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Leafly’s buying guide to indoor marijuana grow tents

marijuana grow tent
(cendeced/AdobeStock)

Cannabis grow tents have been essential for homegrowers for years. But with legalization and the convenience of online shopping today, the market may seem flooded with options.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the myriad options, so here’s a guide to help navigate buying the right grow tent for your weed garden.

Why use a marijuana grow tent?

Grow tents allow you to grow weed indoors without having to do any construction or remodeling to your property. You’ll need a dedicated place for your tent, but after you’re done growing, the tent can be broken down and you can use the space again.

Tents also streamline the growing process because they’re quick to set up and provide support to hang lights, fans, and other equipment, and also allow for ventilation.

What to consider when buying a marijuana grow tent

Here’s what you need to know before you buy a grow tent.

Size

Grow tents range in size and height, so you’ll need to figure out how big of a space you want to grow in before you buy one.

In a 4′ x 4′ tent—as are the examples below—four-six plants is ideal to give plants enough space, with two rows of two or three plants. You could probably fit up to nine small-to-medium sized plants, with three rows of three plants, but they’ll be more cramped and might not yield as much per plant.

Height is the primary concern, and it is often overlooked when trying to grow in a small space. It’s best to maximize the height of your tent so grow lights are far above the plants and won’t burn them. Extra height will also give more room for air filters, fans, and ducting.

All of these additional inputs add up quickly, making space tight inside a small tent. You also won’t be able to grow wall-to-wall and need to account for horizontal growth—if growing in a 4’ x 4’ tent, you’ll really only have a 3’ x 3’ space for the plants.

Durability

Cost usually translates into durability with grow tents—low-end products tend to be made with flimsy materials, which often lead to problems. Tears, broken joints, low-quality zippers, and poor seals all show up quickly in a tent that isn’t built properly.

You’ll be using your weed grow tent daily and it’ll be continually jostled around every time you visit your garden, so make sure it’s sturdy.

Material

The tent material itself is important when looking for a grow tent. You want material that is:

  • Dense
  • Heat resistant
  • Reflective
  • Has a solid zipper

Fabric density is measured in denier, abbreviated as “D”; it refers to the thickness of a thread—a small number is thinner and a large number is thicker. Grow tents usually range between 120-600D. Some can go up to 1680D, but those are rare.

Material should also be heat resistant because the grow light will generate a lot of heat—it’ll be on for half or more of the day, every day, for weeks.

You also want the material of your grow tent to be reflective on the inside. This will help light bounce around and hit plants and buds from many different angles, optimizing light coming from your grow light and increasing yields.

You’ll also be checking plants daily or every couple days, so make sure you have a solid zipper that works properly. If any light leaks in during a dark period, it’ll confuse your plants and they could revert to a different growth cycle.

Features

There are a number of features that can make the growing process easier, including:

  • Quick-viewing windows to check on the progress of your plants
  • Easy-to-connect upper and lower intake/exhaust ducting vents for fans
  • Large door openings to easily access plants
  • Removable floor trays to collect and dispose water runoff from plants

Safety

Grow tents are great because they have a small footprint and allow you to maximize your weed-growing space. That being said, be sure to give yourself enough space for equipment.

The main safety concern with weed grow tents is the grow light: Make sure it doesn’t get too close to the plants or the tent material.

A tent with a vent is a must: With all that equipment packed into a small space, you’ll need a vent to pull out hot air.

Also, make sure you have enough outlets and power available for all equipment. Never overload an electrical outlet.

Our picks for best cannabis grow tents

Here are our favorite tents with a standard base size of 4’ x 4’, in different price ranges:

Top shelf: Gorilla Grow Tent (~$475)

indoor marijuana growing tent
(Courtesy of Gorilla Grow)

Gorilla Grow Tents are the most durable and reliable cannabis grow tents on the market. They’re made with metal connectors and poles, and a thick wall material. They allow for 360° of access to your garden and sell height extender kits to increase the height from 6’11” to 8’11”.

These tents are built to last for years, making them a must for anyone who doesn’t want to mess around with low-quality products.

Mid-level: Secret Jardin DarkRoom II Pro (~$250)

indoor marijuana growing tent
(Courtesy of Secret Jardin)

Dropping down in price doesn’t mean much of a sacrifice with the Secret Jardin DarkRoom II Pro. Secret Jardin has been making cannabis grow tents for over a decade and are committed to continually improving their products.

These mid-range tents are inspected thoroughly before shipping, can hold 65 lbs. of equipment, and are made with a patented technique that keeps toxins from off-gassing from tent material.

Low-level: Cool Grows (~$100)

indoor marijuana grow tent
(Courtesy of CoolGrows)

The CoolGrows mylar grow tent is our answer for someone who needs something quick, simple, and inexpensive. There are many tents ranging from $75 to $125, but we found that CoolGrows is the best at this price point. 

The tent is made of a thick, 95% reflective, 600D mylar, is easy to set up, and has a viewing window and removable floor tray. While this tent probably won’t last for years, it will get you off the ground and growing.


Trevor Hennings contributed to this article.

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