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Can a tent be too big? + needs some advice on beginners setup

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    Can a tent be too big? + needs some advice on beginners setup

    Hello Folks

    Im planning to buy some things to try my first grow, been reading up and down on google and thru forums, but theres some things im still not sure about and hoping for some advice from some with experiense.

    First, i was originally planning on growing 4 plants in a homebox 4x4 feet tent, i can get this tent really cheap. However, electric usage/bill is a concern for me, since electric is really expensive where i am at, so now i have thought of downgrading to a 2 (or maybe 3 if the led can handle it?) plant setup, and using the viprarspectre 450w led (which pulls like 200w from the outlet as far as i have read), instead of the hps 600w setup i was considering buying at first. So question is, can i still use the 4x4 tent with just 2 plants with same results as a 2x2 tent? or is it a downside to have "too big" tent? getting two 450w leds and grow 4 plants is an option, but further down the road, cant really afford 2 lamps right now.

    I see some say you wont get the same quality plants using led, but other says its no problem. Whats your opinions? im growing strickly for my own use, so its not like the quality needs to be top notch, but of course i would like some good quality stuff. I also have a very old hps 400w with magnetic ballast, would it be worth it to use it instead of the led in one of the cycles? however im a lil sceptical of using it cuz of heat and again electric.

    It gets a bit colder where im planning to grow during winter, maybe 35-40f, will i have to add heat to the tent in winter if i use led, or would i have to anyway? im not sure what kinda temps it gets inside a tent.

    I also wonder about hydrophonics, using rockwool in water seems from what i read to be pretty easy to start and maintain, is this correct? im a bit confused of all the options when it comes to grow mediums and such. i can get a good deal on "autopots" with a tank, after what i read people seems to be pretty happy with those kinda pots, its additional costs, but if it makes it easier to grow good, im thinking it might be worth it? is there reasons why i shouldnt do this, and if so, what should i go for instead as a beginner?

    Lots of questions, but i hope someone has time to give some advice, Thanks in Advance

    Think of a tent as if it were a house, the bigger it is the more expensive it is to operate - more lights, more fans, bigger exhaust fan, harder to maintain a stable climate ect. One 450 would do great in a 2x2 tent and it gives off enough heat to keep it warm in the winter. You could grow 4 plants in a 2x2 using 3 gallon pots with a short 2-4wk veg. If you’re starting out go small with what you can afford and make sure you enjoy it before sinking too much money into it.


      I'm also a new grower and started with a 2x2x3 tent but found out that I wanted a bigger one almost immediately and bought a 32"x32"x63" one a month later. Wasn't so much the floor space but the height that made me upgrade. With only 36" of height there wasn't much space to adjust the lights and I had to put the fan and carbon filter outside the tent which made it nosier than having it inside. Will say having the extra floor space helped too being able to put a decent size humidifier in there but I needed a bigger one due to the dryness were I live.

      Here are some pics of both tents and my setup.
      Current setup for first grow:
      • Strain - Critical Purple Feminized Autoflowering
      • Vivosun 32x32x63 grow tent
      • Vivosun 4" 203 CFM Fan with Carbon Filter
      • 2 x Vivosun VS1000 LED grow lights
      • TaoTronics 6L Humidifier
      • 2 Gallon Smart Pots
      • FoxFarm Happy Frog Soil
      • Dyna-Gro nutrients (Grow, Bloom and Mag-Pro)


        Thanks for you answers.

        So having a too big tent isnt a good idea, so basicly if i use a 4x4 tent with 2 plants, i would still need about the same lightning as for 4 plants? i think im pretty set on doing just 2 plants then cuz of the powerdraw of the lights.

        Thats a good point bigmak, the seeds i have is for pretty large plants as far as i understand, bigbud and simular, so i would need a tall tent right? what kinda lights do you have in there bigmak?
        so if i can find a full height 2x2 tent that would be ideal for two larger plants i take it?

