Medically Reviewed by
Jason Crawford

Article Last Updated on January 12, 2023

Growing marijuana on your own can save you a lot of trips to the dispensary and give you the advantage of perfecting your harvest. Every grower’s goal is to grow high-quality cannabis plants with solid amounts of THC and CBD, as well as fragrant terpenes.

When you’re a newbie marijuana grower, there are a lot of things to think about and look forward to. Besides the obvious basics, like figuring out which strain you’ll grow and where you’ll cultivate your crops, wondering about how much weed a single plant can produce is a common concern.

Therefore, in this article, we’ll talk about how much yield you can expect from a single plant, which variables affect the yield, as well as how you can boost it.

How Much Does a Marijuana Plant Yield on Average?

Inexperienced growers often tend to think that the taller and broader a plant is, the more yield it’ll produce, but this isn’t always the case. While height and volume do play a part, they don’t necessarily determine how many buds will bloom at a budding site.

Truth is, there are many variables that can affect your yield, but if you know how to utilize your resources well and provide your crops with the perfect conditions, your plants will thrive. One of the biggest factors is the growing medium as well as whether you’re growing inside or outside.

Growing in Soil

Growing in organic soil is the classic cultivation method. It’s also the easiest as it leaves considerable room for error. You can underwater sometimes and get away with it, or you can mess up the pH, but your plants will still survive because the soil holds all the nutrients. Although you may not get the highest yield, your plants will survive.


If you’re an indoor grower, you’re most likely aware that grow lights are integral in the process. In the absence of sunlight, your indoor grow needs an adequate amount of light to produce satisfying results. On average, indoor plants can yield a maximum of 1 gram of weed per 1 watt of light. For example, a 400-watt HPS light will most likely produce 400 grams of dry marijuana.


For outdoor plants, the calculation is a bit different. Provided that your cannabis plants are growing in the perfect conditions, you can get about 500 gr of weed per single plant. Giving your crops plenty of room to grow and thrive outdoors is very important, and so is timely watering and feeding, as well as pest control.

Growing in Hydroponics

Hydroponics, on the other hand, leaves no room for error. Everything must be precisely executed because the roots of the plants are submerged directly in water. Any imbalances in the pH levels or the nutrient solutions will affect them directly. You have to be precise if you don’t want your marijuana yields to be affected. 

However, when done correctly, hydro will give you bigger yields by 20% in comparison to soil.

Experienced growers who cultivate cannabis hydroponically already know how to read what their plant needs and how to regulate all the parameters in their grow room or grow tent correctly so they can get optimal yields. Marijuana plants also grow much faster in hydro than in soil due to the high regulation of the growing environment.

When you do everything by the book with hydroponics, you can end up with 1.2 grams of weed per watt, meaning that a 600-watt HPS lamp will give you 720 grams of weed.

FYI, Wet Weed and Dry Weed Don’t Weight the Same

The weight of your buds will be higher immediately after harvest because they still have a lot of moisture in them, and water weighs a lot. Once you dry and cure your harvest, the weight will go down significantly because the water content will have evaporated. This is good. You don’t want wet buds because they can easily develop mold when you store them.

To get a rough estimate of how much your wet buds will weigh once they’re dry, multiply their wet weight by 0.25.

Some Ways to Maximize Your Cannabis Yield

Apart from providing your plants with the optimal growing conditions, there are some extra steps you can take to make sure you get bigger yields every time.

Pick Strains That Naturally Produce Higher Yields

Whichever Indica, Sativa, or a hybrid you’re thinking of cultivating, if you’re a beginner, start with a strain that’s genetically bountiful. It’ll help you get a kick start, plus your efforts will be less likely to be in vain. So, you can help yourself by cultivating a strain known as an “extreme yielder,” such as Big Bud, Blue Dream, Girl Scout Cookies Extreme, Purple Trainwreck, White Widow, and Critical Kush.

Grow Hydroponically If You Can

Like we said, hydroponics on average yields about 20% more weed than soil. While it can be a lot of work, especially when you’re just starting, it’s very rewarding in the end. Provided that you have the right equipment and knowledge, you can really get the maximum potential of your chosen strain.

Use the SCROG Technique

The Screen of Green (SCROG) technique is great for getting more buds at the bud sites. It involves topping the plants and placing a net or screen at about 15 inches above them. When a marijuana branch spreads 4 inches upwards through the net, you’re supposed to bend it and tie it horizontally to the net so that it grows sideways. 

One by one, you should do this with all the others until you get a flat and even cannabis canopy which will ensure you get a ton of buds. This method works because this way all parts of the plant get equal amounts of light.

Use the Right Nutrients

Nutrients are essential for healthy plant growth because they are the food for the plant. The most basic nutrient combo is NPK (Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium). However, you should know that during different stages of growth, plants need more of certain nutrients. 

For example, Nitrogen is ideal for vegetative growth, while Potassium is much needed during the flowering stage. Be careful of nutrient burn, though, as this can harm your crops just as much as a lack of nutrients.

Growing Fewer Plants Can Give You Better Yields

Indoor growers tend to have limited space for cultivating, so planting fewer plants and making sure they get the ideal environment is often far more productive. Think about it – if you have only 4 plants per light, for example, they’ll have overall more room to thrive and spread during the vegetative stage, meaning they’ll develop more bud sites. Plus, it’ll be easier to manage them, and if one of them goes bad, there are fewer chances that the others will too. 

The Takeaway – The Yield Is In Your Hands

As a grower, you have the power to make the most of your plant. Making sure your weed garden gets everything it needs to thrive, whether you’re growing indoors or outdoors, sets a great foundation for success. However, there are always some extra steps you can make to take things to the next level, starting with growing strains that are naturally high yielders.

A passionate advocate for the benefits of cannabis. Fraser Horton, who has a background in botany and a strong love of nature, has spent years researching how cannabis affects the body and mind. He established Leaf Nation in 2020, where he has devoted himself to educating people about the legalisation of marijuana and its safe and responsible use. Fraser is committed to highlighting cannabis’ potential for improving wellness and working to dispel the stigma associated with its use.


The information presented on this page is provided as a public service to aid in education and is derived from sources believed to be reliable. Readers are responsible for making their own assessment of the topics discussed here. In no event shall Leaf Nation be held reliable for any injury, loss or damage that could happen if using or abusing drugs.