Home Growing on the Cheap

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I am totally new to this. So I hope you can help me out a bit.


I would like to grow some cannabis

My goal is to Educate myself to become a first class grower and have fun doing it.

Without the risks an illegal grower has.


So I do not wish to go in starting with many plants or big investments.

I wish to start with say 5 plants and the least investments as possible.


So just with some good seeds.


Seeds that I can grow in my house at room temperature (mostly 20°C),

under regular indoor humidity (Netherlands),

that do not need much light,

that are well-resistant to disease,

and give me reasonable amount of good quality cannabis.

(Preferably giving a high that enhances sociability and fun, I don't want to fall asleep)


They don't need to be fast growing or highly productive.

But femenised and autoflowering seems a good idea, however I leave it to you to advise me on this.


So the question is what seeds would you advise me?

Can you help me out with some starter tips,

and maybe a video on how to best grow the advised strain.


much obliged



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Wow, you have a lot of conditions to meet, so let's get started.


First of all, you are absolutely right.  You should have fun doing this.  It is fun, but to avoid frustrations, you must realize that you must be patient.  Seeds dont crack and stand up if they dont have the right conditions.  Because you are supplying the ENTIRE environment, water, light and nutrients for the plant, YOU are the plant's Mother Nature.  So don't start germinating a seed until you are fully prepared to provide what the plant needs well in advance.


You want to do this as inexpensively as possible, so that rules out hydroponics and the other methods that are costly-equipment based.  You want to grow in soil medium.


Soil:  Cannabis grows best in a soil that is not dense, but rather, drains well.  The soil should drain well in order to allow oxygen to get to the roots soon after you have watered the plant.  Any soil that does not drain well will basically close-up around the roots and asphyxiate the roots.  Avoid dense soils (soils that look like after you add water that they would turn into concrete).  If you want to purchase a soil-base that is specifically formulated for cannabis, there are mixes made by Plagron or Bio-Bizz or Ocean Forest or Happy Frog, and there are many many more.  If you want to buy from a gardening store or home improvement store, you can start with a good potting soil (pH around 6,0 to 6,5) but WITHOUT added or time-released nutrients.  These potting soils should have a little Perlite in them for drainage, so peek inside the bag to check.  Perlite is a very light-weight, white-colored, heat-expanded clay or silicon.  It readily accepts water and allows the water to flow through it immediately.  If you cannot get soils with perlite already in them, then it can also be bought separately.  It is sometimes found in gardening centers, but it is ALSO found in construction materials stores and is used there as an additive to lighten the weight of cement mixes when a floor is to be poured where floor-heating systems are to be installed.  Two alternatives to perlite that work almost as well are expanded clay (Ton-Balls) readily available in most all gardening stores (used often for orchids or bromelaids), use the smaller sizes.  And Lava Rock can be used, but it must be the smaller size, 6mm and smaller for adding to soil.  Lava Rock is heavier, but it will help somewhat with drainage through the soil if the other materials cannot be found.  (Lava Rock about 15mm size is excellent for another purpose, I'll discuss that later.)  Potting soils with added or time-released nutrients (such as Miracle-Gro) can cause toxicities for cannabis because the nutrient-levels will spike unexpectedly from time to time at often the wrong times for cannabis.


Amendments to the soil:  Cannabis enjoys to absorb the by-products from the rotting of other plants that have lived before it, in other words - compost.  That does NOT mean freshly chopped-up green plant materials, NOR freshly chopped-up dead plant materials.  No no no.  It must already be rotted away.  Something like black, fully-rotted leaf material or well-finished compost materials, preferrably that black material full of microbes where you actually see earthworms.  (The dung from the earthworms is EXACTLY what plants love.  You can also buy Earthworm-Humus at your local garden store or home improvement store and use that as an additive.)  I run 6 composters for my yard-work and kitchen waste, and I always have ample compost and earthworms.  If you have a friend who has a composter, that would be a great source. 

There are many other amendments that we could discuss, but compost is a great start.  If you want to really study-up on soils for cannabis, then google or youtube "supersoil for cannabis".  There are many good recipes for supersoil.  Read a few of them, and if you find some components that are readily available to you, then add some, just not too much of any one of them.


