Grow Q&A: Growing in “Smart” Pots

Dear Dan, I’m hoping to increase my yield by upgrading from 5-gallon pots to larger size “smart” pots. But I’m concerned that it may not be worth it due to the fact that I’m running an 8-week vegetation period in 1-gallon pots under T5’s, because of limited space reasons. My plants are a mixture of indica and sativa dominant and range from one and a half to two feet tall by the end of the vegetation period.
The flowering room consists of two 600-watt Metal Halides supplemented with an additional 1,200 watts of LED power as well as optimum CO2 and air temperature. The soil mix I am using is all organic and properly fortified and I also feed with name brand supplements and beneficial biologicals. With that in mind, would you recommend larger “smart” containers? If so what size do you think my set up could handle? Any input you can give would be greatly appreciated. P.S. Free Weed is a great podcast, I listen to every episode and look forward to new ones. Thanks! – Tommy Green

Dear Tommy,
Thanks for the kind words about the podcast! As for your question, I do believe you could benefit and increase your yields by switching to a larger “smart” container. With two months of vegetative period, you have plenty of time to develop a much larger root system than you’re currently able to obtain. This directly results in stronger growth rates and heavier harvests.

The “smart” containers I think you’re describing are the type that have holes on the bottom and sides to allow more oxygen to reach the roots. Keep in mind that using them means you will be watering more often, but when properly utilized, results can be dramatic. The air holes encourage roots back into the mix instead of wrapping around the sides of your container, resulting in thicker root-balls and healthier plants up top.

As for the size of the pots, you can’t go wrong with the 5-gallon ones you have your eye on. They give you enough space for plenty of root production without making you feel like you’re wasting soil mix in some huge overkill-sized container.

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