in Veg I'd like to try a few using your guide. I'm wondering if you might get a photo of the lower plants showing the bend at maturity? I'd love to see how this plays out - watching!
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018, 2020 - Grow Journal of the Year: 2020 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018, Jan & Aug 2020 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018, Dec 2020 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018, Oct 2021
Great post, thank you. I have 6 plants now in Veg I'd like to try a few using your guide. I'm wondering if you might get a photo of the lower plants showing the bend at maturity? I'd love to see how this plays out - watching!
Hope it helps DRey! Check out this post here where I show the the bones after harvest. It gives you a good idea of what supercropping can do.
 

syenite

Well-Known Member
Great post, thank you. I have 6 plants now in Veg I'd like to try a few using your guide. I'm wondering if you might get a photo of the lower plants showing the bend at maturity? I'd love to see how this plays out - watching!

I'll just toot my own horn here 'cus the pic is fresh!

Not strictly supercropping in the way Shed has defined here (I pinched, but didn't bend), but the resulting structure - the knot/knuckle - is the same:

img_0641-jpeg.2258238
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018, 2020 - Grow Journal of the Year: 2020 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018, Jan & Aug 2020 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018, Dec 2020 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018, Oct 2021
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