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Best Indoor Grow Kit | Top 10 Weed Growing Kits Reviews

Are you among the many who are switching from outdoor gardening to indoor plantation? Do you live in an urban city and wish to freshly grow your own weed, right inside your apartment?

Be it growing marijuana or basic herbs, it is all possible with an indoor garden and that too throughout the year. All you need is the best indoor grow kit to cater to your essential requirements to start up.

One of the most effective processes for indoor gardening is the hydroponic growing system. A hydroponic system is less messy and more effective growth since the hydroponic growing system requires minimum to none soil and less water to grow plants.

Follow through to find out what to look for when looking for the best hydroponic indoor grow kit available on the market.

Selection of the Top 10 Weed Growing Kits in 2020

As there are numerous products in the market with different built, shapes, and sizes, it will be best to go through a list of the best marijuana grow kits out there.

Here is a list of the top ten indoor grow kits available in the market.

Image Product Size Watts Check
Price
1 TopoGrow
Editor´s Choice!
2.7’x 2.7’x 5.2′ 300
2 Gorilla
SuperRoom
5’x5’x7′ 750
1000
3 TopoLite 2’x2’x4′ 300
4 HTG Supply 3’x3’x6.5′ 400
5 Hongruilite 2.7’x2.7’x5.2′ 600
6 TopoLite 2’x 2’x4′ 300
7 TheBudGrower 2’x2 x5′ 150
HPS
8 BloomGrow 2.6’x2.6’x5.2′ 600
9 Oppolite 4’x2’x6′ 800
10 Hydro Plus 4’x 3’x6′

Marijuana Grow Kits Reviews

1. TopoGrow – Indoor Weed Growing Kit

Easy to assemble and use, TopoGrow LED grow tent is a complete basic kit with 600 watts LED light for growing weed.

You can use this indoor weed growing kit for any life cycle of the plant. It is made of waterproof diamond Mylar that is 96% reflective, and 600D heavy-duty lightproof cloth.

If you are looking to plant one or two plants, then this hydroponic grow kit is ideal for use.

The LED grow light efficiently aluminates while consuming 220 watts power consumption.

The indoor grow kit has a 4-inch fan along with the carbon filter that ensures high absorption and better yield.

TopoGrow LED grow tent can operate in temperatures as low as -20 degrees Celsius. There are multiple vents for the installation of a fan and filter.

So if you are looking for something simple and effective this hydroponic grow kit is the answer.

2. Gorilla SuperRoom 5’ x 5’ Smart Grow Kit

The SuperRoom Smart Grow Kit is an all-in-one package that offers the most sought-after equipment for your interior garden. You get a 1680D 5’ x 5’ x 7”11’ grow kit with premium carbon filters and multiple internal circulation fans.

Besides this, you can choose from a 20-site Super Flow System, a 6-site Bubble Flow Buckets, or nine five-gallon soil pots for your grow medium. As for the LED, you can either opt for the Kind LED XL750 or the XL1000 light.

Moreover, the grow kits come with a trellis system to boost your yield up to 30%, a TDS system for checking the water purity, and a digital thermometer to maintain an optimum temperature for your plants.

However, this is not everything. Apart from all this, the SuperRoom includes a Wi-Fi GrowCam, a pH control kit, an industrial power strip, a GFCI Shock Buster for safety, and the Lotus nutrient starter kit.

If this was not enough, you could connect your grow room with its app on your phone. Here, you can customize the light timings and control the watering schedule using the Super Flow System.

3. TopoLite LED Grow Light + Multiple Size Indoor Grow Tent Kit

If you are looking for growing any life cycle of the plant then Topolite full spectrum LED grow light plus multiple sizes grow tent is a good choice.

This hydroponic grow kit features a 300 watts LED light and measures 24”x 24” x 48” overall. The size and dimension offer enough space to grow a good number of plants.

Since it uses an LED grow light, it consumes less electricity and also generates less heat while in use. The led light can work up to 18 hours and has a longer lifespan.

The package includes one power line, stainless steel hanging kit, an instruction guide, a removable waterproof floor tray, two nylon belts for filter straps, and a set of a frame of rods and connectors.

