Posted on

vertical cannabis grow systems

Vertical cannabis grow systems

Although vertical growing of any kind will increase yield by maximizing space, when you add up the increased energy usage from more artificial lighting, an upgraded climate control system, the extra infrastructure required (ladders, racks, sensors, and more), and paying high-skilled agro-technicians, it is very costly for many.

Mike Zartarian, from Zartarian Engineering, builds circulation systems for vegetable and cannabis growers. To decrease chances of mold and fungi, he says: “I recommend systems that push air right in between the racks above the plants, usually with small ducts that take air from the edges of the room to the center of the racks.”

“The main catalyst behind cannabis cultivation going vertical is the improved performance of LED lighting,” says Thomas Rogers, LED engineer of Exact Lux. “Cannabis growers are approaching us wanting the most powerful multi-tier or ‘vertical farm’ lighting systems possible.”

Expensive to Set Up and Maintain

In contrast, STEM Cultivation uses one temperature sensor per 100 cubic feet. STEM collects data on: temperature, humidity, air pressure, CO2 levels, lighting levels, lighting power (kW) and energy (kWh), system air circulation rates, localized air circulation, VOC (volatile organic compounds), and HVAC power and energy, to name a few.

Agro-engineer Aja Atwood of Trella sees value in vertical growing, but the limited cultivars it serves made her determined to find another option. “There is a wide variety of strains out there that prefer longer vegetation periods and have a taller growth structure. In order to diversify, you need to train or trellis those taller varieties to stay within the space.”

Environmental Conditions Get Complex

The most common method of vertical farming is a stacked vertical setup—levels of plant racks with LED lights above each rack. Plants are topped and defoliated to keep them short and bud-heavy.

Because of this atmospheric variability, Hugh Gaasch, engineer at STEM Cultivation, recommends sensors to detect data points like moisture changes. “Shockingly, the majority of commercial growers I’ve seen to date use a single temperature/humidity sensor to monitor a room, even large spaces, over 20,000 feet.”

Vertical cannabis grow systems

The most successful strains are those with few leaves and big buds. Work on your defoliation skills, and the diversity of strains you can grow increases. Most strains can grow vertically, but only experienced farmers should attempt Sativas under a vertical model.

Finally, keeping reservoirs clean of salt, algae, and other buildups is vital for avoiding plant damage. Install flexible tubing to facilitate the replacement of plumbing every few crop cycles.

To better control the environment, use more than a single temperature sensor. We recommend utilizing STEM cultivation to collect data on temperature, humidity, CO2 levels, lighting levels, system air circulation rates, and more. Use one temperature sensor per 100 cubic feet.

It’s important to understand the two main types of vertical cannabis farming before determining the right system for your operation.

Step Five – Manage the Plumbing

It takes time and experience to pull off a vertical marijuana grow successfully. Start with a smaller system and simple Indica strains before incorporating new strains and more tiers.

In contrast, the true vertical cannabis grow method is an advancement on the stacked vertical model. At its heart, stacked vertical growing cannabis is nothing more than two or three horizontal farms built on top of each other.

Like any growth system, a vertical grow comes with its fair share of pros and cons. Here’s a brief rundown of the pros and cons of implementing this system as part of your indoor cannabis farm.

Step Three – Choose the Right Strain

Once you’ve followed these five steps, you can begin executing your first vertical crop cycle.

Vertical growing, when done correctly, can increase your profits and maximize efficiency. In many ways, it’s a game-changer. Scynce LED lights are designed to help you perfect your vertical marijuana grow while creating an overall higher quality of cannabis.

When space comes at a premium, every square inch counts. The GROW Mobile System is a vertical, movable, configurable growing system that minimizes wasted space both vertically and horizontally. The stacked shelving allows for multiple levels of growing area, while the carriage-and-rail system reduces wasted aisle space.

The result? Your commercial cannabis operation can grow more plants in the same amount of space—giving you more opportunities to grow your yields, your profits, and your business.