Need help with first ever grow. Just want to try a single plant

Hi ILGM community,

I am new to this. Like very new. My state (NY) just legalized cannabis use and I am finally ready to grow. I want to start with just one plant. After reading a bunch here, it seems that auto flowering might be my best choice.

I am wondering what auto flowering seed I should use for my first and only plant?

The ideal option would be: easy and low maintenance.

The other question is lighting. What is best lighting situation for one plant? Can you guys please provide links to some bulbs? I would ideally like to use CFL bulbs. I don’t mind having multiple bulbs pointing at this one plant. Just want to make sure I am buying the correct bulb and the amount of bulbs i need to grow one successful plant.

I would appreciate any help. Really beginner here and just want to start with my first plant. Thank you.


Welcome to the party

I’m glad you are starting out modest with just one seed at a time. So many new growers get 5 or 10 seeds in and decide to plant them all at once, not having any idea how much space and money it takes to flower 5-10 plants.

We all loose a few seeds at first until we develop a system that works for each of us. Starting one seed at a time will give you a chance to develop your own system without loosing $100’s worth of seeds.

Gorilla Glue seems to be one of the easiest strains to grow and they are often on sale, but not currently. Maybe you should spend a few minutes on ILGM website reading the descriptions of the ones that are currently on sale. Buy the 10+10 sale and you should have enough seeds to get your system down pat.

Lights are the most important component to successful harvests. CFLs are ok for seedlings, but are not going to get you through the grow. You will need to spend some money on real lights. It will cost between $100-$150 for a light capable of growing a single plant. There are many many posts on the forum asking about lights since it is such an important part of the growing process. In general, stay away from the ones that claim 1000watts or more, have red/blue LEDs with veg/bloom switches. What you want is a light with a “quantum board” that casts a natural looking light and can be dimmed. If you want help after reviewing other posts just ask. You could start a new thread to get maximum exposure.

Some other bits of info beginners should know.

If you are growing in soil do not use miracle grow soil or anything else that has slow release fertilizer added. Starting out I suggest minimizing the variables and buying cannabis friendly soil. Fox Farms makes appropriate soil and you most likely can buy it locally saving you a ton of money on shipping (Amazon is not free, the price of the soil is doubled). Go to Fox Farms web site and use their dealer locator feature to find a local supplier. The two Fox Farms soils most commonly available are “Ocean Forest” and “Happy Frog”. There are slight advantages/disadvantages of each and many use both. Starting the plants in happy frog and transplanting them into Ocean Forest once established is commonly done.

Spend time reading up on how to successfully germinate the seeds. Everyone here has a different method, but in general, most soak the seed for 24-48 hours before moving to either paper towel inside a plastic bag, or directly into soil. Keeping the seed warm will help, somewhere around 75-80 degrees is best.


@CMichGrower thank you so much. I really appreciate all your insights. I’ll go with gorilla glue then.

In terms of lighting: I don’t mind spend about that much for a single plant. Any recommendations on what I should buy? Or even where to start.

Thank you for the soil recommendations as well!

@CMichGrower that was an amazing welcome!
@Mm2021 welcome to da boardz!
For less money I recommend spider farmer (SF1000) or Marshydro ts1000. For a bit more money you can go HLG just make sure you get a light from them that does both veg and flower. R-spec…I think….I don’t have a lot of Info on HLG personally. Check out this cat on YouTube.

He does comprehensive par tests and reviews on lights of all kinds.
Happy Growing!
I started with GDP auto and was very pleased.
Also, start a grow journal. Document your experience on choosing a light and tent and ventilation seeds etc. it’s a great way to keep track of what you learn and it will help other beginners to learn from your experience.


If you go with HLG (horticulture lighting group) the “HLG 100 RSpec” is the one to get. It costs $150 (shipping is free) AND you can save 10% off that by using “dude” at checkout.

HLG is an American company assembling and servicing out of the Midwest. Responsive customer support if you ever have an issue.

Some more info on lights.

The lights need to be sized to the grow space, quantum boards requiring about 35 Watts per square foot. Look in the specs for actual watt usage.

The 100 watt lights suggested above cover almost 2 square feet. If you get to the point where you purchase a grow tent you need to get something you can afford to light properly. A 3x3 or 2x4 tent is going to cost $300 give or take, and a 4x4 tent will be in the neighborhood of $600 to light properly.


@Docnraq thank you! I will definitely look into the two you recommend as well as the YouTube channel.

About the journal: you got it! I was thinking about it and would love to share my experience about growing a single plant.

@CMichGrower actually this looks like something in my budget. Would this be the correct one:

Link to HLG RSPEC 100


Please tag me in it, I’ll follow along.

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That’s the one

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Got it. Thank you. So, pretty much one of these should handle my one plant situation?


I suggest you go to the forum and look in the ILGM buyer’s guide and see what affordable light’s are shown there. If you find a bad link, let me know and I iwll find another of the same or similar product.

A lot of growers are using LED lamps noe, but another option is a 400 watt Ipower system which comes with all you need a metal Halide and a High pressure sodium bulb and dims to 50% 75% and all the way. So; You get a 400w light system with a reflector, it is digital and you would have a 400 watt lamp that also can be used as a 300w, oe 200w for the beginning.

I use rockwool cubes to start my seeds and the soaking is done right in the cube. 95% germinaiton rate over 20 yeats. Many growers just get some ProMix or Sunshine mix and fill up a 16oz solo ucp and water by using a spray bottle to spritz just the soil around the seed.

I like to use ProMix to grow in and add a nutrient system like GH 3-part, or many use Jack’s and have wonderful grows. This way I know what the plant is getting and it makes it easier to diagnose issues. If you take your time and use quality products, you should be fine.

Sorry, I am not an autoflower guy, I prefer feminized, because it is just as easy to grow and you get a higher yield. It does take 2-4 weeks longer ot harvest, but worth it in my opinion.

Look into Gold Leaf feminized which is the ILGM branded seed created by Robert. It is easy to grow and potent. It contains high levels of thc and cbd.

If you want me to post you some links I will be glad to. Just say the word.

You could go this route and I think you would be happy and the nutrients are super easy to use and dissolve completely.

Everyone here will be glad to help.

Catch you later.

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What @CMichGrower said… I went a lil overboard with my autos at first… I’m on tent 3 now, just bought my second HLG 260 rspec… All together, including mistakes ( a lot were made), I’ve dropped close to 2500…
That includes beans, nutes, microbes, soils… Etc…
Starting slow would’ve probably been a lot better of an idea :thinking::joy::rofl:
I’m almost done with my first grow, thanks to this forum. You’ve come to the right place.
Happy growing :potted_plant::grin:

@ Mm2021

Yes. Spider Farmer has some pretty decent lights and a lot of members use them as a less expensive optin.

They are having a sale at spider farmer I noticed. 79.99 at Spider farmer.

Here is the light on


If you can swing it, I’d go for the 135… HLG is having a sale now, and if you use code “dude”, you get 10% more off.
I got a $350 light today for $267

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Can you find thta on amazon? What model HLG? Give me a model number and I can create a link.

Hell…If you can swing it, spend 500 bucks and get a spectrum King. :slight_smile:


I actually go to the HLG website. I haven’t seen any HLG on Amazon (yet)

If that’s not allowed, please remove

Yeah you have to go to their site or better yet call

They sometimes throw in free glasses with the deal if you talk to sales

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This is OK, as long as their is no link. ILGM allows images of suggested products.

Good to allow options for the new members.

Both of these are widely used amongst members.

And dbrn32 has a Quantum board build thread, but, we must assume you are not ready to build your own light, yet.

I found this on Amazon:

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