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1st grow, indoor tent in soil. Few beginner questions

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Hi Growers and Smokers


I have been looking to get my indoor tent soil grow happening for quite a while now; been researching as much as possible, reading forums, watching videos... it is getting to the point of making equipment purchases. I think I know what I want but would love to post my current plan and equipment list and see if there are any things the experienced folks can advise or fill in the blanks.


Firstly a bit of info about me and the intentions for the grow:

I have no experience with growing, not just cannabis but any plants! But I have confidence and think I understand the fundamentals from what I have studied about indoor tent growing. And am prepared for 1st attempts to have “results that may vary”.

I have been smoking cannabis every day for over 20 years. I like "fruity" tasting buds with a happy head stone (honestly, have never known what strain I smoke, but I guess I prefer Sativa)

I live in Australia so sourcing equipment / soil / seeds are a little tricker / more expensive. (and not legal)

I will have a partner (my brother, also a daily toker) helping with the grow.

OUR IDEAL YIELD would provide us with personal smoke, and if a cycle of growing is about around 3-4 months, that would be approx 300 grams.


After reading a lot of reviews and suggestions about what kind of reflector, I have decided a Cool Vented Hood is best, as some people report the cool "tubes" have hotspots and poor light distribution, and the circular glass can actually act as a magnifier of heat. I would save some money if going cool tubes but not a lot so figure I will go for a Vented Hood. I would really save money if I went with a non air cooled reflector like a "bat wing" but I can't help but think the heat will become an issue in a tent with a 600W bulb. I read a lot about how 600W is the best bang for the buck, some have said a 400W would be fine but others say just pony up for the 600.


So with these points in mind, I have sourced the following setup for the tent, lights and ventilation:


1. tent 1x1x2m

2. carbon filter 6 inch x50cm

3. ducting 6 inch x6m

4. duct fan 6 inch

5. clamps pair of 6"

6. Cool vent shade 6 inch flanges

7. hps lamp 600w 2100k

8. silver duct tape 50m roll

9. HPS Mag ballast 600w

10. 10A timer universal plug

11. reflector Yoyo 1 pair of 2 pcs


That list of gear is going to be around $600 AUD delivered. I am trying to figure out if there is another address apart from where I will have the grow to deliver this to. I might be over paranoid but I think that it is probably safer to be extra paranoid about this whole process.


The kit does not include a MH lamp for veg. I am deciding between getting some cheap CFL’s for this stage or just source a MH lamp from a local store or eBay (the actual lamps by themselves do not seem to expensive). Most things I read say yields will be better if veg’ing with a MH lamp.


I am also going to get a pH tester, seem pretty cheap on eBay.



I think I have settled on a place to mail order a few seeds. I am not sure what strain to get, but I really do not know what the differences are so am just going with the most common recommendations for a 1st tent grow which seem to be mazar or a superhaze.



This is a subject I am struggling a bit to understand, there seem to be many “recipes” and differing opinions. I am not sure if I need to make different soils for different growth stages; or if there is a soil I can use from start to finish? I am also unsure if I use a soil if I need to use extra nutrients or fertilizers, or simply water. Any tips or links to guides are appreciated.

Most things I read on soil suggest “Fox farms” but that is not readily available in Australia. So trying to find info about what Australian growers use, I found this tip (Bunnings is a chain of building and gardening suppliers):

“I had pretty good results from Yates Potting Mix (with dynamic lifter)...it was about $10 a bag from bunnings. I add about 20% perlite to make it drain a bit better (also available from bunnings). Stay away from the cheap brand name potting mixes, they are crap and it's difficult to get seedlings started in them in my experience.”

This sounds great, but I am not sure if (a) this is meant just for seedlings or if it can be used for the whole grow and ( B) will this need extra nutrients and fertilizer, and if so what types and how much?



I am not sure if I need to start seedlings in small pots then transfer for larger pots or “grow bags” after they reach a certain size? Or can I plant directly into the larger pots and stay there? Also, I am unsure if I need to have trays at the bottom of the pots – some things I read say you do otherwise you are just wasting water and nutrients when it comes out the bottom of the pot, others say let that water drain away as it will cause root rot.


