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lot.forty.six

Most efficient setup for 15 plants

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I've been approved to grow 15 plants I've never grown cannabis tho. I'm planning on using a grow tent but I'm wondering what the most efficient setup would be a 3 stage grow tent and have 5 in each stage or just growing 15 all at once would be my best option.

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15 are going to be way too many to grow at once unless you want to do it SoG style and start the flowering very early when the plants are small.

 

There are so many different ways of doing it that it's impossible to just say, Do A, B and C and you'll be buried in pot.

 

Are you going to use feminized seeds or getting clones from somewhere?  Then start five new ones then 6 weeks or so start 5 more etc to get a new harvest every 6 weeks or so.

 

Different plans needed for regular seed growing.

 

Too many unknowns to speculate much so you need to come up with some basic plan before proceeding or before anyone can give you solid advice.

 

Maybe some grow books will help if the link still works.

 

I found a great spot to download FREE POT BOOKS. I downloaded a grow bible first and got lots more.  Books look great and complete like the real ones I have here.  No web site but just a page of links. Just right click on what you want and then "Save Link As" to download so they don't open first as some are 50+ megs. They got lots.  Enjoy.

 

:peace:

 

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I was going to use feminized seeds in soil, after everything I read that seemed to be what most people say is the easiest way and had the largest margin of error. I'm not so concerned about huge yields more concerned about quality as this is all for personal use, I'm looking for a balance between quality and quantity. Is there book you suggest I start with?

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I like the Jorge Cervantes books and have two real ones.  Ed Rosenthal is good too. 

 

15 plants is still to many for something like a 4x4' tent unless you do them up Sea of Green, SoG, style.  That's where you grow many small plants and I know from measuring you can fit 16 2.5gal pots in a 4x4 space.  That would be big enough to grow out smaller plants.  Price of seeds is another consideration with fem seeds upwards of $15 each for decent strains.  I have 2 fem AK47 going right now and I'm not impressed with their growth so far.  They are from Canuk Seeds that I got from a buddy and were $20 each.  Got 3 but one didn't sprout.

 

Soil is easy enough and you don't have to worry so much about temperature like you do with hydro.  I'm getting back into DWC for the better yields and have a cool basement to flower in so I can keep the nute temps down.  I use mainly soilless when growing in pots.  ProMix HP works great right out of the bag and I feed the plants hydro nutes.  Specifically Advanced Nutrients pH Perfect 3 - part with Rhino Skin for silica and Big Bud for flowering.

 

If you want to stay organic there are nutes for that too and soils but you'll have to shop around for good ones depending on where you are located.  Not much in my area but hardware stores and a small garden center a half hour up the road.  They all seem to carry ProMix stuff and the Veg and Herb ProMix grows plants just fine in veg with a bit of added perlite and is organic certified as is the HP which comes with lots of perlite already in it.

 

Lot of things to buy to start growing that add up fast so you should start a list.  Lighting is about the most expensive especially if you want to get into LEDs.  A good 4x4 tent can run 3 -$400 with larger tents costing more.  For a 4x4 you'd need at least a 600W HPS or the equivalent in LEDs.  LEDs cost a lot more upfront but save on power usage so you get back the investment in 5 - 10 years in power savings.  I use HIDs but looking to get some LED lighting if I can find the money.  Not sure if you've looked into it much but figure a couple grand to get set up decently.

 

:peace:

 

 

 

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Yea I've been looking at LED's just not sure on what I would need. The tent I was to use is a secret jardin L280 it has room for plants in all 3 stages. id look to crop as often as possible with a rotation of 5 plants in each stage

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35 minutes ago, lot.forty.six said:

secret jardin L280

Thats not going to work for 3 stages, unless you can separate the flowering from the vegging with zero light leakage between the two. Or you grow all your plants at the same time through veg and flower. They have different light cycles. 18/6 for vegging 12/12 for flower. Flowering plants do better in a lower heat and humidity environment especially near the end ,and then vegging in a slightly higher heat and humidity, so you will need separate ways to control those things in each tent unless you can get and keep a happy medium between the 2. Would to better to run lower RH and temp and just have slower vegging plants and keep your bud quality higher.

 

Your best option  would be a tent for mothers, clones, and vegging and another for flowering. Stagger your clones at different time intervals through vegging so you have a constant harvest every 3- 4 weeks. Use strains with a similar flower period and environment preference.

