Beginners Guide to Everything You Need for Grow Tents
Whether for commercial growers, horticulturists, or hobbyist, grow tents are rapidly becoming a very popular solution for those looking to grow their favorite vegetables, herbs and medicinal plants. Grow tents allow growers to give their crops the perfect environmental conditions to grow healthy and bountiful plants.
Though grow tents can quickly become complicated depending on the growing operation, this guide has the beginner in mind and aims to briefly detail the minimal equipment requirements to get the newbie started on their grow tent journey.
Below is a list of everything you must have in order to have a grow tent garden.
- Grow Tent
Obviously the first thing you need to get started is a grow tent.
Grow tents provide a completely isolated environment. This allows growers to use equipment such as fans and grow lights to give their plants the perfect growing environment.
Usually, grow tent interiors are lined with mylar, a strong substance that is very reflective allowing light to easily reflect from many angles in the grow tent. It also acts as an insulator, keeping plants warm and happy.
Grow tents come in many shapes and sizes, check out our selection of tents to see what size works for you!
For beginners a 2x2 or 2x4 size tent is adequate, which will each fit roughly 1-2 plants.
- Grow Light
Plants thrive on light. Remember photosynthesis (think back to 6th grade science class). Photosynthesis is the process that plants use to create energy from light. In a natural environment this light comes from the sun.
However, grow tents allow growers to bring the perfect amount of light to their plants all year long through the use of grow lights.
There are plenty of options available when it comes to grow tent lighting, such as HPS, fluorescent or LED.
In our grow tent we prefer to use LED lights.
Despite higher upfront costs, LED lights host a wide range of benefits from growing plants more quickly to being more environmentally friendly compared to other forms of grow lighting.
Check out this blog on the 5 Reasons to Consider LED Grow Lights in Your Grow Tent.
- Grow Light Timer
Grow light timers are an affordable and great way to save growers time and headache. Timers allow growers to provide a consistent light source to their crops everyday at the same time.
Though grow light timers aren’t necessary, it can make the experience of grow tent gardening much more enjoyable and less cumbersome when growers don’t have to worry about plugging and unplugging their grow lights at certain times through out the day.
- Duct Fan
Duct fans are responsible for directing stagnant airflow through air filters and out of the grow tent.
Duct fans work optimally when they are “pulling” air rather than “pushing” air. Pulling air simply means that the fan is setup up in a way that it sucks air toward the ventilation rather than attempting to push air toward it.
Duct fans also help act as air conditioning for grow tents, helping keep plants cool and healthy.
- Carbon Filter
Though not completely necessary, carbon filters help reduce the odor that some plants can produce, greatly enhancing your growing experience.
Carbon filters use charcoal to trap air particles in them, purifying the air.
Carbon filters should usually be the first sequence of your ventilation setup.
One of the last components you need for your grow tents ventilation system is the ducting. The ducting simply acts as a conduit for the air from the tent, through the filter and fan and then out of the tent.
Ducting can easily be cut to size. Simply measure out how much ducting is needed in your tent, mark of your measurement points, and carefully cut the ducting.
Ducting is very affordable and can be purchased from any home improvement store. If you prefer you can even buy it from us here.
Ventilation Wrap up
The key components of a grow tents ventilation system are the duct fan, carbon filter and ducting. We recommend the following configuration of your ventilation equipment…
Carbon Filter > Ducting > Duct Fan > Ducting > Grow Tent Outflow
Usually, ducting will come in single units and need to be adjusted for size. It is easily cut, just use caution when cutting as with anything. In order to seal the ducting to the fan and carbon filter, many growers use ducting clips that usually come with ducting.
Duct tape is another popular way to seal ducting and can be used in conjunction or alone in sealing/attaching your ducting unit to other ventilation equipment.
- Equipment Hangers
When you are setting up you ventilation system in your grow tent, it is important to set the equipment at the ceiling of the tent, above your plants. This can be achieved with the use of grow tent equipment hangers.
Though easy to DIY, hangers simply hold your equipment in place. At Grow Tent Harvest we sell hangers that are strong and durable and specifically made to hold both ventilation equipment and lights.
- Growing Method
Nowadays there are a ton of ways to grow your crops. Hydroponics have become a very popular and effective way to grow all kinds of plants.
For beginners however, we recommend starting off using the traditional pot and soil method for growing your first-time crops in your grow tent.
We recommend a more traditional method just because hydroponics can be a little complicated when it comes to operating and managing. Pot and soil is very easy to start and manage.
Contrary to what some believe, the type of soil used is very important. We always recommend stopping by your local garden supply store and asking what kind of soil should be used for what ever it is that you are growing. You can also research and shop online as there are multiple locations to purchase high quality soil.
When it comes to selecting your pots, we recommend growing the pot with your plant. What we mean by that it is when your plant is small, use a small pot, and then slowly and carefully transfer the plant to bigger pots as the plant grows. This allows the roots to continue growing thus absorbing more nutrients from the soil. You will only need to change pot size one or twice.
Lastly, it is very helpful to have a combo thermometer and hydrometer. This will allow you to keep track of how hot and humid your grow tent is so you can adjust your duct fan accordingly.
All plants like different ranges of temperatures and humidity so it is always a good idea to do proper research on what environment your particular plant likes.
- (Bonus!) LED Glasses
Some studies have shown that LED lights can be damaging to human eyes when exposed for long periods of time or frequently.
We highly recommend that if you decide on an LED grow light to utilize LED lights glasses to protect your vision.
As you can see, there are a lot of different components to grow tents! And believe it or not there are a lot more components than this that growers can use to enhance their crops even more. Again, however, this guide was created with the beginner in mind. Therefore if you are just starting out, make sure you have almost everything listed on this list to make sure you are setting yourself up for success with your grow tent!
At Grow Tent Harvest, we offer a wide variety of grow tent supplies for both the beginner and experienced grower. Check out our selection of the top brands in the industry!