Growing weed is easy and the more money you have to invest, the easier and more fruitful it gets.
But since decent setup for multiple plants easily costs a 4 figure sum, we will focus on a really small grow with equiptment for less than 300€.
Depending on how much of the needed stuff you already own, it might be way cheapter than that.
A little warning: Little cost also means some DIY work. No need to be a trained carpenter or elictrician, but you shouldn't expect plug and play here.
Basic things we need:
- A box to grow in
- Ventilation (includig air filtration)
- Soil and fertilizer
- Needed tools
- Useful but not needed tools
- The box:
There are some important things about the box that effect the price of the whole setup, first and foremost the size.
Since we plan on a small and cheap grow we should aim for something with a surface of around 30x30cm, it should also be at least 80cm high. 100cm would be better.
Idealy you already have something that can be used as a growbox, like an old closet or a broken fridge.
For this theoretical grow, i looked up a small cabinet on Amazon for around 50€. The Measurments are L 68 x W 39 x H 90 cm and it's called "KETER Stilo low cabinet", see picture 1.
The pictures on Amazon also show that you can close it with a padlock, which might come in handy.
Since the surface is way above the 30x30 we aimed for, we use the extra lenght for a 20cm department for our growing needs and tools. For that we need something to separate it, any piece of ~90x39 board should do.
Just don't take paper or styrofoam please, we don't need a fire.
Also, there's a whatever it's called in english in there. I marked it on pic 4. Take it out. And tell me what it's called, i need to know now.
So, now we have the base of our growbox which will end up at around 38x38x90. Perfect.
To ensure that only a minimum of energy is wasted, we need the insides of the box as reflective as possible.
Many people think about aluminium foil but it's worth to invest a bit more. Aluminium foil has very poor reflective properties and it will make your box heat up a lot.
You can go with a rescue blanket but a mylar film would be way better. I recommend going with the mylar film, you should get enough for the grow box for around 10€ to 15€, maybe even cheaper.
We will need to make a few holes in the box, so be ready for that, but first:
2. The light:
A good LED light in the 50W to 100W range, made for growing purposes can easily cost 200€ and above. We don't want to spend that kind of money so regular household LEDS have to do.
Other kinds of lights might be more effective for less money than LEDs are, but since efficience and temperature play a role as well, we go with LEDs.
There's a lot to say about different kinds of LEDs, color spectrums and so on. Since we're cheap we ignore everything we could learn and go with the basics:
We want to reach ~50W. There's the possibility that we have to add another light later when the plant hits bloom, so leave a bit of place.
Best go for a setup of multiple E27 LEDs that hit different numbers on the kelvin scale. Something like 2x 3500k and 1x 5000k. If you compare different LEDs with the same wattage, check the lumen value. It's not really that simple but for this setup we're going to say "the more lumen the better".
Example for an acceptable LED: Awenia LED Bulb E27 20 W.
Now that you found the LEDs of your dreams you need fitting sockets/cables to connect them to. Also somthing to mount them together so they don't wobble around. A piece of sturdy plastic where you can cut fitting holes in should do the job but i recommend a lamp holder like in pic 2 (with the lamp holder you also only need 1 cable, so it's worth it).
There are various things you need to control, like humidity, temperature and smell. That's what you need a ventilation for.
We start with the most important thing: Airfiltration. If you don't get rid of the stink you can just as well open the window and scream "Hey, i'm growing weed in here" 24/7.
I snatched this tutorial from a topic related internet forum and midified it a bit so it fits our grow box better. I won't quarantet that this works since it is not tested but i assume it should.
What is needed:
4x 120mm PC fan (two of them will be destroyed, so take a used or cheap one)
1x Universal power supply
1x 120mm fan guard
1x aluminium insect screen (optionally, you can buy 120mm dust screens for 2 of the fans, it would be easier but more costly.)
4mm Activated carbon pellets
A 9,2cm to 12cm fan adapter
Electrical connectors (or whatever else you do to connect cables)
Now take two of the fans and take everything out, only the chasis should remain.
Take a 120 mm fan guard or the dust screen fan and connect it to one of the fans.
See pic 3 for how it's supposed to look like when added to one of the 2 working fans. You can also see all the other steps and the finished product in there.
Stack the two fan chassis on top of the working fan, fill it with the carbon pellets and put a dust screen on top of it. Now add the other working fan on top. Screw it together.
Make sure that the air goes from one site to the other and not from both sites out or in.
Now add some foam or something similar as isolation to the intake site to make sure that only air from inside the box is pulled out.
You can now connect the fans to the power supply and we go back to the box to put all our stuff together.
Keep in mind that the carbon pellets have to be replaced occasionally.
We also need a tiny ventilator to keep the air moving, just take any cheap clip on desk ventilator from Amazon. Shouldn't be more than 10€ or 15€
4. Adding it all together:
Now we need three holes in our box, i marked everything in pic number 4. As you can tell, i am very talented at using paint.
One at the center top, this one is for our light. It should be just big enough, so you can get the socket trough.
One at the center back. This one should be just big enough to squish in our 120 mm fan with the isolating foam. Make sure that it doesn't fall off. If needed, use some duct tape or something like that.
One at the bottom left. This doesn't need to be too big 90x90mm should be enough as a passive air intake. Important is that we have negative pressure inside the box so that no air leaves unless it goes through the filter.
Now, if all the parts are in place and working, you're done. The box is there. Have fun.