        Since i never grown before, i dont really know what to expect out of a couple of plants, i know theres variations of types and how experienced ur at growing and so forth. My goal is just to keep myself provided with the good stuff year around, i assume 2 plants growing year around, would be plenty for 1 person? if not, then i have to rethink the number again, lol.

        Thanks again folks


        • Hectus
          Hectus commented
          Editing a comment
          those lights looks nice in ur pictures. I read good things about vivosun considering their prices, too bad there seems to be no sale or shipping aviable for any of their products across the atlantic. Have you had a harvest yet? how happy are you with them so far?

        • BigMak
          BigMak commented
          Editing a comment
          No harvest yet, this is my first grow but so far very happy with the lights. Ordered them from Amazon saying they would ship when back in stock, approx a month but I got them in a week. Super quiet, no fan and so far plants are loving them.

        • Drekthar
          Drekthar commented
          Editing a comment
          Hectus i've been through them all in the past 3 years starting with a 2x2, 32 x32, 5x5, now a 9x5. Generally i grow 4 plants in hydro. I like the extra space to move around and access the plants from all sides etc. but tbh a 5x5 is probably big enough and if you spend some time viewing the various other posts you can see that you could fill that space with 1,2, or more plants depending on how you train the plant and so forth. I'm guessing most thing soil is easiest but i've been in hydro from the start and its super easy as well. I run a Viparspectre 450 over 1 plant right now in my tent and a viparspecter 600 over another. Then I have 4 plants under a slim 600h. My recommendation would be to get the 5x5 tent if you have the room. Also one thats going to be high enuf.

        I would say bigger is better because I can almost guarantee you will want more plants down the road and when you can afford more or bigger lights you will need to buy another tent. This way the tent is already there.


          Thanks for ur answer.

          That was my initial thoughts on the 4x4 tent. If i go for the 4x4 for now but one of the led lighs basicly ment for 2 plants, will i be able to grow 2 decent plants in that tent with the lights tho? or would it be pretty much useless? if its doable with decent results, i think its what i will do since i get the 4x4 tent cheaper than a 2x2 and can put that towards another led light at a later time.


            I’d like to think there are no tents too big. Just not enough plants


              Thanks again for your answers.

              What about plant medium, whats easiest to keep healthy and fed? any thoughts on the autopot systems?


                Depends who you ask on this forum, different styles to choose from. Myself I use livingsoil. I have tried almost all the ways that are shown on the tutorials from soil with bottled nutrients to hydro dwc no coco. My choice now is simple just mix the soil myself add the amendments and just add water when needed. I do top dress and feed more compost teas now that I’m in small pots but 20 gallon pots and up you can easily go a harvest or two even more with just water. I went over a year not sure how many harvest that way just watering. I hated testing my water ph and all the other things when not using organic living soil.


                  For a beginner I would suggest soil or coco coir. Unless you can keep temperatures pretty low, hydro wouldn't be a very good option. Coco has similar benefits of hydro (if you're really interested in hydro) but you have less chance of running into root issues if you have higher temperatures.

                  I also agree on the bigger tent. I have 5 right now (soon to be 4) and I started with a 4x4 tent, which just wasn't enough for me. The big size won't be a problem for just 2 plants, but the tent walls won't reflect as much light on them. The biggest thing I keep in mind is how much I consume. If you're conservative and consume an ounce a month, a 2x2 with 1-2 plants would be fine. If you're like me and smoke a lot, the bigger the better. It won't seem like it but overall you'll save money on your electric bill as opposed to buying weed. I smoke more than 2 ounces a month. If I buy from a dispensary, I'm going to pay $300+ a month, easily. I spend half that with 5 tents running and have all the weed I can consume. Hopefully that helps a little bit. Good luck and happy growing!


                    Thanks again for ur answers.

                    I see coco could be an option, but livingsoil, how does that work? and 20 gallon pots? sounds very interesting.

                    thanks for that info on consument dphipps1020, i agree with the cost of buying vs electric and such, which is my reasoning too. Sounds like i maybe need to bite the bullet and prepare for at least 4 plants pretty soon, money spent on buying weed would be smarter invested in equipment and even electric. So 4x4 tent it is.

