First Time Grower - Any Help Will Be Appreciated

Hello All,

We’re growing for the first time and I thought it was a good time to check in and get some advice from the pros. I’ll admit upfront that we’re not doing this the best possible way - I’m aware our lighting situation is far less than ideal. My two main questions are: should the canopy be closer to the light source and is it too late to transplant these ladies to larger pots?

I’ve added as much info as possible below.

Thank you all!

Age: 6 Weeks
Type: ILGM Beginner Mixpack - We planted 2 White Widow, 2 AK, 2 Bubblegum, and the 4 remaining plants are 1WW, 2AK, 1BG (one didn’t germinate, one died as a seedling).
Soil - Fox Farms Ocean Forest
Light - 4 T-12 fluorescent bulbs (all different kinds) approximately 10 inches from the top of the canopy. 19 hours on, 5 off set to a timer
Humidity - 50%
PH - Not sure.
Watering Schedule - When the top inch or so feels dry.

We wanted to try our first grow without purchasing anything but the seeds, and fully understand the plants and yields will be smaller than they could be, but I’m trying to work with what I have at the moment. Luckily we have 8 more seeds for the next batch, where we’ll learn from our mistakes. It’s been so much fun to watch them grow.



yes, the closer the better, 1-4 inches, almost touching the bulbs is fine.

it is too early to transplant those.!
they need a descent root ball to hold the ‘soil’ together for less stress.!!
when they get the same size as the pots they r ready to pot up.

r u vegging inside and putting them outside for flower.?

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this method can cause ‘wet feet’, the bottom of the pots need to be almost dry then water to run off and let dry again.!
this is the flood to drought watering method, (flood-drought-flood-drought-…)
it makes happy roots, plants, and growers.!!

possible, but this will be very difficult if growing indoors under lights.!!

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Thanks so much for the reply SOG. I’ve moved them closer to the light.

r u vegging inside and putting them outside for flower.?
We have a balcony that is “semi-private” but I’m taking them outside to flower still makes me nervous. That part is still TBD.

this method can cause ‘wet feet’, the bottom of the pots need to be almost dry then water to run off and let dry again.!

This is probably an idiotic question, but what’s the best way to test if the soil at the bottom of the pot is still moist? I don’t want to mess with the roots.

Thank you again,

Put dry soil in the same size pot you are growing in. Pick it up and feel how heavy it is, when pot with plants in them feels about that light you need to water


by weight like Horn said, or…
with a moisture meter…

that sounds unsafe…???
this chit ain’t worth going to jail for.!!!
the smell alone from the balcony can get u busted.!!

i would suggest saving up some money for good indoor equipment.!

look into HLG 135w QB kits (they cover a 2x2 area in flower) and Can-Filters, a good centrifugal fan, a tent for dark period (they say cheap tents work okay…???), cheap light timers from home depot r okay…

outdoor growing can be done pretty cheap, but indoors it takes money to be successful.!!
the more time and effort and the better lighting u provide, the better your results.!


Since you said:

PH - Not sure

I would HIGHLY recommend you get some PH up/down solution and a decent PH meter. I state that reason for the simple fact that I would be fighting a never-ending battle with PH issues at my home if I didn’t purchase the above recommendations. My water is a flat 7.0 PH so if I didn’t have something to lower that, I would never be able to grow properly.

As what SlowOldGuy said about the smell and buying proper equipment, I second that. I have been told that even growing one plant can let off an odor that makes it seem as though you are smoking or growing indoor. With that being said, I purchased a tent, and a charcoal filter to limit any sort of hint as to what I am doing.

I know you mentioned you didn’t want to buy anything, but I read a comment a while back where they said something along the lines of “if you don’t purchase even the basic supplies, you will be making things much harder for yourself to the point where you may be wasting money completely”.

With all that being said, those plants do look really good.


