Over the last few months, we’ve given you the skinny on how to grow cannabis plants in some seriously confined spaces, including small-scale grow tents, balconies, and even micro grows. This article looks at how you can successfully grow weed in yet another tiny area – a cupboard or closet.
We aim to prove that no matter your limitations, cannabis growers can easily surmount any concerns over space and privacy and produce cannabis from seed, no matter how restricted you think you are.
Table of contents
- Why You Might Grow Cannabis in a Cupboard
- Things to Consider When Growing Weed in a Closet
- The Equipment You Need
- Choosing the Right Cannabis Seeds for a Closet Grow
- Getting Started with Your Closet Grow
- Ventilating a Closet Grow
- Lighting a Closet Grow
- The Grow Medium for Closet Weed
- Air Purification for Your Closet Grow
- Watering Your Weed in a Closet Grow
- Training Your Plants in a Closet Grow
- Growing Weed in a Closet – Conclusions
Why You Might Grow Cannabis in a Cupboard
There are plenty of reasons to start an indoor grow project such as this. If you have limited space, rather than set up a larger grow room, you can still produce a couple of plants in a cupboard (call it a grow closet) without too much clutter. Keeping your project confined to a small space such as this cuts down on hassle – everything is in one tiny area, making it easy to manage and monitor.
Maybe privacy is your main concern, in which case a ‘closet grow’ keeps your plants nicely out of sight and makes odour containment relatively easy to manage at the same time.
From a budget standpoint, utilising your closet as a grow space saves you money on having to shell out for a grow tent. Growing cannabis in a cupboard is an excellent way for newcomers to start producing their own weed, mainly for the reasons listed above. A small cannabis grow is the best way to start, and if you’re successful, it gives you the scope and confidence to take on a more significant project.
Things to Consider When Growing Weed in a Closet
When growing plants in a closet, some key considerations deserve your attention. The most important details to get right are ventilation, temperature, and light – by managing these factors correctly, your grow has a greater chance of success. Your grow setting for this project is a dark environment with next to no ventilation, so you’ll have to make sure you have the equipment to overcome these hurdles.
The Equipment You Need
Cupboard/Closet – When choosing your closet, make sure it will comfortably accommodate the number of plants you intend to grow and the additional equipment required to nurture the grow.
Containers/Plant Pots – Choose pots that will accommodate your plants’ growth
Grow lights/hangers – When growing in a confined space, we always recommend LED lights as they produce the necessary light without giving off the type of heat that could cause problems in such a confined space. The amount of light you allow is critical in the growing process.
Grow medium – soil, Rockwool, perlite or cocoa are your best bests for planting in.
Carbon filter – To keep the cannabis smell to a minimum
Choosing the Right Cannabis Seeds for a Closet Grow
The seeds you choose/strain you grow will depend on the conditions you’re going to be growing under, but it’s best to be aware of several key points from the outset, especially if this is your first project or your first time growing weed in a more confined space. It’s good to remember that photoperiod sativas can stretch between 200-and 300% during the flowering stage. In contrast, indicas tend to take on much less of an upward surge, resulting in more compact plants.
If you want to take the hassle out of it, we’d recommend auto-flowering strains. Auto-flowering cannabis plants automatically switch from the vegetative stage to the flowering stage, taking away a great deal of the worry about lighting times and so on. Then there’s the potential headache and additional expense of odour control. If this is a concern for you, choose a low-odour strain for the occasion. You can’t go wrong with Jack Herer or Northern Lights – these are great, classic strains high in THC that score relatively low on the aroma scale and are both available as auto-flowering seeds.
Getting Started with Your Closet Grow
Make sure your closet is free from mould or dampness before you begin. Begin by thoroughly cleaning and sanitising the space inside – you don’t want to start growing plants in a grimy closet! It‘s a good idea to ensure the inside of your wardrobe is white, too – this will maximise the reflective potential of your lighting, which will result in better plant growth. The next step is to consider your ventilation options before putting your equipment in. Without adequate ventilation, the stagnant air in the small space will choke your plants and starve them of the CO2 they desperately need for respiration. A lack of fresh air in your grow space will also lead to increased humidity, creating the perfect breeding ground for mould and other pathogens that quickly contaminate your weed.
Ventilating a Closet Grow
Airflow is crucial here. Choosing the proper ventilation for a closet grow might well be the most challenging part – after all, you’re working in a compact space, one which is dark and stuffy. Stagnant air leads to mould, and mould ruins plants. You may get adequate air circulation from propping the closet door open a little (while the lights are on). You may get away with using a couple of small oscillating fans, but installing an exhaust fan in your closet is something you should consider as it allows fresh air in and stale air and heat out, ensuring consistent room temperature.
