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By FriskyBiscuit
Posts:  52
Joined:  Thu Oct 05, 2023 2:54 pm
#444441
Currently looking to upgrade my set up for my plants. My main issue being low humidity in my apartment this winter and wanting to try and work with what I have. In general wanted to see if there were any thoughts on what my idea/plans are and to see if I'm missing anything.

Right now I use an adjustable wire rack shelf, it's big and I think will work find for my plants honestly. I'm using Barrina T8's 3ft and have one on each Nepenthes shelf and four where I have my drosera, cephalotus and pings (tho I worry this might be too much light). Using Photone to try and get an idea of the pffd which seems fine based on that. Wanted to get t shelf cover to help with humidity possibly but I'm worried that it would become too hot and not sure if the USB fans would work well enough to cool it down. Don't want to use a humidifier inside it because I feel that's just asking for mold and other issues. But kinda stumped at this point if I'm making a good call or if my concerns can be addressed easily.

Nothing's been bought, I'm coming up with a game plan first before I try and purchase and make any changes first. Saving up for a Mara Hydro tent kit in the meantime as well.

Attacged my set up and the cover I was looking at. Thanks guys!
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By specialkayme
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Posts:  297
Joined:  Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am
#444443
I'm not really sure what help you're looking for. If you're saving up for a Mars Hydro tent, then I don't know why you'd spend any money on any other upgrades in the meantime. Or are you saying you're uncertain if you want to get a tent, or upgrade what you have now?

Personally I took one of those 5 foot metal shelving units (mine wasn't the wire rack) and customized it for what I wanted. The top section uses painted plywood to act as a light shade. Below that are two sections with the backs covered up with painted plywood, and the sides/front covered up with plexiglass that can be slid open. Inside, in addition to lights, are fans to circulate air and a humidifier, with a heater. All on programmable controllers. The setup works fine for me. The humidifier goes through about 0.5-0.75 gal of water a day, mainly because it isn't sealed. You have to find the right balance between humidity and air circulation though. Too little air circulation and you get mold. Too much and the plants dry out.

The issues you'll find with a closed off shelving unit is the same as with a grow tent. No difference. Humidity, air exchange, and air circulation. The main difference between most grow tents and what I have though is most grow tents you can't see what's growing in there without opening up the zippers. Which is fine for most. But I can't enjoy the plants behind light proof plastic. And opening the tent up every time I want to enjoy the plants will destroy any humidity and temperature control I have in the tent. I realized that if I got the tent, I'd either need to get one big enough that I could walk into (at which point I'm better off building a greenhouse), or I'd just need to accept that the plants are in the tent and I don't get to enjoy then, at which point I'm not sure why I'd even have the plants. So for me, the plexiglass is a good option. I have toyed with building a bigger one than what I currently have (I've run out of room) and sealing it off to get better humidity control. But I'm not sure I'm there yet.

As far as the shelves cover you linked, it looks like that would be open on the bottom. I'm not sure what level of humidity control you'd get with a wire rack in the bottom that's open to the room. It's better than nothing, sure. But not what I would consider "good". You'll just end up ditching it soon for something better.
By FriskyBiscuit
Posts:  52
Joined:  Thu Oct 05, 2023 2:54 pm
#444445
specialkayme wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 5:23 pm I'm not really sure what help you're looking for. If you're saving up for a Mars Hydro tent, then I don't know why you'd spend any money on any other upgrades in the meantime. Or are you saying you're uncertain if you want to get a tent, or upgrade what you have now?
Well I'm looking for something for now, yes I'm saving up but who knows when that will be considering other things going on in my life lol As of right now I have all the equipment I would need for what I'm mentioning, just don't have the cover of a ventilation system. But before I go through the effort, time and money for the cover and stuff I just wanted to check.

And as for the rest of your reply, great info and really helpful. Never set up anything of this sort before so have been trying to figure it out while watching YouTube videos and whatnot. And as you said I wanted to figure out a way to be able to see and enjoy my plants still. I was concerned with the bottom being open but was hoping it wouldn't cause too much interference.

I'm trying to figure out a way to balance the heat, humidity and air circulation if I were to get it. I have a humidifier, I have fans, and I have hygrometers to help me track it but didn't wanna waste my time setting it all up for no reason I guess? Again never having done anything like this I wasn't sure where to start, what would be necessary or unnecessary but I'm realizing a lot of it won't be figured out unless I were to do it. No way of guessing what the humidity would be or the temperature or any of that.

