Hydroponic system or soil? Advise please

Discussion in 'First Time Marijuana Growers' started by jkblaze, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. Well Gentleman, the day is here and I have decided to start my own plants.

    I have tried to do as much research as i can between school and work and moving into my new place. I am looking to start with 5-6 plants.

    This hydroponic system seems to be an easy way out as to starting my operations.
    Here are a list of possible prospects.


    The internet has told me to find 400-600W either MH or HPS lighting?

    I was going to start with clones from a club in California, I have done a great deal of research on starting with seeds but I am going to start with what is available to me at the moment. I am not sure if clones I am about to receive are going to be "pre-rooted" or if I am going to have to buy my own products for that.

    I am in need of assistance in ridding the smell from the room in anyway possible, preferably a cheaper method. This is going to be in a walk in closet about 5x5 ft, 8 feet tall. I can post pictures if you really want to be helpful for me. Other than this system and air cleaners, I was curious to some other must haves.

    If you guys feel that it would be much easier to start with soil planting the plants then please don't hesitate to advise me. I am walking into a blind tunnel here looking for advice.
  2. you need some form of ventalation, if you can find time you can build your own hydro system for much cheaper than a store baut, just use the GC search engine to search for blueprints on how to build one if youd like.

    i see your new here,i dont know what you know about growing but if you havent done a few hours of research you can either buy a book at the bookstore. or read alot of peoples hydro threads to find the nutes you want and all the ph testers and whatnot. all that ive grown hydro is a tomato and watermellon plant. so i dont kno much, just trying to help.
  3. [​IMG]

    I feel the system above is a pile of crap. Not worth the $500 and not real good for growing weed.

    I don't know much about the system below. But I can't get a good look at it to make any real judgments. $500 seems kinda high for that one as well.


    You can build better systems then you can buy. But if I had to buy a system it would be the WaterFarm units or WaterFarm pro-system (below):


    They can be used as single units at a cost of $50 each. Or buy the reservoir for $140 and hook up to your single units and make a pro-system. Just add $50 for each additional plant you want to grow. Real simple.
    I have grown in this system and it works well.

    I like the price on the cooltubes at Maryland Hydroponics
    ($59.00). It's hard to get a 400W digital ballast for $86.00. Great deal as well.

    Maryland Hydroponics



    Complete Digital/Electronic Systems
    • Wattage : 400 120V(+86)
    • Cord Set : Hydrofarm cord/socket (+25)
    • Reflector : Hydrofarm Cool Tube (+59)
    • Bulb : Standard 400 HPS (+13)
    • Warranty : 3 YEAR
    • BOX OPTIONS : Recycled Hydro Box
    Total: $183.01

    If this is your first grow. I would buy the above lamp and fill some 5-gallon buckets with good potting soil. Best to work the bugs of your grow room with a soil setup and some bagseed. This is the best advice in my opinion.
  4. Thank you very much Rumpleforeskin

    With this hydroponic system & soil mixture i would still be adding the nutrients to the soil before hand? Then after about 2-3 weeks of the clones growing I will make sure to feed them through the water?

    And btw, on that lighting website there was no selection for Standard 400W HPS Bulb.
    Could I purchase that at a Home Depot?
  5. #5 Rumpleforeskin, Sep 3, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 3, 2008
    Maryland Hydroponics has one of the worst websites I have seen, but they are for real. Call your order in over the phone. I think they have the best prices on the net because they spent ziltch on that website. I have ordered stuff from them more them a few times a year for a few years now. They are good folks with a bad website.
    Phone Number:


    I buy my bulbs from homedepot because they are always selling my bulbs for half price due to "Open-box". They are $23 at homedepot and $13 at Maryland Hydroponics . Buy your blubs with your order. Get one of each (HPS and MH). That ballast will light either bulb so make sure to get normal bulbs, not conversion bulbs. Conversion bulbs are for older mag ballasts and cost twice as much.

    If your growing in soil you don't need anything but a flowerpot or 5-gallon bucket with a hole in the bottom. Make sure the container will hold 3 gallons or more of soil. Add 2" or 3" of pea-gravel to the bottom of the container for good drainage.

    When growing in soil, I like to do a premix. Premix is simple and you never have to add plant food. Just add water nothing more. Here is a good mix:
    Here is your soil mix. It's called Vic's Super Soil:

    1 Bale sunshine mix #2 or Promix (3.8 cu ft)
    8 cups Bone Meal - phosphorus source
    4 cups Blood Meal - nitrogen source
    1 1/3 cups Epsom salts - magnesium source
    3-4 cups dolomite lime -calcium source & pH buffering
    4 cups kelp meal.
    9kg (25 lbs) bag pure worm castings

    - Mix thoroughly, moisten, and let sit (uncovered) 1-2 weeks before use.