 

Thats a nice looking tent for the money though.

 

 

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Just had another look at that tent. It only has one passive air intake for the main tent and 3 on the seedling tray side. Should have it the other way round, Thats going to work your fan hard with only a small intake for that whole side of the tent, you could always use the bottom cable and ducting holes. I use 6 inch galvanized steel 90 degree bends and cover the outside end with furnace filter the amount of dust and pet hair that gets sucked in is amazing, point the opening at the floor to mitigate light leaks.  

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45 minutes ago, lot.forty.six said:

Yea I've been looking at LED's just not sure on what I would need. The tent I was to use is a secret jardin L280 it has room for plants in all 3 stages. id look to crop as often as possible with a rotation of 5 plants in each stage

 

I don't know much about the different LEDs,  There are ones called COB LEDs that seem to be all the rage but most are having to put them together from kits or just buying the bulbs and rigging up their own units.  A decent pre-made LED  to cover a 4x4 space will likely cost up to $1000 on it's own.  From what I've read elsewhere you get what you pay for and cheap ones give cheap results so I'd shop around and do some research before laying out any cash.

 

I just checked out that tent at Secret Jardin and it's basically an 8x4' tent with a foot and a half cloning space tacked on one end.  It looks like the clone/veg area has fixed shelving so will make it hard to veg plants in there big enough to then put into the larger area for flowering.  If you haven't already bought the tent I'd maybe think about getting two 4x4 tents so one can be used for veg and the other for flower.  I'm building an 8x4' flowering room and plan to use a 1000W HPS light on a light rail to light up the space.  Got everything but the plywood for the walls so far.  My current grow room downstairs can handle about 6x6' for growing and I've taken over an upstairs bedroom for vegging plants in.  I set up the frame for an 8x4 tent I got off a friend just so I can hang lights etc without making holes in the ceiling.  Downstairs I can put in big screw hooks wherever I need them and hang everything off light wire chains.

 

With 10" air intakes it shouldn't be a problem if using a 6" fan for extraction.

 

:peace:

 

 

 

 

 

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I havent purchased anything there is so much information/misinformation on the internet i thought id reach out in a place like this first to get advice from people with experience and guidance to share before i spent any money my budget is about $3,000 to build and get my grow going im in no rush to get started just want to get the best setup i can for the money i have. 

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Very sensible, I spent about 3 months reading up on here, and getting advice before I started. Learning from others mistakes saves a lot of money, I am exactly like you, I want the  best I can get for what I can afford. Check out growlights.ca if you live in Canada. Probably the best value for money on the net I have found.

 

For what you are doing, 2 4x4 tents would be a better option as Lab suggested. In reality with that setup you wont need to use 15 plants, once you learn, low stress training techniques, you can get similar yields using half the plants. Most of what you will have, using up the quota will be mothers and clones. 3-4 plants vegging and 3-4 flowering on rotation every 60-70 days or whatever flower period the strain requires. If its strictly for personal use, you will never run out unless you have a catastrophe and your storage area goes up in smoke, and after a couple of years probably only grow once year with a new strain because your bored of what you are using lol. After legalization though, all your buddies will be looking for for hand outs lol.

 

My first flower production in a 4x4 tent gave me about 175grms dry using 2, low yielding strain CBD plants. My next one, that's growing atm, in the same tent with 5 of the same plants, will probably get me about 750-1000 grms dry, if it goes according to plan. I could probably get the same amount with 3 plants next time as they are running out of space and 2 of them are really just hampering the grow atm, If it does, I really dont know where I am going to put it all lol, starts creating other logistical nightmares, like having enough room to dry it and cure it and store it properly.

 

You should read though some of the grow files in the forums, it will give you insight into the problems you may have deal with and how to circumvent them.