It is made of 96% reflective Mylar that is waterproof and adds to its durability.

This indoor grow tent kit can continuously work for 10 to 16 hours per day.

The TopoLite indoor hydroponic system tent features a heavy-duty zipper.

It can be set up very easily and within minutes without any hassle. You don’t really need any tools to set it up, as the process is very simple and straightforward.

4. HTG Supply – Indoor Grow Tent Kit

Another grow kit that falls among the best cannabis grow kit that you can pick as a beginner is the HTG supply’s original 400w 3×3 hydroponic grow kit.

The entire grow kit’s dimension is 39” in length, 39” in width, and a height of 85”. As the company states, it is a complete “plug and play” indoor hydroponic grow tent kit.

The HTG supply kit includes An AgroMax original grow tent, a 6” aligned fan and projection kit, a 6” rotation fan, a 400w HPS bulb, a GrowBright thermometer/hydrometer, four bubble boy single shot 3.5 gallons DWC hydroponic system, a pair of ratchet grow light hooks, 1L PH perfect grow micro bloom nutrient solution, and a 120v mechanical time.

As a starter indoor grow kit, this is also the best choice as it does all the planning and purchasing of all the basic equipment and it can be assembled together easily.

This kit also has great customer reviews.

5. Hongruilite Hydroponic Indoor Weed Growing Kit

This marijuana grow kit is about the Hongruilite Indoor Plant Growing System. This is a complete indoor grow kit with ventilation, grow lights, and a durable medium-sized tent.

If you’re a beginner in the indoor hydroponic growing field, hydroponic grow kits like these are a great way to get started.

The tent is constructed with a beginner-friendly full-spectrum design. This way, you can grow your plants from at any stage may it be germination, seedling, vegetables, or flowers.

Besides that, the durable tent is made out of 600D lightproof oxford cloth. This cloth does not let light or heat escape from the tent.

Also, it has a reflective mylar layer on the inside which directs maximum light towards your plants. This ensures the optimum use of your LED grow lights and help you save energy expenses as well.

Furthermore, this indoor grow tent kit includes effective carbon air filters. This model uses an environmentally friendly coal-based activated carbon in their filters.

Along with that, you’ll get elastic ropes, silver flex ducting, and steel hose clamps to help you set up your own indoor grow area with only one purchase.

6. TopoLite – Marijuana Grow Kit

If you are looking for an easy to use indoor grow kit then the TopoLite Grow Tent room kit is a package that is easily set up and use.

It uses a 300w LED grow light that projects a full spectrum for growth. You can use this LED grow light in any growth cycle of the plant; however, you need to adjust the light wavelength.

The 300-watt TopoLite Grow tent features an inline duct fan, a silver flex duct, clamps, and an activated carbon filter.

You can use this grow kit for a maximum of 16 hours without a break, which is better than many other grow kits.

This indoor weed growing kit also helps you to easily monitor the growth of the plant.

It is made of 600D lightproof oxford cloth, metal rods, heavy zips, and double stitching. This makes it durable and sturdy.

The design of the tent supports multiple vents for ventilation and installation of filter out and fan.

7. TheBudGrower Complete Indoor Grow Kit with Fan

One of the best hydroponic grow kits, TheBudGrower.com offers a complete and easy to set up bundle.

The complete indoor grow kit is designed with premium quality products. The kit includes a growing tent, LED, 4” fan, an assembling guide, indoor hydroponic soil, and a carbon filter as major parts.

The tent dimension 24”x24”x60” can fit any space in your desired room.

This indoor grow tent kit is also designed with a reflective diamond Mylar. Built with heavy-duty zip for easy to close or open. With steel poles and corners, this grow kit can hold up to 300 pounds. The spacious opening allows easier all-around access to the plants.

Budgrower complete indoor grow kit features an XP summit LED grow light that provides a full 13 band light spectrum with a 50,000-hour lifespan. It also allows you to use two different settings to grow vegetable plants and flowering plants.

The carbon filter in this kit can remove any moisture or odor and has an average lifespan of 2 years with respect to the use.

This marijuana grow kit comes with a three-year warranty; however, the warranty does not cover the fan and the carbon filter.