Lighting:  You mentioned that you wanted to use "not much light".  Well, cannabis is a photosynthesis-based lifeform.  Not much light will mean not much growth.  And you need to know one more thing about cannabis.  It is sensitive to photoperiod, that means it GROWS best when it receives about 18 or more hours of light each day, and it will begin making its flowers when it receives less than 14 hours of light per day (Under controlled conditions, most of us growers use 12/12).  Autoflowering plants will begin making flowers generally regardless of the photoperiod, but even they will certainly begin flowering when switched to 12/12.  If you are considering using the sunlight through your window at this time of the year, be aware that you are doing so while the natural photoperiod in the Northern Hemisphere (Netherlands) is swinging straight into flowering photoperiod, meaning that you will not have very good growth unless you add some lighting.  On the cheap, fluorescent lighting can be used (18/6), and they are OK, but the growth is generally slower than lighting requiring greater energy (LEDs or HPS or MH).  Each of these involves greater initial equipment cost and greater energy cost.  For Fluorescents, in VEGG, you want CoolWhite or Gro-lamps with plenty of blue spectrum (or even an additional UVB Reptile-spectrum tube, caution for your eyes).  When you switch over to the flowering Photoperiod, you will also want to change over to a fluorescent Gro-lamp with less blue spectrum and more red spectrum.


Feminized is definitely the way to go.  Because you want to use low-cost, low-energy lighting, I would definitely steer away from Autos.  Autos have a limited lifespan, and if you try to grow an Auto under low light, it will probably begin to die before you have judged it to be of sufficient size to proceed to flowering. 


You want an uplifting high that doesn't put you to sleep, so avoid Indicas and Kushes.  You want a Sativa-based strain, but not a pure sativa.  Pure sativas will grow very tall and are generally better grown in bright, sunny, dry, outdoor locations.  I would suggest a Sativa/Indica Hybrid where the Sativa is dominant or 50/50%.


Without looking at the percentages, I think you would be happy with White Widow or Northern Lights or MoneyMaker, but there are so many good ones.  In the store (click on "Products" above, then click on "Buy Seeds", or google "greenhouse seeds" to go to "the other store"), then just click on each strain variety, and the percentages and characteristics of each strain are explained. 

In "the other store", you can also purchase variety packs of the famous GreenHouse "color-coated seeds".  That way you can try a number of different strains coming to you in a single packet.  Neat, huh?


For ease of use and pH stability, I would recommend using GreenHouse "Hybrid Powderfeeding" or the new GreenHouse "BIO-Enhancement" for soils.


The videos are found right here in the forum.  Click on "Videos" above.  If you are on a smartphone, you will need to change that.  Get on a full-sized laptop or a PC, because so much of the forum is not available on mobile devices.


Good Luck and have fun.




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I have been looking at the 3 strains you advised. The White Widow seems to come closest to what I'm looking for. However when I look at the shipping restrictions it shows that this (in the Netherlands developed?) strain is not shipped to the Netherlands. Is there a reason for this? And is there another way to get good quality seeds or clones of this strain?

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Yes, there is a town in the Netherlands where you can buy the seeds directly from the GreenHouse Seeds Company.  It's called Amsterdam.  Here's a link to more information on that:



If you cannot get to Amsterdam, then you might be able to find a store near you.  I have found two ways to do that.


If you would go back into the online store (mentioned before), at the bottom of the page, find "Distributors" and click on "other countries", then click on your nation's flag.  Select map-pointers that are near you.


At the top of any page in this forum, click on "Products", then click on "Nutrients".  Here, you may view the nutrients offered by GreenHouse, but at the bottom of those pages, you will find "Store Locator".  Some nutrient distributors may also sell the seeds too. 


Call and ask before driving a long way.


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Though you're on a budget and don't need much light, your plants do. And you still can opt for a good LED Grow Light with a reasonable price. Even if it's a little out of your reach, I still strongly recommend that you get one. It will surely satisfy you. Find some here: https://lovebackyard.com/led-grow-lights/

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Emily is right.  I agree that if you want to provide excellent lighting at a relative cheap energy-cost during flowering, then LEDs are the way to go. 


Thanks, Emily.

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