This section of my blog is intended to give every reader a clue of what are my tools of trade and what am I using to grow high yielding autoflowering plants. I will give a review of each tool or item and include useful websites that should be useful to you!
Here are some links of resources any cannabis enthusiast should visit :
And here are some of the tools that I use for growing top autoflower plants:
General Hydroponics GH1514 Ph Control Kit
A PH adjuster Kit is a must have in any serious growers arsenal as PH control is very important and the correct autoflower PH level can boost your Yield and total plant mass.
I myself use this General Hydroponics GH1514 KIt that lets me regulate my PH of the water I use for feeding my plants. I don’t use the included tester kit because it is too messy and I have a PH tester that work perfectly. You can also use Vinegar and Baking Soda to raise or lower PH but I have found that these PH Up and PH Down solutions work better than those substances. However this may not be a good buy for someone with a lot of plants because there is not that much solution but for that price and a small garden this is perfect!
2 Packs Ph 1-14 Test Paper slips.
This was my first try to measure my PH level and I must say that it worked perfectly. These 80 strips have to be submerged in water and within 15 seconds they will change color and you will be able to tell the PH level. The thing that I did not like is that they are really fragile when wet so if they get too saturated they can break apart.I had to take a pipet and with it take the water sample and sprayed it on the paper strip and in this way these Litmus paper strips won’t brake apart with too much moisture. The price is great and if you don’t need to measure the PH too often then they will work great but after the 80 pack was gone I wanted something more advanced.
Milwaukee Instruments pH600AQ pH Tester
This is my PH tester that I use and I must say that despite the low price it works like a charm. I was skeptical at first weather to buy this cheap tester or get something more fancy but I decided that this would be good enough and I have not had any trouble with it. The calibration works and the tester itself is accurate but to be honest I don’t use it all the time as my water supply has a constant PH level and it is almost at the right scale but every now and then I check the supply and this cheap device have not let me down yet.
4 Inch Plastic plant pots
These 4 inch pots were my first try at growing auto flowers as I had very limited space requirements and wanted my girls to stray small so I chose these small plastic containers. They worked well and I managed to pull a couple of grams from each plant in a very limited space. I really love these as they have great drainage holes and can be reused as they are made from quite resilient plastic. They can feel a bit flexible and thin but I had no issues with them. I also use these for seed production as I grow a female an male plants in these small containers so that they stay small as I don’t need thousands of seeds and a couple hundred from each pot is more than enough for me.
1 Gallon plastic blow molded pots
These growing containers where my second go at auto flowers as I got a bit larger grow area and wanted to grow bigger plants. These Blow molded containers are ideal for smaller grows and are also easy to reuse and quite strong. They have huge drainage holes so be prepared that a lot of water will flow out of these but I have found that if you put a planter tray at the bottom and fill it with water the pot has sufficient holes that they soak up the water from below and this lets your autoflower to grow its roots faster toward the bottom and get a much stronger root mass. In these containers you still get a bit smaller yield than you could potentially have but for smaller grow areas and multiple plant growth or Sea of Green grows these work perfectly.
Plastic Nursery 3 Gallon Trade POTS
These are the largest posts I have grown weed in and They provide sufficient growing space for the roots to expand and your plant to get its maximum yield. I managed to get somewhere around 35 grams from one Sweet Seeds Fast Bud in this pot and with performing LST the plant did not grow taller than 30 cm. These amazing containers are just like the 1 gallon ones but bigger and will allow you to grow fewer plants and get the desired yield and growth. At least for me these have worked perfectly and I must say that I feel a bit rubbish to have ever grown seedless females in those small pots but that was a good first experience and as I mentioned above I still use those small ones for Seed production.