It is an optimum choice for a fresh user because the product offers all the basic necessary items in one kit. This also eliminates hassle at the user end and gives better produce.

8. BloomGrow – Indoor Cannabis Grow Kit

BloomGrow grow kits are one of the best indoor grow kits available in the market.

With a durably constructed tent and high-quality basic growing essentials, this kit has everything you need to get started.

Firstly, the grow tent is made with the finest quality 600D waterproof material. From the inside, the layer is 96% reflective to direct all the light towards your plants.

Also, this hydroponic tent kit has an effective mechanism against light and heat leakage. The edges are double stitched while the zipper locks are heavy-duty industrial grades to maintain the proper growing environment inside.

Secondly, this best weed growing kit also includes a complete ventilation kit to ensure better health in your plants.

The pre-filter air cleaning system with eco-friendly activated carbon filters cleans the air effectively providing a healthy, natural environment.

Also, the fans are designed to produce less noise and vibration to avoid any damage to the plants.

Thirdly, the package includes full-spectrum LED lights that are perfect for any growth cycle such as germination, seedling, flowers, and vegetables.

The hygrometer helps you maintain the ideal temperature and humidity level inside the tent by displaying accurate readings with clarity.

To complete the marijuana grow kit, you’ll get sturdy rope hangers and shears to manage the plants as they grow taller and heavier.

9. Oppolite – Complete Indoor Grow Kit

The 800w Oppolite cannabis grow kit is made from a reflective Mylar material that helps maximums light exposure.

The fan helps to keep the temperature at bay and the activated carbon filter helps the absorption of the nutrients in plants.

This 800w LED COB grow light provides great light projection with the full spectrum to help with the growth cycle of the plant.

The double-stitched, heavy-duty zip eliminates the chances of light loss.

This kit has less power consumption and also reduces the temperature.

10. Hydro Plus – Complete Marijuana Grow Kit

If you’re looking for the best hydroponic grow kit, this kit complete with all the basic essentials by Hydro plus is a great option for you.

The tent itself is designed with two-tier accommodation which can be customized according to your plants’ needs. Meaning, you can remove the upper shelf and let your plants grow taller as well.

Besides that, the construction of this tent is impeccable. It’s made out of a thick, heavy-duty, 600D oxford cloth. The cloth is held together by durable metal rods to provide a sturdy growth environment for your plants.

Also, the openings of the tent are secured by industrial-grade zippers that make sure light or heat does not escape from the tent in order to maintain favorable conditions at all times.

Moreover, the tent has rectangular vents reinforced with mesh lining to ensure ideal ventilation inside. There are multiple vents located at different spots that you can use to fit fans and filters.

Furthermore, the complete package comes with a timer, plant netting, light hangers, and a hygrometer.

With this marijuana grow kit you can nurture your plants as seedlings and take care of them as they grow taller.

All you’ll need to add are the fans and LED grow lights to get started.

  • Buyers Guide
  • Types of Hydro Systems
  • Pros & Cons

What to Look for When Purchasing an Indoor Grow Kit

With so many products out there in the market, how do you know you are investing in the right product?

If you are new then you are probably are familiar with what to look for when buying the best indoor grow kit and the go through various hydroponic grow kit reviews.

Need not to worry because we have laid out a basic guide that will help you clear your mind and pick the product that meets your needs.

  1. Know why you need an indoor hydroponic growing kit

Before you begin, it is essential that you know the reason you are opting for a indoor weed growing kit.

This would mean that you will know what type of plant you want to harvest. You may want to grow some marijuana, flowering plant, or just some herbs.

This is necessary to know because different plants require different settings and requirements. Once you are clear about the plant you want to grow, it will become easier to set your hydroponic grow kit.

  1. Cost expenditure

As there are a lot of options available in the market, you can choose between high-end and expensive or affordable grow kits.

Prior to purchasing the product, you must be aware of your expense budget as it will help you save time by not browsing throughout of budget products.

  1. Space set up

It is good if you decide about the place you want to install your marijuana grow kit.

This way, you know the exact dimensions of the kit you want to buy. You can easily find all types of sizes to fit any requirements.

