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Homegrow is easily one of the most popular components of the budding cannabis industry. Something of a footnote to the present conversation, growing at home – like homebrewing – is reserved, not for the most skilled aficionados, but for those who are willing to roll up their sleeves and put in a little work. Whether growing cannabis for medical purposes or simply to hone the craft for recreational reasons, the practice does come with a set of pre-requisites.

In addition to selecting a location and ensuring there is adequate space, growers must make use of fertilizers and supplements, proper fixtures and understand basic plant development and maintenance before launching a homegrow. For this, it’s best to gain knowledge across all tiers of cannabis cultivation such as grow mediums, fertilizers and proper lighting in order to minimize variables, and maximize the chances of growing a successful crop.

Location

There are two things to consider in the context of the size of a grow: space and location. The latter is foremost among those considerations. Though the term homegrow may lend one to believe this means growing inside the home, this isn’t necessarily the case. Homegrow can also mean growing in a small outdoor garden, greenhouse or pod on the property. Whether pushing plants up in the house – usually in a designated room, closet or tent – or somewhere on the grounds, size must also be factored in. The footprint of a homegrow is completely contingent on the number of plants being grown, and can vary from a very small craft grow to a relatively large size, usually completed in a greenhouse or a pod on one’s property.

Medium

Grow mediums, often regarded as substrates, are the actual material the cannabis plants are grown in. For homegrowers, the question of what to grow the plants in can be tricky, namely because there are so many different options: coco, soil, peat moss, water etc. In this day and age, there are even a number of revolutionary grow techniques like aeroponics and aquaponics that require a fair bit of sophistication to perfect. For the most part, choosing a medium is a subjective exercise. A versatile plant that can be cultivated using dozens of different substrates, the onus is on the individual to find the best fit, while ensuring it’s also well suited to the environment and the feed being used.

Fertilizer

Unquestionably one of the most difficult aspects of setting up a homegrow is selecting the right fertilizer. Also known as nutrients or feeds, fertilizers are available from dozens of different companies, and typically come in two-or-three-part solutions. These concentrations must be mixed properly, tested often and adjusted accordingly. To properly maintain flowering plants, it’s best that homegrowers check the electro conductivity (EC) and acidity (PH) of the plants every day. This way, the concentration of the fertilizers can be adjusted accordingly. In addition, most nutrients also come with an array of supplements that can be added to the concentration at various stages of the grow in order to improve the quality of the flowers, and increase the crop yield.

Lighting

In the context of the many questions that need to be addressed when erecting a homegrow, choosing the right lights, or fixtures, is a somewhat simple task. The number of fixtures is correlated to the number of plants being grown, the space that is utilized and the yield one is looking to achieve. There are no wrong answers in this area, though too many lights can be overkill, and not enough can leave one with a small and undeveloped crop. In terms of selecting fixtures, there are literally hundreds of options now available across three major categories: high pressure sodium (HPS), light-emitting diode (LED) and metal halide (MH). Most contemporary lights will easily do the trick and, again here, choice is very much correlated to the preference of the grower.

How-To: Grow Cannabis at Home


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