Be aware you’ll need to cut a hole in one side of your closet to install it. Another bonus of an exhaust vent system is that some of these come with a filter, which will help handle the smells from your cannabis plants. Exhaust fans are available in various sizes, so find the right one for your closet by taking measurements ahead of time and choosing the best one for you. Additional ventilation in the form of a small desk fan (on a low setting) will serve you well in keeping a nice cool breeze shimmering over your plants.
Tip: Put the input fan at the bottom of the closet and the output fan at the top. Hot air rises to the top, so your exhaust ducting should be up high to suck out the majority of the warmer air.
Lighting a Closet Grow
The more plants you’re looking to grow, the more lights you’ll need. The importance of lighting cannot be understated for a project such as this, as the type and quality of lighting you choose will significantly influence the quality of your cannabis plants. There are many different types of light available, but you can’t go wrong with LED grow lights. They don’t produce heat, the light spectrum is ideal for growing marijuana plants, they’re significantly cheaper to run (a definite bonus given current energy costs), and they’re easy to install.
To complement your lighting set-up, it’s worth investing in a timer – this will save you a ton of hassle, especially in the flowering stage when your plants require a strict 12/12 hours of the light cycle. You’ll pick one up at any decent hardware store or online for roughly the price of a case of beer.
The Grow Medium for Closet Weed
There are several options for grow mediums, including soil, Rockwool, coco, and hydroponics. However, it’s probably best to rule out hydroponics for such a small set-up. Sure, there are advantages to hydroponic systems, but the disadvantages include things like root rot, so for a project like this, it’s perhaps best to use good old fashioned soil because the only real downside is that if you spill it, it makes a little mess.
Tip: By choosing organic soil, you won’t have to worry about contaminants or pollutants, and your plants will receive the nutrients they need for optimal growth.
Air Purification for Your Closet Grow
If stealth is a big concern, you’ll want to make sure you have something in place to limit those skunktacular odours. Cannabis smells like cannabis, and if you’re going to keep this project on the down-low, you have to consider the aromas. If you’ve chosen a good exhaust ventilation system, you’ll already have a degree of filtration, but a carbon filter near the intake fan and one at the exhaust will keep you right in terms of odour control.
A lot of this is avoidable if you start by making the right choice in terms of strain – going with a low-odour strain from the outset reduces the chances of the smell of your plants giving the game away, assuming stealth is an issue in the first place.
Watering Your Weed in a Closet Grow
Since your using a closet as a grow space, you don’t have the room for a water supply line and drainage system. Watering by hand will require you to exercise great care; you want to avoid overwatering and spillage due to a lack of drainage and humidity. Hand watering is tedious but probably the safest way to go because you retain complete control over how often you water.
Tip: Be sure to deal with any spillages immediately to keep the moisture levels inside the growing environment from getting out of control and causing problems for your plants.
Training Your Plants in a Closet Grow
Depending on your closet space, as your plants begin to flower and grow, you may need to employ some training techniques to keep them nice and compact. You should regularly check on your plants to keep tabs on their progress. Once in the morning and once at night will give you ample opportunity to troubleshoot any problems that may arise before they take hold and cause more significant issues. A good tip is to know a little bit about training techniques to keep your plants in line.
Defoliation involves pruning the excess foliage to ensure your plant gets enough lighting to develop good buds. Still, this practice should be done in moderation – keep it too big leaves, yellowing or discoloured leaves, and anything overshadowing the buds.
Low-Stress Training is a handy technique in confined spaces and involves bending branches to achieve maximum light penetration. This technique encourages plants to grow more side branches instead of growing taller and depending on your closet size. This may be a useful technique.
Topping and fimming are other techniques you can use to your advantage when growing weed in s a small space. Cutting the top off a cannabis plant forces it to grow wider instead of taller and helps with bud production. Fimming is a procedure similar to topping. Only instead of cutting the entire tip of the stem, you cut maybe 75% of it – the upside to this overtopping is that it causes less stress on the plant.
Growing Weed in a Closet – Conclusions
Growing cannabis plants in a closet may seem like a crazy idea, but growing superb weed in such a confined space with a little know-how and the right equipment is possible. A closet grow is a fun way to get started on your growing journey. Be sure to let us know in the comments if you’ve had success growing this way, and let us know your top tips for getting the most out of a wardrobe grow box.