Types of Hydroponic Systems for Grow Kits

There are six basic types of hydroponic systems

  • Wick System

A passive system, the wicking process is a very simple hydroponic system.

This is once again among the simplest yet active hydroponic system.

Grow kits with this system are among the best hydroponic grow kits because they offer the best growth rate out of all.

  • Aeroponic System

The Aeroponic system is considered the most sophisticated hydroponic system. It is slightly complex so it is not for beginners.

  • Nutrient Film Technique

The NFT system is the most popular hydroponic system for commercial use.

The crop develops long canals and the liquid nutrient solution flows through the plants.

  • EBB & Flow System

Although the EBB and Flow System, also known as flood and drain system, is an effective system, but not very much common.

A most broadly used system commercially and non-commercially. In this technique, once activated, the pump drops a droplet of nutrient solution onto the plant base through a small drip line.

Pros & Cons of the Complete Indoor Grow Tent Kits

Every product has its pros and cons and as a customer, it will be best for you to be aware of what you are investing in.

Here are some key benefits of using a cannabis grow kit and a few disadvantages as well.

Benefits

  • Better Yield
  • Higher growth rate
  • All year round growth
  • Effective delivering of nutrients in plants with minimum or no barriers
  • Minimum water reduction
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Lower water consumption
  • Less wastage and mess

Disadvantages

  • High cost if you are bigger plantation because you need bigger marijuana grow kits
  • You need to monitor the growth critically
  • Requires manual maintenance
  • A new user can take time to understand the system and use which is natural but the learning curve is simple
  • Health and growth of the plant completely depend on the power

Wrapping Up with the Best Indoor Hydroponic Grow Kits

If you are a first time user of a weed growing kit, choose the kit that offers the complete set to grow any plant because it will offer you ease.

Although you can always customize your grow kit, it is best to avail of a solution that requires less hassle from your side. It looks like a good option, and why not when you have some affordable and good indoor grow kits available in the market.

You can easily find a perfect kit in the market because there are a lot of good options available. You can also buy these marijuana grow kit easily online.

We advise you to go through the options on our list, compare them, and read the hydroponic grow kit reviews from other customers, pick your kit, and start harvesting.

“When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a commission”

Looking for the best indoor grow kit? Read our expert review and buyers guide Top 10 indoor weed growing kit on the market for 2020

An intro to indoor cannabis cultivation

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Contents

  1. What are the basics of growing weed?
  2. How to start growing weed
  3. What Is the best way to grow marijuana indoors?
  4. Cannabis feeding systems
  5. Setting up your grow: choosing a space
  6. Creating the ideal environment: lighting
  7. Creating the ideal environment
  8. Tips for success
  9. Frequently asked questions

What are the basics of growing weed?

Indoor cannabis cultivation is a rewarding endeavor that basically can be done in any climate. Growing pot takes attention to detail and the right equipment, time, and money, but the benefits reaped from growing your own weed are more than worth the time and expense. Not only is the practice of gardening itself therapeutic, it also lends a connection to the plants that cannot be experienced outside of a hands-on approach. Having trained and grown out a favorite cultivar to fruition is one of life’s great joys for a marijuana enthusiast.

Indoor cultivation provides many benefits compared to outdoor cultivation, including control, reproducibility, and risk mitigation — not to mention location, location, location. The goal is to artificially create the ideal environment for your plants at all growth stages. This is achieved through precise lighting, temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide content, and air movement within each indoor growing space.

Ultimately, the costs of equipment and recurring utility bills are more expensive than in outdoor and greenhouse settings. However, specialized indoor cultivation equipment allows cultivators to achieve multiple harvests per year and a more reproducible product. If you’re detail-oriented and technologically inclined, indoor gardening is a fun and rewarding pastime, or could even be a full-time job.

How to start growing weed

To set up an indoor garden, you will need equipment to help create a stable environment that mimics the necessary periods of light and darkness to grow plants through the flowering stage. This includes horticultural lighting, fans to recreate a gentle breeze, dehumidifiers to maintain the proper humidity, HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning), and all the basic supplies that a plant needs to survive, from water to grow media to nutrients.

