The Importance of Day Length & Photoperiodism to Your Crop

June 2, 2021

Anyone who grows crops quickly realizes that day length matters.Short days mean less sunlight, which means cooler temperatures and more rain, all of which are going to factor into your plant growth. Likewise, long summer days and high heat will have their own effects. Farmers must know what crops to plant when and where based on temperatures and climates - all of which are dependent on day length. Day length plays a big part in what varieties farmers grow when and where.


The response of a plant to the daylight and darkness it experiences is part of a much more complicated relationship between day length and farming - photoperiodism. Why is this important to growers? If you’re not being provided with day length details for the genetics you’re buying, your cannabis may not flower correctly, leaving you with a poor product. 

First Things First: Photoperiodism

Essentially, photoperiodism is the physiological reaction and/or developmental responses of a plant to the lengths of daylight and darkness it experiences. In the mid-twentieth century, crop researchers first came to understand it is actually the length of uninterrupted darkness experienced by a plant - rather than the length of daylight - that is most crucial to its development. Day length influences a range of plant responses in the crops farmers grow around the world. Flowering, bulb formation, runner development versus flower bud initiation, and even seed germination of some plants are affected by the amount of daylight and darkness. 


Photoperiodism also plays a critical role in determining when to plant hemp varieties and when they will initiate flower. Outdoor hemp farmers need to plant the right genetics that match the day length in their region.Unfortunately, too few growers understand how important it is to get this information right for each plant. Front Range Biosciences sees a number of farmers that are buying genetics but don’t receive day length information, so their plants don’t start flowering at the right time for their region. 

Front Range Biosciences Field Trials 


At FRB, we conduct field trials to understand how our genetics actually grow in regions across the country. This includes finding which varieties tolerate disease and insect pressure, in combination with environmental stresses, and how they respond to photoperiodism so that we can make the best variety recommendations to our customers. In 2020, Front RangeBiosciences conducted field trials representing seven regions across the country and over 12 micro-environments. We partnered with seven growers, four universities, and one agricultural institute to test and optimize our hemp variety offerings for a wide range of growing conditions. And we’re continuing our field trials in 2021 to bring the next wave of new hemp genetics backed by data.


At every step along the way, Front Range Biosciences is making sure the seeds and clones you order are correct for your region and environment. By focusing on important elements of growing like day length and photoperiodism, FRB continues to set itself apart in the hemp farming space. 



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