By Olivia Drake
There are many different purposes for growing hemp. Based on how you space plants and care for them, it can grow for medicinal intent, as well as recreational or industrial use.
Hemp is also a very versatile plant, able to thrive indoors and out. It will even thrive in a greenhouse. However, one of the most efficient ways to grow hemp is with indoor hemp cultivation techniques.
How growing hemp indoors differs
Growing and harvesting hemp in a greenhouse is a great option when your end goal is to extract cannabinoids. Indoor conditions offer more control over the crop than outdoor growing methods. Using a greenhouse also offers protection from the various, but minimal, challenges outdoor hemp might face. Environmental conditions within a greenhouse are easier to regulate. There’s no exposure to the outside elements.
For smaller crops, focused on producing compounds like CBD, CBG, CBC, and CBN, indoor growing is a worthwhile option. It protects the crop and decreases risk. However, with limited space and the need to control environmental conditions, there’s also a potential cost increase from growing outside. Knowing plants can thrive in either environment, you’re able to select which works best for you without any detriment to your crop.
Benefits of growing hemp indoors
One of the greatest advantages of growing hemp indoors is that it offers a line of defense from severe weather. Each season brings a variety of weather circumstances you can’t ignore outside. This includes any number of conditions from harsh rainstorms to tornadoes. Greenhouses protect crops from all weather-related elements. Plants can continue to safely grow no matter what’s in the forecast.
Greenhouses also allow farmers to regulate bugs and other pests. They offer an extra layer of protection to counter unwanted visitors to your hemp crop.
You can also ignore seasons when planting in a greenhouse. As long as you have enough light and water, planting in a greenhouse allows you to replicate ideal growing conditions all year long.
Indoor growing conditions
When you grow hemp inside, you have to create all the right conditions for your plants to thrive. In order to do this, there are several things to know.
Spacing is necessary for a greenhouse hemp crop to flourish. It allows for proper airflow. For a typical 2-3 pound plant, you should leave a 6×6 inch area around each plant.
Greenhouses do let in the sun, but hemp plants need 12 good hours of light when growing inside. Supplement the natural light with LEDs. They’re cheap, save energy, and are lightweight to move about.
- Blackout Curtains
This is to trick the hemp flower into continuing to grow even if you’ve planted out of season. Flowering hemp needs 12 hours of darkness to properly grow. Blackout curtains will help control natural light exposure during flowering. season.
- Air systems
Ventilation is your best bet for controlling airflow when growing hemp in your greenhouse. This system allows you to exchange indoor air with outside air. It helps cool the greenhouse while removing excess moisture and oxygen. It replenishes the CO2 inside the space as well, and hemp plants get hungry.
Hemp plants like a lot of water when they’re young, but this need decreases as plants mature. For that reason, proper drainage systems are important. They ensure water doesn’t puddle on the surface of the soil.
- Drip irrigation
Drip irrigation imitates the natural amount of water your plants would get exposed to outside. Setting up a system lets you control water levels. It helps reduce the day-to-day work of watering your crop.
- High-quality soil
The right soil is everything when it comes to hemp plants. They don’t ask for much, so give them good, aerated soil with a pH between six and seven.
- Climate regulation system
Keep your greenhouse at an ideal temperature regardless of what the thermometer says outside. A climate regulation system allows you to maintain conditions within your greenhouse throughout cultivation.
Interested in indoor hemp cultivation?
Ready to start growing your hemp crop indoors? Arbor Vita8 has you covered. From selecting the right seeds to advising you on your set up, our industry experts are here to support you through the whole process. Our seed-to-sale services mean you get our superior support every step of the way. From seed selection to drying, processing, and selling your final product, Arbor Vita8 can help. We’re committed to seeing our farmers and manufacturers succeed. Contact us today to learn more.