cannabis
grow environments

Cannabis Grow Environments

Cannabis cultivation is migrating from indoor warehouse to greenhouses to reduce energy consumption in states such as Colorado, Washington, Nevada, Arizona, and California.

But what if your state is considering legalizing medical or recreational Cannabis, and you do not have the option of growing in a greenhouse environment? Or, what about retrofitting existing facilities to grow Cannabis?

We break down the pros and cons of indoor vs. outdoor Cannabis cultivation, as well as retrofitting existing facilities for Cannabis cultivation.

Warehouse Cultivation

For years, patients who were licensed to use and grow marijuana for medical purposes have been growing in small indoor grow rooms. Warehouse production of marijuana on a commercial scale is the natural progression from the small grow rooms to professional legal facilities concerned with producing consistent top-quality Cannabis.

Benefits & Challenges

One of the greatest benefits of warehouse production is the ability to have complete control over all aspects of lighting through the various grow cycles regardless of geographic location and the natural changes to light and daylight and nighttime hours throughout the year.

The challenge, however, is that 100% of the lighting has to be provided by lighting products and these lighting systems and their use of electricity have a significant impact on the cost of production, the cost of goods sold, and the power grid.

There is also a significant capital investment to set up an effective lighting system and these systems need to be maintained, cleaned, and upgraded. For these reasons, choosing the right lights for your facility can make a huge difference in the yield and health of your plants and your profit margins—both immediately and over time.

HOW TO MAXIMIZE YIELD AND EFFICIENCY IN AN INDOOR SPACE

Consistency
A warehouse environment provides the cannabis grower with maximum control, and therefore the most reliable consistent marijuana crops can be produced in a properly designed warehouse grow room.
Intelligent Lighting
Without natural light, warehouse grow rooms depend on intelligent grow lights which need to replicate the parts of the sunlight spectrum that the marijuana plants need at each stage of growth. Lighting is a key component in an integrated system.
Coordinated Environment
Air filtration and circulation systems are essential for controlling heat buildup, and eliminating exhaust odors. It is critical that the air circulation in a marijuana warehouse is designed in conjunction with the grow lights because lighting systems emit large amounts of heat.
Irrigation Options
There are various irrigation systems for growing marijuana appropriate for growing in a warehouse: including drip irrigation, hydroponic flood benches, or trough benches. The irrigation system should be designed in conjunction with a nutrient management system for maximizing the production yield of the cannabis plants, and urban-gro’s cultivation experts can help you with this as well.
Convenient Control
The brains of the complete marijuana growing system whether a warehouse grow op or a greenhouse production facility is the environmental computer. The computer control systems for a marijuana warehouse control and monitor all the nutrients, lights, air circulation, and irrigation needs of the plants, it is designed to maintain the exact environment needed for as many different growing rooms, cloning rooms, flowering rooms as you need. With certain systems, all of this can be conveniently run from your smartphone.
Customized Cultivation
Custom made benches (growing tables) that not only maximize the efficiency of your growing space, but that are made of materials that are compliant with health requirements, or the local code that you need to meet. Additionally, optimum plant health is ensured with urban gro’s complete set of cultivation products coupled with the use of de-humidification to optimize your growing environment and computer controlled CO2 injection and monitoring.

Contact urban-gro to discuss how our lighting solutions can help improve the yield and efficiency of your indoor Cannabis cultivation facility.

Greenhouse Cultivation

Greenhouse growing is now becoming ever more popular and it is the next frontier in Cannabis cultivation.

The mismatch between federal law and state laws has kept many large investment firms and from dealing in the marijuana space. Setting up a greenhouse is a sizeable capital investment, and as the industry matures, more investors are willing to take on this level of commitment in favor of the long-term advantages.

The impact from growing in warehouses on the power grid has not gone un-noticed, topping over $6 Billion in utility costs each year alone. Many are starting to see this is not a sustainable practice over the long-term for large-scale production.

Benefits and Challenges

One of the greatest benefits of growing in a greenhouse is the ability to source natural light and thus, reduce both the impact on the power grid as well as the cost of goods sold.

The challenge of growing in a greenhouse lies in the fact that light levels change throughout the year and because the plant has different light needs at different growth stages, it’s necessary to operate a lighting system that can read the natural light levels received over any given period of time and supplement accordingly.

Greenhouse facilities also need to be outfitted to meet the needs of the Cannabis plant, which differ in some ways from other agricultural crops, and this can include a substantial upfront investment in order to cultivate a healthy crop.

HOW TO MAXIMIZE YIELD AND EFFICIENCY IN A GREENHOUSE

Letting Go of Control
While the modern greenhouse has existed for centuries, current designs are inefficient for growing cannabis. For example, in a conventional glass structure, vents are opened when temperatures get too high, allowing moisture and precious carbon dioxide to escape through the hatches.
Humidity Challenge
Cannabis plants thrive most when the humidity levels are at 70 percent during their growing phase and at 40 percent during their flowering phase — a precise balance that’s difficult to control when vents are opened.
Customizing for Cannabis
In order to customize a greenhouse for the needs of commercial cannabis crop an investment needs to be made in the design and technological capabilities of the facility. Costs depend on square footage, location and a host of potential technologies and systems.
Diffused Light
Additionally, glass used in traditional greenhouse structures can be replaced with other panel substitutes designed to diffuse light so that more of each plant is exposed to the light, increasing both the yield and quality of the cannabis.
Research & Correlation
It can also be valuable to track plant genetic strains and combine it with climatic data during all stages of production — from growth to flowering to drying to distribution so growers can understand which greenhouse conditions can generate certain levels of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the primary psychoactive component of marijuana, and other cannabinoid compounds.

Contact urban-gro to discuss how our lighting solutions can help improve the yield and efficiency of your indoor Cannabis cultivation facility.

New vs Retrofit

Our top priority is increasing your yield and plant health whether in a greenhouse or an indoor grow environment. We can help you design a new facility or we can work with you to restructure and optimize your existing space and grow operation.

  • We provide you with a complimentary customized light plan.
  • In a warehouse environment we will look at ways to design your system to maximize yield and efficiency.
  • In a greenhouse environment we recommend you design a system that can supplement for the lowest amount of light in the year and then use computer sensors to auto-adjust how much you supplement your light levels as it changes throughout the year.
  • We will give you a professional engineered lighting plan that works with your capital planning and can be shared with investors.
  • urban-gro is the ONLY company that guarantees light levels.
  • We evaluate your existing light set up and how well it is meeting your needs.
  • We can discuss the need to work within current voltage or benefits of an upgrade.
  • We look for ways to create greater efficiency in light distribution including where light is being wasted on pathways and walls.
  • We make sure there is enough clearance between the plant and the fixtures.
  • We look for ways to get optimum coverage for the plant canopy and avoid hot spots or shadows.
  • We will give you a professional engineered lighting plan that works with your capital planning and can be shared with investors.
  • urban-gro is the ONLY company that guarantees light levels.

Our Lighting Guarantee

 

  • urban-gro lighting plans are professionally prepared.
  • We work closely with you to deliver a lighting plan to achieve maximize yield and efficiency.
  • You can have confidence that light uniformity and light levels are adequate for your crop. Our professionally engineered plans guarantee light levels measured in μmol.
  • We are the ONLY company in the industry that guarantees our light levels.

“urban-gro helps warehouse and greenhouse cultivations maximize their lighting investments.”

 

 

 – SHELLY PETERSON