By: Jasper Shotts
In selective reduction, the targeted is removal of branches, flowers or buds, to increase the quality and size of remaining fruit and buds. Selective reduction techniques include topping, lollipopping, super cropping and fimming. Selective reduction has a rich history spanning hundreds of years as an agricultural practice. Selective reduction can decrease the risk of microbial infections, such as powdery mildew, by increasing airflow. Selective reduction utilized at the very end of the vegetative cycle minimizing interference with flower development, leading to higher quality cannabis buds.
The two most popular selective reduction techniques are topping and lollipopping. Selective reduction via topping is when the main stem is cut so that multiple branches take the place of ‘main stem’ increasing the girth of the plant. Topping helps to combat apical dominance, which occurs when the top cola sends a chemical signal known as an auxin that inhibits the growth of lower branches allowing for the plant to become taller and out compete neighbors for resources such as sunlight. Topping creates bushier plants which is an advantage if you are short on space or a twenty-foot tree is not desired. Topping increases overall yield when done properly. Lollipopping is a selective reduction technique where the lower one-third to two-thirds is removed in a bonsai tree like manner. The lower regions see diminished light in comparison to the tops and produce inferior buds that are aesthetically unappealing.
Super cropping is a technique of doing damage to the stem by pinching and bending. Super cropping creates a flat canopy of top buds when bent and secured. Super cropping should only be done if you are experienced or don’t mind potentially damaging your yield. Super cropping mimics an animal breaking part of the branch or severe wind damage.
Fimming is a selective reduction technique very similar to topping. Topping you cut all new growth of a growing shoot, fimming you cut away 80% of the new growth on a shoot allowing it to branch and creates what will be four colas instead of the traditional single cola. Fimming causes the plant to bush out and become girthier. It also increases airflow and allows more sunlight to the cola.
Article Produced by Green Magi Labs Inc. www.greenmagilabs.com