Planning, designing, and implementing an indoor garden can seem daunting, but having a firm understanding of the basics goes a long way in helping a new indoor grower get started on the path to a healthy and bountiful harvest.

What Is the best way to grow marijuana indoors?

The first step in creating a proper indoor growing environment is to decide on the medium and irrigation methods you’ll be using to supply your plants with the proper nutrients throughout their growth cycle. The medium is a shelter for your plants’ roots that retains moisture. The irrigation method is the way you deliver nutrients to the plants.

Unlike outdoor cultivation — where you almost always use soil to grow your plants — growing indoors offers several different options for growing systems and media. Some media are easier to work with than others, while some are a little trickier, but offer more control over the finer details. Different media retain moisture at different rates, which in turn determines how often plants need to be watered. Some media harbor beneficial microbes that can help roots absorb nutrients better.

The two main options for an indoor garden are soil and hydroponic media. Consider the following:

Soil

Soil is a great choice for beginners. It can be much more forgiving and requires less precision when watering and feeding plants. Less-frequent watering and a stable pH foundation can drastically increase the likelihood of a successful first harvest. Soil also contains beneficial microbes and nutrients that help keep plants healthy, though it also creates favorable conditions for pests, mold, and mildew to spread. Working with soil and hand-watering plants can also be messy, but it will allow you to get familiar with the pace in which your plants consume water and nutrients.

Soil can be much more forgiving and requires less precision when watering and feeding plants additional nutrients. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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Hydroponics

Hydroponic media are viable indoor alternatives to soil, but they’re considered more advanced because they bring with them a set of challenges that may prove difficult for beginners. Then again, if going hydroponic is in your plans, it’s best to learn the method from the beginning.

Hydroponics is a blanket term for the growing of plants in a nutrient solution, with or without an inert medium to provide physical root support. Media such as fused basalt rock and chalk (known as rockwool), coconut fiber (coco coir), and clay pellets (hydroton) can drastically improve nutrient delivery. With a plant’s roots system exposed, hydroponically grown cannabis can grow faster and more efficiently, requiring less water and fewer nutrients but also requiring monitoring systems to ensure a stable pH.

Soilless mediums

Rockwool , also known as mineral wool, is one of the most common forms of hydroponic media for the beginning stage of a plant’s life. Rockwool is an inert substance, and its composition of mineral or rock fibers provides a relatively sterile environment with a unique capacity to hold water. Rockwool will quickly expose any watering or feeding mistakes. Missing even one day of watering could be detrimental when using rockwool, especially for tender young plants.

Coco Coir is the fibrous material found on and in coconut shells. As a byproduct of the coconut industry, it is favored by growers as a sustainable and renewable medium. Coco coir is an inert medium with a neutral pH that does not provide or maintain any nutrients. These qualities are great for growers who know how to appropriately adjust pH, allowing for quick pH and nutrient changes. There may be a learning curve, but if you’re numerically inclined, it’s not too hard to get a grip on the process. Coco coir can be used either by itself or added to soil or hydroton for improved drainage and growth capability.

Coco Coir is the fibrous material found on and in coconut shells. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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Hydroton is a lightweight expanded clay aggregate composed of porous clay pebbles that can be used alone in a hydroponic system or blended with soil or other soilless mediums. Hydroton does not retain water to the extent of coco coir or rockwool, but it does provide plant roots with equal levels of oxygen. Like rockwool, the biggest issue is that it can dry out very quickly, so you have to be extra careful to keep it hydrated, especially when used on its own.

Other common soilless mediums used by hydroponic growers include perlite, vermiculite, coarse sand, and gravel. Advanced growers frequently mix these media in custom quantities to create blends that suit their specific growing style and environment.

Cannabis feeding systems

Feeding your plant is the process of giving it the chemicals and compounds that it needs to grow out its leaves, roots, and ultimately produce the heavy, trichome-covered flower clusters called colas. There are two main types of feeding systems: drain-to-waste and recirculating.

A drain-to-waste system applies fresh nutrient solutions to the grow medium every time the plant is fed. Any nutrients that drain through the medium are then disposed of and not reused.

