Medically Reviewed by
Jason Crawford

Article Last Updated on December 24, 2022

Growers that are planning to cultivate marijuana plants definitely want to cultivate more plants in less time and use less space. In order to do that, commercial growers need to find the best method to grow marijuana. Since marijuana growing is no simple task, we’ve started researching the best growing methods in order for you to decide on the option that suits you. 

This article will focus on the Sea of Green or SOG method of cannabis cultivation and all the perks that the method entails. We’ll start by explaining what the method is, how it’s done and what kind of yield it can produce so you’ll be able to make an informed decision when you decide which type of marijuana to grow. 

What Is Sea of Green (SOG) Cannabis?

The Sea of Green method which is also known as SOG is a low-stress cannabis growing technique that has a better harvest since it grows many small cannabis plants compared to growing fewer bigger plants. The perks of this method are that it’s efficient in the use of space and resources, and also provides quicker harvests and high yields. It became popular when marijuana growers turned to indoor marijuana cultivation.

This training technique works better with Indica strains since they don’t grow as tall as Sativas, although if you’re topping the Sativas, strains like the Amnesia and Super Silver Haze can thrive. Auto-flowering strains are also a good option if you decide to go with this method of growing.

In order to grow SOG plants, cannabis cultivators need to get the correct pot size, soil type, type of light, environmental conditions, as well as proper water pH.

Growing Cannabis Using the Sea of Green Method

The SOG growing method doesn’t require any special skills in order to be effective. Since it doesn’t require training or pruning, it may be considered as one of the easier methods for growing cannabis. It takes 3-4 months for the plants to mature from germination to ripe buds, which makes this indoor growing method time-efficient. Below we’ll give you a simple grow guide so you can master the SOG method.

The Method

The SOG technique is ideal for growers who have limited spaces since this method of cannabis cultivation requires placing plants close together. 

  1. Propagation (or the early stage) requires a light cycle of 18/6 and a temperature of 70-72 ℉ (21-23 ℃).
  2. Once the early stage is done and the plants move to the vegetative stage, they need 2-3 weeks until they reach the flowering stage which isn’t a lot since other methods require 2-6 weeks for this stage. The light cycle in this stage is still 18/6 and the required temperature is 70-75 ℉ (21-24 ℃).
  3. After 2-3 weeks the lightning and the environment should be changed for the flowering stage. Once the flowers reach flowering time, they need 12 hours of light and a temperature of 70-75 ℉ (21-24 ℃).
  4. When the canopy closes, and a dense canopy of buds forms, cultivators can trim the lower branches from the flowering plants to improve the airflow, help the plant focus on the main bud, and get a top harvest. The branches can then be used as clones. 
  5. Once it’s harvest time, you can harvest your flowers and then repeat the whole process all over again. 

Tips About the SOG Method

  • Opt for a marijuana plant with a short flowering stage that doesn’t grow wide and bushy.
  • It’s best not to use cannabis seeds for this method since that way the plants could grow at different heights and you won’t have a uniform canopy.
  • Indica strains are better for this method since they have a primary cola and don’t require topping, unlike Sativa strains which do. 
  • If you decide to top the seedlings in order to increase the number of bud sites, do this once the plant has at least four pairs of leaves.
  • As the SOG method is done using clones, make sure you use cuttings from the same mother plant which are identical in size.
  • The minimum amount of plants for this method is four in order to be able to get a nice canopy of buds.
  • Choose HPS grow lights for a budget-friendly option, and LED grow lights if you want the artificial lights to produce less heat. 
  • Do a continuous harvest in order to keep the electricity bill lower and your yield higher.
  • You can do the Nutrient Film Technique, the Deep-Water Culture system, or whichever you choose since you don’t need a specific hydroponics method when doing SOG. 

How Much Grow Room Does the SOG Method Need?

When deciding on marijuana cultivation methods, farmers look at the grow space needed for a certain method, as well as other conditions like light, fertilization, and plant maintenance. Choose small plants rather than large plants in order to have a bigger harvest and use less space.

When it comes to SOG growing, the growth space needed in order to cultivate using this method is not that large since SOG plants aren’t very tall. In order to end up with high yields, the optimal grow area for one plant is 1 square foot, a maximum of 2 plants per square foot.

Difference Between the SOG and SCROG Growing Method

The SCROG growing method or Screen of Green has the same goals as SOG – to increase the yield at harvest time as much as possible. While SOG can be done with only 4 flowers, this growing method is used for a larger number of plants. The SCROG technique can work with every strain and in every condition and is one of the best methods if you want to grow marijuana plants indoors.

Final Thoughts on the SOG Growing Method

When doing the SOG method and growing smaller plants, growers can get more harvests and also save on electricity, water, fertilizers, manual labor, and other costs. It doesn’t require special skills in order to be effective and is especially useful when you have large quantities of cuttings from a cloned marijuana plant.

This method requires a minimum of 4 plants in order for it to be effective, and each plant should have a grow area of 1 square foot for optimum growth. Plants reach harvesting time in 3-4 months, which makes this method time-friendly and allows cultivators to grow year-round and have large yields. So if you’re looking for a high yield growing method with fewer plants, SOG growing is for you. 

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.


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