    Another one is Fox Farm Ocean Forest Potting Soil. I have never used it, but I hear good things. You don't have to mix it or buy anything. Only problem is you have to buy it at a hydro store or find cheap shipping online:

    Vic's supersoil ingredient can be bought at your local nursery, even Walmart.

    Best of luck, R.
  6. Well that helps a great help i have about a 5x5 ft room and the house I am living in is a rental house in Arizona.

    Here are some pictures of the room that it will be grown in. If you notice the door has slits for vents in it already. I am trying to set up a system by any means where i can do the least amount of drilling into the walls as possible. I obviously realize i may have to for the lighting but that is not a problem.

    The problem here is a ventilation system that i will not have to trash this room to set it up.

    Attached Files:

  7. personally i prefer soil, i did try a bb but i couldnt get it down, soil seems so much simpler to me
  8. Your not the first renter who came up against this issue. The fix is simple and cheap.

    Remove that nice door. Go to Homedepot/Lowes and buy the super cheap hollow core interior door (without frame/door-jam). Buy a deadbolt while you are there. You will need to cut the bottom of the door off to make it fit (in most cases). A skill-saw will do the trick, but I have seen it done by hand-saw (not by me). Real simple job that should not take but an hour at most.

    You will need to ventilate your room. A simple way to make the intake is, to drill two 4" holes next to each other (about two inches apart) at the base of the door. Get a louvered grill (one used to cover a heater/AC vent) and screw it on over the holes on the outside of the door (louvers down).
    Here is a picture of one I put in above my door for my A/V closet (kind of the same thing):



    Get two 4" black PVC elbows and attach them to the 4" holes on the inside of the door. Use sillicone or what ever you have handy. Get creative with weather-stripping on the inside of the door to plug any light leaks.

    Exhaust is the tricky part. You can blow it out the top of the door (more holes in your new door) if you can't find another way. If you have a crawl space or attic above your closet, you have it made in the shade. A single 4" hole in the roof of your closet would be all the damage that would need to be done. Use that grill from your door to cover it when you move out (no one will ever notice or care). I won't go into detail of all the stuff you can do with a crawl space until you deside if that is an option.
    Blowing out the top of the door is a noisy and stinky solution to the exhaust problem and should be a last resort. Good luck, R.
  9. you are saying to cut a 4" hole in the wall above the lighting for the exhaust fans? and then when we move out just fix it up a little?

    And those vents you built on the door do not actually lead outside the door? they just vent into the door, that is what it looks like on yours. Thanks for the tips so far man, really appreciate it. Trying to set this room up, thats the most confusing part to me, seen a lot of pictures and ideas but feel more limited.
  10. I read what I wrote three times and never came away with that. Can you show me where I wrote that so I can edit it?

    This is what I wrote "You can blow it out the top of the door (more holes in your new door) ". Not above the door, but the top of the hollow-core door. I don't think anyone would care if you messed up the temporary door.

    Sure the pictures of my home closet show one that is cut that way. but I explained it before posting it.

    I think you should find a way to vent out the ceiling of the closet if possible. You could cover it with a vent cover when you move. No one will notice the vent in the ceiling of a walk in closet. Or you can be a nice guy and put in a light fixture covering the hole, or a velvet Elvis portrait will cover the hole nice.:D

    Bottom line is, that door you got up needs to go in storage. Intake through the bottom like my stupid picture below.

  11. You need to be as creative as possible with your ventilation. It is the hands down toughest part of indoor growing. Most of us will re-design or ventilation a few times before it's right.

    Hooking a dryer exhaust hose to the top of your door is one option (just not one I like). But it is a way of making no holes in your home. Your exhaust will be loud and smelly. A small hole in the ceiling is basic and easy to fix. I can give you links to fixing drywall if you like. Save the hole you cut out if you plan on fixing it.

    This shit seems easy till you see the details that go into a working indoor grow operation.
  12. Alright. Sorry i was confused to at what you were explaining. I like the idea of going through the ceiling and then covering it up with a square vent when finished. What i'm going to do is get an exhaust intake fan from above the lighting and connect it with a hose to the hole in the ceiling. Avoiding having to air out the room to my bedroom?
  13. Sounds good.
    Best of luck, R.
  14. Organics.

Share This Page