A lot of new growers assume that putting together a grow room for indoor cannabis plants takes a lot of work and money. Although there’s definitely some work involved and you will have to spend some cash, getting your grow room up and running doesn’t need to be overly complicated.
Setting up a marijuana grow room can be done in 8 easy steps, and once these steps are completed, you’ll be well on your way to harvesting quality bud.
Step 1: Designate the Grow Space
First thing’s first, you need to designate your grow space. If you’re following the new laws of 4 plants per house in Canada or just want to test your luck with 1 or 2 plants, this should be fairly easy. A storage closet or small tent is the perfect space for a small grow op of just a few plants.
For larger operations, it can be a bit more complicated to find the space you need to grow cannabis plants from start to finish. Whatever you do, just make sure you have enough square footage for the number of plants you plan on growing. Depending on the strain and growing styles, these plants can get pretty big, so plan your grow space accordingly.
Step 2: Give the Space a Good Cleaning
Next, empty everything out from the designated grow space and give it a thorough cleaning. The only thing left behind in the space should be the floors, ceiling, and walls. In terms of cleaning, it’s not enough to sweep the floor; you’ll want to wipe down everything and ensure that every surface is disinfected. You can use diluted bleach for this, just be sure not to leave anything behind.
Even if you’re not a huge fan of cleaning, never skip this step. Cannabis plants are extremely susceptible to houseplant pests and diseases, and both of these things are attracted to uncleanliness. Even dust that’s built up in the room’s ventilation system can hinder growth, so don’t be shy about dusting out the vents.
Step 3: Build the Grow Room or Grow Tent
Unless you’ve chosen to grow in a grow tent, this is probably the most challenging part of the grow room setup process. Building a grow room means getting everything ready for cultivation by lining the walls and ceiling with reflective material, setting up the grow tables and water system, and making sure the room is light-tight.
For a tent grow op, all you have to do is take the tent out of the box and follow the instructions for setup. Grow tents usually come with interlocking metal pieces for the frame that’s covered by a thick canvas material. The best ones are built with venting holes, viewing windows, and waterproof flooring.
Step 4: Ensure Good Air Circulation and Ventilation
Once the actual bones of the room are built, the next step is to focus on the room’s ventilation system. Even before building a grow room, home ventilation is important, but now it’s vital for the success of the crop. Plants crave fresh, moving air, and since fresh air isn’t as abundant indoors, it’s up to you to introduce it into the room as often as possible.
Setting up a ventilation system may sound like a lot of work, but it’s actually very simple (especially with grow tents). You’ll need a good amount of 8-inch ducting, an inline fan hooked up to a window or outdoor vent to bring in fresh air, and an exhaust fan to expel old air and remove heat that’s coming off the lighting system.
Step 5: Set Up the Room’s Water Source
Unless you’re a fan of hauling buckets of water to feed your plants, you’ll want to make sure the grow room has an accessible water source. A lot of growers hook up their grow room water to the water manifold used for supplying the washer and water heater. This is a handy trick since you’ll be able to access both hot and cold water and you keep the washer/water heater up-and-running.
Before using any water source, always test it to make sure it’s suitable for cannabis plants. You’ll want to check the pH, the temperature, and the PPM, all of which can be done using a pH meter from companies like BlueLab.
Step 6: Install the Lighting System
Lights are obviously an important aspect of any indoor grow room environment. According to the University of Minnesota on the light requirements for indoor plants, “light is one of the most important factors for growing houseplants. All plants require light for photosynthesis, the process within a plant that converts light, oxygen and water into carbohydrates (energy).”
In the past, most growers went with a standard T5 fluorescent fixture, but nowadays, things are a bit more complicated than that. There are a lot more choices, like high-intensity HPS systems and super-efficiency LEDs.
No matter the type of light you go with, make sure to install the light securely by using hooks, chains, and light holders that are able to support the full weight of the fixture.
Step 7: Make a List, Check It Twice
There are a lot of random tools used by growers, some of them are necessities and others are just helpful to have handy. It’s a good idea to make a list of the things you’ll need – like duct tape, light hangers, trimmers, string, etc. – so that you’re not running to the local hardware store every other day.
Step 8: Install the Growing System
Once the grow room is put together, the final step is to install the growing system. Whether you plan on growing with soil containers or hydroponically, this last step is where all your hard work finally starts to pay off. Of course, the biggest payoff comes with harvesting time, but it will still feel really good to finally get the plants in the grow room.