My first grow journal! Not my first grow... Forest Fruits Autofem


OK well it’s slightly past my bed time but I have news. I talked to my prospective investor today and she told me she has five or ten thousand to invest. The catch: she wants me to draw up a business plan outlining everything including her possible return on investment.

I’m a little over my head here on the business plan thing, but that ten grand could really get me set up pretty nicely in my little room. So if anyone wants to play “what if” with me, my space is basically 9x9 and my build budget is possibly as much as ten grand…

I’m now faced with the task of figuring out just how to maximize production in this space and developing a pie in the sky numbers sheet showing how much profit I can eke out. As it’s all just conjecture, I think the main goal here is to make it look at least somewhat realistic.

So I’m asking for any and all help that I can maybe get on this task. I would love to hear people’s opinions on the best medium for this grow, the best lights that I can afford, nutrients additives anything you have to offer slap it down. Right now the important parts for the business plan are build costs and projected yields. To figure build costs I’ll have to get off my flippy floppy ass and decide on a medium, which will probably be some sort of hydroponics, and lighting at the very least.

I know there are a lot of variables here, and there is no real way to say but the lady actually told me that most business plans are total BS and best case scenarios in a perfect world. She’s a friend of the family who I am told was the first person that held me the day I was born. She wants to help me get off the ground, but also wants to see return on her investment.

“These are very exciting times.” - Cmdr Jack Oneill, Stargate SG-1


Yea. They pulld me off outdoor routes at the moment. (Im an asshole and its my punishment) but i used to get around 10 miles a day between work n walking to work. Not to toot my own horn but… ladies always dig my thighs :joy::joy: quite possibly the thickest parts of my slim body


Oooooo now this is uber good news. Ok before i start spouting off living vicariously thru ur cash. Biggest questions are:

Have u grown AND harvestd?
Do u like soil or hydro?
Have u considerd the insane licensing costs of ur state?
And do u need an additional employee? :joy::joy::joy:


Yes purpngold I have grown and harvested, but it’s been a few years.
I like hydro
I already have paid the insane licensing fees and have got my license
Talk to me again about work in a few months


OK so I took the time to look at those HLG-600 lights that @hangthebanksters posted up above and I like what I see. Thanks for posting those hangthebanksters. That website has a lot of nice looking stuff.

If I was to put four of those in this room, I would be at 2480 watts. According to the 50w per sq ft rule I would need 4050 watts in my 81 sq ft room, but I will of course need walking around room. Also I think the old adage 50w per sq ft came from HPS, so hopefully I should need less with these “more efficient” lights.

So now I’m looking into what kind of grow setup I want. I’m most familiar with DWC, as that’s all I’ve ever really done since my first ever grow which was ebb and flow. I think it’s the same thing as flood and drain but that’s what we called it back then.

I have also recently purchased a chiller for my rdwc, which I haven’t even plugged in yet, so if I could use that it would be cool. I just got the tenth hp one though which is rated for up to 40 gallons. I don’t think I’ll be able to do a whole room in rdwc with 40 gallons of water, but I didn’t know about the investor until after I bought it.


I’m going with 35W/ sq ft with the QB LEDs and the results are magnificent!


Sounds like enough juice to me! Seriously. That budget is insane. You could do whatever u wanted.

@peachfuzz @BigDaddyCain @Bogleg can help you tune some damn fine rdwc or mult dwc setups. Fellas have at em. He wants mass and noob friendly. Or at least learner friendly

Lighting again @dbrn32. Easy job this time. 81 sq ft give or take for walk room etc. 4 - hlg600s? More or less?


I seen five or ten thousand… quick glimpse… not sure what to think… @Filthyhat are you helping or just making a quick buck… ?
Will have to read a lil more… I get back at you…
More info needed… :wink:



4 hlg-600’s sounds pretty reasonable, and yes you can divert from any watt per square foot rule. You’d maybe have a little room to tweak lighting but I would save that for after getting a few harvests.

