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The Ultimate Fimming Guide

Written by Ed Rushford Dec 20 2021

What is Fimming

Topping and fimming are two techniques used to boost yield. Increasing the number of significant colas is the goal. However, fim results may generate four or more new top cola brands rather than doubling down. For micro-growers with a few plants, this method is highly recommended. Ensure you understand how to fim before you get started.

What are the origins of Fimming?

Does Fim mean F*ck I Missed?

“F*ck I Missed” is the abbreviation for the pruning for yield technique known as FIM. Like topping, this method entails removing part of the primary stem. According to folklore, a grower accidentally devised the procedure after bungling a topping operation.

Fimming Cannabis
What is FIMMING?

This abbreviation is perhaps not correct, former High Times editor Kyle Kushman has stated that the person who sent a letter to the magazine outlining this technique did so under the alias Fim. However, given the nature of the technique, Kushman created the acronym meaning F*ck I Missed.

How does Fimming work?

Topping and fimming plants are two techniques that have lots of similarities. Rather than clipping the stem between internodes, you sever your plant’s developing tip from its vegetative material. When you fim during the vegetative stage of cannabis, you have to get it right.

With fimmed cannabis, you’re effectively topping two tips at once. Your cuts will go through the primary tip and the nascent tips growing inside it when you cut through the tip. It results in four heads sprouting from the top of the stem instead of simply two. Further down the crop, when you fim cannabis, it encourages broad lateral bushy growth, stimulating lateral branching and side shoots. In the same manner that topping interacts with the auxin transportation network, this is why.

Pros and Cons of Fimming

Benefits of Fimming

When it comes to enhancing the output of flowering cannabis plants, fimming before and after may be even more successful than topping; of course, there are more than two primary branches. It seems that the auxin circulation in cannabis is affected considerably more severely by fimming cannabis than by topping. A fimmed plant produces more tops and more branches than unfimmed plants.

You can use various training and pruning strategies with fimming autoflower to provide the best possible yield. Fimmed crops may be as productive as SOGs with 2-3 times the number of plants if coupled with a SCROG.

US producers like to use the early application of this technique to turn any strain into squat, branchy bushy plants. In addition, you can use this approach numerous times until the farmer is pleased with the cannabis bush density.

Using the F*ck I missed approach offers a massive advantage since it is so forgiving. Aiming for accuracy isn’t the primary goal. Often, a lousy Topping might turn out to be a great FIM.

Drawbacks of using the FIM technique

Using this method on Autoflowering cannabis is a bad idea. Your autos’ development will be stunted due to the stress and recovery period of trimming the main stem. If comparing Fimming vs topping, the latter is much better for autoflowers. Notably, growers that use the technique should expect to maintain their plants in vegetative development for 4-6 weeks on average. An Auto grower can’t wait that long.

It might be difficult to maintain order in the grow area later in the blooming period without a ScrOG. If you’re using FIM as a high-yielding strategy, you may want to stake your plants. However, this is an excellent condition since it may result in the cannabis plants being overburdened with fruit.

How to Fim your Cannabis Plant

If you are beginning to learn how to fim a plant, you should know this is a hit-or-miss method. Results might vary since it is challenging to execute precisely. Your plants will have a bushier structure and more heads as a consequence, but you have no way of knowing what will happen. There are instances when you may get more or fewer than four new growth tips, but four is generally regarded as a good number. It would help if you used a sharp, sterile blade every time you cut your plant. However, other growers pinch through the growing tip. Many infections are both easily spread and difficult to eradicate.

Choose where to Fim

Select the end of your stem or branch with the most growth potential.

Remove fan leaves 

Using your thumb and fingers, pull back the tiny fan leaves and grasp the green tip between them.

Remove 75% of the tip

With one hand, gradually extend the development of your plant’s tip. It would help if you used clean scissors to clip around 75% of the top. In the end, you’ll get four colas and a little patch of growth.

What are the limitations of Fimming?

Fimming recovery time

When cannabis plants are fimmed, they will spend more time in the 18/6 vegetative development stage. If you’re going to use these methods, count on a 4-6 week vegetative development period.

Increasing the number of fat colas on a cannabis plant may also lead to the plant being very top-heavy, often overlooked but evident drawback. You can use bamboo stakes to support plants without a ScrOG.

Using Fimming with other techniques

Combining it with other growth methods is essential if you want to get the most out of using this technique on a plant. Fimmed plants may benefit from any approach that relies on a bushy structure, such as SCROG growers. With many heads on each plant, you’ll be able to maximize your production per square foot by filling up the productive area in the canopy with top kola.

Topping vs Fimming

Topping is the act of cutting off the top of a cannabis plant’s primary stem. It is the most prevalent HST method (high-stress training). The usual structure of a cannabis plant in the wild resembles a Christmas tree, with a dominating center cola and several lateral branches. Plants get sunlight at different times of day as the sun travels over our skies.

So what does it mean to fim a plant? It is the process of snipping off a portion of a plant’s new growth. Instead of simply one, there are now four primary budding sites. A fimmed cannabis plant grows broader and lower than its unfimmed counterparts. As a result, more light is absorbed by the leaves as they are exposed to more sunlight. It may harm the plant, but it will be able to recover.

Ed Rushford

Ed Rushford’s impact on cannabis growing is undeniable. Though he tends to focus primarily on 2 areas, plant training techniques and dealing with disease, pests, and other problems, he has offered many insights into how cannabis plants live and grow. That’s not to say that Ed is unfamiliar with the complete life cycle of cannabis, from seed to harvest, but he uses his widespread knowledge to hone in on the minutia and niche areas of growing cannabis. Ed’s goal is to spread knowledge and allow for everyone to become better growers. About this Author

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