Fimming is the partly removal of the latest shoot of a plant.

This creates four main buds instead of just one.

The plant gets wider and lower than plants that are not fimmed.

Also, more leaves will be exposed to light, so more light is absorbed.

This will damage the plant a bit, but it’s capable of recovering well.

How to fim

Step by Step

  • Select the latest shoot
  • Cut off two-thirds
  • Give the plant some rest

A shoot grows into 2 new petioles with leave on them.

The middle of the shoot contains a new shoot, and new shoots will be formed in the axils.

A shoot therefore consists of 2×2 leaves, crosswise against each other.

By removing two-thirds, you only cut off the leaves, and leave the stems.

These will, along with the shoots in the axils, grow to become the main buds.

So you’ll get 4 main buds.

Make sure you don’t cut off too much, because you’ll end up with 2 main buds.

The plant is damaged, so it will use its energy to heal the wound, so this can slow down the growth a bit.

You will also see that the newest pair of leaves is damaged when it starts to grow, but this is normal.

You can fim multiple times, but leave some time in between fimming sessions, because the plant has to recover.

Fimming is done during the growing phase, and possibly in the first week of flowering at the very latest.

Otherwise the plant has no time to recover and grow wider, and it wont have any use.

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Why fimming?

Fimming can be useful when the ceiling of your grow room isn’t very high.

Especially Sativas grow very quickly and can become very tall. Since they don’t get very wide, you have to place many plants close to each other to use all of the light.

Light that doesn’t hit the leaves and falls on the ground is considered lost energy.

By fimming the plants, they will stop growing lengthwise for a bit, but they’ll mainly grow in width.

You can then leave some more room between plants and still have a nice green blanket.

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I never fim Indicas, because they grow much slower and the growing phase would last too long otherwise.

Another advantage is that the plant can absorb more light, because it gets wider.

The plant will have more leaves that can absorb more light. This can significantly increase your yield.

Especially outdoors, you can get great results. I’m sure you’ve seen those pictures of gigantic outdoor plants.

This advantage also applies to indoor plants, but I prefer to just place some more plants to make sure no light is lost.

Lastly, fimming spreads your risks. You get more main buds, and because they’re not as big, they’re not as sensitive to bud rot and/or other nasty diseases.

Once again, this is a major advantage for outdoor plants. Especially because you can’t control the climate and your plants become sensitive to bud rot in the moist fall.

Indoor growers could place some more plants without fimming them to spread the risks.

Be careful when you have a really big plant that’s very heavy, because there’s a chance that the plant will split in half under its own weight.

It’s best to start strengthening the plant with some tape, just under the fimming, to prevent splitting.

This only applies to outdoor plants, because they get much bigger and heavier than indoor plants.

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Robert Bergman

Robert Bergman is an Amsterdam-based marijuana grow expert who has years of experience from small grows to massive operations. His passion for growing lead him to develop his own Gold Leaf strain. Now, Robert is dedicated to sharing his knowledge with the world.... [Read full bio]

6 comments on “Fimming”

  1. Not sure where the get this four main colas from? When I fim like you say I get 6-9 main colas off of 1 fim and I have the pictures of 4 different plants to prove it.

    Maybe thos needs an update.
    Mayne the difference is you guys fim clones and I fim seedlings?

  2. Good article but its called topping Always has been in the States , Mate.. the Original fimming or topping you showed was compl wrong. He cut the new growth leaves , you cut the stem with your thumbnail right below the fresh new growth . You have ghis terribly wrong . Please take new pics so Amateur is not Confused and ends up with half a set of full leaves? Double check and your Seeds are the best Namaste

  3. I’m a noob and about 3 weeks into my first grow. I’m only growing a single plant (for now) in a small 2×2×5 grow tent with a decent LED light. I wanna see what I can do and get a good feel for things before going all in. My friend (who i consider a pro) is growing 20 plants of Purple Diesel. According to him, Fiming and topping are 2 totally different things. He tells me that this article is legit. the explanation of the process is on point and the pics are proper. I watched him FIM all 20 of his Purple Diesels about a week ago and he did it exactly as this article tells you how to do it. His plants look absolutely amazing. I totally understand how topping and fiming get confused with each other because I am guilty of it myself. It’s why my friend asked me to watch him fIM his plants… I was reading articles and comments that contradicted each other and asked him for help. Instead of telling me, he showed me. This article is the correct way to FIM a plant… Not top. In topping, you cut off the whole top node. In Fiming yo don’t. Heck, it’s called F.I.M. for a reason… F**k I Missed. Apparently, years ago a grower accidentally left about 1/3 of the top when topping… He “missed” and Fiming was born. I’m not sure if this is true or not, but it’s an amusing tale of how this amazing technique came to be. Well that’s my 2 cents on things. If my 2 cents goes against or is different in a way that’s upsetting to other growers, I apologize. I do not wish to downplay or ridicule another growers technique, knowledge or experience. I am just explaining things that I have personally experienced. My experiences may be totally different than your own and I respect that. If another’s methods yield much better results than that’s great. I would never ask, tell someone to change or belittle their beliefs. We are all different and we can all learn from each other’s differences, that’s why life is so great and amazing. the growing community is awesome and is why I decided to finally learn how to grow. Happy growing! PS… I don’t know why my phone is forcing the 1st letter of every word to be capital.