A recirculating system collects the nutrients and water that are used, replenishes them, but with a smaller amount of fresh nutrients, then reapplies the solution to the plants the next time the plant is fed. A grower will check the solution’s pH before and after adjusting the nutrients.

When using soil as your primary medium, drain-to-waste is the only possibility. In soilless hydroponic systems, it is up to the growers’ preferences. Most hydroponic growers will opt to maintain a drain-to-waste system, because it affords them full control over the application of nutrients. Recirculating systems are typically reserved for the most advanced and efficient cultivators.

Top feed drain-to-waste systems can be as simple as putting your plants in a soilless medium and watering them from the top of the container, either with a drip system or by hand.

Ebb and flow systems, also known as flood and drain systems, are a popular type of recirculating system that uses a pump to bring water and nutrients from a reservoir into a flood tray where the plants are positioned in their grow medium. The nutrient solution floods the tray and gets absorbed by the roots and medium before slowly draining back into the reservoir. This process repeats itself on a timer to ensure that plants are properly hydrated.

Nutrient Film Technique (NFT) is another recirculating system in which plants are suspended by net baskets or neoprene collars that run along a trough. A thin film of water and nutrients continually circulates through the bottom of the trough, providing food to the tips of the roots, while leaving a majority of the root mass exposed to air.

Deep Water Culture (DWC) is a modular bucket system that suspends the plant’s main stem in a net basket while the roots are completely immersed in a highly oxygenated nutrient solution. An air pump supplies the oxygen to the nutrient solution which circulates through 3-5 gallon, or 11.4-18.9 liter, pots. DWC buckets can be configured to run in a stand-alone drain-to-waste system, or all of the buckets can be connected together to run in a recirculating manner.

Aeroponics are hydroponic systems in which the roots are suspended in air and lightly misted with a nutrient solution on regularly timed intervals. This method can achieve faster growth rates while using less water and nutrients than other hydroponic systems, though this is considered of the most advanced methods of growing hydroponically.

Setting up your grow: choosing a space

Before you purchase any equipment, it is important to understand the possible limitations of an indoor garden. Consider the height of the ceiling, how much insulation your space offers, and your ease of access to electricity and water. Some local jurisdictions may also ask that indoor gardens mitigate odors during the flowering phase.

If you’re a beginner, prefabricated grow tents are a great option, as they allow for minimal wear and tear on your property. Instead of renovating or building a new room, grow tents can be set up and taken down in a matter of minutes while also providing a clean, reflective, and enclosed environment for your plants to grow. As a general rule, your ceiling height should be at least a height of 8 feet, or about 2.4 meters; this is the typical height of a tent. Check your prospective tent’s measurements before committing to the purchase.

Grow tents also make it easier for home growers to maintain two separate environments: one for vegetative growth, and the other for flowering. This allows you to keep a perpetual harvest going by propagating and growing young plants in one tent and flowering another set of plants in the other tent. Maintaining a balanced rotation like this can result in maximized harvests year over year.

Electrical power

Whether you are growing two or 30 plants in your house, grow equipment requires a significant amount of electricity, primarily from your lighting and air conditioning units. Make sure that all electrical equipment is installed by a trained professional to reduce the likelihood of an electrical fire. You don’t need to be an electrician to design an indoor grow, but having a basic understanding of watts, volts, and amps is essential. The equation below can be used to determine whether your property has the minimum amount of power for an indoor garden:

Always make a list of the power requirements for each piece of equipment and make sure your electrical panels can support the electrical load before you make any big equipment purchases.

Water

Water quality is another key aspect of indoor gardening. It’s important to determine water acidity and general mineral content prior to planting. Checking the pH, the acidity or alkalinity of the water, is easy to do with a handheld water quality meter. The same device can be used to check the total mineral or chemical content of your water as well. Knowing these things will help you determine the correct amount of nutrients to feed your plants or if fresh water needs to be introduced.

Odor control

Most local jurisdictions require you mitigate the odor from your plants to avoid disturbing your neighbors. Activated charcoal filters absorb plant odor in your grow area. Adding a charcoal filter to your HVAC system or placing one within your grow space is a great way to drastically reduce the odor. The size of the filter is largely dependent on the size of your grow. Make sure filters are sized and installed correctly. Keep track of the life of the filter, as their effectiveness diminishes over time.

