Canopy management is the strategic control and arrangement of plant foliage, ensuring optimal light penetration and airflow. As the cannabis industry evolves, advanced indoor cultivators are leveraging IoT devices to fine-tune their canopy management techniques, optimizing plant health and yield.
Effective canopy management ensures that every plant receives an optimal amount of light, leading to uniform growth, higher yields and reduced risk of disease. It also facilitates better air circulation, reducing the risk of mold and pests. Overcrowded canopies can cause uneven growth, which can result in lower yields, increased susceptibility to pests and mold due to poor airflow.
What Are We Monitoring?
To achieve optimal canopy management, cultivators rely on key metrics:
- Light Penetration Depth: This metric provides insights into how deeply light is reaching within the canopy.
- Canopy Temperature and Humidity: Monitoring the canopy's microclimate is essential to prevent mold and pest infestations.
Devices for Monitoring Canopy Management
- IoT-Connected Light Meters: Measure light intensity at different canopy depths.
- Digital Hygrometers: Measure the relative humidity within the canopy.
- Infrared Thermometers: Measure canopy temperature.
- Understanding the Ideal Range: For cannabis, uniform light distribution across the canopy is essential. Humidity should be below 60%, and temperatures should be between 70°F and 85°F.
- Recognizing Outliers: Changes in readings can indicate a need for pruning, trellising, or ventilation adjustments.
Using Data for Cultivation Decisions
- Adjusting Pruning and Training Techniques: Use light penetration data to determine when to prune or train plants for optimal canopy structure.
- Incorporating Other Data: Combine canopy data with other metrics for a comprehensive approach to plant care.
Canopy management has been revolutionized by IoT devices. These tools enable cultivators to monitor and adjust canopy conditions continuously, ensuring optimal growth. This modern approach combines traditional wisdom with cutting-edge innovation in cannabis cultivation.
This article is part fourteen of an exclusive new series that will guide you through the essence of each of the fourteen pillars of plant care, focusing on indoor growth and revealing the nuances of how IoT can be a game-changer for cultivators.
Shawn Deggans owns Green Nanny, an IoT, AI and data consulting company focused on helping growers spend more time in the garden and less time struggling with technology.