Plants are normally grown outdoors under the warmth of the sunlight and the mighty blue skies. However, when it comes to growing marijuana, there are some limitations, such as social taboo and legal restrictions which is why many growers prefer growing it indoors. There are a number of different ways in which weed can be grown indoors and using a hydroponic grow closet to grow your plants is one of them. A Hydroponic grow closet is an enclosed setup where you can grow plants inside a controlled as well as concealed environment.
Over the course of this article, we shall help you understand what a hydroponic grow closet is and how you can set it up. We shall also take a detailed look at the benefits of using grow closets and grow tents and why growers prefer it, as well as at some disadvantages that this form of growing has. We shall also be looking at how to set up a hydroponic grow closet, which is the focal point of this article. In addition to that, another important chunk here deals with some of the key components that are involved in setting up a grow closet for growing marijuana.
What is a Grow Closet?
Basically, a grow closet is like a regular closet, but instead of storing your stuff, it actually stores your marijuana plants inside a grow tent! Grow closets are getting increasingly popular with growers as they can have just the perfect and ideal growing setup which is great for their plants and when they are not around they can just lock it up and hide their weed there.
Growing this way does not make things obvious that you are growing weed and you can hide it not only from the eyes of neighbours and the law (as opposed to growing it out in the open) but you can also hide it from family and guests. A grow closet is also great because since it is a limited space where all the elements of nature are recreated, you can actually set it up in a way that your plants give you optimum output. Inside a grow closet, you make use of grow lights and ventilation systems to recreate the sunlight and natural air and you can tweak them in a way that they provide optimal growth conditions to your plant. In addition to this, using a hydroponic grow closet is also great for plants because it keeps pests and insects away which might damage the plants otherwise.
How to Set up a Hydroponic Grow Closet?
Now that you know what a hydroponic grow closet is, let us take a detailed look at all the elements that go inside it and how to use them together to set up a grow closet! Before all of this, however, you will need to choose a closet inside which you are growing to grow your weed in. This closet needs to be of a good length, breadth, and height (4x2x6 is the minimum that we’d recommend).
1. Grow Tent
Inside a grow closet/grow cabinet, you need to set up a grow tent. These have to be set up because this is the primary enclosed structure inside which you would be setting up all the other elements needed for growing weed. This is is an important structure because it is completely reflective from the inside, which helps the growers ensure that their grow light is used to its maximum possible efficiency and that the plants are getting the best possible lighting. In addition to that, a grow tent also keeps insects and pests away.
2. Grow Light
A grow light is the most important part of the indoor growth process, as it acts as a replacement for the sunlight. Since there is no access to sunlight when you are growing your plants in a hydroponic grow cabinet, and hydroponic setups do need quite a bit of light, these grow lights are very important. Most growers choose to use a full-spectrum grow light rather than use grow lights of different spectrums for different phases in the plant’s growth cycle. LED grow lights are the most popular ones nowadays as they consume less electricity while providing a better wattage than traditional forms of lighting.
3. Exhaust Fans
Considering that a hydroponic grow closet or a grow cabinet is an enclosed space, there is no ventilation over there. However, you need to make sure that you are fitting the right kind of exhaust and ventilation system in the grow cabinet which will help the plants get fresh air while stale air circulated out. This will need to be done with the help of a system of inlets and outlets where ducting will be used and holes will need to be drilled so that fresh air from outside can come in and air from the inside can go out.
4. Carbon Filters
When you grow marijuana (hydroponically or regular methods), it will always have a strong smell regardless of the method of growth. This smell comes from terpenes, which are chemical compounds that the plants emit to keep insects and pests away and to attract humans. Furthermore, the common notion is that the stronger the smell the better the ‘high’ you’ll get out of consuming the plant. However, the smell is usually a big ‘tell’ that you are smoking or growing marijuana and it needs to be contained. This is why growers make use of carbon filters which trap the smell that these plants emit so that there are no suspicions around you!
Nutrients are a very important part of the hydroponic growth setup. Since they are to be provided directly to the roots via water, you need to choose them carefully and mix them in an amount that won’t be an excess for the plants! Growers also need to make sure that the nutrients they choose are providing the required elements to the plants. Too less or too much of these nutrients is bad for the plant’s growth so be careful while providing them. You might also want to look at nutrients which act as flavour enhancers – which is great for growers who are true connoisseurs of the weed that they consume and want it to be of just the perfect taste.
6. Reservoirs/Hydroponic Growth Setup
Now this is the core of any hydroponic growth. Inside your hydroponic grow closet, you will need to keep a hydroponic reservoir, which is basically a small water tank or a reservoir upon which you will be keeping your plants. Usually, growers tend to make use of plastic totes and drill holes on them. The body can be filled with water while the plants can be suspended on the pots that you are drilling on top. While there is no soil involved, you will still need a medium such as rockwool cubes which is both porous as well as retentive. Depending on the number of plants you need and the amount of space that you have at hand, you will need to create a reservoir/hydroponic growth setup which is just the right size, stores the right amount of water and hosts the right number of plants.
7. Other Accessories
You might need a number of other accessories such as timers, which are useful for growers who want to automate some processes such as that of switching their grow lights on and off at a particular timing in case they are not there for a while. In addition to that, you can also make use of accessories such as clip-on fans which provide a breeze inside the grow cabinet, which is great for the growth of the stem as it makes it stronger. Then you can also use certain insect traps and other accessories which help ensure the overall well-being of the plant.
