Learn the cheapest method used to grow cannabis indoors with our step-by-step how-to grow weed tutorial. For as little as even less than one hundred dollars you can start growing your own plants indoors at home, whether it be in a closet, grow tent, rented out room, basement, garage, or anywhere.
Want to grow weed indoors for the least amount of money? Follow our process and you can save on equipment and minimize running costs of an indoor garden to produce the high quality sativa, indica and hybrid strains of your choice.
Generally speaking, in order for a cannabis grow room to work indoors it has to have 3 things:
- Place for roots to grow
Estimated costs checklist
Cannabis plants let out heat and moisture into the air during photosynthesis. What happens when too many plants are crowded together in an enclosed, non-ventilated area is that the plants just don’t grow well in that stagnant air. While this is hardly a problem for the lone houseplant in the house, cannabis plants crowded together often create this problem which is why indoor growers use ventilation systems to bring fresh air into the grow room, while expelling the stagnant air outside.
To do this the most cost effective way, you can open a window or try growing your plants in a room with natural airflow. However for stealth indoor grow rooms such methods are not possible so we will have to make our own ventilation system from scratch.
Fans also help to stir up the air circulation in the room and their speed controls the ability to alter the relative humidity (RH) of the grow room. Along with the use of stationary and oscillating fans in the grow room – exhaust fans, extractor fans or in-line fans are a fundamental part of the productive indoor garden, being the “tail-end” of the ventilation system that sucks the air out. The use of intake fans depends on whether you are building a passive intake or active intake (or forced-air) system, illustrated below.
For our grow room we will not need an intake fan because the LED grow lights are air-cooled; they don’t heat up the grow room much. We will simply require an intake port, carbon filter, in-line fan and the aluminum ducting to put it all together.
A DIY ventilation system for the indoor grow room can be made with a few required materials:
- flexible aluminum ducting
- in-line fan
- carbon filter
- stationary/oscillating fans (optional)
Assemble the ventilation system according to the following diagram:
The next consideration when growing weed indoors is how to provide the right lighting. You may already be aware that cannabis plants, like other plants, use certain wavelength colors of light more than others. The PAR spectrum shows us in particular the kind of light that weed plants use to grow.
When it comes to lighting, developing cannabis plants require a healthy amount of PAR to trigger the fastest growth capabilities of the strain. In many world-class standard indoor grow rooms, HID lights (short for High-Intensity Discharge) shine their powerful artificial rays onto the eager leaves of a cannabis plant canopy below. The name of HID lights is not a mistake, the high intensity of the light is exactly what cannabis loves to absorb for photosynthesis.
HID lights are traditionally either High Pressure Sodium (HPS) or Metal Halide (MH). HPS bulbs emit a red-heavy wavelength color spectrum, whereas MH bulbs create a more bluer colored light spectrum. While either HPS or MH can be used for the entirety of the cannabis plant’s life, many growers prefer to use HPS during bloom cycle especially due to the increased red spectrum provided to plants by using such grow lights. HPS & MH bulbs with light fixtures and ballast cost around $150-300. Be aware that many companies are merely resellers of lights made in China, so if you are considering such a light for purchasing you may want to go straight to the source such as Aliexpress or Alibaba grow lights
LED grow lights are a newcomer to the scene, first appearing in the cannabis business market during the mid 2000s. At first LED grow lights were considered toys, and undoubtedly many of the early designs were. Once the PAR graph started to be used in agriculture more often, manufacturers began matching the correct red and blue colors to be installed in their LED grow lights.
The cheapest way to get a hold of an effective grow light for cannabis in 2019 is definitely by buying a LED grow light. LED grow lights fixtures are mostly made in China, with a few exceptions for the premium LED grow lights on the market today, such as the Green Sunshine Co. and Advanced Platinum Series.
A low-priced LED grow light can be had for less than $60. From $50 and up you should be able to find a fair LED grow light made with the correct colored LED bulbs for plants. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s description and customer reviews to verify. At around $100 you can get a decent LED grow light suitable for a small indoor grow area. Of course with the higher priced models the quality goes up accordingly.
Now that your grow light is chosen we can move onto the final step – growing the plants. For cost reasons in this guide we are going to set up a dirt cheap indoor grow room that will work to grow enough cannabis for a hearty stash of buds.
Place for roots to grow
Marijuana plants typically grow in soil or potting medium, however some cultivators prefer to grow hydroponically, or aeroponically. In our grow room we chose to make a custom potting mix due to it being:
- a) low cost
- b) low maintenance
- c) easy to fertilize
A blend of Pro-Mix, compost, worm castings, vermiculite and coco-coir was blended together to form the base of the potting mix. A healthy “alive” microbial ecosystem is beneficial for a number of reasons, in short it can help your plants obtain more of the nutrients it needs to grow thus developing into higher yielding, better producing cannabis plants.
If you decide to grow organically that means taking notice of each and every ingredient put in the root-zone (soil area) and on the plant. Chemical synthetic fertilizers of course cannot be used due to the high salt content contained within the formulas. Instead consider natural sources of nutrients such we used in our living soil organic potting mix recipe:
- Animal Manure
- Bat Guano
- Dolomite Lime
- Dry Organic Fertilizer Blends
- Mineral Powders
- Sea Kelp
- Worm Castings
- and more.
Work the mix together at appropriate ratios (found on the back labels) suitable for the number of pot plants per grow room. Cook the mix in the hot sun before moving plants in (sterilizing the soil). This potting mix is perfectly fine to be used again-and-again with multiple crops of cannabis, considering the microbial conditions are healthy.
Now you have a good soil mix that you will need to transplant your marijuana seedlings and clones into as they progress from the vegetative growth cycle (VEG) towards their blooming phase (FLOWER). Stay tuned for our individual analysis of both, coming soon to MarijuanaGrowingBlog.com