Hopefully that made sense lol
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By andynorth
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Posts:  1520
Joined:  Fri May 12, 2023 9:08 pm
#444446
Not sure if the sale is still going on but https://vivosun.com/vivosun-smart-grow- ... 14?_lf=nav also has good grow tents and lights. I picked up a smart light for 40% off and 2 grow tents for 35% off. Those shelve units fit inside them perfectly. Same as I use except mine are 3 shelf units due to space limitations. If you sign up with an email address you can get some great deals. Their $239.99 Smart Light can be had for $119.99 when applying coupins.
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By FriskyBiscuit
Posts:  52
Joined:  Thu Oct 05, 2023 2:54 pm
#444449
andynorth wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 8:42 pm Not sure if the sale is still going on but https://vivosun.com/vivosun-smart-grow- ... 14?_lf=nav also has good grow tents and lights. I picked up a smart light for 40% off and 2 grow tents for 35% off. Those shelve units fit inside them perfectly. Same as I use except mine are 3 shelf units due to space limitations. If you sign up with an email address you can get some great deals. Their $239.99 Smart Light can be had for $119.99 when applying coupins.
I will have to look into those some then! Those are really good deals lol, and think would work perfectly. I really only worry about my Nepenthes when it comes to this, my Drosera and my pings and even my cephalotus seem fine with my current humidity. The Neps I can tell want some more, so I wanted to get something going. I think they sell kits as well, which is what I might look into as well to save me some further trouble haha and that's actually good to know the shelving fits in there!! Was a concern of mine when looking into them, having my plants all in the floor seemed like a mess waiting to happen 😂 does the the whole unit fit inside or just the shelves?
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By andynorth
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Posts:  1520
Joined:  Fri May 12, 2023 9:08 pm
#444450
[/quote]
does the the whole unit fit inside or just the shelves?
[/quote]
I think it will depend upon which tent you buy. I bought 2 of the 24x24x48 units. The Amazon 4 shelf unit although is a little tight can be assembled and then placed inside. However, I found that it was easier to assemble inside the tent but either way the 24 inch 4 shelf unit fits inside perfectly. There are 2 different sizes of the 4 shelf unit. The other 4 shelf unit is roughly 47 5/16" high will also fit. I chose the 4 shelf unit that is 42" high due to using the Vivosun smart light in one and a Mars Hydro light in the other. Hope this makes sense. If not, PM me and I can explain in detail.
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By specialkayme
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Posts:  297
Joined:  Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am
#444451
FriskyBiscuit wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 5:39 pm
Well I'm looking for something for now, yes I'm saving up but who knows when that will be considering other things going on in my life
I'm not sure I understand. The "covers" you're looking at are ~$40-50. You can get a decent Vivosun grow tent for $100, or a budget one for ~$50. So I don't understand why you would be looking at spending $50 today as you save up $50-$100.
FriskyBiscuit wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 5:39 pm I'm trying to figure out a way to balance the heat, humidity and air circulation if I were to get it. I have a humidifier, I have fans, and I have hygrometers to help me track it but didn't wanna waste my time setting it all up for no reason I guess?
If you're asking if your specific gear, with your specific plants, will work in your specific home and home environment, I'm not sure anyone will be able to answer that for you. If you're asking if you'd be better off getting a shelf cover or getting a grow tent, get a grow tent. If you're asking if you'd be better off spending $50 attempting to make something work while you save up $100, don't do it (just save up to do it right the first time). If you're asking if you should build your own setup, instead of buying, I don't know what tools you have, or your skill set, but I can tell you it wouldn't be cheaper than buying a grow tent.
By FriskyBiscuit
Posts:  52
Joined:  Thu Oct 05, 2023 2:54 pm
#444452
specialkayme wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 9:19 pm
FriskyBiscuit wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 5:39 pm
Well I'm looking for something for now, yes I'm saving up but who knows when that will be considering other things going on in my life
I'm not sure I understand. The "covers" you're looking at are ~$40-50. You can get a decent Vivosun grow tent for $100, or a budget one for ~$50. So I don't understand why you would be looking at spending $50 today as you save up $50-$100.
FriskyBiscuit wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 5:39 pm I'm trying to figure out a way to balance the heat, humidity and air circulation if I were to get it. I have a humidifier, I have fans, and I have hygrometers to help me track it but didn't wanna waste my time setting it all up for no reason I guess?
If you're asking if your specific gear, with your specific plants, will work in your specific home and home environment, I'm not sure anyone will be able to answer that for you. If you're asking if you'd be better off getting a shelf cover or getting a grow tent, get a grow tent. If you're asking if you'd be better off spending $50 attempting to make something work while you save up $100, don't do it (just save up to do it right the first time). If you're asking if you should build your own setup, instead of buying, I don't know what tools you have, or your skill set, but I can tell you it wouldn't be cheaper than buying a grow tent.
I see. When looking online everything I saw was $300 or more. Until andy posted about vivosun I didn't know. So now that I know that, I'm looking into that instead. And no not asking anyone to tell me if a specific setup will work for me specifically. Though it was this forum or another where I saw someone using something similar and was also looking to see if that was the case and if anyone had experience to share in that regard.

