Planning Stages -Tent?

Just like title says, I am just starting my planning. (Never done this before)

First off, I bought seeds ( White Widow Feminized), probably should have been like step 20…

2nd step I started reading tons of posts in this forum and a couple of others.

It’s Fall, heading into winter so if I want to attempt soon, I need to go indoor. I have mapped out an enclosed area and I can fit 36" x 48" x 72"

Now I have read many many post about tents but I can’t seem to find any sort of consensus or credible rating system to help me choose a tent. Several complain that zippers break within a few uses, others complain the frames are flimsy and can’t hold any extra weight, and yet other complain about pin holes letting light out. It doesn’t have to last my lifetime but a few years of sturdy good working materials would be nice. What can you “fine experts” and soon to be “fine experts” suggest?

Once I nail down a tent, I can better determine the light needed but early indications are pointing towards HLG 260 V2 R-Spec XL.

I appreciate your attention and input on my planning stages


There’s many brands I have a Vivosun and a no name. The minor differences aren’t major so I would just look at the budget. I would get a cheaper tent and a better light. Just my experience.


Welcome! Nice to see someone starting out on the right foot.

Tents aren’t too difficult. Stay away from brands with unintelligible names. Gorilla tents or Secret Jardin seem to represent the top of the line; Vivosun and similar are midrange and present a good value. I agree the zipper is the weakest point and the hardest to address. Light leaks on the walls/seams are an annoyance, but you’re gonna check for light leaks and seal them anyway because you’re smart.

If you’re getting an HLG 260 XL, I’d go with a 36"x36" tent, or one with a 36"x36" main area and a germination/cloning partition off to one side. Similar to what @MattyBear uses (check out their grows).

It sounds like you have the option to grow outdoors next year, and that might lead you towards a tent with 2 or 3 chambers (flower, clone, veg).

Have you set an overall budget, or started to build a purchase list? You sound like you’re ready.


It looks like you are covered regarding tents choices…

Welcome to the forum from a fellow NW grower.

I have seen Vivosun come up on many searches. I was leaning towards it but then saw a couple of posts saying they were junk… Maybe time to go back that direction. This is one I had marked

I honestly like my cheap tent alot more than I like the Vivosun. But I buy Vivosun because I just complain and get a refund.

Two of you now suggesting Vivosun as a decent starter tent. This one may meet up with your suggestion of going 3 x 3. I think the side chamber would take up a foot?

as far as budget, I had been thinking $500 but now that I see price for a decent light I may have to expand that a bit

See how this cheap one has a flap that covers the zipper . The Vivosun lacks that. It’s made more like a gorilla tent which is very high end.

Yea, I see that. So as long as zipper works well the flap can keep the light contained

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Exactly it’s just a good back up for light leaks.

Can’t fault the Mammoth Elite range, heavy duty zippers, quality material, clip in bars, they’re definitely built to last.
Also found to minimise sound & smell substantially compared to cheaper tents.

My best advice would be to make sure you get clip in bars.

Time to open up a spreadsheet, because you need:

medium (+nutrients?)
carbon filter and inline fan
small fan (air movement)
Climate monitoring and control (temp/humidity meter, heater, AC, humidifier or dehumidifier?)
Pest management
Various Meters

You don’t necessarily need to buy all these things, but you need to solve for all these things.


Welcome to the community. I have a 3x3x6 Vivosun tent and a HLG 260 W V-1 3000k. The tent has some pin-hole light leaks when i walk into my grow room with lights off (but i grow autos) The light is an older version HLG but works great.

there’s no perfect tent. they are ALL going to leak. you just have to stay on top of it. do read the reviews for zippers, because once those go, you may be in trouble.

the biggest thing I would say to pay attention to is WHERE the ports are and what size. my first tent only had the passive rectangular ports and when it came time to seal it up for flower, I had to cut a hole and perform surgery in order to run a duct in there. take a look at where your tent is going to go, how you plan to ventilate, and make sure your tent has everything in the right place to meet your needs. the veg side of the tent has a port in the back, so you wouldn’t be able to put it directly against the wall if you wanted to use that to ventilate. the flower side has them on the left side. do you have room? that kind of thing.

I’d also have a few things on hand as leaks pop up… people will use liquid electrical tape, blackout curtains (i use strips and attach with binder clips) or tape for the seams (which still requires clips).

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yeah and as far as budget… eek… more like $1k. keystone’s got your back. i used to have a spreadsheet for folks and now i can’t find it.

don’t cheap out on meters. you’ll buy the cheap ones, realize they’re cheap, and then buy something better anyway. Apera makes decent Ph pens.

i wouldn’t cheap out on the filters either. ive never had a $100 filter make it through a whole grow.

blizzard 8" oscillating fans have been treating me well

Dr Zymes or plant therapy for pest and mold management and you’ll need a spray bottle

you may need a dehumidifier for your room depending on your climate.

Inkbird and Govee make decent blutooth hygrometers

you got the light :slight_smile:

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Holy Smokes, you guys are really loading me down with great information now. I hadn’t planned on gathering this much information so quickly. The great thing is that I am seeing repetition in the suggestions which helps convince me I will be off to a proven start with things.

I have spent all morning reading what you have all wrote and researching prices, not how I had planned on spending my day :slight_smile:

I don’t have the cash on hand to pump 1k into this project at this point but I will take all the info you guys have pumped out so far and whatever else that comes in and see if I can’t come up with a basic set of equipment that can get me started and then I can build on it from that.

Thanks again folks! What a great community you folks have here.


Basic necessities. Light, medium , pot, seed or clone. I mean if you have to you can grow outside with nothing or indoors with just a light. You don’t have to break the bank, honestly once you start you will probably upgrade as you go anyways most of us do even if we spent 1000 on a setup.


Welcome to the community. As you can see there are a lot of great growers who like to share what they have learned and are willing to pass that info on so you can eliminate the growing pains. You may soon find out that this passion is not inexpensive but what you get in return is priceless… happy growing this hit for you :crazy_face: :rofl: :bat:

I went with a cheap tent to start and it worked fine. Was it perfect nope but it still worked. Spend most of your budget on a good light it is the foundation and you have picked a great one. A good ph meter is a must. I really like my Apera. Blue labs is another good one. I pieced the rest together as I went. Until I have my current set up where I almost want.


I tell you, this Apera, is a reoccurring theme. I have already put one in my basket at amazon, think I would be a fool to buy anything less.