Even experienced indoor vegetable growers can face a substantial learning curve when they begin to grow cannabis. The cannabis plant has its own characteristics that are unlike those of most vegetables.

As the number of states that legalize cannabis continues to rise and growers face an increasing amount of competition, it’s more important than ever to examine its care. This article will explain the key differences between growing vegetables and cannabis in an indoor environment.

1. Irrigation.  Overwatering is one of the most common reasons for nutrient deficiencies and diseases in cannabis plants. On the other hand, underwatering can deter plant growth.

The primary difference between the water needs of cannabis and those of vegetables is that the irrigation needs of cannabis change as the plant matures.

For young cannabis seedlings and clone plants, you should avoid heavy watering. Instead, the soil only needs only a light misting once every two to three days. As the plant matures, it may be wise to switch to a drip water system. A drip system provides a slow, steady supply of water to your plant.

Vegetables can vary greatly on the amount of water they require. For example, lettuces need constant access to water. Root vegetables are more like cannabis, needing more water most during their intubation stage.

Keep in mind that, as a general rule, overwatering is more dangerous to cannabis than underwatering.

2. Environment. As any gardener knows, all plants need carbon dioxide for the process of photosynthesis. In addition, higher levels of CO²can boost the quality and quantity of both vegetable and cannabis crops.

The levels of humidity that plants need and their transpiration (moisture lost by plants) can vary from plant to plant. Once again, the needs of the cannabis plant vary according to its life cycle. The ideal humidity for cannabis seedlings is 75%. That percentage lowers to about 55% for the flowering stage.

Another factor to consider is vapor pressure deficit, or VPD, which describes the relationship between the moisture in the air and the water at the leaf’s surface. Many crops prefer a VPD between 0.65 to 1.25 kPa. Leafy greens thrive on the lower end of the range, while fruiting and flowering plants (including tomatoes and cannabis) do better on the higher end.

Temperature needs also vary among agricultural crops. Leafy greens thrive in cooler environments, while fruiting and flowering crops prefer warmth. For indoor cannabis growing, temperatures typically should be kept between 77°F to 86°F (25℃ to 30℃) to maximize yields.

3. Lighting. Another variable for indoor plants is the amount of light they receive. Most indoor vegetable growers aim for anywhere between 14 and 20 hours of light each day, which, of course, is far more than the plants would get outside.

Cannabis growers must once again consider the stage of their plants when determining lighting needs. In the vegetative stage, the plants need 18 to 24 hours of daily light, but you can reduce it to 12 hours a day during the flowering stage.

A challenge for cannabis growers is to keep the dark hours dark. Even a small amount of light leaking into the flowering room can negatively impact the process.

4. Reproduction. You can reproduce cannabis from seed or by cloning. Successful cloning can save the grower time and money.

Cloning, the process of growing a genetic duplicate of the original plant from a cutting, is not always possible or advisable with vegetable plants. For example, leafy greens and many fruiting crops do not clone. Herbs, such as rosemary and basil, do tend to clone well, though.

Whether you’re growing veggies, herbs, or cannabis, you can benefit from Our Grow Higher vertical mobile grow rack systems. We’re ready, willing, and able to design a system just for you and the needs of your operation. Just give us a call for a free consultation.

As of April 2021, 17 states, the District of Columbia, and two U.S. territories have passed legislation to regulate cannabis for adult recreational use. In fact, in the months between November 2020 and April 2021, every cannabis-related ballot measure before U.S. voters has passed.  

Whether you’re an established grower or just launching your business, you already know that It’s a competitive market out there. The question on your mind is, what can you do to boost your yields and profits.

The answer is to look up. This article will explain five advantages of mobile vertical cannabis growing.

1. Greater efficiency and higher ROI. Vertical growing with a mobile racking system allows you to create an efficient operation that runs like the proverbial well-oiled machine.

You can more than double your growing space without the expense of adding new buildings or property. You won’t need to deal with new permits, construction, or employee downtime when you add mobile racks.

Even more importantly, since custom-designed mobile racks allow you to grow more cannabis plants in less space, you can save on labor costs. Your employees will be able to spend more time tending plants rather than moving through your building.

2. Enhanced flexibility. In addition to the vertical space you gain with mobile racking, these systems also allow you to optimize your horizontal space. Your staff can move and turn racks with a simple push or pull to tend to plants, eliminating the need for space-wasting aisles in your facility.

3. Better use of resources. Plants arranged in a horizontal system often suffer from overcrowding. On the other hand, mobile vertical racks systems allow plants improved access to light, heating, and air conditioning, and airflow.

Although the initial investment for LED lighting, irrigation, and ventilation may seem daunting at first, you will more than make up for it with crop after crop of vigorous, healthy plants.

4. Create a multi-state operation to standardize and streamline your outputs. When you design a mobile vertical system, you can easily adapt it to suit your other grow room locations.

Using the same facility layout across multiple sites helps to standardize your employee training and streamline your growing and harvesting methods. Both of these factors contribute favorably to your bottom line.

5. Improve employee safety and ergonomics. To increase their canopy, some cannabis growers use wide tables and narrow aisles in their grow rooms. However, this strategy can backfire.

Employees can suffer injuries from repeatedly reaching across wide tables and navigating narrow spaces. A mobile racking system allows them to access plants safely and comfortably.

By now, you can see that mobile vertical systems are indeed the future for cannabis growers. An added bonus is that you can purchase a system that is custom-designed for your particular operation. At Grow Higher, mobile vertical growing systems are our specialty.

We like nothing better than helping our customers grow more quality plants in less space. Please give us a call today, and let’s get started on your new vertical growing system.