Basic Closet Growroom Guide (beginners)

Discussion in 'Getting Started 101' started by TheApprentice, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. TheApprentice

    TheApprentice Retired.

    "How to design and build a basic closet grow room."

    OK,im going to try and start of with the simplest grow room IMO which is a closet grow.This is ideal as most ppl can find a closet to use somewhere,so i'll run through all the things to do and take into account,from mine and others experience.As my garden is not constructed yet due to moving house then i sadly wont be able to provide pictures unless i can find an image on google which fits in with what i have described.
    BASICS
    OK,lets start with the basics first of all before doing any grow whether its outdoors,indoors,etc it is defo a prudent and clever idea to do your research but i will assume you have done none,if this is the case then i recommend reading:Indoor Marijuana Horticulture, (otherwise known as The Indoor Bible) by Jorge Cervantes
    LAYING THE FOUNDATIONS
    First try find a closet near a source of ventilation,usually a closet beside a window is IDEAL,in my experience.First thing is first,strip the closet and disinfect thoroughly(very important!),i try to find or cut a piece of wood a few centimetres thick(preferebly white,or paint it white afterwards) and make that the BASE of your soon to be grow room.
    MYLAR
    Mylar is the next thing,cover all the walls,etc with mylar as this is perfect for reflecting the lumens,etc back towards the plant(dont use tin foil!).If Mylar is hard to come by then paint the whole closet 'brilliant white' as this is a poor mans Mylar solution i suppose.

    Now,in my closets they usually have a shelf at the top and a bar just under this,the bar is where i attach my HPS lamps,more on that soon...

    So if you have followed me so far then you should have a closet near a window with mylar and a wooden base on the floor.OK so onto the subject of lighting...
    LIGHTING (and brief light/spectrum lowdown)
    Plants appear green because they absorb more light near the ends of the visible spectrum (red and blue) and reflect and transmit more light in the middle of the spectrum (green and yellow).The light energy absorbed is used to fuel photosynthesis.Almost any electric light will produce some growth, but for normal development the plants require a combination of red and blue light.

    Sunlight has such a high intensity that it can saturate the plants in the blue and red bands, though most of the sun's energy is in the middle of the spectrum. Artificial lights operate at lower intensities; so the best lights for plant growth emit much of their light in the blue and red bands.

    The amount of light you provide is what determines a growrooms size,the amount of soil, number and eventual size of the plants, and the overall yield,etc. Since light is the factor on which our grow depends then its real important to invest wisely and IMO go for the cheapest but most powerful lights you can get as opposed to an expensive set of floro's,etc.

    Florescent light is the most effective and efficient source of artificial light readily available to the home grower and yes there are so many with different spectrums,etc and i do still use them for vegging,etc but IMO ya gotta go for a HID system!!Its an investment you will recoup after your first grow as you should with most these costs incurred,etc

    Many on GK will say 600w hps and many will say 400w hps,some even 1000w hps,me personally find that a set of 400w hps lights in a small closet area is AMPLE and WILL provide a healthy grow if you give the plants plenty TLC and optimum conditions.Its getting the lights at the optimum height thats the trick.
    POSITIONING/HEIGHT OF LIGHTS
    Position 400 watt HID lamps 18 to 30 inches above plant tops,600 watt can go at roughly the same height or a bit higher and 1,000 watt lamps need at least 30 to 42 inches above the tops.
    TESTING WARMTH
    Y'all know the old trick...put your palm on the tip of your plant then if it burns or even feels a bit too hot then raise your lights slightly,this is a tried and tested method amongst ALL growers.
    VENTILATION
    During flowering,flowers may 'run' rather than form in compact,dense,thick buds if lamps are positioned too close to the plant tops,particularly when using HPS's.At the same time ya gotta make sure there are fans in the grow room(2 or 3 preferebly) for air circulation otherwise you will end up with what i got during my last grow b4 x-mas,basically my buds were too dank and tightly packed together and mould spreads inside the area s of the bud that isnt receiving air intake and movement(this is real important,especially for us closet growers!)
    HEAT
    Heat is the main problem with HID's, and the room must be well-ventilated.If possible use exhaust fans or clothes dryer tubes hanging out a window to draw heat out of the room.The fan doesn't need to be large, just active enough to create a strong,ventilating draft.I use lots of mini fans more than i do big fans,especially in small closet areas.

    Personally i have a fan attached near my lights facing downwards to my plants and i have one facing up towards my lights from the base aswell as usually one opr two small fans blowing air in a circular motion around the base of the plants,this arguably can also toughen your plants but dont go over the score ppl.
    :stop: OK so i will post a few links at the end for sites where you can purchase ALL i have mentioned. :stop:
    LIGHT CONSTRUCTION
    Under artificial light,marijuana grows from three to 6feet in three months,so the height of the light must be easy to adjust.Fixtures can be hung from the ceiling,shelves,walls,or from a simple frame constructed for the purpose.If you are hanging the lights from the walls or ceiling,screw hooks directly into a stud.Studs are located in every room corner and are spaced 16,18 or 24 inches apart.Light can be supported from lathing using wingbolts, but plaster is too weak to hold a fixture unless a wooden strip held by several wingbolts is attached to the walls or ceiling first to distribute the pressure.Then hang the fixture from a hook in the strip. Closets have hooks and shelves or clothes rungs that are usually sturdy enough to support the fixture.

    Chains are the easiest means of raising and lowering fixtures.Two chains can be suspended from a solid support from above,and attached to an "S" hook at each end of the fixture.Raise the fixture by inching the hooks to higher links on the chain.Or tie rope to the fixture,pass through an eye hook or pulley in the ceiling or frame,and tie-off at a hook or boat cleat anchored in the wall or frame.

