You may have heard the term “light deps” thrown around, especially in the spring or summer. The term is short for“light deprivation,” which is a method of growing cannabis where you limit the plant’s exposure to sunlight, thereby controlling when the plants begin to flower.
Growing with light deprivation lets you harness the benefits of both indoor and outdoor growing, making it an ideal method for cultivating cannabis. Understanding the different light deprivation setups and the benefits that come with each is the first step to implementing this method in your cannabis garden.
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Light Dep Cannabis Growing Setups
High-end light deprivation setups can be costly, but low budget options are available as well. When deciding which route is right for you, it’s helpful to understand the cost-to-benefit ratio of each price point.
Low-Budget Light Deprivation Greenhouses (Amy Phung/Leafly)
A low-budget light deprivation setup generally involves building hoop houses. With this setup, the garden is covered with clear plastic to help insulate the plants like a greenhouse, which will allow for longer seasons.
The cheapest way to create hoop houses is by using rebar, PVC, and 2x4s. The rebar anchors the PVC that is then used to build a hoop house over the desired garden space, while the 2x4s help stabilize the structure.
To control the light exposure in your hoop house, cover it using a light deprivation tarp. This tarp blocks sunlight, thereby controlling the light cycles for your plants. You can also moderate humidity and airflow in the hoop houses by including intake and outtake fans at either end of the hoop.
Low-budget systems such as this work well, but they do require more manual labor and are prone to malfunction. You need to pull