Indoor vs. Outdoor

An outdoor guerrilla grow operation

With the arrival of spring, many marijuana farmers are gearing up for sowing cannabis seeds for the fall harvest.

If you grow indoor you're not as pressured to get things rolling in the spring because you're able to grow year round.  Outdoor growers, on the other hand, planing their strategy at this time of year.

Starting with the best plants and strain for the job is paramount.
Whether you're growing indoor or outdoor your choice of starter plants is the same, either seeds or clones.  Generally speaking, clones work best for indoor growing and seeds work best for outdoor growing.

Plants grown from seeds have a built in urgency to bud and finish as soon as the daylight hours start to diminish after the summer solstice (it's handy to keep the Old Farmer's Almanac handy to track daylight hours).
Plants grown from cut clones are forced into bud by the grower cutting of the light hours from 18 in vegetative stage to 12 hours for the flowering stage, the process known as "triggering" the plant.

Many factors are in play that determine whether you'll be able to grow indoor or outdoor.

Location, location, location, first and for most.

Budget may also determine which way to go, however I've known folks that started an outdoor crop on the cheap, "banked" the cash in the fall and used the money to set up a nice indoor facility to keep them going through the winter and beyond.
Smart investing.

So here's some of the pros and cons associated with growing indoor and outdoor.

An indoor marijuana grow



Year around growing has to be the one great perk to having an indoor facility.  Nothing's like walking into a room in the dead of winter and be greeted by growing cannabis plants under bright, bright lights.  Energizing.

The plant's environment is controlled.  The grower is in control of the temperature, wind, humidity, daylight hours, watering, feeding, etc. 

It is easier to control access to the cannabis plants and keep them secure.  The grower has complete control over the comings and goings of their situation.


It can expensive.  Have you priced out "Sunshine Mix" lately?  The price of a bag of dirt keeps going up, not to mention all the fancy nutrient mixes to choose from.  The local grow store shelves are loaded with products touting this and that.  On top of that there's electricity bills to pay and depending on what part of the country you're in it can cost several hundred of dollars per month just for a few 1000 watt bulbs.  By the way, you'll need to carry at least 3-4 months operating costs upfront before you'll see the first harvest.  

It's dirty having plants indoor.  Unless you're growing hydroponically you're dealing with dirt, mud, and soil.  If the room can be situated away from the house you live in, all the better.

Cannabis harvest size is limited to grow room size.  Available square footage provides a cap to how much can be grown in a given space.

An outdoor marijuana grow



Potential exists for a huge harvest.
While rooms are limited by their size, in the outdoors the sky's the limit.  Done right, seedlings have the potential to be extreme in size.

ProTip: Cut back on nitrogen after they've grow up the first month in the hole so they don't bolt and get gangly and they'll finish nice.
If you've prepped the hold well in advance of planting the seedling with good organic, manure base you won't need to add much more nitrogen, about a month after the summer solstice, late July and on.

Relatively cost effective.  Depending on your situations, seedlings can be planted in grow bags and dug into an area where they can be ground watered by nature.  The roots will dig in through the bag and launch themselves into the surrounding dirt following the water.  A little extra tending in a sunny location and these types of conditions can yield large for very little actual money.  You will, however, have to look long and hard for a suitable location.

Quality isn't sacrificed growing outdoor.  Outdoor cannabis is just as strong if not stronger than indoor grown cannabis and has the full spectrum of CBD's which the indoor grown cannabis does not.
The documentary "The Nature of Things" on CBC in November 2009 aired a discussion on the teenage user's in particular who have a "schizophrenic" type reaction to high potency indoor cannabis and discovered the missing CBD may be the culprit.
It seems the full spectrum CBD do not produce the same result.


Security.  If your marijuana plants are not under your watchful eye then they are not under your watchful eye.  It's difficult even with taking all the precautions to not have your crop discovered.

You may have to transport plants and freshly harvested bud on the public roadways.  It's all about risk assessment.  Pick the right time of day, blend in, have a good working vehicle.  

If you're growing from seed, there's always the task of sexing the plants and to make sure the males don't sneak in there and pollinate the buds.  Daily vigilance is required until you know that all the cannabis plants are female.  A 5 times magnifier works good for early and definitive detection of the tell tail hairs indicating female.

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