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Tips for starting growing cannabis on a budget

Added 1 June 2021

Introduction

One of the main reasons why people don't start to grow on their own is because there is still a perception that you need a big investment to get started. And on the other hand, there is still a belief that cannabis is hard to grow, but let us already state the following : this is not the case because only a few bits and pieces are needed for growing and the reason that it is also called weed, is because it grows like one! It is a plant just like so many others that can thrive with nothing more than the right amount of water, dirt, and light. To get the maximum results and a big yield is a different story because of all its complexities to reach that level, but if you don't get started, you will never reach that level of experience and therefore we have made this article for you with a few but important tips for growing on a budget to help you get a proper start without making a huge investment.

Seeds

There are a few things to have in mind when you make the choice of what seeds you are going to grow. Not only is there a difference between a few options such as regular, feminized, and autoflowers. The first word of good advice to give here is the following : free seeds or seeds from weed will not save you money in the long run. Not only is there a big risk of reproducing weed that will also be filled with seeds, but you also have no idea of the genetics of what you will grow. For the price of a decent seed pack ( 3 - 10€ per seed ), you will be sure of the genetical background to be able to avoid certain issues in your grow because you have to keep this in mind : seedbanks will deliver quality genetics that are bred by teams of very experienced growers. Not only that, it gives you a better choice of finding what you like but also a better chance of getting some nice bud!

  • Regular : These are represented by a 50/50 male/female population as nature has intended. Most likely not what you are looking for because it is only the female plant that produces flowers aka buds and therefore feminized or autoflower seeds are the solution if you are looking for bud only! Regular seeds can still be very interesting for the grower who wants to start crossing with the idea of making their own strain. If you still decide to grow this for fun, keep in mind that eventually, the males will pollinate the females and so those will produce seed-filled buds, and not only that, the pollen can travel quite the distance so it might pollinate another neighboring grow that you might not have any idea of!
  • Feminized : Feminized seeds are very close to 100% female and there are many reputable cheap strains to be found, the only catch here is that you are still responsible for timing the moment of flowering by altering the light schedule unless if you grow outdoors, there it is the seasonal change of autumn setting in when days get shorter again, that causes the plant to go into flowering. But even outdoors you can apply this technique by darkening your plants with a structure or by putting them in a dark room for a period of hours.
    Royal Queen Seeds has a few very nicely priced seeds amongst their selection. Special Queen 1 is one of their cheapest feminized options.


  • Autoflowers : Autoflowers are the easiest to grow and so if you are just getting started this might be your best choice. The reason why is in the name : they flower automatically. And because of intensive breeding by many growers out there and different companies, a huge range of good producing plants can be found that bring a very good harvest in a short time frame. Autoflower seeds are a bit more expensive than feminized seeds but is 100% worth it when it comes to saving time in the long run. A great example of a cheaper but great option to go for is the Auto Amnezia Haze from 2Fast4Buds.

Another way to choose for starting to grow cheaply is with clones/cutlings and its benefit it that it is timesaving. However, here comes risk! If you get these from a reputable grower and they come from a healthy motherplant then there is not much to say except that the root system of a plant that is grown from a clone or a cutling can never be as strong as one grown from seeds. If you get clones or cutlings from a "random place with little reputation" you have to again keep in mind that you have no knowledge of the genetic background and I cannot emphasize how important that is!

Growing indoors

The first thing that we will start with is trying to convince more of you to get yourselves a small budget and to get a proper kit to get you started ( and make a diary on our platform growdiaries.com :D ). Maybe a decade ago it was still a great excuse to say that there is not enough choice for the small budget grower but today that is a very different story. Many, and very reputable companies out there are able to supply you with all the basic essentials to give you a good start on growing your own ( and trust me, they deliver in discrete packaging if that is your doubt )! For around 100-300€ there is a lot to choose from. You have to take in mind that once you own this and it is set up, you might get your money back already after only one grow so it should be considered a great investment. Most of those kits should have the following :

  1. Tent
  2. Light
  3. Ventilation
  4. Accessories such as hanging equipment, a timer for the light, temp and moist meter, pots


Then of course for the people who prefer to get crafty and save a bit more on their first grow, there are many options to go for from building their own growspace but the old closet method is probably still the easiest to go for on a small budget. You get yourself some white plastic or Mylar film and just start covering the whole inside of the thing with that material to make the inside more light-reflective and basically, all you need to do is hang your light safely on the inside without creating a fire hazard ( we feel like we have to mention this ), and also make sure to create some ventilation by making some holes and if possible putting a ventilator inside.

Growing outdoors

Outdoor growing is of course not possible for many of us but for the ones that are eager to get started outdoors on a budget, there are also a few small guidelines we would like to share with you.

  • Seeds : We already discussed seeds before but for outdoor growing there can be quite a few more challenges because there is absolutely no control when it comes to temperature, moisture levels, and so on. Therefore it is important to do the proper research before starting. Some seeds will operate better in warm and dryer climates and others will work better with more mild or colder climates where it can rain more often. A good example is Holland. A country with great summers but very wet autumns which means an outdoor plant will have to live its flowering period in a more wet climate. Therefore Dutch Passion developed Frisian Dew, and this is a good mold-resistant strain of legendary proportions with massive yields!
  • Equipment : If possible, try asking around for pots and gardening equipment. Many people have these laying around and do not use these and once you have acquired some you can simply reuse them over and over again, just don't forget to properly clean and sanitize all your equipment before each grow and this is the same for shears and hoses and such.
  • Reuse and reduce : Soil is probably one of the biggest costs when it comes to growing cannabis, so reuse your old soil after each grow, and give a try at composting. Take all your organic waste and turn it into a nutrient-rich growing medium for your plants.

Conclusion

Probably the biggest aspect that will save you money when it comes to growing cannabis is, take your time to make a decision and do the proper research before buying products that you might not need in the end. Now, of course, you have to be realistic also, with doing it all on the cheap side you cannot expect to grow plants with massive yields from the first or second go at it or maybe not even at all. It is all up to you how much you are willing to spend on your plants!

Feel free to drop a line down below in the comments!

References

Cannabis can be grown outdoors for pennies on the dollar. So why is hardly anyone doing it? - Vanmala Subramaniam ( 2019 )

Your first low budget indoor or outdoor grow with recyclable products - Plagron

Reducing, Re-using and Recycling in the Garden - Annie Warmke

This article was updated June 2021






Comments

ZzPot
ZzPot

guerilla grow next to a body of water , sun is free, water is free. check up on it every 2-3 weeks, or more... harvest is free but you have to leave a small piece of your sould in trim jail, that's the price of guerilla bud. :rocket:

Herbie
Herbie

if you really want to see budget grow, just checked my diaries out.

I haven't bought a grow light.

I make tents out of bedsheets and sticks.

I also used a shoebox and mailing bags.

skybound
skybound

I bought a lifetime supply of nute salts and make all my own concentrates and control ALL elemental ppm. I also grow in perlite which is mostly reusable, so now I only pay for water and electricity!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bVt9_9x-ag&list=PLxxqN5RKSG16VMcEHQr09mlYEDyAyKTcR