    You can also hang the lights permanently and lower plants on a shelf or plywood.The shelf could be suspended or lowered by supporting the shelf with progressively smaller block.This arrangement is often used in "growing factories" where plants are rotated to larger gardens and grow for only a few weeks in each space.One garden may have fluorescent for starting plants and another garden for maturing plants under HID's.With HID's and skylights,lowering the plants may be your best option.Use lightweight soil components or hydroponics rather than heavier soil,and the operation is easier.

    A FEW SAFETY COMMENTS
    [​IMG]Check out your electricity supply can handle the fans,HID,ballast,etc[​IMG]The wattage capacity of any circuit is found by multiplying volts time amps.While on the subject,try and always do any cleaning or watering when your lights are turned off to avoid accidents,also keep ballasts and other electrical connections either outside of cupboard or keep them on raised wood,these are safety pre-cautions,it goes without saying to always have smoke detectors in the growroom or near and its also very handy(in more ways than one:wink:) to have a Co2 fire extinguisher handy.
    MEDIUMS
    OK so assuming the lights are now attatched to a bar or self constructed frame,it is now time to pick your medium..coco,soil,etc.I'm a soil grower and always have been and for starting out i reckon soil is easier IF researched properly as i mentioned earlier,so seeing as im writing this based on my own experiences then i'll say we are gonna use a soil/perlite mix.I usually go with a bag of perlite mixed into a bag of organic soil,sizes of bags,etc will differ from here in the UK to where the rest of y'all live.

    Basically you want an even mix of soil/perlite,in fact extra perlite on top i find helps me with my drainage,etc.
    POTS
    Use as many pots as can fit in the lighted area to make the most efficient use of space.Many growers prefer to start the plants in smaller pots, transplanting into larger pots when the plants are larger.There are definite advantages to this method in terms of the yield in the garden,given its space and light energy.Seedlings and small plants take up much less space than they will at maturity,so they can be placed closer together.As the plants grow and begin to crowd each other,remove the less vigorous (to smoke, of course) and transplant the rest into larger pots.

    Start plants which will be transplanted later in four- to eight-inch flower pots, or one-quart to one-gallon tin cans or milk containers.Peat pots or planting pots are made of compressed plant fibre for the purpose of starting young plants.They are available at garden shops and come in several sizes. Use at least a four-inch pot so that the roots are not restricted in early growth..
    STERALISING MEDIUM
    Most indoor(or at least i do!) growers prepare the growing medium using commercial potting mixes.These mixes are usually sterilised or pasteurised and have good general soil properties.Since they seldom list the contents,nutrients,or pH,do some simple test of your basic soil whether you buy or dig for it.Then you can adjust the soil to meet the basic requirements of the plant.These are important factors that can make or break your grow IMO!
    THE REST IS UP TO YOU!

    Ok then,a few more details,again i cannot put enough emphasis on air intake and ventilation!For plant growth,the most important properties of the air are temperature,humidity,and composition.
    TEMPS.
    The average temperature for maximum is about 75 to 80F.In other words, normal household temperatures are fine for growing marijuana and no special temperature control is necessary for most gardens but it pays to keep the temps under the late 70's and humidity is a major factor also.
    CLOSET VENTILATION,HUMIDITY AND QUALITY OF AIR
    Gardens in small,confined spaces such as closets,must be opened daily, preferably for the duration of the light period.Plants growing in a closed closet may do quite well for the first month,but they'll need the door opened as the plants begin to fill the space.The larger the plants get,the greater the need for freely circulating air.

    When the weather is mild,an open,but screened,window is the best solution for ventilation.After germination,make spaces in the surrounding reflectors to allow air to circulate freely.Leave the spaces at the bottom, ends,and the tops of the garden.:stop: The higher the temperature or the humidity, the more the plants need good ventilation. :stop:

    There are many other aspects of growing in a closet i could cover however this section is purely based on how to construct a growroom,i have opted to tell y'all how i go about my closet grows but i am sure other members will contribute more elaborate designs for growrooms,etc,however i am just trying to make a simple construction guide for a beginner.

    Remember to make sure your grow room has NO light leakages and try not to let temps drop too much during the night.Of course this is just the beginning,now you have to choose your nutes and decide how you will grow your plants,there are many various methods,etc but thats me straying from what essentially is a simple closet grow room construction.

    Just keep in mind ph levels as well as humidity levels,although in my case a nearby opened window is usually enough.If you feel your temps,humidity and ventilation is not good enough then drill holes at the top of the grow room to the outside of house or to any room with an adjoining window.

    I gotta add though,my humidity has went out of control in the past but still produced great grows. :stop: Good air circulation and raising the temperature to 75 to 80F are the simplest means of dealing with high humidity.

    Peace y'all and hope this is of SOME help to the closet growers who are starting out 1st time,good luck y'all.Peace:pimp:


    LINKS
    :stop: For a Visual Aid to help construct a growroom then goto google vids and watch the 'stoned free guide to growing cannabis' as this shows you how to construct growrooms albeit larger ones than i construct.Its a short but informative VISUAL guide:http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-259262713655286519&q=stoned+free&hl=en

    To Purchase quality,reliable,nxt day delivery HIDS,etc then go to www.aquaculture-hydroponics.co.uk (used many times,never let me down EVER!)

    To Purchase all other growing needs such as seeds then www.drchronic.com is a reccomended site and if you want some real potent feminised seeds such as killer queen strains,etc then www.high-land.co.uk supply fantastic strains albeit expensive.
     
    SMARMY likes this.
  2. TheApprentice

    TheApprentice Retired.

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