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Unfortunately for my friends its been prescribed to me by my doctor and i wont be able to share and hey if its legal they can grow their own haha. i do live in canada and have been on the growlights.ca site and thought they were the most reasonable when it comes to price just wasnt sure on the product itself but they do carry some of the better led brands. i will be drying and storing at my house fortunately i just moved to a small town and i naturally keep a low profile and have 2 big dogs and security cameras so i think im safe in that aspect. i decided to apply for my grow license as a way to save money on cannabis and i needed a new hobby lol. im not opposed to using 2 4x4 tents whatever it takes to get the best end result if i need to upgrade/add pieces as i go i will just not sure what the necessities are and what would be considered a luxury when it comes to equipment ie. reverse osmosis systems co2 systems etc 

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40 minutes ago, lot.forty.six said:

if i need to upgrade/add pieces as i go i will just not sure what the necessities are and what would be considered a luxury when it comes to equipment ie. reverse osmosis systems co2 systems etc 

 

An RO unit is not a necessity but it will make life a lot easier, and a big difference to you later on, especially if you try managing 15 plants constantly. If I know my water is clean and the PH is good then it eliminates a lot of possible negative factors, and stops the guessing if things start going out of whack. Its the biggest pain for me as I just use a Zero water filter which takes 40 minutes to an hour, to get 9 liters, and has to be filled 3 times to get it. I had to do that twice yesterday carry it down stairs and PH it, the bigger the plants get, the more they need, soon I may need to be doing this every other day :( . CO2 system I would wait, I use Labrats patented home made CO2 burner :)  Get good basics. Lights, Tents, Extraction Fan and filter, and Humidity and Heat controllers for the Extraction Fan. Some smaller fans for moving the air around in the tents.  A good PH pen not a cheapo they last only a couple of months, I got a good one last year cost $100 but well worth it, once the head wears out it can be replaced. I haven't had to re calibrate it since I got it, and use it 2 -3 times a week. I can check what its called if you like?

 

I use fabric 5gal pots, very cheap on ebay from china, just have to wait a month. They are re usable and roots self trim in them. You may need some aircon in summer and heating in winter. My LED lights in winter will produce enough heat to raise ambient temps 12-14 degrees, so I only need to heat the room with the tents at night. Soon as it gets into +temps, I have to open a window so cold air can get in, other wise it just re circulates warm air, and does nothing to cool the inside of the tent down. This summer I will need some air con to cool it all down, but need to exhaust the hot out side which creates another problem of running duct everywhere or just cut a hole in the wall to outside next to the tent or use CO2 and let the heat stay higher. But you will need to have cooling for flowering in the summer, keeping in the low 70's with low RH to stop the possibilities of bud rot and mold and give a better trichome production.

 

Something to think about  for you.

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im going to set up in my basement its cool down there even in the summer so im not sure if ill have to air condition it but i will definitely need to heat it in the winter. yea if you dont mind taking a look to see what ph pen you have that would be awesome that way if i run into problems maybe i can bother you for advice haha do you use soil with the fabric pots if so maybe ill order them now to prevent a lengthy wait when i am ready to get started

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I have to have a heater in my grow room too but it's not on that much as it's fairly well insulated and not that large a space.  I have one of those little power meters I can plug things into to see how much they use over a period of time.  People keep telling me to get the new, more efficient LED lights but then the heater would be coming on during the plants daytime too so either way I'd be paying the same for power which works out to 23.5¢/kwh here in northern Alberta.  I'm sticking to my old but tried and true HID lights as light grows plants but electric heaters don't. :)

 

All pH pens need the same kind of care and things to use them properly.  You want to get some pH 4 and 7 calibration solution to make sure it's dead on and some storage sol'n to keep the probe in when not using it.  NEVER let it soak in RO or distilled water or it will leach the salts out of the glass ball in the probe tip and destroy it.  Keep a sprayer handy to rinse it off with after using and it should never need to be cleaned with anything else.  I have an EcoTestr pH1 pen made by Eutech Instuments/OakTon but never hardly use it as I use AN pH Perfect  nutes with RO water and trust them to work and so far they've been fine in DWC or soil/soilless.  RO or distilled water has no pH of it's own but some people still test the pH of it and adjust the pH before adding nutes which is a total waste of time.  Always add all your nutes THEN test and adjust if not using pH Perfect nutes.

 

Fabric pots use soil or soilless but I don't use them.  I prefer plastic pails or pots so the soil doesn't shift around when moving the pots and each time I repot into larger ones I saw off the bottom of the root ball to prune any long roots at the bottom or sides which causes the roots to branch out much like the side branches do when a plant is topped.  Then the root ball gets full of fine feeder roots rather than long thick ones.  As we've been buying tobacco in plastic cans for years I drill holes in them and use them for plant pots.  Also great for jarring pot in when curing as they have smooth sides so if the pot forms a big clump it just slides out instead of having to dig the mass out like with mason jars that have a big shoulder inside.  Home Hardware sells their branded 5gal pails for less than $5 on sale and tho they are white they make fine plant pots for growing in.  You really don't need black pails to block light as not enough light gets thru to hurt the roots and would just root prune the tips like the fabric pots do if it did.