Luster Leaf 1820 Rapitest Soil Moisture Meter
When I first started out I was really baffled by the watering action and I did not know when or how to water so I thought of ways to know how moist the soil is and sticking your fingers in the ground each time did not sound promising, so I found this soil humidity meter that works great and for the first couple of grows I managed to water my plats right but then I learned how often should I water them by the weight of the pot and now I use that method. But for any newcomer I suggest to first get accurate readings and after a while when you take the pot up and see if is lighter and measure the humidity if it really need watering you will be able to slowly stop measuring all together.
Solo 418 1-Liter One-Hand Pressure Sprayer
This hand sprayer is my tool for foliar feeding my plants and also for basic spraying them when they are in their seedling and vegetative phases. This particular model is a one liter one with a pressure system that you can pump and then just press the top lever and your nutrient solution or PH adjusted water sprays out. The best thing about this device is that you can regulate how big or small the spray will be and it ranges from fine mist to almost steam and there are no drips that those cheap sprayers have. I also like the nozzle that can be adjusted to 90 degrees so that I can spray part of my weed plants that is just not reachable by maneuvering the sprayer itself. I also read that this model has a anti corrosion material for the times when I use it for my foliar feeding or pest control.
One thing to remember is to always depressurize it because this will extend its lifetime and will give you better return of investment.
For the temperature and humidity I use two devices where one is set at the top f my grow box but the second one is at the bottom.
At the top I have
Digital LCD Thermometer / Humidity Meter
This was my first digital Thermometer / Hygrometer purchases and I will say that it was really cheap but turned out to be quite accurate and is a nice addition for my grow room to know how are the growing conditions changing and what I need to adjust. This device is quite reliable and I like the big temperature display as the temperature is the main thing that changes in my grow room and with such large numbers the temperature can be seen from quite a large distance. This Digital Thermometer also has a Humidity meter and Min / Max humidity and temperature readings that let you see how cold it got at night and what was the top readings for humidity and temperature in the day. Another great feature is that this uses 1 AA battery and it also has a clock and date functions that let you quickly see what is the date for some quick check ins and recording growth and grow cycles.
AcuRite 613 Indoor Humidity Monitor
This is the second device I bought but not because the first one was faulty but just to get something fresh and to be able to measure humidity and temperature at two levels. I tested them both together and they showed exactly the same temperatures so I should think they are not both wrong. This AcuRite 613 model is a good investment because it has a big Humidity number at the top and a smaller temperature reading at the bottom. This device will be more useful for places where the humidity changes more often than the temperature but basically you will be able to see both temperature and humidity reading quite well. There is also the option to see humidity and temperature High and Low and that gives you a more better understanding of how the environment changes in our grow room every day.
Sweet seeds fast bud #2
My first Autoflower grow was a Fast Bud #2 from Sweet Seeds and I must admit that it was not a ideal grow but I managed to get quite good yield for my first ever grow. I grew this strain in those 4 inch plastic pots that I mentioned earlier and they worked perfectly. This stain has a strong smell and quite a potent smoke that can knock you out and is a perfect candidate for late night smoking as it allows you to get amazing sleep! The height of this plant is directly influenced by the growing conditions but in the best case scenario you will be able to get a plant that is about 90 cm in height and will yield you around 30 to 50 grams and in the best case scenario you can get somewhere around 70 grams from each plant. This strain is amazing in that you can get you harvest in 50 days from seed so it is truly a fast bud!
For more information about this amazing strain see my detailed review!
This strain is currently my favorite one as it has the smell and taste of the award winning regular photo voltaic Blueberry strain but has the benefit of flowering automatically. I really love the taste and smell and the smoke is more sativa like and will give you more energy and is good for daytime consumption. This plant will stay small and will yield a decent amount that again depends on the growing conditions but you can expect a bit more than from the fast bud and in the range of 50 to 80 grams per plant. This amazing strain will show you the inherited sativa characteristics and can grow tall!. I strongly recommend this strain to any grower who enjoys a sativa high and wants the blueberry aroma to fill his grow room!
I have a bit more extensive review of the Auto blueberry here!