Thank you all for the advice. I should have explained more, I didn’t think I was going to be able to grow tons of buds half-assing, we just figured we’d have lower yields. An eighth will last a month or more around here so I figured if I could get a few oz from each plant I’d be delighted. What I think I’m starting to realize is by not having the proper systems in place I may be setting myself up for NO flower harvest instead of a small flower harvest. I’ll get a PH tester ASAP.

Sincere thanks for all who took the time to help.

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for what it is worth…
i started indoors under 4’ T-12 floro (40w bulbs)
they do okay for for veg, kinda a pain in the ass keeping them close enough,
not good at all for flower, this is why i asked about moving them outside,
i quickly upgraded to 400w HID and ain’t looked back.!!

do not sweat the pH meter right now, with the FFOF ‘soil’ and city water u should be fine,
getting some pH test strips would be good for now.!
when u do get a meter, do not get a cheap one,
if it is under $50 it is not worth the money spent on it,
Apera ph20 (i think), and Blue Lab (expensive) r good meters.

anyone know if the Hanna pH pens r any good.?

this is very possible, but it would take good to great lighting, fert/watering habits, and environment.!

i recently upgraded to HLG 135w QB LED…


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@slowoldguy - I googled HLG 135w QB LED, that’s super affordable, and I read a lot of good reviews online. It’s a little embarrassing to admit, but I’m worried about construction of the light, I watched about ten minutes of a video on their site about how to put it together and I’m slightly worried I’ll burn the house down or electrocute myself. I’m not a complete moron, but I don’t have much (read: any) experience with wiring / electric work. Do you think as long as a person follows the directions they’ll be okay?

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Yes you will do fine take pics and post the guys here will help you through assembly


i agree with Freakish,
watch a couple you-tube videos and assemble the light.!!
by all means if u have any questions, post them, we’ll be here to help.!

be patient, take your time, and it will turn out great.!!

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First I would like to welcome you to ILGM and our awesome community.

!.) Yes, you can transplant them into larger pots,

2.) Rule of thumb is about 18" above the canopy or as we pros do Place your hand over the top of your plants, if the light is hot or very warm so are your plants so move the lifgt up. Very simple…


With that HLG 135w QB LED, that would seem like a cool project to build that. My question regarding that though, is it better to build a light like that or spend $10 for an already built grow light like Viparspectra? I specifically list Viparspectra because I have one of their 600w LED’s and it is super nice, puts out good warmth and has two settings, veg and bloom.

I have both and the light output from the HLG is superior starting from 12” out from center. As you get to 24” from center, the output is nearly double. The HLG is a much better light but, with that said, I was very impressed with what the vipar did for me. I’m definitely keeping my vipar and will utilize it in a veg area.


Ohhh interesting. I had no idea. As with the OP, I am a new grower so I bought a bunch of highly recommended items, within budget, and came up with the vipar. I feel like this could be a very fun hobby so I am sure my items will grow over time. I will have to keep that HLG in mind for later.

Thanks for the info man.

Hi everyone,

Just a quick update. I took the advice of this forum and upgraded some pieces. I purchased a 135W QB V2 LED kit from HLG and also found an inexpensive 3x3 tent. Everything got set up last night, the amount of light this thing throws off is intense! Right now it’s 36 inches above the shortest plant, 32" above the tallest. Based on some other things I’ve seen on the forum I think that should be good but if not please let me know.

I realize I need to get a few more things together before I transition to flower. My plan is 2 more weeks of veg to “catch up” from living the tough life under T12 bulbs and figure out a ventilation / filtration system. Then on to flowering! They’re all showing pistils, so it’s just a matter of switching them over now. Thanks for all the help!

Tent2 Tent1


Sorry to keep asking questions… @slowoldguy, you mentioned you have the same light I do, do you have recommendations on how high it should be from the canopy? I’ll be throwing them into flower next week, they’re itching for it.

Thanks to all

I have the 240 watt setup about 20" from top of canopy and it works great