 

:peace:

 

 

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4 hours ago, lot.forty.six said:

if you dont mind taking a look to see what ph pen you have that would be awesome that way if i run into problems maybe i can bother you for advice haha

Yeh no problem for getting advice, members here, are always willing to point you in the right direction when they can. Heres a link for the pen, its on sale atm, it comes with everything including storage solution, I have never used the storage solution as its always in use. What my favorite thing about this pen is, the cap. You can put the fluid in it and put it back on the pen and stand it up in the case an let it do its thing instead of having to stand there waiting with it in our hand.  https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B01ENFOIQE/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

I use plastic pots for my clones and mothers and early vegging, I switch to the fabric for finishing vegging and flowering. The reason I like fabric is it dries out faster and breathes, as a newby grower over watering is easy to do, so it gives me more mistake room, especially if RH is high, the plants drink less, its easier to water from the bottom and it soaks in faster.  The other reason I like my pots drying faster is, it gives fungus gnats less time to breed and lay eggs on the surface soil. If you are using soil you will have fungus gnats, it just goes with the territory :(  I think I just paid $2 each for some new 5 gal pots on ebay. $5 for ratcheted light hangers pack of 2 from the same place.

 

What size is the room you will have the tents in?

 

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1 minute ago, lot.forty.six said:

thanks lab, all useful information. what if i used the fabric pots inside the buckets?

 

Kind of defeats the purpose of the cloth bags. :)

 

You plan on growing soil all the time?  Different considerations if doing hydro.

 

:peace:

 

 

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33 minutes ago, lot.forty.six said:

soil leaves larger margin for mistakes

It does, but,  sorry laptop having a spaz attack lol, Hydro/DWC is not that destructive to the plant if you mess up. The good thing is the plant recovers faster as well. If you are going to kill a plant you will probably do it in the first 2-3 weeks unless you accidentally cut it off at the base at a later date or you get some really bad root rot. Most of the time you will just slow its growth down. Res temps are more critical and nute strength as well, but if you follow the instructions and Lab will guide you through the first grow I know you would be able to handle it.

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im think i should just buy a complete package online and add in the few extra things ill need just not sure what i should order they offer upgrades on lights and options when it comes to hydro or soil, any thoughts?
im looking on a few websites not sure what the best deal is, im thinking i buy a complete package get a couple harvests under my belt and then add the second tent i was going to get a 5x5 and hopefully get 6 plants in?

http://www.fullbloomhydroponics.net/
https://indoorgrowingcanada.com/collections/grow-kits
https://growsupplyexperts.ca/
https://www.growlights.ca/
https://hydrobuilder.com/

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38 minutes ago, lot.forty.six said:

im not against growing hydro but i read that soil leaves larger margin for mistakes so i figured i should go with that

 

 

Good plan for starting off.  I find hydro a lot easier and get way better yields so am going back into that for the bulk of my growing now.

 

Soil is a lot more forgiving but has it's issues too.  Shadey is likely better with soil than me.

 

:peace:

 

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Yep your first year growing is all about learning, no matter how well prepped you are for it, you are going to second guess yourself on everything lol. Your second will be more dialed in, you going to know what to expect roughly, seasonal changes will vary it but you will have a good idea in the direction you want to go in and switching either soil or hydro for one or another will not cost you much. Unless you are going to make your own soil, you will pay more for that than nutes, it costs me $40 to fill 2x5gal pots and I have to supplement on top of that. I am using second hand soil with 2 plants in my current grow and they have started to starve this last 10 days even with amending it a bit before planting in it.

 

I am getting this  https://hydrobuilder.com/titan-controls-spartan-series-basic-digital-environmental-controller-temperature-co2-timer-and-humidity.html   I suggest to you it will be a good buy although its in the US. This is the next big pain that ties you to your grow worse than having a dog. Switching between RH and heat cool Temp controllers days and nights. Living near the sea I get big swings in the environment real pain.

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