Security

Even when growing cannabis legally, it’s a good idea to minimize your public visibility as a grower and take some mild to moderate precautions. Simple steps, such as not geotagging your location when you post grow pictures or hiding the glare from your grow lights when you run them at night, can go a long way in keeping your prized indoor garden secure.

Creating the ideal environment: lighting

Choosing the right horticultural lighting for your indoor grow can mean the difference between success and failure. Correct lighting is crucial, as it drives photosynthesis. In other words, your plants will not grow properly without proper lighting. The duration of your lighting controls the photoperiod, or the times in which a grow is exposed to light. During the vegetative growth phase, plants need a minimum of 16 hours of light. The most common schedule during this phase is 18 hours of light and six hours of darkness. To initiate flowering, plants need a shorter day, with 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness.

Correct lighting is crucial, as it drives photosynthesis. In other words, your plants will not grow properly without proper lighting. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

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The intensity of light and its placement within your grow space are important aspects to consider when choosing what kind of light to grow with. Low light levels will slow photosynthesis, delay growth, and result in poor yields. If your light is too far away the plant will not receive enough of it and will grow spindly. If your light is too close it can damage the plant and ruin your colas.

There are several different types of grow lights that serve different purposes, each with their own sets of pros and cons.

Fluorescent lights are affordable and use minimal wattage to produce a low-intensity light. They are available in strips or larger arrays of multiple bulbs, and are most commonly used during the germination and propagation of seeds and clones. They should not be used during the flowering phase.

Metal-halide (MH) lights are a type of high-intensity discharge (HID) lights that work by igniting gas in a tube with a spark of electricity. Metal-halide bulbs emit a spectrum of light that is most beneficial during the vegetative phase. They emit more usable light for a plant than a fluorescent bulb does, but tend to cost substantially more.

High-pressure sodium (HPS) bulbs are highly efficient HID lights that produce a very effective spectrum of light to promote growth during the flowering phase. Most HPS bulbs are double-ended and can last 10,000 hours without losing efficiency. While these lights are the workhorses of most grow rooms today, they produce a significant amount of heat that needs to be removed, increasing air conditioning requirements.

Light-emitting diode (LED) lights are another form of high-intensity lighting that have been growing in popularity as their technology has advanced. LED lights produce a spectrum suited for all phases of plant life. They typically cost more than other grow lights, but they last much longer, are more energy efficient, and give off a lot less heat than HID lighting.

Creating the ideal environment

When it comes to cultivating cannabis indoors, you need to be sure to provide your plant with the optimal temperature, humidity, air circulation, CO2, and nutrients.

Temperature and Humidity

Maintaining the ideal temperature and humidity at all times is crucial to the health of your plants. Some plant varieties prefer hot and humid climates, while others like it cool and dry. Keeping them alive and healthy means controlling the temperature and humidity when the lights are on or off.

Air conditioning (AC) and humidification systems are used to control the temperature and relative humidity of an indoor grow room. The size of each unit is based on the amount of heat the lights and other equipment produce in relation to the size of the space. In an open grow room, intake and exhaust fans are used to constantly exchange the air within the room to maintain a consistent temperature. In sealed rooms, mini-split AC systems are used because they circulate the air in the room without bringing in fresh air.

AC systems maintain temperature and also dehumidify rooms. Fluctuations in humidity can affect plant health and should be controlled using a dehumidifier or humidifier, depending on conditions.

Advanced growers use digital environmental controls to monitor all equipment responsible for maintaining a stable environment (i.e., fans, AC, dehumidifiers, sensors, thermostats, etc.). These environmental controls can be worth the hefty price tag for the peace of mind they provide.

Nutrients

With lighting, AC, and other environmental controls in place, indoor cannabis plants will require large amounts of fertilizer or nutrients throughout their lifespans. Hydroponic systems lack the base nutrients that occur within soil; that leaves it up to you, the grower, to feed their plants with nutrient concentrations — the exact formula of which depends upon plant variety and phase of cultivation. With hydroponics, salt-based nutrients typically come in the form of a concentrated liquid or dry soluble powder that can be mixed with water.

