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Growing outdoors presents challenges that you may not necessarily be able to overcome – for example, climatic conditions. You can’t turn winter into summer. Perhaps it is too much trouble to deal with predators – animals, obviously, and humans. Yes, in some places, theft is a problem to consider. And so, you could do the next best thing – grow marijuana indoors.
Now, before jumping right in, there is one thing you should consider – the indoor growing system. Mainly, you have two options, and that is what we will discuss. After reading this article, it will be easy to determine which method is more suitable for you. And then you can continue to plan ahead, prepare, and start growing.
What Are the 2 Growing Systems You Can Use In the House?
There are two ways to grow marijuana indoors. One is the hybrid system that relies on sunlight, while the other is a closed-loop system that uses lights. In either case, it eliminates the challenges posed by growing outdoors.
Briefly, here are four of the many benefits of indoor cultivation:
- You have more control over the atmospheric conditions. Outdoors, you are at the mercy of the elements – strong winds, excessive rain, unforgiving heat, and more.
- Because of the ability to control the environment, providing optimal temperature, humidity, and so on, it also follows that you could grow marijuana at any time of the year.
- The house is a more hygienic place than outdoors. There are fewer pathogens and pests to deal with but only to a degree. Nonetheless, you could say that the plants are less likely to contract a disease.
- Having the plants closer to you means less hassle taking care of them. For example, there is no need to go out of the house during odd hours to check them.
As alluded to, the sun is the primary source of light for plants grown in a hybrid system. It can be a complicated, intricate set up such as a commercial greenhouse, or can be as simple as placing the plants inside the house, by the window. So as long as there is adequate sunshine, your plants should be provided with the complete spectrum of light they require to thrive.
In reality, the results vary depending on several factors. Apart from optimal exposure to sunshine, the proximity of the plants to the floor is another consideration. Carbon dioxide tends to fall rather than rise. By keeping the plants as low as possible, they can have access to more oxygen. CO2 happens to be one of the key ingredients needed for photosynthesis. The more of it at a time when the leaves are absorbing light can indeed boost growth.
A floor to ceiling window facing the east where the sun rises help marijuana plants grow best in an indoor hybrid growing system. If you are planting only a few plants using containers, it is possible to put them on a low, sturdy, flat trolley. Then, you could move them to another window facing the west in the afternoon. That way, you could prolong the duration of exposure to light.
Although you could grow plants even if the window is facing north or south, that is not ideal as the lack of light hinders them from attaining their full potential. Consequently, the overall quality and yields leave something to be desired.
As you can imagine, the cost of growing marijuana is less if you could still take advantage of the sun. Even if you wanted to use the hybrid system, the geographical location of the plants, windows, and sunshine might not be ideal. Keep in mind, too, that the legality of growing marijuana indoors comes with stipulations. One of the most common restrictions imposed by states is that they need to be secured and cannot be seen from a public place, such as a road. In this case, there is only one thing you can do – use the closed system.
In this method, more than merely a matter of privacy, you also have absolute control over the environmental factors – much more so than a hybrid system.
A fully enclosed system is incredibly beneficial to commercial growers, who could manipulate the conditions, which maximizes plant growth, THC concentration, and yields. You could also reap these benefits – albeit on a smaller scale. Most likely, the state allows you to grow only up to six plants with no more than three plants flowering at any given time. This restriction varies by state, so you would need to review local statutes carefully.
The level of customization in a closed system is unparalleled. From lighting to atmospheric conditions, you can manipulate the plants to grow a particular way. You can influence them to produce more THC and terpenes. However, it is also more costly as you would need to use artificial lights. HID lighting systems (MH and HPS) can increase the size of your harvests, but they also turbo-charge the electric meter. Nonetheless, as most beginners would find out later, the returns more than compensate for the overhead.
Final Thoughts on Hybrid and Closed Loop Marijuana Growing Systems
Deciding to grow indoors is a combination of preference and a matter of necessity. That much can also be said of choosing between a hybrid or closed-loop system.
Provided that you have a window that faces the direction of where the sun rises, you can already grow marijuana, even if you have to place them by the windowsill as opposed to the floor. “More light, more ganja” so goes the saying. With that in mind, you are better off picking auto-flowering strains for two reasons. First, the Ruderalis genes that gave them the ability to flower automatically also influenced them to grow in low light conditions – arguably better than photoperiods. Second, you still depend on the sun and therefore is at the mercy of the climate and geographical location. Autos have a quick life cycle, which allows you to grow them with a small window during the growing season.
Should you decide to grow with a closed-loop system, regardless if it is a necessity or preference, it can be as simple as using a cupboard or cabinet. Most people do buy a grow tent that has all the provisions needed – vents, reflective interior, hangers for light, and other equipment. And if there is a spare room in the house, some people convert them into a grow room.
As a beginner, you may consider using a cupboard or an empty cabinet. Instead of investing in an HID lighting system, you could also start off with CFL bulbs. Such a set up lets you grow one or two plants – it is an excellent way for you to feel out or experience growing marijuana. After harvesting, you could then assess if this is an activity that you’d like to pursue. If so, then you can progress to the next level by making more substantial investments.
Hybrid or closed-loop, have you decided which one is for you? Because if you have, then it is time to plan and prepare.