As a kid my mother taught me the passion of gardening and sustainability. I have always hoped to past this passion on to future generations.
First we must talk about growing indoors vs outdoors!
You might ask yourself is there really a difference between growing indoors and outdoors? Well yes there actually is a big difference. Mainly environmental factors like room and root temperature, RH ("relative humidity"), and light density.
While you can grow indoors without a tent, it is much easier to control all of these factors in an isolated location. Not to mention a grow worst enemy PEST!
Outdoors vs Indoors Grow Tent
Outdoors you plant and harvest at specific times usually only once a year, spring-fall. This way mother nature handles everything for you. This requires you to plant in bulk to sustain a crop year round. But to a lot of people this isn't an option for many reason. Such as space or just the area they live. This is where indoor growing and grow tents come to the rescue!
Even with a cheap indoor grow tent we can achieve better quality and higher yields. Indoor grow tents can accomplish this by giving the grower complete control over the grow tent environment. Remember all of those growing factors we talked about earlier. These become easy to control with the right equipment.
Quality is cheaper in the long run!
Growing indoors isn't always easy nor is it cheap. Some plants can grow without proper lighting and conditions but speed, yields and quality will all be affected. Some plants will grow but be extremely weak and delicate, usually from improper lighting. But don't fear with some investment you can grow indoors just as good as outdoors or even better. The real key is to not just buy the cheapest equipment you can get but to but cheap QUAILITY products. Luckily that is why you came!
Finally lets start with the tent!
So when it comes down to tents for indoor grows you want ones that will block light escaping and reflecting as much of it as possible back into the room. This makes the most of your lighting system. This bounces the light all around your plants, from all sides.
This is usually achieved my a material called Mylar. It is the same stuff space blankets and sun blockers are made of. A sun blocker not only blocks light but reflects and insulates the area from heat. This can be very useful for us as indoor growers.
Main thing to consider when buying a tent is getting one big enough or small enough for the space you want to grow in. Some are a actually 10ftx10ft rooms.
If your just starting out i would recommend starting small. The smallest i would go would be 3ft x 3ft though as 2ft x 2ft is very small. Do remember the tent has to accommodate any environmental control equipment.
The Exhaust Fan and Odor Control
These items will be very important in controlling fresh air, temperatures and RH. The carbon filter comes in handy for keeping the smell of your plants from escaping the indoor grow tent as the smell of some plants can be over-powering at times especially herbs and mints.
This is your exhaust fan. It is important to get a high quality one. Most of the cheap kits you find online are just that extremely cheap equipment that is prone to breaking down and failing which can kill your plants if not caught in time.
I recommend AC infinity fans because they are built to last and not made with shoddy parts and motors. They also have great controllers and other accessories you can upgrade to.
This is your duct that attaches to the exhaust fan in your grow tent so the hot/stale air is blown out of the tent. A lot of people tend to run this outside some how or at least into another room. Otherwise some some of the heat will come back in your tent. This particular ducting in insulated as well.
If you are growing something in your tent that has a strong odor a carbon filter will be very handy. Plant odor can be extremely powerful and can make your whole house, clothes and even collect enough to be smelled outside in the right conditions.
Let There Be LIGHT!
Any indoor grow tent needs a light. Not just any everyday light will do either. For this grow size we are aiming for at least 1000w of standard lighting. But more is better as you can turn down the lights in your grow tent. This will make lights last longer and be more efficient.
Most lights indoors these days are CFLs (compacts florescent lights) These are more efficient than standard light bulbs but LEDs are the king.
1000 watts of standard lights would equal
- 10 x 100w standard lightbulbs total power used = 1000w
- 10 x 20w CFLS total power used = 200w
- or just one 180w led grow lamp total power used = 180w
The 180w for the led grow lamp is amount of power the light uses this makes it cost 5x cheaper than standard lightbulbs.
Also these light try to imamate the light from the sun. Normal indoor lighting is just inadequate for growing plants indoors. This is a very common mistake most new indoors growers make and it can lead to many problems. Such as slow growth, low yield, or even death. So make sure you have more than enough.
Other less important stuff for your cheap indoor grow tent.
The rest of the stuff in this list are less important but will be needed sooner or later. Like fabric grow pots for the best pots to grow in. Also a humidifier in most cases will be necessary in most case where you humidity above 30%. Clip on Fans are a great way to keep air moving around inside acting like outdoor wind. This will help your stems grow big and strong. This can be important because your plants stems are like the plants veins. It carriers all the water and nutrients for your plant. It even regulates your plants temperature.
5g Fabric Grow Pots - With fabric grow pots once the roots reach the edges of the soil or medium, they stop growing, allowing for a strong but distributed root network that doesn’t entangle itself.
Clip on Fans - These hurricane fans are great quality and powerful. They will clip on the bars of you indoor grow tent and help air circulate inside strengthening the stems of your plants just like the wind does outside.
Humidifier - This can be very important depending on what you are growing as it controls the humidity inside your tent. Their are homemade ways of doing this but requirely hourly attention and misting water. Save yourself time and buy one.
Did you pay attention?
For each question, choose the best answer. The answer key is below.
- How important are environmental factors when growing indoors?
- Very Little
- Very Highly
- Can growing indoors be better than outdoors?
- Is quality equipment important for yields?
- Very Highly
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Shaun Ellis