Growing Cannabis In A Grow Tent: A Grower's Experience

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Growing Weed In A Grow Tent


It’s time for another experimental, indoor LED cannabis grow with Top Shelf Grower. This marijuana grow report is all about my struggle to bring a super sticky Gorilla Glue, Kaboom, and Mataro Blue crop to harvest in hot Catalan temperatures.

VEGETATIVE GROWTH WEEKS 1-5: INDOOR LED GROW

If 16 years of cannabis cultivation doesn’t teach you to be flexible and roll with the punches, nothing will. Setting up an indoor LED grow at the last minute was a necessity for two reasons. The first is obvious. I owe you, the reader a grow report and weekly YouTube videos of the grow from seedling to smoke report. Secondly, for selfish reasons, I needed a fat, sticky stash ASAP.

So, I unpacked the Dorm Grow G8 LED and acquired the rest of my grow kit within two weeks. Within no time, I was germinating 3 Gorilla Glue by Zamnesia, 1 Kaboom and 1 Mataro Blue, both by Kannabia. 5 out of 5 beans sprouted with tiny tap roots within 48 hours using the paper towel method.

cannabis grow kit

SEEDLINGS

I sowed the germinated seeds directly into 12l air-pot first and final containers. Growth was rapid and environmental conditions were pretty simple to dial in. Nutrient requirements were minimal at first with only beneficial fungi and enzymes added to hand water feeds. Advanced Nutrients Connoisseur Grow A and B base nutrient doses never exceeded half-strength doses, working up from quarter-strength doses.

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21 days from seed and I was mulling over topping all the plants with the exception of the hybrid-looking Mataro Blue, which got off to a sluggish start in comparison to the rest. All three Gorilla Glue and the lone Kaboom were looking very indica-heavy and branching well.

What Are Cannabis Seedlings?

INFANT PLANTS

28 days from seed and as the plants passed 45cm in height, I drew my scissors and topped all five plants cleanly. I decided this was the best way to fill out a 1.5m grow tent without going for a SOG. Recovery time was phenomenally quick. After just one week, at day 35 from seed, as temperatures began to soar to 30 degrees outside, I made the switch from 18/6 to 12/12 flowering.

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At this point, it was obvious there was some differences between the three Gorilla Glue. Two, maybe three phenos were beginning to show and diverge. I wasn’t quite sure yet. Two looked more indica-dominant and not altogether dissimilar, while one more sativa-leaning pheno presented. Admittedly, the primary focus of this grow was the Gorilla Glue. The potential of cropping the most potent marijuana on planet earth was and still is simply irresistible.

Kaboom was another branchy, fat finger leaf, compact indica. While my Mataro Blue looked very indica-sativa with far wider internode spacing and less prolific side branching.

cropping the most potent marijuana

FLOWERING WEEKS 1-9: RED HOT INDOOR CANNABIS CULTIVATION

For the record, I had no air-conditioning in the spare room/grow room or any place in the house. Worse was an insanely low maximum electricity capacity or carry load or however you say it. Anyway, let’s just say it was the type of house where you turn on the washing machine and the TV in the living room goes off or fuses are tripped upstairs.

What the crap is wrong with the electricity in Spain, seriously? Sometimes there are regional siesta time blackouts. This is not how you do utilities. I’m not joking when I say this. Send your solutions to the ministry of the interior. It’s 2018, someone needs to sort it the hell out!

low maximum electricity capacity

HIGH TEMPERATURES

Just as soon as I made the 12/12 switch, the high temperatures became uncontrollable. Weeks 1-3, the grow-op was right on the red line touching 29°C during lights on and 23°C in the dark cycle. Humidity was troublingly high, refusing to dip below 60%. Modifications would have to be made, fast.

All the plants, save the Kaboom, could be characterised as stretchy. My sativa-ish Gorilla Glue pheno and my outsider Mataro Blue really accelerated vertical growth. Had I been using HID lighting, I am quite certain the whole grow would have ended abruptly in failure during early flowering.

Instead of battling the high temperatures or surrendering the crop to the scorching sun, I hit upon a strategy to make it work. Plants love CO₂ and marijuana is no exception. Moreover, optimal absorption occurs at a higher temperature than the typical cannabis grow. 30-35°C temps are desirable when adding CO₂ to the grow room. Nothing too technical or too costly.

The addition of a simple CO₂ bag to the grow tent made all the difference. I sat it right on the floor. Hanging any deadfall weight above the canopy is not my style. Suddenly, I was out of the danger zone, or so I thought.

Temperature In The Cannabis Grow Room

UNWELCOME VISITORS

I had trouble again with the power company. Apparently, a home inspection of the fuse box and power outlets is required, even for renters, to get an account with the electricity company. Sweet Jesus! What if this electrician wanders into the spare room to probe a plug socket? Confronted with a packed grow tent midway through bloom, there is no telling how he might react. Admittedly, the thought of pulling the plug crossed my mind. Ahh, but that’s not my style either. Besides, I had come too far and I had a bright idea.

UNWELCOME VISITORS

DESPERATE MEASURES

The key to overcoming this unexpected home visit was denial of access to the upstairs back bedroom. The electrician was due to arrive Friday at 11.00am or day 28 of bloom. Thankfully, during lights-off. Running at night helped shave off a few degrees and wouldn’t set the meter racing while the electrician was fiddling around with it. My plan was to mop the floor moments before his arrival. This way, every surface would be slippery to discourage wandering. Plus, I had my noisy hand-held vacuum fully charged to hoover the stairs and create a physical barrier.

Finally, waiting to pounce in the upstairs bedroom facing the stairs was an Irish Boxer dog. Should my defensive perimeter be breached and the electrician insist upon a thorough room-by-room inspection, he would meet the beast. A good growl and maybe pinning him to the floor would suffice. Certainly no risk of physical damage. I know what you’re thinking, but war is a dirty rotten business and my little honey bear is really quite charming once you get to know her.

Irish Boxer dog

HARVEST AT LAST

High temperatures, even with added CO₂ increases cannabis plants’ thirst for water. Daily watering was essential throughout the bloom phase. Slow and steady, I incrementally increased nutrient doses and added the appropriate supplements and boosters as flowering progressed. Constant adjustment of the LED was required as plants climbed ever taller to about 1.5m. A 600W HPS lamp would have fried the canopy without a doubt.

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Moderate defoliation was required in the final couple of weeks to allow more light onto lower buds. Popcorn buds were kept to a minimum after lollipopping all plants at the end of week 3. I highly recommend this simple technique. By day 60 of bloom, my grow tent was filled with frosty colas and big buds straining stems under their weight. A thorough flush with a light dose of flushing solution for flavour, and the crop was ready for the chop between days 60-68.

Finally, after 10 days drying, it’s time to jar up 264g of connoisseur marijuana for a good cure. That’s an increase of 62g from my first LED cannabis grow. There will definitely be a third LED crop. In fact, it’s already in the works. But before that, I’ll be back with a comprehensive smoke report on all three strains and an all-new cannabis concentrates special.

When And How To Harvest And Dry Cannabis

Top-Shelf Grower

Written by: Top-Shelf Grower
Veteran cannabis cultivator originally from Dublin, Ireland and currently on the loose in southern Spain. 100% committed to Top-Shelf reporting until captured or killed.

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