I hope to place orders for equipment later this week.. does this look like an OK plan? I have a couple of other questions I cannot seem to find info on:

When you are in a 12/12 light cycle for flowering, do people have the light on udring the day or night? My thinking is it would be at night as it would be cooler then and the light would maintain a better temp, but during the day it is hotter so keep light off then? Also, when you have the light off during flowering and this was during the night, do you need to keep the fan running ie never turn off ventilation?


Thanks in advance for any information or tips. I plan on uploading a grow diary once it starts.



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yep, agreed with Ford... and you are not gonna want dynamic lifter indoors !


If you are worried about postage, I would take your shopping list down to your local hydro store with the prices, brands etc. and see what they can do, you may be surprised... will be dearer, but you can return things easily if they fail.

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Good luck mate, will be one of the best decisions you ever make for sure.


Few hints from my personal experience.

- fuck the soil off straight away and get coco.  Learning to grow with soil can just be too tricky for beginners, too many unknowns etc.  Get some good coco, get some coco specific nutes and follow the instructions

- start off with small pots and then transplant.  I usually transplant twice.  Others don't transplant at all but for me the smaller pots make it easier to not overwater, especially when learning

- i know that you've chosen those strains as they seem easy for beginners, but they don't call it weed for nothing.  Cannabis wants to grow, and you have to do a fucken lot of things wrong to kill it.  With that in mind, pick something that has the taste and high you are looking for straight away.  You said you like uppy smoke that tastes fruity, so i'd be buying some Jillybean from TGA/Subcool or some Tangie (those two are my next order :) )

- i have my lights on at night and off during the day.  This helps keep things cool during summer and hot during winter, and also means you are using the most power during off-peak, saving you money

- and yep, fans on 24/7, gotta keep the smells down, plus airflow for plants is just as important as light and nutes


Hope that helped.  This is what works for me, and every grow/grower is different

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Great information guys, thanks for your posts.


I have not heard of CANNA TERRA and it does seem to be available in Australia. Will research this more. (Man it is cool being in an OzStoners forum where the advice will likely be local!)


Someone also recommended SEARLES potting mix.


I am getting a few suggestions that more or bigger fans may be needed. My budget is right on the limits so maybe as an upgrade or I can source some stuff 2nd hand.


Billygoat, a lot of the shops have higher prices than what i see from online places, I have not gone into the shops to discuss it but generally I seem to see cheaper stuff online so far.. but the point about having a place to take back something not working is a big one.


CookieMonster420, thanks for all that great info. Those strains sound fun :) I have heard a few people say that coco is easy but others tell me soil is more forgiving.. I just think soil 1st few tries then bump the operation up to a hydro thing, which I am totally keen on trying!


Thanks for the info again everyone - Its_Always_420

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good thing about the canna terra it's already ph balanced ready to go and contains a mix it's got peat moss + perlite + a few extra's 


i've used it now for 2 canna grows and a basil veg grow as well both performed really well ... only have to water every 3-4 days and it's quite forgiving if you miss an extra day.


i havnt used coco so cant say much on it, but it sounds complicated to me with all this soaking / pre-wash ph balancing and specific nutes  :unknw:

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good thing about the canna terra it's already ph balanced ready to go and contains a mix it's got peat moss + perlite + a few extra's 


i've used it now for 2 canna grows and a basil veg grow as well both performed really well ... only have to water every 3-4 days and it's quite forgiving if you miss an extra day.


i havnt used coco so cant say much on it, but it sounds complicated to me with all this soaking / pre-wash ph balancing and specific nutes  :unknw:

I was under the impression Canna Coco was ready to go...

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Hey mate


With using soil indoors it can cause more problems than any other hydroponic medium. You have more chance of pest and diseases taking over and destroying the plants.


Another reason soil is not used in hydroponics is because true hydroponics means soilless gardening, only reason for a medium in hydroponics is to give the roots an anchor to stay up right.


Also when using soil, takes longer to identify problems such as nute burn or lockout, because the plant must access nutrients absorbing through the soil, not direct contact like a DWC.



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Sad to say I am back after 6 years and still haven't started. I predict I've spent about 60K on weed since, and I'm sick of the mediocre quality everyone sells in Aus (PGR?) so am trying again.


I'm about to purchase a system based around:


Generic ebay tent 120cmx120cmx200cm with a carbon filt 4" vent system about $150
Spider Farmer SF1000 LED $300
Medium: soil


Even just these items have different opinions online - that I actually need 2000W LED in this tent size.

Edited by Its_Always_420
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