This article was originaly published on 2Fast4Buds and appears here with permission.

As a grower learns more about growing Cannabis, they will come across two types of plant training. Low stress and high stress, which both have varied results. As you can probably tell from the name, HST puts plants under a considerable but reasonable amount of stress. This is because these techniques involve inflicted tissue damage in the form of severed and crushed branches.

It sounds nasty to beginner growers—almost sadistic, in fact—but these tried and tested methods work. Despite the obvious risks, by manipulating plant growing patterns using rather brutal methodologies, experienced growers consistently improve plant shape and productivity. In this article, we explain about H.S.T, how it is done, pros and cons associated, and our top tips.


High stress training is a way to manipulate the growth structure, vigor, and canopy of Cannabis plants. The hands-on methods used are classed as highly stressful to the plants, however, will structurally produce the strongest plants with an increase in growth hormone. This increase is thanks to the genetic markers within every cannabis plant. When you intentionally and carefully wound the plant (especially in certain areas of the plant growth), she will “freak out” and send all the help she can to the affected area. This can result in several potential benefits. From increases in the yield size, the potency (boosted levels of both THC and CBD), and the production of the frostiest buds you have ever seen – the possible pros of HST have been well documented over the past 2 decades or so. 

When HST is performed correctly, it can also result in a short, more compact plant with perfectly spaced bud sites and an overall canopy that can be much easier to maintain in the long run. These techniques are considered to be intermediate to advanced methods, so if you are just starting out it may be best to leave this stuff for a few more cycles. Only after you have all the other factors dialed in, and have become familiar with LST (Low-Stress Training) should you start considering implementing HST into your crop.


The way that high stress techniques such as super cropping affect the plants, is by causing a spurt in a repair-growth hormone. As the plants recover and begin to form hard wooden knuckles around the original break, the branch repairs itself causing the rest of the plant to become stronger.

Pros and Cons of High Stress Training Cannabis Plants: H.S.T. What is cropping

How to perform super cropping on your cannabis plant.

It sounds utterly barbaric—we have to agree. However, cannabis plants are hardy creatures. Instead of cowering in the face of stress, they actually adapt and become stronger. By adjusting the spread of growth hormones through these techniques, growers are able to promote vigorous growth in the canopy. This, of course, results in bigger and more plentiful buds and a potential increase in the synthesis of important secondary metabolites such as cannabinoids and terpenes. As well …

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