Growing Cannabis Indoors
The majority of Cannabis grown in the UK is grown indoors. This is due partly to the climate, which, unless you live in Southern England, can be quite grey, lacking any guaranteed sunshine hours, even during the Summer months, and also because Cannabis can be better maintained and hidden when grown inside.
As all experienced Cannabis growers know, plants perform best given the correct environment and an abundance of light. The intensity or amount of lumens in your growing area will depend on the lighting rig and bulb you are using, as well as any reflection of the light that can be achieved.
Almost all bulbs are covered over the top with a reflector which bounces the light back down, increasing it’s intensity in that area. It’s just a very efficient lamp-shade really. The majority of light that hits the walls, or any other surface is absorbed, unless the surface is reflective, in which case the lumens are increased as the light is reflected back to it’s point of origin.
Using reflective material on the walls surrounding your growing area increases the amount of light your plants are receiving, improving the efficiency of your lights and returning a greater yield from your plants. If you are growing in a cupboard, constructed area or complete room, using some form of reflective material will always assist in increasing, and maximising your yield will.
If you’re using a pre-fabricated, purpose built grow tent, reflective material is already on the inside, and helps to reflect the light and stop light penetration during the flowering period.
Choices Of Reflective Material.
There are several types of reflective material available, each having differing degrees of efficiency. If you are setting up a permanent growing area, we recommend buying the best available, however, if finances are short, and you really can’t afford to line to walls, white paint is a very cheap, and although not as effective, still has some reflective properties.
Black and White Sheeting.
This is the basic and cheapest option offered by most grow shops. There is often a choice of several grades of plastic sheeting, often black on one side and white on another. The white surface should face the plants to aid reflection, while the black on the reverse side helps to block out light, and in the slightly more expensive varieties, helps to block the heat and thermal image given off from your lights.
Black and white sheeting is commonly used to line complete rooms, increasing the protection against thermal imaging cameras. It is fairly cheap to buy and can assist in containing the light in a given area, with some reflective properties.
Mylar was one of the first reflective materials available by the meter and sold directly to the public by the grow shops back as early as the 1990’s. It’s highly reflective surface was perfect for lining walls and increasing the amount of light the plants receive.
The low cost of Mylar made it very popular and it proved to be highly effective, easily repaying the small investment within the first crop, by helping to produce larger buds and cola’s, as well as increasing light to the lower parts of the plant.
The main drawback with Mylar is it can be quite difficult to work with. It isn’t very thick or durable, and if care isn’t taken, it can easily rip and tear.
Diamond Reflective Sheeting
This is similar to Mylar in that it is a highly reflective material that can be purchased off the roll to any required length. The embossed diamond pattern across the surface helps to disperse heat better than standard Mylar, creating less ‘hot-spots’.
Diamond reflective sheeting is a lot more expensive, but is far more durable and can be taken down and used again, unlike Mylar it doesn’t rip or tear as easily and can be wiped clean without fear of damage.
Most experienced growers agree that the extra cost of this material is worth the investment. It produces great results and once in place, can last for years with regular cleaning.
Considered by many to be the ultimate n reflective sheeting, Orca is very durable and purpose made for the indoor grow room. Orca Grow film is a revolution in highly reflective light diffusing sheeting. No other reflective sheeting can match the 94% reflection, 99% light diffusion and 50% increase in Lux reflection.
Orca reflective sheeting is expensive, but like any equipment you buy to grow Cannabis indoors, should be looked upon as an investment. It’s superior reflective properties will help to produce larger plants and ultimately buds.
If you have spent extra money on obtaining the best lights, fans and environmental controls, this is the final piece in building the ultimate grow room for your Cannabis plants.