How Grow Rooms Work
Major aspects of a grow room and how they work
When choosing the type of light for a grow room it is crucial that a perfect layout is constructed. It is important to know how many lights are needed per room, and more specifically how many watts per square foot is needed. For instance, you don’t want to stack to many lights to close to each other or have them too far away from each other. Also, the “X” axis and “Y” axis, in reference to the direction a light is hanging, is a huge determination on how successful the end result of a harvest is. A leading brand of lights called Gavita offers high quality grow lights that are becoming extremely popular and well known for their high quality. The most popular light they offer, and the most popular light we install, is the Gavita Pro 1000e DE. This light can be controlled to illuminate 600w-1150w with a digital controller. These lights are typically used for a 5’x6’ of canopy spread; meaning the light will hang over and illuminate 30sqft of plant canopy. The lights can be moved closer together or farther apart but in most situations, it isn’t recommended. Lights come in multiple electrical voltages depending on the local electrical transformer will limit you to certain voltage of lighting.
In Cultivation rooms, there are three different ways to supply fresh air or ventilate a room. One option is to have a completely sealed room with no outside air exchange where you add co2 to the room so the plants can breathe, this is the most common choice. Another option is to have a room with co2 and fresh air exchange. With this you allow the plants to have c02 and fresh air, where the fresh air is added in at certain times of day or night. The last way to ventilate a grow room is to constantly have air from the outside being exchanged, giving the plants co2 from the natural air that we breathe. When doing air exchange, it is important to note that the smell of the plants will be released to the outside, which is why having a completely sealed off room is the best option.
Co2 is a major aspect of plant growth; plants take in co2 to convert it into water sugar and oxygen for energy. Depending on the climate and where you live the average parts per million PPM in the air we breathe is approximately 400ppm. Plants can take in much more co2 than we can, and by increasing the co2 levels to around 1200-1600 PPM they begin to thrive and grow. When you increase the co2 levels in a cultivation room it boosts the growth rate and results in a higher yield. There are many ways to supply co2 to an indoor garden or a greenhouse, but the main way co2 is supplied is with a tank of compressed gas or with a co2 burner. Each of these methods are controlled by a meter that can sense how much co2 is in the atmosphere. When the levels are low, the sensor signals the tank of co2 to slowly enter the room or it tells the co2 burner to turn on in order to burn natural gas or propane. The combustion of natural gas or propane creates co2, which the plants love and depend on in order to grow.
- When cultivating most people run into the problem of trying to keep the smell down. One of the best and most efficient ways to control the smell of a grow room is to use a carbon scrubber. Carbon scrubbers come in multiple sizes and shapes. Air is circulated through a filter that is filled with activated carbon, where the odor causing molecules are then captured, and the clean air is then released back into the air. In order for the filters to work, you need the correct size for your room so that an efficient amount of air is being replaced. If you have a filter that is too small for your room it won’t be effective in keeping the odor down.
- A main question that comes up is how big of a filter will I need for my room and how many. The chart below can be used for the amount of air exchange that is needed inside of the room to keep the smell down.
Air Conditioning and heating
The amount of air condition for a grow room depends on the size of the room, how many, lights, co2 system, watering system, dehumidification system, the amount of plants, the type of soil. The air conditioning and heating system is a very crucial part for optimize growth and success with an indoor cultivation room.
Inside cultivation rooms controlling the humidity is very essential aspect to optimize growth. The humidity levels inside the cultivation room will decide on whether or not plants will either thrive or become inadequate. Adding a dehumidifier to a grow room is a crucial aspect. With a dehumidifier, you are able to control the humidity levels inside the room, and having the proper levels is an important aspect. When the humidity level is too high or continuously changing inside of the room, powdery mildew can start to grow which can be very detrimental for the plants and affect the amount of weed they produce. It is extremely important to be able to control the humidity because the ideal levels a plant needs can change. For example, the stage of the plants life cycle will determine how much humidity should be inside a cultivation room.
Air circulation fans are used inside grow rooms to move the air around and imitate the natural winds that plants would receive if they were in an outside environment. It is important to have fans inside of a grow room in order to supply plants with a fresh breeze and strengthen their stems. Allowing fresh air to circulate through the room regularly will also help prevent and protect plants from getting mold and pests. When air blows onto the leaves it helps evaporate the moisture that lies on the surface, thus lowering the chances of mold or mildew growing on the plants. The breeze will also help prevent pests like spider mites by making it hard for them to fly and live in the room.
Having a proper electrical set up is a crucial part of having a successful grow room. Grow rooms utilize a lot of power and having good electrical wiring is an important aspect. Lighting systems use a generous amount of power, as the amount of power being used increases so does the amount of heat being created. Without proper wiring the equipment that is inside of the rooms came be damaged or destroyed completely. Improper wiring also poses the threat of creating an electrical fire.
In order to get the best yield out of your plants, having a proper watering system in place is critical. If you chose to do a drip system in your room, the time it takes to water will be cut down significantly. With a drip system, you can control the amount of water your plants will receive as well as the amount of nutrients. A various amount of small tubes will be placed inside your plant, and these tubes are connected to a reservoir. Having a drip system will save you time and also help control the exact amount of water your plants will receive.