Cost effective growing tips; can growing really be cost effective? A very short answer is no, indoor growing cannot be simple steps can be taken to help minimize the over all cost of operation for growing cycle.
Our cost effective growing tips is based on real life experience as well as a common method growers used since indoor cannabis production really start.Our cost effective growing tips will cover all the practice ways you can start to save money well growing your cannabis strains.
Growing cannabis requires a lot of electricity and for long periods of a time. Their is a few options that will help reduce your energy foot print as follows:
- Replace coil over core magnetic ballast and run digital ballast; this will reduce the 15% surcharge initial surcharge when firing up your bulbs.
- Turn down your electric hot water heater! Hot water heats use two heating coils, one of top of the tank and one at the bottom; each coil is 1500watts. You can easily reduce your electrical consumption by turning down your hot water tank. Generally, people can run another 600HPS for the cost of being efficient with a hot water tank.
- Replace your indoor lights with warm spectrum CFL lights. CFL lights are generally rate for 15watts per bulb and usually have the lighting output of a 30-60watt bulb. A warm CFL bulb is must more comfortable for a home atmosphere where as the blue spectrum is cold and usually overly bright for bedrooms etc.
- Understand peak hydro billing times. Hydro companies love to over charge the killowatt per hour during high usage demands such as 7,8 and 9 am as well as 4,5 and 6 pm. Energy rates usually return to normal at night time, when demands are generally less. Understanding your ‘step rated billing plan’ is helpful but not controllable.
Your electric company deliberately makes everyone fall into step rating 2 for higher billing rates. Evey one I know is in step 2 billing rates; and BC Hydro claims their rates are for normal, comparable house holds. No one ever falls in to step one billing, how normal is that than BC Hydro?
Vegetation times and lighting
Vegetation is very important and often over looked. Vegging can be a perfect time to be cost effect when growing cannabis. If you can veg your cannabis plants in another location other than your flower room you will save time between pay days; you don’t have to wait 3 months per cycle. You can really start to save money when you supplement HID lighting and use T5 high out-put lighting.
Its obviously cheaper to buy a MH or HPS with MH conversion bulb for vegetation but you cannot beat the quality of plants you get under T5 bulbs. The T5 bulb output is strong enough to combine lighting intensities. Place your T5 bulbs, side by side and daisy chain up to six together; some manufactures say you can daisy chain 8 T5, 4 foot bulbs together. The pictures below show a simple T5 veg setup that can accommodate 40-60 plants in small pots or 12-16 plants in two gallon pots.
The cannabis plants in the pictures are the same plants in the above two pictures with T5 lighting. These pictures are posted to show how well the stocks can develop under T5 lighting. If you grow under MH, generally your plants are thinner and flimsy. I personally like HPS for bulk vegging but T5 lighting is the very best light spectrum for healthy plant growth.
There are additional cost to growing cannabis that when added together may shock you. Your growing medium, nutrients, trim gloves, isopropyl alcohol, trim scissors, garbage bags, new flower pots, jiffy peat pellets, smell proof zip-lock bags and maybe the cost of labor for trimming. These are all regular occurring cost besides your electrical power. I have not even mentioned typical, on-going upgrades such as lighting shades, grow bulbs or any improvements like oscillating fans. Here are more cost effective growing tips for cannabis cultivation.
Soil-less grow medium
Purchasing your soil-less growing medium in bulk will help save you money. Pro Mix HP has increased 30%. You can usually pay cash at grow stores to receive a discount or buy bulk at hardware stores for discount. Do not buy from horticulture stores such as Art-Naps or other privately owned horticulture green houses; they sell at a premium and offer no discount. Do not buy bulk soil that is designed for garden beds as it has not been sterilized, its full native seeds and requires amending for container growing.
There are some products such as Sensizym that claim to break down dead root growth and turning unavailable molecules into plant available form. There is a couple downside having to rely on another product that is costing you money.
You do not really know if the product is working. Also, now you must occur the cost of another product. Generally, these products have extremely poor shelf life of several months. I asked the grow store if they sell other enzyme products much and they hardly sell any. They sell mainly Pro Mix HP as it already carries a mycorrhizae mixture. Either way, it is a poor practice to ruse soil for indoor gardening and the cost per page VS bottle its much better to be safe than sorry.
Not all tips can be cost effective when growing cannabis. You should not cheap out on nutrients because its generally the cost of doing business. But you can save money by minimizing unnecessary nutrients products. You do not want to get caught up in all the nutrient hype. There are just to many products to be concerned with. To gain excellent yields you need to give your plants what they require. You do not need to give all the extra fluff just because your scared or thinking the plant must require it. The truth is, nutrient companies make a product for almost everything and if you combine them all, you will create a total disaster.
You can review my article about nutrient-feed-program to get a really good understand about what plants require and when. Soon it will be apparent that a lot of manufactures offer various products with claims to guarantee results, increase yields and 100% satisfaction or your money back! I personally had a horror story with Bud-Factor X with advance.
