Use Only the Best CO2 Sources!
Higher Temperature is Okay – Maintaining 1200-1500 PPM of CO2 in the grow area allows growers to keep temperatures much higher than normal, up to 95°F (30°C). For growers with hot bright lights, this can make it easier to keep temps at a range their plants will like.
But since you’ll be using much lower concentrations of CO2, it is very unlikely you’ll ever expose yourself to negative effects. It’s still always a good idea to protect yourself by staying out of the grow space as much as you can and otherwise reducing how much you breathe CO2-enriched air.
However, a lot of growers feel from personal experience that running CO2 does increase bud production. Some growers recommend that you keep running CO2 all the way until 2 weeks before harvest.
1. Compressed CO2 (available at local welding supply stores, as well as some hydroponic stores)
2. Pressure regulator, Flow Meter and Solenoid valve
3. Either a CO2 PPM monitor / controller or a regulator with timer
4. Connecting tubing, fittings and adapters (usually comes with your set)
A long time ago, there was a lot more CO2 in the air than there is now. Some scientists believe that this is why many plants can take advantage of more CO2 than what’s naturally found in the air.
Even though CO2 levels in the air are much lower today at around 400 PPM, plants are still able to use CO2 levels at the higher concentrations, allowing them to produce more energy from the same amount of light. Growers can take advantage of this increased growth by providing extra CO2.
Can be automated with a controller, so relatively automatic once everything is set up
If I want to supply CO2 levels up to 1500 PPM, am I willing to seal up my grow area so it’s airtight?
Will CO2 work for your space? How do you get set up? Learn everything you need to know about CO2 injection…
Plants extract CO2 from the atmosphere via the plant’s stomates, which are the pores that plants “breathe” through. Photosynthesis begins as the plant uses CO2 in combination with light bulbs or light from the sun to produce both sugar and oxygen. The sugar is used by the plant to grow while the oxygen is released back into the atmosphere.
Compressed CO2 tanks can be acquired at hydroponic stores, compressed gas facilities, or even home brewing stores. In this case, the CO2 is produced by the manufacturers and is collected and compressed into tanks that can be then made available for purchase. This allows you to introduce controlled quantities of CO2 into your garden via emitters without having to own a CO2 generator. The benefit of this setup is that without a CO2 generator, you’re no longer producing heat when releasing CO2 into your garden. For this reason, compressed CO2 is ideal for smaller grow spaces.
CO2 generators, which look something like patio heaters, produce carbon dioxide by burning propane or natural gases. They can be set up to automatically power on or off when CO2 levels reach a specific ppm. Natural gas or liquid propane are very easy to acquire, but the burning of these gases produces heat which can be difficult to regulate in small grow spaces. Because of this, CO2 generators are better suited for large grow spaces with equipment for climate control.
The benefits of introducing CO2 into a grow space are well known and widely accepted. However, if you’re a novice grower and/or under a tight budget, there might be a number of ways for you to initially increase your yields before investing in a costly CO2 system. Make sure you first know how to:
The CO2 emitted should ideally fall from above the garden, as CO2 is heavy and will sink to the ground. Using fans will help keep the CO2 moving around the room and make it available for more plants to absorb. CO2 should only be emitted during the time that the lights are on; plants photosynthesize while it is dark out.
Increasing CO2 levels in your cannabis garden will allow your plants to create more energy – if you provide adequate lighting as well. Again, light is the second requirement to create energy for your plants, meaning you must match your CO2 levels with your lighting. However, before we dive into how this is done, there are a number of other considerations to make before investing in a CO2 system.
- Grow a healthy garden with a quality product
- Prevent and/or treat mold and pest infestations
- Set up a secure, sealed grow space
- Use an adequate high-powered light system
- Utilize quality strain genetics
- Use quality nutrients and growing mediums
CO2 levels in our atmosphere are around 400 ppm. Interestingly, studies show CO2 levels can continually increase plant growth as ppm reach upwards of 10,000. Note that once CO2 is above 3,000 ppm it starts to become dangerous for humans to breathe, and at 5,000 ppm it is considered lethal.
There are multiple ways to introduce CO2 to your garden, but most methods do not guarantee controlled ppm (parts per million, used to measure CO2 levels in atmosphere). For this reason, it’s important to invest in a quality CO2 setup. If the systems below are too costly or demanding for your space, you may consider holding off on CO2 supplemented grows until you’re ready to make the jump.
Learn how to add and control CO2 levels in your cannabis garden for stronger plants, increased yields, and the best possible end product.