Growing Cannabis on a Budget
When it comes to growing, budgeting and being efficient is the key. Otherwise growing can turn right into a money pit quicker than you think.
This applies for all levels of growing commercial, care givers to personal growers.
Here in Michigan you are limited to one grow for each outdoor season because of the winter. But, where as if you were to grow indoors you could pack in 4 to 5 grows per year depending on your rotations. There are several pros and cons with both growing indoors and outdoors. Obviously growing indoors the cost can get out of control. There are some growers that have it down pat so good that they harvest every month. Constantly having plants in their veg room and constantly having plants in the flower room, then swapping them out from one room to the flower room and then harvesting. That takes a lot of commitment and dedication.
Did I say rooms? Yes, I did and you should be prepared to have two separate rooms. One for 12 hours on and 12 hours off (flowering) then 18 hour on and 6 hours off (vegging). This is necessary for mimicking the outdoors. So this is what I like to do and that is to have LED lights that are efficient enough to veg your plants and then HPS bulbs in our flower room. The reason why is running those LED lights in the veg rooms will save you money.
Next, if I had only known about critical or dynamic peak pricing through the consumers energy company when I first started being a care giver. I could of saved a lot of money. I had noticed that growing indoors during the summer residential electricity can be huge. Yes, huge if you use more than 600 kWh per month. Only imagine using 6000 KWH each month for growing only 12 plants using 4 HPS 1000 lights. How it is calculated is first 600 KWH rate is at a lower rate and anything over is doubled during the summer months. This rate is to encourage you to use less electricity because of the overload of usage during the summer months.
But, this is old news because now all residents on standard rates is going to be changed to Time of day rate. What this means is you will have lower rates for nights and weekends. You will want to adjust your grow hours to benefit your over all electric cost. You should pay attention to your usage hours before you get an unexpected bill. Or maybe consider using critical peak time of use program. It’s similar to time of use.
It seems simple to shut down your flower room during the summer months and grow outside. This will free up the biggest cost and that is the electricity. The over all yield doesn’t even compare with outdoors vs indoors. Unless you have 12’ or higher ceilings with commercial lighting. Outdoor growing has the highest yields under good growing conditions.
I added some links for your convenience.
Nextlight Veg8 is full spectrum and replaces the T5 lamps. Here again saving money on electricity and bulb replacements
Veg8 190 watts LED Nextlight
Nextlight Flowering 650 watts
Mega LED full spectrum light providing Sun-light quality and replaces 1000 watts bulbs HPS lights saving you huge $$$
The benefits are huge at all aspects in growing with no bulb replacements, less electric cost and no heat stress for your cannabis.
Yours truly Mason J.A.R. Head