Growing your supply of cannabis requires more than just a desire to smoke a joint. Trust me; you will need a truckload of commitment and dedication to appreciate this herb better and tender it like a baby. Since the global cannabis industry keeps expanding and gaining popularity, many people have entered the business of producing cannabis. So, be rest assured, you are not alone on this quest. Recently, there has been a significant increase in the number of people growing weed behind doors. In regions where the cannabis laws are not exactly favorable, you can find several grow rooms concealed in the basements or hidden in small enclosures.
Any strain of cannabis, if carefully nurtured, can grow anywhere. Not only in the open garden. In countries where the rules are modern, you can find industrial-scale grow rooms fully functional and equipped for cannabis production. Regardless of your choice of plant size or enclosure size, the cannabis grow rooms must be equipped to support the plants fully. Cannabis has long been grown outdoors, so most strains available today have genetics that survives better outdoors. You will want to mimic the outdoor conditions as closely as possible.
Giving your cannabis the same conditions as its natural habitat requires much work and dedication. You will need an indoor space of at least 1m2 to produce a continuous supply of weed every growing season. Your space allocation can be bigger depending on whether you want large harvest yields. You will want to ensure you have all the necessary equipment to help your plant through the seedling, germinating, vegetative and flowering stages. A good cannabis lighting setup is also required, especially if you are cultivating autoflower strains.
Getting started: The requirements
Discretion is probably one of the main reasons people decide to grow their weed indoors. So, you will need just the right space to get started. There is no exactly fixed space dimension for cannabis indoor growth. The space you will need depends on many other factors, including the number of plants, the height of the light and fan, and the size of the odor control setup. Nevertheless, the space requirement is one of the simplest conditions to be fulfilled. Once you’ve sorted this, you can move on.
2. Light and light proofing
Cannabis plants need light to grow properly. Especially during the flowering and vegetative stages, many of these plants' operations depend on their light and dark cycles. Outdoors, the natural light source takes care of this requirement. But in your grow room, it is all up to you. A typical cannabis plant needs about 18 hours of light in a day. During the flowering stage, it needs about 12. This reduction in light exposure is what triggers flowering. Except if you are only growing autoflowers, this light requirement is essential. You should also procure the best cannabis grow lights for your planting operation.
Light proofing is as important as the quality of grow light you’ve selected. Your grow room should be entirely lightproof. Once your plant enters the vegetative stage, it becomes susceptible to the length of light exposure. A big problem is if your grow room light leaks out of the enclosure. Any crack that allows light leakage will also allow light into the enclosure. Light leakage can confuse your plant as it struggles to understand why the light cycle fluctuates unexpectedly. This can reduce the yield of your plant, trigger hermaphroditism, delay flowering, or, at worst, cause plant failure.
3. Air integrity
Your grow room should be airtight. As your cannabis grows and flowers, it produces large resinous buds and gives off a characteristic odor. Sometimes, the plant odor might be strong enough, extending beyond the grow room and into the external environment. This is a big problem as your growing operation can lose discretion this way. A well-sealed room helps trap the odor and ensure it stays only in the grow room. You can also learn how to control cannabis grow room odor. An airtight room also helps you regulate the air inlet. If your grow room is located in an environment with a considerable level of air pollution, you will want to ensure your plant is safe from contaminants.
When your room is airtight, air pollutants cannot interfere with the growth cycle and reduce yield. A well-sealed room also helps you safely protect your plant from bugs, cannabis root aphids, vermin, and airborne pathogens. If infected by all these, your cannabis develops yields that are not only substandard but also have less appeal from cannabis users. If you are also willing to take your planting operations further and experiment with CO2 enrichment, an airtight room helps you through the processes without hassles.
4. Climate control
Simulating a natural habitat for your cannabis plants starts with controlling the climate of your room. You will want to have conditions very close to that in open gardens. Cannabis strains, including plants of economic value, only thrive under ideal climate conditions. Humidity and temperature are the principal conditions you must control if your plant must grow properly. Generally, cannabis grown indoors thrive better at a temperature range of about 18 to 24°C (65 to 75°F) during the vegetative stage. During the flowering stage, the optimal temperature range is set at 18 to 26°C (65 to 78°F). For humidity, depending on the stage of growth, indoor cannabis plants generally thrive better at a relative humidity range of 40% - 70%.
If the temperature is too high, the plant is exposed to too much heat. This might trigger cellular death and loss of nutrients. The plants also lose water, and the resinous buds can become easily damaged. Not only will the potency be lost, but the cannabinoids sensitive to heat can also become structurally altered. High humidity levels provide the right environment for fungus and mold growth. If left unchecked, molds and fungi can infect the plant and significantly reduce harvest yield. The dry condition also spells doom to the cannabis plants. Learning to regulate temperature and humidity is a skill you must learn.
- Grow Light: Grow lights emit different heat signatures and, as such, can help you regulate your grow room temperature. Fluorescents. MH, and HPS are known to give off more heat than light-emitting diodes.
- Heaters: You can also use a heater as a conventional method of increasing the temperature of your grow room. You must have sensitive equipment to track the temperature levels while using the heater.
- Control Air Flow: A simple technique to lower grow room temperature is by controlling airflow. Using large fans, you can remove warm air from the room and bring fresh air from the external environment. The cooling process can be unpredictable and depends on the temperature of the external air.
- Air condition Units: Although expensive, air condition units are the most reliable method of decreasing a grow room temperature. They come in handy when fans are not enough to do the job.
- Humidifiers: You can invest in humidity with a large water reservoir. Humidifiers add water to the grow room and directly increase the humidity levels.
- Spray Bottles: If you are operating on a low budget, spray bottles are your best option. Using a spray bottle, you can easily add water to the plants and introduce mist into the grow room. Be sure only to make the leaves moist and not wet.
- Dehumidifiers: Dehumidifiers reverse the action of humidifiers on the humidity levels. They remove moisture from the air. This helps you control a humid grow space and reduce the risk of mold growth.
- You can also try to water your plant when the lights are off. The temperature is lower during this time, and the water vapors can stay longer in the grow room.
Regulating temperature and humidity also involve using designated tools to track changes in these parameters. A basic, easy-to-use thermometer helps you track temperature changes. A hygrometer does the same for humidity.
5. Safety installments
Your grow room should also be equipped with primary safety equipment that helps reduce the risk of plant loss. If your light source is too hot and you leave it on for an extended period, you increase the risk of a grow room fire. Electrical faults from the light system can also trigger a grow room fire. Grow room fire can destroy your plants, making you lose your investment. You can install a fire alarm or a fire extinguisher. These safety equipment are better installed in an area of the grow room where they can be easily reached.
While growing your cannabis indoors, your primary target is simulating the conditions in the plant's natural habitat. You should pay proper attention to the temperature and humidity levels. Growing cannabis indoors comes with its challenges. However, setting up the right space can help you solve these problems.