                    So going the led light route and creating less heat and such, do you still use extraction fans and such like u would with hps lighting? i would assume u could get away with a less powerfull extraction system than with hps lighting but at the same time, its probably better to have a extraction system thats too big than too small.


                      Yeah you want an exhaust system to get rid of the excess heat, and a fan or 2 for air circulation. LEDs will still create some heat but not as much as a HID light would, so you could probably get away with a fan pulling around 200 CFM. The higher the better usually, but 200 CFM should be plenty with LEDs. Wattages are usually fairly low on those anyway, but you can use a fan controller to get it even lower.


                        Thanks again for all your answers.

                        im Learning a lot from all your advice and i feel like im getting closer to a start and what will suit my needs.

                        Livingsoil looks very interesting and is def something i would like to try further down the line, but to keeps things more simple i think i will go with regular soil for now.
                        Speaking of "regular" soil, can i just get any good quality plant soil, or is it things i should look for in the soil? buying any "special canabis brand soil" isnt really an option for me since its not aviable to me localy.

                        200cfm should be easily doable on a budget i think. I looked into the carbon filters a bit and saw one of the bigger brands, which i cant remember the name of now, but their filters had a replaceable sock on the outside, i guess a setup like this helps u save in the long run when u dont have to get new filters all the time?

                        I also wonder about the pots, since i plan on large plants like bigbud, how big pots should i go for? do i need several size of pots to switch them in depending of how mature the plants are?
                        i guess also those big trays to put under the pots would be nice to have to avoid a huge mess on the tent floor? any other things like that that comes in handy?

                        Also a question about led lights, i see many of them have switches for veg and bloom cycles, do people use them switches or run it on full spectrum all the time? reason i ask is i assume they use less than full power when their in either bloom or veg, and that means i could afford bigger or another light to add, and still be low on electric useage.

                        Any other things you guys know that is a must have or makes growing life easier, being equipment, pots or whatever else you can think of, please feel free to suggest it, i take all the help i can get.

                        THanks again


                          For the soil, if you have Miracle Grow available you can use the kind that is designed for tomatoes, don't use the regular kind. If you have Fox Farms soil available, you can mix the Happy Frog and Ocean Forest together and it will be perfect for a full grow.

                          For the pots, 5 gallon pots will be sufficient. The type depends on your preference really. A lot of people use fabric pots here, some use air pots, and a few use plastic pots. Personally, I use fabric although I'd like to try the air pots some time in the future. Definitely get some trays to put under the pots. Pay attention to the size of your pots so you know what size to get.

                          If you want to start your seeds in a smaller pot, I'd suggest a one gallon pot. Some people go from a small pot, to medium and then to the final large pot. That isn't entirely necessary though. You can start them in the final pots and just use one pot for your grow too. Just keep in mind the bigger the pot, the more you'll have to pay attention to the watering. On the other hand, every time you transplant it takes a couple days to recover if they get transplant shock.

                          I'd suggest looking at the tent setup tutorials, to see if there's anything you may have missed. A timer, fan and filter for exhaust, fan for air circulation, and a thermometer are the main things. A humidifier or dehumidifier will be useful if your humidity is too high or low. You don't need Co2 so I wouldn't waste time or money on that.

                          Just a few suggestions from my end, hope it helps.


                            Thanks again dphipps1020

                            Airpots, are you talking about those fabric pots that "breaths"?
                            sounds like its just as easy to start in a big pot then and rather try check soil/water often.

                            a dehumidifier i already own thankfully, humidifier is something i will have to get.

                            Im writing down everything to make a list of what to buy when im ordering, as long as i have the basic stuff to start im golden.


                            • dphipps1020
                              dphipps1020 commented
                              Editing a comment
                              You don't necessarily have to have a humidifier or dehumidifier. A lot of people here have one or the other, but not usually both. And then there's some that are like me and don't monitor humidity at all. I've found my house to be around 30% so I could probably try raising it a little, but my plants are growing just fine so I haven't bothered.

                              Fabric pots and air pots are a bit different, the link is an example of air pots.

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