High-Stress Training (HST)
Definition - What does High-Stress Training (HST) mean?
High-stress training (HST) is a method of growing cannabis, also known as super cropping, where the plant is intentionally wounded in order to achieve several potential benefits. When stressed using this method, cannabis plants are believed to increase their levels of CBD and THC production and also increase their overall yields. This is because the cannabinoid compounds found in trichomes and terpenes are what protect the plant when growing in the wild.
It is believe that when a plant undergoes stress, or senses danger, it is prompted to produce or generate larger amounts of its defense strategy, which are what growers seek.
When applied appropriately, high-stress training can also result in a shorter, but well-branched plant with many buds.
Hydrolife explains High-Stress Training (HST)
The high-stress training technique should only be performed on healthy plants; weak or sick plants may not be able to withstand the additional stress.
High-stress training is done by intentionally bending a pliable stem until it is perpendicular to the plant. This should result in more or less a 90 degree angle. The branch or branches will need to be secured in a manner that will not harm the plant. Tape of flagging material can be used. String or wire may girdle the plant, causing undue stress.
High-stress training should be done before the vegetative stage for best results, but definitely needs to be done before the flowering stage. Leave the tape on for up to one week. If upon removal, the plant “bounces” back, intentionally crack open the stem at the bend with a fingernail or knife.
Other forms of pruning cannabis to boost yields and cannabinoid production include low-stress training, monster cropping, topping, and lollipoping. Other growers simply just remove their fan leaves from the plant canopy to increase the amount of light that's hitting the buds.