The point of the post was asking for feedback, clearly I don't completely know what I'm doing so before I make dumb decisions I figured it wouldn't hurt to double check. What might seem like common knowledge to you, isn't the same things to me. Sure I research, and I think and try and figure things out but I'm not gonna say I'm the smartest individual on the planet. Which is why I ask people who might know more. Like the vivosun for example, those were being advertised to me when looking online, just lights or whole kits or gigantic tents/greenhouses for outside.
Last edited by FriskyBiscuit on Tue Dec 26, 2023 9:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
By FriskyBiscuit
Posts:  52
Joined:  Thu Oct 05, 2023 2:54 pm
#444453
andynorth wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 9:11 pm
does the the whole unit fit inside or just the shelves?
[/quote]
I think it will depend upon which tent you buy. I bought 2 of the 24x24x48 units. The Amazon 4 shelf unit although is a little tight can be assembled and then placed inside. However, I found that it was easier to assemble inside the tent but either way the 24 inch 4 shelf unit fits inside perfectly. There are 2 different sizes of the 4 shelf unit. The other 4 shelf unit is roughly 47 5/16" high will also fit. I chose the 4 shelf unit that is 42" high due to using the Vivosun smart light in one and a Mars Hydro light in the other. Hope this makes sense. If not, PM me and I can explain in detail.
[/quote]

Thank you for the info! I'm definitely gonna be looking into them further and see if I find anything I like! For some reason tents in their own never showed up unless they were the gigantic ones when I was searching for stuff. Only sucks I can't see the plants but honestly I just wanna save my Neps before its too late lol
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By specialkayme
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Posts:  297
Joined:  Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am
#444454
It seems like you're somehow upset or frustrated with my response. Not really sure why. I think there might be about 4 or 5 people on this forum that have built and tested out exactly what you're describing. I'm one of them. I would have figured, after finding someone who has done exactly what you're trying to do, you'd use that opportunity to ask them questions. Instead it appears you want to lecture me about how my responses aren't helpful enough for you. If that's the case, it's cool. I'll move on. I certainly don't need to spend time providing responses and guidance if it isn't wanted.

Of course, if I'm reading your posts incorrectly, that's fine too. We can move along.
FriskyBiscuit wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 9:26 pmWhich is why I ask people who might know more.
The point is that I don't think you're asking a question. You're asking for general feedback on a range of thoughts. Which is fine, but it makes it hard to provide an answer. So instead you're likely to get a range of thoughts in response to your range of thoughts.
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By PlantBro
Posts:  9
Joined:  Tue Feb 07, 2023 6:29 am
#444456
Not sure if this helps, but I struggle with humidity and my old dry a/c unit, as well as mold on smaller plants. I grow strictly indoors and have a set up like yours, but only keep plants who need to be drier on it, mostly VFT. Next to it I use a $40-50 crap miracle grow mini greenhouse with included shelves from Lowes. I’ve had mold accumulate on the plastic when I forget to air it out, but otherwise nothing on the moss, sarrs, etc that are top watered and allowed to drain in it. IMO grow tent systems really only seem worth it and designed for weed. Maybe huge sarrs would benefit.
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By FriskyBiscuit
Posts:  52
Joined:  Thu Oct 05, 2023 2:54 pm
#447010
PlantBro wrote: Wed Dec 27, 2023 4:14 am Not sure if this helps, but I struggle with humidity and my old dry a/c unit, as well as mold on smaller plants. I grow strictly indoors and have a set up like yours, but only keep plants who need to be drier on it, mostly VFT. Next to it I use a $40-50 crap miracle grow mini greenhouse with included shelves from Lowes. I’ve had mold accumulate on the plastic when I forget to air it out, but otherwise nothing on the moss, sarrs, etc that are top watered and allowed to drain in it. IMO grow tent systems really only seem worth it and designed for weed. Maybe huge sarrs would benefit.
Definitely helpful and some stuff to take into consideration! :) I've decided to let them grow in in my household conditions for now and then later on down the line getting more serious with a setup once I've done all my research and have a better idea of what I want it to be like :)
By FriskyBiscuit
Posts:  52
Joined:  Thu Oct 05, 2023 2:54 pm
#447011
specialkayme wrote: Tue Dec 26, 2023 9:53 pm Of course, if I'm reading your posts incorrectly, that's fine too. We can move along.

The point is that I don't think you're asking a question. You're asking for general feedback on a range of thoughts. Which is fine, but it makes it hard to provide an answer. So instead you're likely to get a range of thoughts in response to your range of thoughts.
Very late response as I never was notified for some reason. But a bit of that but I also struggle with forming my thoughts/ideas into sentences. So yes I got a bit frustrated at both it not looking like you understood what I was trying to ask/say and me not knowing how to word it in a way that worked. There are no issues here, I find yours and Andy's advice to be quite helpful :)

Anyways I've decided to just grow my plants at household conditions versus trying to change things constantly/driving myself crazy trying to get it done right now. I like the idea of te challenge of attempting to grow and acclimate them to these conditions and eventually gonna change things for the better but gonna continue to research and figure out exactly what I want as well.
So far all Neps, Drosera, pings and my ceps have been growing fine. Just have run into some recent pest issues.
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