Example of too much product hype
Remember, a great cost effective growing tips is not to get caught up in all the nutrient hype. I was given a sample of Bud-Factor X by our local grow store. What a huge mistake. So, I followed the instructions perfectly and did a comparison between plants. First I noticed the required dosage recommend seemed high; I was uncomfortable with the required dosage as I am normally seeing those dosage rates with organic related products. Within one light cycle(24hours) my plants where burnt crispy on the tips and acquired an artificial feeling. Also, various stomata’s closed up; in which my leafs rolled up and never recovered.
The big marketing ‘secret formula’ hype!
I communicated with the cannabis grow store and they contacted the manufacture about what is the ‘secret’ behind the product. The manufacture would not deluge ‘marketing secret’ but after careful research we notice it was simply a stress inducing chemical and potassium. This is how Advance Nutrient is marketing their Bud Factor X product and why you MUST be careful purchasing additional nutrient supplements.
Advance Nutrient marketing tactics as follows:
Now, with Bud Factor X, you can harness this Himalayan secret to enhance your crops! Bud Factor X triggers systemic acquired resistance (SAR) within plants to produce markedly higher amounts of essentials oils and terpenoids, which directly benefit taste, aroma and resin production, giving you higher-quality crops with greater market value. Plus, these powerful ingredients allow your plants to better handle stress and delay fruit senescence and decay. Bud Factor X also helps your plants produce thicker stalks and branches, signaling them to generate heavier harvests because they sense they can support the additional weight. Lastly, the supporting ingredients in Bud Factor X – like all Advanced Nutrients ingredients – enhance plant growth and flowering. Rest assured, you risk nothing trying Bud Factor X because our Grower Guarantee ensures you’ll be 100% satisfied or get all your money back.https://advancednutrientsonline.com/product/bud-factor-x/
And another marketing quote for Bud Factor X
Advanced Nutrients Bud Factor X was concocted by plant scientists that spent years looking for powerful ingredients that make a BIG difference. They tested and discarded hundreds of substances until they found this potent combination. We aren’t allowed to tell exactly what the factor is or how it works, but one things for sure… you’ll happily witness the results! It’s your own secret weapon.
Your ace-in-the-hole that guarantees you’re going to succeed, and there’s nothing that can be done about it. Advanced Nutrients would like to share with you this secret weapons.https://www.planetnatural.com/product/bud-factor-x/
Your ace in the hole, trouble free, guarantee, must by now product? You don’t even have to be smart to realize its all marketing tactics; there is no guarantees for a successful grow and it requires much more than a single product ‘guarantee’ that!
The point to all this; just be careful with what you buy and be cautious with your hard earned money; because working for yourself is much harder than for someone else. Remember this tip is to help you be cost effective with growing not to affect your crop negatively.
The idea of LED lighting is excellent and does provide an alternative lighting source for growing. But the marketing outline LED lighting is false advertising and full of nasty little lies. A perfect example is LED lights being sold for under a few hundred dollars with near comparable chart numbers of those of LED series costing two thousand. The cheaper LED lights should raise red flags to your spider senses.
With such comparable charts but insanely different price tags, one should investigate what makes and LED light cheaper and how can LED lights be measured for cannabis growing. Honestly, LED lighting and cannabis growing is another full topic and will not be covered here. LED lighting is only mentioned because it is NOT cost effective at the current time.
The major benefits for LED grow lights is not energy consumption like advertised; they still require power to still run their china built 3,5 or 10 watt chips X the number of LED chips per unit. When used for flower, cannabis plants generally require an addition 2 weeks for finishing; costing you more power. LED lights work best for small grow tents such as 2x2x4 or flower and veg combination tents. They are a poor choice for cannabis production period.
Failed LED example
I personally know a grower who have invested $$$ $$$ of dollars only to sell them in parts to a scrap person in Vancouver. LED lights still require higher efficacy and require major investment. The best LED systems for vegging are two thousand + that cover a growing foot print of 4×4. The LED series that produce enough efficacy generally have continue power consumption around 500watts. I can think of a few perfect lighting systems that will cover a 4×4 foot print much cheaper. Just beware, there are many people online boasting about LED lights and their harvest.
Peoples pride, greatly interfere with perspective
People are too prideful and always try to justify their means. No one wants to think their product is crappy, let alone their grow op sucks. Growing inefficiently under an LED does not initially mean crappy product, it usually means loose, fluffy cannabis that has bad bag appeal. Some modest people say LED lighting is ideal for personal use only. I would rather recommend an HPS lighting system that will generate greater returns for a much less investment than adverting for an expensive grow light that give a minimal return.
More failed LED grow stores
I know other story’s about growers using LED lights for vegetating cannabis plants. Their main job is to supply clones for growers all over BC, Canada. They used LED lights to help reduce heat in comparison to HID and T5 systems. What they found was they had similar operation temperature equal to T5 lighting. T5 lighting is very hard to replace and will out perform most LED lighting systems.