Cannabis automated grow boxes, climate controllers, irrigation tools, and remote management software—cultivation is becoming less time-intensive by the day. These systems expand control of your setup and cut mundane manual labor.
Do you start by installing an all-encompassing regulation setup? Is it better to dip your toes with a mini marijuana fertilizer drip? The answer depends on your budget, skill, and readiness to familiarize yourself with technology. In any case, improvements are near-instant.
Here are the five fields where automation does wonders for yields.
GO FULLY AUTOMATIC: GROW BOXES
The highest level of mechanization is the cannabis grow box, an automated space that leaves no factor to chance. This cultivation area caters to marijuana from seed to harvest, meeting all crops’ needs within its confines.
In theory, these boxes are no different from grow rooms, only on a small and isolated scale. They employ lamps, coolers, ventilators, and humidifiers to create the optimal environment for prolific growth.
Pre-built grow boxes incorporate all equipment necessary for indoor growing, facilitating your journey. They come with:
- Monitors for nutrients, lights, air exchange, and pH
- Carbon filters to keep the smell to a minimum
- Lighting systems to control light and dark hours
- Irrigation drips to water and feed the crops
You can keep the box anywhere and tweak parameters via your smartphone—the simplicity is unprecedented. There are also downsides, though. Notably:
- The cost— these all-in-one devices come with considerable price tags
- The size limit—boxes fit fewer crops than a facility; it’s preferable to use short stature strains
It’s possible to bypass the first issue by DIY-ing a grow box. The following solutions might sound more appealing if your yield ambitions are loftier.
CONTROL THE OP: TIMERS AND METERS
Does a fully automated cannabis grow box seem too limiting? Similar tech is available for larger setups, letting you reap the same benefits on a larger scale.
Timers let you start small and work your way up to complete indoor automation. Making the switch from manual control is surprisingly inexpensive nowadays, too.
These tools can control numerous functions, including:
- Grow lamps
- Water pumps
- Fan activation
- Nutrient drips
A timer is a perfect way to minimize labor spent on repetitive tasks. You can’t leave your garden unattended for long, but you make fewer daily trips.
Climate control is another worthwhile automation area.
After all, the conditions make or break indoor and greenhouse gardens. Moist air leads to bud rot, heat causes dry leaves, and improper air circulation leaves room for mold. Meters let you avoid these health issues.
Hygrometers, thermometers, and pH meters are affordable ways to manage the environment. Many are multi-platform, allowing you to adjust parameters via phone or a pre-set script.
Besides the basic meters, you can get digital environmental controllers to track all aspects simultaneously. They notify you of spikes or drops, letting you continuously optimize the setup.
LIGHTS, IRRIGATION, FERTIGATION
Watering, feeding, and lights are the three practices that produce prolific crops. You don’t need to do any of these things manually. Your facility can feature the tools of a cannabis automated grow box, providing light, food, and water at regular intervals.
Automatic lighting is a valuable investment that saves time and prevents errors.
Going off the light schedule can revert the crop to vegging and turn it hermaphrodite. Once you have the tech, following a strict daily timetable is as simple as entering the lights on and off times into an interface.
Auto irrigation and fertigation are must-haves for extensive facilities.
Feeding and watering tools ensure that your crops receive the ideal moisture and nutrient amounts on a specific schedule. It reduces the guesswork and hands-on labor. Since everything follows a script, it’s easier to gauge why a health issue occurred.
POST-HARVEST: BUCKERS AND TRIMMERS
Automated cannabis grow systems don’t end with late flowering. Harvesting and processing equipment facilitates these formerly manual tasks, producing clean and consistent results. There are two appliance types to employ once your plants are mature—buckers and trimmers.
Buckers remove buds and leaves from plant stalks, preparing them for processing. At-home and smaller commercial facilities may use manual bucking machines; larger yields fare better with engine-driven ones.
Trimmers streamline defoliation and manicuring. There’s equipment to accommodate both popular clipping methods:
- Dry trimmers—cutting the flowers after drying the whole branches
- Hybrid trimmers—removing leaves before or after the drying process
In either case, you get a clean cut indistinguishable from a manual op, but in less time. All buds are equal in shape and size, and no trichomes are lost.
COMMERCIAL OPS: LABELS AND PACKAGING
People planning to smoke their cured bud can easily mark their jars by hand. The importance of proper packaging and notation skyrockets for commercial growers, though.
Having a person print and apply labels is repetitive and time-intensive. Plus, human error can cause compliance violations. On the other hand, technology ensures consistency and conserves time.
Print-and-apply machines aren’t specific to the marijuana industry, making them more accessible than other automated cannabis grow tools. They let you design labels with barcodes and graphics, generate them, and attach them to the package. You’re ready for export in hours.
GROW AUTOMATION: EASIER THAN EVER
Cannabis grow automation is the future of the marijuana industry—why not jump on the bandwagon? Let machinery take over tedious tasks, make your garden self-reliant, and enjoy easier cultivation.
Buy seeds, grow cannabis, and take advantage of technological advancements. Visit our shop for top-line trimmers to make bud collection quick and seamless.
ABOUT THE GUEST BLOG AUTHOR KYLE KUSHMAN
Kyle Kushman is an American writer, educator, activist and award-winning cannabis cultivator and breeder specializing in veganic cultivation. He is a representative of Homegrown Cannabis CO company, has been a contributor for over 20 years, and has taught courses in advanced horticulture at Oaksterdam University in Oakland, California and across the United States. Kushman also hosts a cannabis podcast called “The Grow Show with Kyle Kushman”.