Auto Original Amnesia
This is one of the strongest auto strains that I have tasted and I must say that it truly is comparable to the regular Indica strains with High THC values and will knock you out and give you that couch lock feeling! This is sativa and indica cross plant and it is taller than those small autoflwoers but the best part is that it produces like Indica so you get a great production and really strong High. The smoke itself is not that harsh but the feeling is amazing, you will get the immediate energy rush and after a wile you will need to sit down because the strong THC content with low CBD amounts will start to effect you. The production of this strain can surpass 100 grams but usually is around the 50 to 70 g range and the height can be up to a meter and a half so don’t try to grow this in small grow boxes without any low stress training.
I also have a bit more extensive review of this strain here!
My first grow was a micro cabinet grow with CFL regular lamps that I purchased from Amazone and they worked great. Before that grow I did an extensive research for the subject “if you really could grow weed with CFL light” and from what I found all posts suggested that I can but I had to try them out myself. I then purchased those regular 40 W CFL bulb because I calculated that they are the most efficient of all those lights and after arrival I placed them in my grow box and they worked just like other growers told they would. At first I was shocked that they are more efficient than those big 200 and more watt CFL lights but I guess these 40 W bulbs are the most popular ones and manufacturers have a great experience in making and perfecting them.
I also found that placement of these lights is crucial and a few smaller bulbs will give you a greater coverage and your plants will receive more light so they will grow faster. I found
that my autoflowers will grow best under both the daylight and warm yellowish lights combined but I have not done side by side grows with different spectrum lights so I can’t be 100 % sure about that. The exact light bulbs that I used are the: Sunlite SL42 (6500K) and EarthTronics CF42SW1B (2700K) and because they are different spectrum ones they will give more photosintetcally active radiation to your plants and they will grow faster – at least my did!
So after a wile I started to research the T5 grow light technology as I heard they work better than CFL bubs and have more advantages over them. I researched and found that they have up to 100 lumens per watt efficiency and so they can be up to 2 times more efficient than those regular CFL bulbs. After this research I was hooked and I wanted to find the best grow light for the lumen to watt ratio and for the best price so I researched and found those 1 bulb fixtures – SunBlaze – 24″ Grow Light Kit. I snatched up 4 lights and after arrival they I set them up and they gave amazing light spread and coverage and for LST and SCROG they worked perfectly. The only downside was that they were not that powerful and I needed something stronger if I wanted to grow more plants but for two medium sized autos they are enough.
That stronger light is the Hydrofarm FLT48 4-Feet/8-Tube t5 fixture that spits out a whopping 40000 lumens and can easily grow 5 autoflowers. This fixture is also an amazing value for your money because it has a good light spread, powerful light and those T5 bulbs will work for more than 10000 hours. I been using this light for some time now and it has not let me down and not one bulb has broken. Until I see those LED light get cheaper I will stay with these T5 light and maybe in the future experiment with different color spectrum bulbs but for now four 6400K and four 3000K bulbs grow my plants like crazy!
A humidity dome is usually used for cuttings when cloning regular photo-sensitive cannabis plants but I also use these plastic covers for seed starting and seedling phase as they retain moisture and I can much more easily control the growing environment and get the best growth out of my seedlings. This particular Hydrofarm dome has those vents at the top for even more better environmental condition regulation and the size is great for starting a bunch of seedling at once.
For my ventilation and air circulation I use three 120mm silent case PC fans and they work perfectly in my small grow closet. One of these sucks air inside my grow box at the bottom and another one takes the hot air out at the bottom but the third is positioned to blow air directly on the plants so that they can get more mixed air and there wont be any CO2 buildup around the leafs. I bought these fans with the Coolerguys 12 V adapter that takes in your household current and spits out those 12 Volts needed for that fan. I have two of these adapters and I also needed the Zalman ZM-MC1 Multi-connector that allows me to connect that fan directly to that Adapter. However this Adapter is not essential if you have some old mobile phone chargers as one of the fans is directly plugged with the phone charger but you will need to cut and fit together the right wires for these two to work.