There are many opinions out there regarding how big or small should the pot for your autoflowers be.
But the truth is that no two plants are exactly the same and before choosing the right pot size you need to think about all the aspects that will affect your decision.
How to determine the best pot size for your autoflowers?
Regular cannabis strains have a great rule for determining the pot size – you should get a gallon (3,7 liters) of growing medium volume for each month that the plant will be alive. Or you can just anticipate how big your plant will become and get a gallon for each foot (30,4 cm) of growth.
So, if your plant will grow for 5 months you need a 5-gallon (18,5-liter) pot.
However, it’s not as easy to choose the best pot size for autoflowering plants because you need to think not only about how long will your plant live but you need to also think about the size of the plant and how big you want it to get.
Most people choose autoflowering strains because their growing space is limited and they can’t grow plants that stretch to 1 or 2 meters (3,2 or 6,5 feet) in height and pot size can greatly affect the plant’s height.
If you plant your autoflower cannabis seed in a small container like a “Dixie cup” then it will stay short because it will become pot bound (root bound) fast and that will stress the plant slowing down its growth.
Usually, autoflowering marijuana plants don’t grow more than 18 inches (45 cm) in height and they usually are ready to harvest in less than two months. If we know these numbers then we can calculate that the best pot size for autoflower plants is 1,5 to 2,5 gallons (5,6 to 9,4 liters).
Any experienced grower will tell you that if you want your autos to reach maximum potential then you shouldn’t get a pot that can hold less than 1 gallon (3,7 liters). While getting a pot that is more than 3 gallons (11,3 liters) will be a waste of money and soil because the plant can’t grow enough root mass in two months to fill a 12-liter pot.
This means that the answer to the age-old question of what size pot should I use for my autoflowers is a 1-gallon, 2-gallon, or 3-gallon pot.
But if you want to maximize the yield of your plants and don’t want to waste any growing space or dirt, try different pot sizes and see how the particular autoflower strain you’re using grows in different sized pots and determine what is the perfect pot size for it!
Why does pot size for autoflowers matter?
For the small and micro-scale growers, pot sizes can also be a big advantage because you can easily manage your plant’s size by potting it in a smaller container!
This small container will soon be full of roots and that plant will be root-bound and won’t grow as fast as it could but it will stay small. And for small spaces, small plants are perfect!
This small plant can be further trained with the low-stress training (LST) method and with small pots and training growers can get a very good yield in small spaces!
Basically, a smaller pot means a smaller plant so you need to experiment with what pot sizes are good for your autoflower grow and stick to that one size because transplanting autoflowers will decrease their yields therefore it is best to start them in the container that they will be grown in!
My experience with different autoflower pot sizes
I, myself, have grown autoflowers in 4-inch (10.16 cm) pots, 1-gallon (3.7 l), and 3-gallon (11.3 l) pots, and the 3-gallon pots did the best!
For my first cabinet grow I used smaller 4-inch pots because I needed the plants to stay small but I got only a few grams from each of them.
The 1-gallon pots already gave me much bigger plants, while the plants in the 3-gallon pots were the best.
With those 3-gallon pots I had over 70 cm of vertical growth with a lot of side branches and from that point on I usually use the 3-gallon ones!
Now that you have figured out which is the best pot size for autoflowers, learn about other things that affect the autoflowering cannabis plant size and yield.