Grow Q&A: Getting Started With Small Scale Growing

Hey man! I’m looking into starting a closet grow. I’m a beginner at growing and was hoping you could give me some tips as to what kind of setup I should use. Here are a few things I would like your opinion on – and if I missed anything, please let me know. Hydro setup or soil? Grow box or grow tent (I can’t have smell leaking out of the closet)? Are there any strains genetic-specific for indoor and or closet growing? What I should expect to spend on a good setup? I really appreciate the help! – Michael

Dear Michael,
My advice for most beginners is to start with soil – or, more accurately – a soilless mix typically sold in bales or bags; 3-5 gallon pots are a good size for decent-sized plants that you will hand water with nutrient solution. This type of growing is more forgiving for the first-timer than the more complicated automated hydroponic systems. Also, if your budget doesn’t allow you to purchase a grow box, get a good grow tent instead. They’re much cheaper and easy to set up (and take down).

Put a significant amount of your budget towards your lighting, airflow and odor control. If you dedicate the bulk of your funds to these issues now, you won’t have to scramble to fix them later. Purchase HID lighting (400-watt or 600-watt are perfect for a 4 x 4 grow tent) and securely hang it so that you can raise and lower it as your plants grow. Attach a vent fan with an activated-charcoal can filter and place a re-circulating fan in the tent to keep air moving.

Start with an indica-dominant hybrid that won’t stretch out or take forever to flower like some of the sativas out there. All in all, your budget should run you under $2,000 to get growing now. But think of it as an investment in your future, knowing that you’ll be producing your own pot for pennies on the dollar and you’ll know everything that went into it, or onto it.

Have a grow question? Ask away at deardanko@hightimes.com

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