Twentytwo Small Grow Rooms

Getting Started In Hydroponics

Hydroponic Grow Rooms

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Q This small, white closet was very easy to set up, and it took only about four hours. The budding clones are growing in one-gallon containers of soilless mix and sitting in 10 x 20-inch (25 x 50 cm) trays lined with a plastic grate to facilitate drainage. Flypaper is stretched across the back of the room to monitorflying insect populations. A small 250-watt HP sodium illuminates this 2 x 2-foot (60 x 60 cm) garden. The grower could have waited until plants were a little taller before inducing flowering to increase yield.

180 Marijuana Grow Basics

Jorge Cervantes

180 Marijuana Grow Basics

Q This small grow room was set up In the corner of a room that is lined with white Visqueen to protect the walls and reflect light. Rockwool blocks are set on rockwool slabs covered with black plastic, which inhibits algae growth.

Here is a close-up of the buds In the garden at left a couple of weeks later. The single 600-watt HP sodium light provides more than enough light to harvest a heavy crop in this 40 x 40-inch (1 x 1 m) garden.

Q This small grow room was set up In the corner of a room that is lined with white Visqueen to protect the walls and reflect light. Rockwool blocks are set on rockwool slabs covered with black plastic, which inhibits algae growth.

Q This top-feed hydroponic garden under self-vented 400-watt HP sodium is set up in a utility room. The other things stored in the room make it difficult to maintain the garden, and the walls provide very little reflection.

Q Set hydroponic and soil gardens up on a bed 18-24 inches (45-60 cm) so that gravity can carry irrigated nutrient solution back to the nutrient tank below. The shadow on the wall tells you the light hood needs to be adjusted so that plants receive more even lighting.

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@ The clones in this hydroponic garden are just starting to grow. They were transplanted too early, before the root systems had properly developed, a mistake that cost the grower two full weeks of slow growth. Regardless of the amount of money spent on grow gear, mistakes like this still slow progress.

^ We call it Mecalux in Spain (see below), the industrial metal shelving which frames this 40-inch-square (1 x 1 m) garden. These stressed-out females suspended by plant yo-yos are growing on a shelf that isfourfeet (1.2 m)from the ground. The lower half of the room could serve as a clone room or be used to store growing supplies.

182 Marijuana Grow Basics

Jorge Cervantes

Mother plants are growing under a single 400-watt metal haiide lamp in eight-gallon (30 L) pots of soilless mix. Notice how light shines in a hot spot directly below the bulb. Bending plants will disperse light so that all plants receive more overall light.

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Q Check out the roots on this hydroponically grown plant! This is an excellent example of a strong, healthy root system. The grower glued Styrofoam panels to the far wall; these panels insulate against hot and cold temperatures and reflect light, too.

Suspending a fan from the shroud near the grow room doorway with lightweight rope or bungee cords is a temporary and unsafe option. Serious growers mount the fan firmly on a wall or shelf.

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Bathtubs can make good grow spaces. Drainage is not a problem and the walls are waterproof. Make sure the lamp and all other electrical appliances are plugged into a ground fault Interrupt (GFI) outlet. But most growers use bathtubs to leach (flush) toxic fertilizer salts from soil. Flushing the growing medium every 30 days will avert many possible problems.

This photo shows a bright hot spot concentrated in the center of the garden while less light reaches the perimeter of the bed, which is significantly darker. Much light is also shining off to the side of the garden, wasted in space. Simply by turning the lamp 90 degrees, the entire garden would receive considerably more light.

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184 Marijuana Grow Basics

184 Marijuana Grow Basics

Jorge Cervantes

This series of five photos of the same garden shows two different crops. The first crop suffered much fertilizer/temperature, and humidity stress. The grower also got a little carried away removing leaves. In fact, I am amazed the garden turned out so well afterward.

This photo of the same garden was taken a week before harvest. The flowering females received consistent care. Buds look pretty good considering how sickly the scrawny plants looked a few weeks before.

By the second attempt, the grower had more experience and was able to keep the fertilizer, temperature, and humidity under control. You can tell this crop will grow much better than the last one. Plants look much healthier.

The profile of this hydroponic garden is much greener than the first. At the top you can see the air vent and a little bit of the 400-watt HP sodium dangling above the garden.
A few weeks later, the same plants are flowering and producing respectable buds. This short series of photos shows how just a little tender loving care can make all the difference at harvest time!

186 Marijuana Grow Basics Jorge Cervantes

186 Marijuana Grow Basics Jorge Cervantes

Plants are set up on buckets and a board, which form a growing platform and work/smoking bench. The 40-inch-square (1 x 1 m) drain table contains the three-gallon (11L) pots full of soilless mix. A small extraction vent fan in the upper left-hand corner moves old, stale air out of the room. A circulation fan shroud on the right is visible. The leggy, stressed plants were induced to flower too late, when about 24 inches (60 cm) tall.

^ This grow room is framed with 2 x 4-inch (5x10 cm) boards and covered with white Visqueen plastic. Velcro at the top and bottom of the doorway holds the plastic in place. A bit of reflective Mylar helps direct light too. The 400-watt HP sodium lamp provides all the light necessary to harvest a nice crop of buds from the 40-inch-square (1 x 1 m) grow room. The calendar attached to the outside wall helps the grower schedule regular fertilization and maintenance.

^ Section off a cubicle in an unused portion of the garage, basement, or spare room. Line the walls with Mylar and the floor with plastic. Hang a 400-watt metal halide, plop in some clones, and you have a grow room!

^ These clones (above) have been moved into a small grow room and will be transplanted into two-gallon (7.5 L) containers. A few days after transplanting, the grower will change the fixture from the current 110-watt CFL setup to a 400-watt HP sodium lamp to illuminate this 2.5 x 3-foot (75 x 90 cm) closet garden.

^^ This small basement grow room above was set up in less than a day. The grower walled off a corner of the basement and framed a two-foot-tall (60 cm) table on which he set several growing beds. The grow table in the foreground is full of three-gallon (11L) pots full of soilless mix. You can see brackets for a shelf that will one day hold small, rooted clones.

Haze-dominant saliva strains like these at right take longer to grow, and central buds often spike to make even lighting in small and large rooms alike a challenge. A simple solution to unwieldy growth is to train plants by tying branches to a trellis, starting in the vegetative growth stage. Make trellises from wood, wire, or my favorite—plastic netting.

Jorge Cervantes

188 Marijuana Grow Basics

Jorge Cervantes

188 Marijuana Grow Basics

^ Even small, one-light rooms (above and right) ^jjv need adequate ventilation and a good activated w charcoal filter to ensure no unwanted fragrances leave the grow space. Remember, it is much easier to set up an air filter than it is to explain to your landlord or the cops why you did not!

Commercial grow closets make setting up a grow room quick and easy. More and more growers are opting for prefabricated grow closets so they can concentrate on growing plants rather than grow room construction and fiddling with all the details in order to get plants to produce well. See Commercial Grow Closets in this chapter.

^ The plants in this little two-light room are set up on a drainage table with a reservoir below to catch runoff nutrient solution. Plants have plenty of space to grow and all the air circulation and ventilation they need.

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Growing Soilless

Growing Soilless

This is an easy-to-follow, step-by-step guide to growing organic, healthy vegetable, herbs and house plants without soil. Clearly illustrated with black and white line drawings, the book covers every aspect of home hydroponic gardening.

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