Article written by
Homegrown Cannabis Co.American Seed Bank and Cultivation Experts
Content reviewed by
Dr. Lewis JasseyMedical Director - Pediatric Medicine
Table of contents
Gathering the right cannabis growing supplies can feel daunting if you’re new to home cultivation. While there is a host of things that can help your plants thrive, there are ten specific items that are crucial to the success of your crop, including lamps, fans, scissors, and more.
While those planting outdoors require less growing equipment, and advanced indoor cultivators often use additional items, here is what a beginner cultivator will need to nurture a basic grow.
Personalized Cannabis Guidance
Meet with a counselor and get personalized guidance to the right types and doses of cannabis for your unique needs.Book an Appointment
Seeds or Clones
A successful cultivation operation begins with high-quality seeds or clones.
Clones are reliable yet lower-yielding cuttings from a “mother” plant. Seeds are more readily available (you can order them online from companies like Homegrown Cannabis Co.) and produce bigger, healthier harvests, but they can take longer to grow. You can find your own “mother” plant in a pack or two of seeds or purchase clones from dispensaries in some states.
Your cannabis seed options are as follows:
- Regular seeds produce a roughly 50/50 split of male and female plants. They’re great for breeders and old-school growers. There are also more strains (cultivars) available as regular seeds.
- Feminized seeds produce only female plants. They’re the best choice for most at-home growers when growing for flower. Feminized seeds can also save on energy costs.
- Autoflower seeds are typically female and always non-photoperiod. Plants will automatically flip into the flowering stage after a few weeks in the vegetative stage.
- Fast Version seeds are typically female and contain a little Cannabis ruderalis. These plants have a shorter flowering time, but they’re not autos. They deliver yields equivalent to normal fems (depending on the strain).
The grow medium provides physical support to plants, allows root respiration, and holds water and nutrients. Depending on your setup choice, you can choose regular soil or soilless potting mixes.
First-time growers fare best with traditional soil. Buy a ready-made blend from a hydro store for optimal drainage and nutrient balance. Talking to the staff at the store is always a good idea. They’ll help you choose the right soil for your set-up and experience level.
If you have experience with pH management, you can get higher-yields growing marijuana in coco coir or perlite. Many organic growers like to use a mixture of soil and coco coir or perlite, which can help retain and drain water from the soil. Those using an aquaponic or hydroponic system often choose Rockwool cubes.
You should place your grow medium in a container that is sized appropriately for the life stage that your plant is in. Seedlings thrive in six-inch trays, while five-gallon pots accommodate most strains in the vegetative stage. Stretchy sativas sometimes require a seven-gallon bucket as they move into the flowering stage.
Choose containers with well-spaced drainage holes. Ceramics or wood are often better than plastics, especially in a high-humidity area.
Outdoor grows have the benefit of natural sunlight. Indoor gardens use lamps to replicate the sun, and modern lights can deliver high yields. Common options include:
- CFL lights: Cheap and practical, with no real risk of burning the plants. The downside is their comparative lack of power.
- HPS/Metal Halide lights: Excellent lumen output and color spectrum. Poor in terms of running cost and heat efficiency.
- LED lights: low-heat, full-spectrum, and low electricity consumption. The main drawback is the cost. Good-quality LEDs will be expensive.
Most growers nurture their seedlings under a low-intensity CFL lamp and transition to HPS/Halide or LED for vegging and flowering.
Clean air is vital to a healthy grow room. Well-placed oscillating fans keep the air moving inside the grow space (a gentle breeze encourages stronger stems, too), and tent growers should always rig up an exhaust fan to remove stale air. Ventilators can also help maintain the temperature of a grow room.
Heaters and Coolers
When growing marijuana indoors, it’s super-important to maintain an optimal temperature within the grow space.
Indoor plants will flourish in temps over 80°F, so employ a heating device like an air conditioner with a heat pump if your lamps run cool. If your lamps run hot, an AC unit, mini split, or ventilator can reduce the grow space temperature in hot areas.
Dehumidifiers and Humidifiers
The easiest way to control humidity levels is with humidifiers and dehumidifiers. These appliances optimize air moisture for healthy respiration and photosynthesis.
Buy a large appliance to avoid daily refills. If possible, get a double-duty machine to increase or decrease moisture levels as needed and use a hygrometer to keep the humidity range in check.
Like any plant, you’ll need to keep your cannabis crop fed and watered. Watering equipment can be simple or complex. A handheld can is enough for growing a few small cannabis plants. With that said, self-watering containers are more convenient (but pricier). The best way to water cannabis plants is to cycle wet to (almost) dry.
Removing excess leaves is one of your main tasks while growing weed. Cannabis produces more greenery than it requires for photosynthesis. This dense foliage accumulates moisture and casts shade on the bud sites, potentially leading to mold or mildew growth.
Get a large and a small pair of ergonomic pruning scissors, and keep your plant well-trimmed.
You must supply the necessary minerals for healthy development when growing weed indoors. These include three macronutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) and a selection of smaller ones, like magnesium, iron, and calcium.
Buy high-quality soluble fertilizers and supply them per the manufacturer’s instructions. These mixes will contain optimized micro and macronutrients for each growing stage.
Additional Non-Essential Supplies
The following marijuana growing supplies aren’t necessary, but they will improve your growing operation:
- A carbon filter to trap the odors of flowering-stage cannabis.
- Supplemental grow lights for effective side penetration.
- Smart climate sensors for hands-off grow environment stability.
- A pH meter to check and modify soil and water acidity.
- CO2 supplements to encourage photosynthesis for a larger yield.
- Mycorrhizal fungi to help improve the health of your soil, which can boost yields.
Get Your Medical Card
Connect with a licensed physician online in minutes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can you buy growing supplies?
As they’re not cannabis-specific, most growing supplies are available at gardening stores. You can buy cannabis seeds and nutrients from dispensaries and online seed banks like Homegrown Cannabis Co.
How much does it cost to grow cannabis?
The cost of growing marijuana plants varies. You can start growing cannabis indoors for a few hundred dollars. However, spending more money will improve your chances of success and make the process more enjoyable.
Do I need a permit to grow my own weed?
Keeping a marijuana plant is legal in many states, but you must abide by local regulations. Check your local government’s website for details.
How long does it take to grow marijuana?
Seed-to-harvest duration is generally three to six months. Autos and Fast Versions are quickest, while outdoor sativas can spend 14 weeks or more in the flowering stage alone.