As a cannabis plant develops, its nutrient needs change. That’s why different nutrient lines are available for different growth phases. Most nutrient lines come with recommended feeding charts. If you’re just starting out, be sure to get to know your nutrients and their ratios.

Carbon dioxide supplementation

Controlling the amount of available carbon dioxide (CO2) in your garden is another aspect of growing marijuana at home . During photosynthesis, CO2 converts into sugar, which the plant uses as energy for growing its vegetation and, ultimately, its seeds or flowers. Adding CO2 to your indoor garden can drastically improve your yields. While the atmosphere naturally has an average CO2 concentration of around 400 parts per million (PPM), most indoor growers try to maintain a range of 800 to 2,000 PPM, depending on the plants’ growth stage. Levels above 2,000 PPM can damage plants, and anything above 3,000 PPM can be dangerous to humans.

The amount of CO2 you supplement your garden with depends on how much light your plants are receiving, the growth phase they are in, and their overall size. CO2 should only be used during the “daylight” period, as plants are unable to utilize CO2 at night or in the dark. Sealed grow rooms are ideal when supplementing CO2, as open rooms tend to exhaust the CO2 more quickly than the plants can use it.

CO2 can be supplemented into an indoor garden using compressed gas tanks or generators. Using compressed CO2 tanks is the most common method because they’re readily available, easy to set up, and do not add any extra heat to your room the way a CO2 generator does.

Air circulation

Air movement is the least expensive component of creating an ideal environment for your plants. Even a gentle breeze can help keep pests and microbes from landing on your plants, move oxygen and carbon dioxide around the leaves, and create a uniform environment throughout your room. One of the easiest ways to maintain sufficient air circulation is by hanging oscillating fans on the walls or ceiling/grow tent corners and placing a small box fan on the floor. The goal with air circulation should be to mimic a light breeze and avoid powerful gusts that may harm your plants.

Tips for success

The health of your garden is completely dependent upon the environment you create and the equipment you select. It is easy to buy a new line of nutrients, but much more difficult to replace an undersized air conditioner. Careful planning prior to your grow will go a long way in saving you from expensive mishaps.

Cleanliness in an indoor garden cannot be overstated. Clean your entire grow room before your first grow cycle and after every harvest. The walls, floors, trays, irrigation lines, reservoirs, lights, and fans should be cleaned using a three to five percent (3%-5%) hydrogen peroxide solution, an efficient sterilizing agent that leaves no dangerous or toxic residues behind. Be careful what you bring into your grow room. Pets, dirty clothes, and contaminated clones can introduce unwanted pests and diseases.

Maintaining a grow journal and logging all major aspects of your grow is one of the cheapest, easiest things you can do to become a better grower. Logging daily temperatures along with water and feeding amounts will help you pinpoint problems, and may give you something to show other growers who can help you resolve issues, increase your yields, and save a troubled crop.

Remember, not everyone was born with a green thumb or an affinity for setting up and maintaining equipment. But with practice, passion, and an attention to detail, you can ready yourself for an amazing growing experience that has the potential to change your views of and interaction with cannabis for good.

Frequently asked questions

Should you grow cannabis with distilled water or reverse osmosis water?

Distilled and reverse osmosis water are fairly comparable. It’s the process of distilling that differs from the reverse osmosis process. Distilled water has been boiled to a vapor and cooled back into liquid to filter out contaminants. Reverse osmosis (RO) filters pressure water through a filtration membrane and produce wastewater as a byproduct. They’re generally better than distillers at removing volatile chemicals such as chloramines.

RO filters can remove 95% or more of contaminants, and typically increase in efficiency when pre-filters are placed before them in a filtration system. Carbon or sediment filters remove chlorine and chloramines as well as larger solids such as sediment and dirt. Water softeners exchange calcium and magnesium for sodium chloride so it can be purified and softened through the RO filter.

There are big differences when you grow cannabis indoor versus outdoor. Learn everything you need to know about growing weed indoors.