How to Choose Good Grow Tents?
Grow tents are quite important in this process. Let us take a look at some factors that you need to keep in mind while you buy a grow tent for a hydroponic grow closet:
- Adequate Space: This should be your biggest concern. Don’t get a grow tent that is too big or too small or your growth process will be all messed up. You should chart out all the size-related things, be it the size of the hydroponic growth closet, or the size of the grow tent, the size of the plants, etc. before you start off with it all. Space is a big concern and it must be dealt with well. There are ways in which you can grow more number of plants in a limited space if you know where and when to cut them from time to time. You should have adequate space and you should make use of the space well.
- Durability: Two things need to be taken care of here – the poles of the grow tent, as well as the zipper that comes along with it. Poles are important because they support the whole structure and they need to be sturdy and strong enough to carry the weight that your grow cabinet setup is carrying. This includes grow lights, timers, carbon filters and clip-on fans, etc. which might be hanging on to it, hence the poles of the tent need to be really strong. Furthermore, zippers are also quite important and you must check the reviews of the tent you are buying to make sure that the zipper is good quality! Countless growers groan about broken zippers so make sure yours is a good one!
- Reflectiveness: How reflective the inner layers of the grow tent are is a very important thing that you need to consider before you buy a grow tent for your hydroponic grow closet. This is needed because the more reflective the inner surface is, the more light will it bounce on to the plant instead of absorbing it. The more light a plant gets, the faster it grows and the more yield it produces! Hence, always check for how reflective the inner layers are. Usually, you’d get Mylar layers between 95%-100% reflectiveness.
- Canvas Quality: Another thing that needs to be taken care of is that you must get a grow tent with a good canvas. The canvas is basically the layer of cloth around the poles and it needs to be thick and double-stitched so that it ensures that no light leaks out. Making sure that the light stays inside the grow tent is important because light that leaks out is light that could potentially have helped the plant grow better. Most grow tents make use of the Oxford 600D cloth which is a good option for growers.
- Removable Tray: Removable tray isn’t really that important of a feature inside a regular grow tent but when you are growing marijuana using a hydroponic setup, a removable tray is very important because hydroponics is all about a water-based growth and wherever there is such a large volume of water involved, there’s bound to be some sort of spillage. Cleaning it would become much easier if one were to use a removable floor tray!
- Observation Window: An observation window is also important and should be a part of your grow tent setup because it will allow the growers to take a quick look at the plants instead of having to open up the main zipper and have a lot of light leak out. This gives quick and easy access and a look at how your plants are growing.
Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Marijuana in Hydroponic Grow Closet
Here are some frequently asked questions about growing marijuana in a hydroponic grow closet that we have attempted to answer. Do take a detailed look at these questions as many growers tend to have a similar question.
1. What is hydroponics?
Hydroponics is basically a soil-less method of growing marijuana where growers grow their weed using a medium such as rockwool cubes or peat moss, etc. Here, soil is not used and water, which is mixed with all the nutrients needed for growth, is provided directly to the roots. This process requires a setup where water flows constantly and the roots are in direct contact with the water. This allows plants to grow much quicker because the roots have easy access to nutrients and don’t have to seek for it. This also results in higher yields as well as plants remaining safe from soil-based diseases.
2. What are the benefits of growing weed in a hydroponic grow closet?
There are a number of growing your marijuana inside a hydroponic grow closet:
- They remain away from the public eye, keeping your weed safe and keeping you away from all troubles and social taboos. A lot of people tend to judge growers who grow weed out in the open. Sometimes you might even have to hide it from the law and grow cabinets offer just the perfect place for this.
- Climate control is another major factor that you get here. As opposed to growing your marijuana outside, you can actually simulare just the perfect temperature, the amount of light, the lighting time, and even humidity, air and water are in your control. This will ensure that you can create just the perfect plant for yourself here.
- It also contains all the bright lights and strong smells which might have otherwise been quite troublesome if you were to grow it in a regular grow tent setup outside the cabinet! Hence, growing in a cabinet is great for the growers.
- Lastly, as we’ve mentioned a couple of times above – growing inside a hydroponic grow closet will also keep the insects and pests away keeping your setup safe and secure from any potential damage.
3. What are the disadvantages of growing weed in a hydroponic grow closet?
- Given that the size of the grow tent isn’t really that big, growers might face a problem managing the elements inside the tent as everything is just too compact and too small to control.
- Providing proper ventilation can be a challenge inside a normal grow tent also. When you add it inside a grow cabinet, it becomes even more difficult as you would need to set up an elaborate system so that air can flow through the system well and your plants can ‘breathe’.
- Heat buildup is another major problem while growing in a cabinet because it is really difficult to provide an outlet for hot air while growing weed inside a cabinet.
- Lastly, while you grow your weed hydroponically, it will protect you against soil-based plant diseases, but the same cannot be said about water-based diseases which are often more infectious and travel faster up the plants!
To conclude, we hope that this article on how to set up a hydroponic grow tent has helped you understand all the elements that go inside a grow tent in a much better manner. We hope that you now have a better insight on everything that you need to start growing marijuana using a hydroponic grow cabinet. If there’s anything that you feel we have missed out on, or if there’s something more that you would want to know, do drop us an email or let us know in the comments below! Till then, we hope this helps you grow better weed for your indoor garden.
Happy Growing! 🙂