Preventative Maintenance In The Grow Room
Preventative Maintenance In The Grow Room or grow tent will help to prevent the spread of mold and pests that cause havoc in the grow room and can make growing cannabis stressful. A clean room will not attract pests but a dirty room will. The same goes for mold, if you keep your surfaces clean this will help prevent dust and mold spores from spreading through out the room. Every grower is different and has their own preventative measures they take to ensure their grow room or grow tent stay pest and mold free. Some growers will do there preventative maintenance daily, weekly, every other week or monthly and some will not do it at all or just wait until they have problems to take action. I like to do most of my preventative maintenance once a week by completing the same routine every Sunday but I also have preventative measures in place from the start of the grow to help keep a clean grow room. I will go over my weekly routine below as well as some steps I take daily or every other day to ensure the grow room stays pest free. I will also include some tips on to helping to prevent any issues with mold and pests like mites and thrips in the future.
Always start with a clean grow room
Always start with a clean grow room. Rather it be your first crop or your 100th crop always start with a clean growing environment. At the end or at the start of a crop the entire room should be cleaned and sanitized. The two most popular ways of doing this is by using bleach or hydrogen peroxide. Both bleach and hydrogen peroxide can be harmful to humans and can be hard on the lungs. I use a mask when cleaning the grow room and recommend you do the same but it is up to what precautions you take to protect your lungs. When using hydrogen peroxide to clean and sanitize use a 2:1 ratio 2 parts water to 1 part hydrogen peroxide I use this solution to clean and sanitize pots, bamboo sticks, watering containers, snips ect. When using bleach use a 30:1 ratio 30 parts water to 1 part bleach I use this solution to clean the floors, walls and ceilings. Make sure to let it sit for 5-10 min to do it’s job then wipe down. After you wipe dry to need to rinse the walls and floors as the bleach will leave a residue the can be harmful to plants.
My Daily Routine
I have a checklist I go though in my head daily when entering the grow room. This is a mental checklist I have put together over the years based off experience and something that works for me. First thing I do before entering the grow room is change. If I just come from outside I always change my cloths and shoes before entering the grow room. Some people wear a painters suit and booties but I just make sure I am not going from outside directly to grow room and If I am I have a change of clothes. If your walking through grass to get to your grow room there is a chance of bringing thrips or mites into the grow area.
Second thing I do is check my min and max temperature and humidity and make sure my ventilation is working properly. If I know I am going to plucking some leaves I will have a new garbage bag to put what ever I am removing directly into. Never leave any leaves laying around in your tables or on your floor they can attract unwanted problems.
Basic daily routine is make sure all equipment is functioning properly and not is getting to hot. Make sure nothing is left on the floor no dirt leaves or puddles of water. Always clean up after myself. Finally before leaving check a few branches on a few different plants to ensure there are no signs of pests or nutrient deficiency and check the sticky strips to see if any new pests are in the room. These simple steps each day help me to ensure a nice heavy healthy crop.
My Weekly Routine
My weekly routine usually takes place on Sunday. My weekly routine consists of wiping down the walls, floors and ceilings with a mop or cloth. Having a clean grow room will be unfavorable to pests. If the plants are in veg I spray once a week with End All, this helps to ensure the plants are nice and healthy and no signs of pest infection when it comes time to flower. The final thing I do at the end of the week is clean out the containers I use to mix my food and PH my water in. By cleaning them out each week this prevents salt build up on the containers and any cross contamination.
Tips To Prevent Mold
- Wash all equipment pots, trays, snips etc outside the grow room so you do not contaminate the grow area. I wash all my items in the tub and use a strainer plug to catch all the debris that was purchased at the dollar store.
- No food or drinks in the grow room other then water. a single drop of soda, juice, or sugar can provide food for mold to start growing.
- Remove trash from the room daily. Do leave bags of trash or leaves in the grow room this can promote mold growth.
- Do not leave any still water in the grow room. leaving feeding containers filled up in the grow room or puddles on the floor can help promote mold.
- Keep rooms clean at all times.
- Watch high humidity levels if humidity stays high for long periods of time this help promote mold growth.
Tips To Prevent Pests Like Mites & Thrips
- Always quarantine any new plants or clones you purchase or get from friends or family. This is one of the most common ways pests get introduced to the grow room. I have a small tent I use for this purpose only and I treat all new plants as if they have bugs even if they do not. After 2 weeks I when I am sure the plant or plants are pest free I will move them to my main room.
- Change you clothes and shoes if entering the grow room from outside as you can carry mites and thrips from the grass into your grow room.
- Keep your room clean at all times. Take a hour a week and give your room a good cleaning. Never leave any trash or leaves in the room you picked off, get rid of them right away.
- Use a preventive measure like End All and spray your plants when in veg to prevent mites and thips from starting, spreading, and taking over your crop.
- Do not have regular visitors in your grow room specially if they are growers them self as they could have mites on them from their own crop.
- Start your own mother and take your own cuttings, this prevents you from bringing in plants that could potentially be infested.
- Inspect the plants regularly for any signs of damage or color changes on the leaves this could be a sign of a pests starting.
- Use insect sticky traps and inspect them on a regular basis this will help you identify what pests are in the grow room.
- Do not allow pets like cats and dogs into the grow room they can bring in pests attached to them from outside and also will get your bud full of hair.
Preventative maintenance in the grow room is important to ensure you have a good healthy crop from start to finish. Everyone has their own routine they have to keep everything running smooth. I am not telling you what to do here I am giving you some ways to hopefully prevent mold and pests in the grow room. It is up to you what measures you want to take. I know some people that are set it and forget it, clean when they start and don’t clean again until the crop is finished. What ever works best for you I listed what i do as I know how hard it is to get rid of some pests so I take measures to prevent them from appearing.
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