That’s indeed a small chiller for big dwc, but what about flood tables? Seems like they would make sense in a larger room anyway. Measurements work too using a row of 3x3 tables on each wall with 3’ work way in the middle. 6 tables makes it easy to control nutes on a perpetual grow too. Your 4 hlg 600’s would be money there too running probably 80% or so.

You have to figure that stuff out and then make reasonable. A good grower can get a unit out of a 3x3. I would imagine you’d be at least a few harvests dialing in room and methods to get there though. Planning on 8 zips per table would be safe for someone that’s trimmed a few plants I’d say. Once everything was setup properly, you figure you’d get 2 tables every 3ish weeks.


Well @peachfuzz I don’t really understand the question. I’m the grower and the one doing all of the hard work, she’s just the investor. The five or ten grand is what she has to invest.

I still don’t even know what she wants for the money. I think what she wants is a percentage of my company, forever, which I am leery of. The “company” has a potential to make untold amounts of money, but without her investment capital I’m sailing in calm conditions. Not really moving a lot and nobody’s having any fun.

I took some more looking at the growers lights website and it looks like for flowering a 3x3 they would recommend the 320w xw board. 460 bucks assembled with a potentiometer. The HLG-600 says it’s for 4x4 or 5x5 flower size, and costs 761 bucks assembled with a potentiometer. If I go with four of the 320s, that would save me 1200 bucks and allow me to run four 3x3 flood tables. Does anyone see any reason to buy the bigger ones under these circumstances?

I think I like the idea of flood tables, especially if they come in 3x3. It just seems like a more efficient setup where the rdwc really is a pain in the bum to work with. It’s a big nuisance to have to clean up every time too. I could also build my own flood tables, although if they are cheap enough to buy I will probably just do that. Investment or not I am one cheap ass broke bastard.


Four hlg-600’s vs six 320 kits. Wouldn’t bother paying for the assembly either of them personally. Price difference isn’t that significant.


Well dbrn32 I’ll be limited to five flood tables max because of the door location, and that would cut off access to the closet in there. No huge deal but something to think about. It seems like with the 600s I’d be lighting some of the floor where I could have one 320 above each table and call it good.

What do you think?



This is basically the room I have to work with. The closet size is probably off and the door is actually a little closer to the corner but you get the idea.


The other thing is, if I can get this budget down low enough for the lights and room setup, my current partners (my parents) and I may be able to scrape the money together here pretty soon without outside help. That would be the perfect situation as I wouldn’t have anybody to answer to or to split my hard earned money with.

Anybody want to buy a truck? :sweat_smile:


You’re over estimating size of the hlg-600 fixture, but a smaller light would make more sense if you could fit 6 tables like this.

5 tables not only a reduction in production per square foot and lost potential revenue, it also extends time between harvest in perpetual grow. If you put tables on wheels or at least table behind door and in front of closet it wouldn’t be a big deal.


Lol I just came to that same conclusion


That door actually opens the other way but I couldn’t get the software to turn it around.
Well we’re pretty close anyway.


That works too. At least in my head it looked good lol


The rolling tables I like a lot, if you didn’t necessarily need them you will be happy you have them.

I didn’t have a space that big, but I have grown in room that was divisible by 3’. Never made it to hydro, but when I started putting it together the plan was to end up there. I went back and put casters on later.


Cool beans now we’re getting somewhere. I think the casters is a definite win.

In this setup do you think it would be better to go with the 600s still or would one of the 320s above each table be sufficient? With one light per table I could maybe even hang the light from the table somehow. One other option though if they were on wheels would be this:


If that would make a better lighting option available.

Also, why is the HLG550 more expensive than the HLG600?


You could go either way in my opinion with the lights. The only differences between 600 and 550 are driver and heatsink. The 550 heatsink is a cnc machined aluminum plate and constructed much better. The 600 comes with fairly unimpressive extruded heatsink that does the job.