Smartpots / fabric pots / air flow

I am planning out my next tent layout and have some questions on fabric pots. My tent is a 2x2 and i am planning on doing a small SOG this time. Trying to decide if i should nine 7"d pots ( giving them each an inch or so of space between them), or if i can pack in sixteen 6"d pots butting up on each other.

I have read conflicting answers on whether the pots should be sitting in a tray so that they can soak back in runoff, or if they should be elevated so that runoff can flow away from the pot.

That leads to my second question about whether they need space around the pot, or if I can pack them in close to each other.

My thought is that in nature, plants sit below ground. So they are able to keep roots cool and happy. So packing them in close would be fine, and not having to elevate them would make my setup simpler and cheaper.

I also am thinking about the whole point of fabric pots is air pruning, and more air flow is better. And realize less plants is less headache but I just want to understand how you guys think fabric pots work best.

One love and thanks in advance.

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great question @Ilovereggae i am very interested in what the gang has to offer on this. my only problem with the crowding thing is about it’s implications for turning plants herme. but i think the gang on here has just about gotten me convinced to do the scrog and that is similar but different than sog, but has some of the same issues.

2ft x 2f or 2m x 2m? This is 1 plant in a 2f x 2f

Double check interior measurements on your tent. 16 of of square plastic pots will fit into mine. 9 not a bad number though either.

What @BobbyDigital is showing you is that…in general each plant will fill up approximately a 2ft x 2ft area or more when you get into the flowering stage. You can pack them in tight when they are seedlings and for some time during the vegetative stage but eventually they will run out of room and bring with it many issues. My thoughts are 4 plants per 4ft x 4ft space. That so far is what I do.
You can go for more but it gets crowded.

Pot size if you use photo seeds and not auto flowering seeds and plan on around 2 months in seed/veg and another 2 months in flower you will need 5-7 gallon pots (12 - 14 inch) your mentioned sizes 6” and 7” are fine early on but they will outgrow them quickly and the plants will suffer.

You want a catch tray under the pots and not leave the run off sitting in there for too long as that will cause problems.

Hope this helps


Appreciate all of your replies. I understand that SCROG is how most people run, and that 1 plant will fill a 2x2’ space with decent veg time. I know doing SOG instead is bucking the trend of most people on here, but I am also stubborn and have to try and fail for myself before I will give up on the idea.

I currently have two 3gallon smartpots and a one 2 gallon plastic pot in said tent, and they are doing great.

You can check my progress here:

I have thought about this a lot, and want to try a SOG for the following reasons:

  • Smaller plants means less veg time, and I can run up to 36 so am not concerned about having too many
  • Smaller pots means more frequent watering, but less time between feedings to correct nutrient deficiencies or wait for overwatering to fix itself
  • I am only growing for consumption not sale, so im fine with giant colas instead of a bunch of smaller buds
  • Not into all the LST and training required to max out 1 or 2 plants. Would rather keep it simple and grow a bunch of smaller plants.
  • SOG means a lot less cleanup/trimming

That still leaves my original questions unanswered though

  • do you think the smart pots can be packed in tight and touching each other
  • do you think the smart pots can sit in saucers (and residual water drained a few hrs after feeding)
  • or is it better to expose the sides / bottom to air flow by leaving a few inches between pots and elevating them?

@dbrn32 the actual interior is about 23.5" but you make a good point. With negative pressure I lose another couple inches anyway. I was gonna say screw it and pack them in tight but this makes me rethink that maybe 9 is the number.


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I see no fault in how you’re looking to grow, i think its a good plan. Regardless of the reason 9 is a good start. If you want to push the next one, they’ll find a way to grow around collapsing tent sides.

I’m not sure if you have considered it, but these are a lot easier to do from clone. From seed they typically won’t flower until 4-5 weeks old regardless of light schedule. Plants can be a little bigger than you need or want at that point, and no real guarantees in consistency from seed either. Can definitely be done from seed, just usually not as easily.

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Thanks @dbrn32! Yes I am planning to do from clones.

Currently have 11 Sundae Drivers and 4 Rocky Dennis in the veg tent. Planning to stick 9 of them in at about 10-12" tall so that they finish around 24" tall.

Leaning towards my Sundae Driver bc its stays nice and low, yield seems great so far, and it remains to be seen with my own eyes, but Ive seen a bunch of ppl who grew out the Cannarado seeds say they finish @ F50-52!

That would let me take clones the same week I start flower, give them a week in the dome and 3.5w in veg.

Thats my everything being perfect plan anyway.

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3.5 weeks may be longer than you want to veg. You kinda have to play by what’s going on there. If they transplant well and don’t really have any issues 10-14 days may be plenty. With single cola plants you will typically see a little more vertical growth on transition than something that’s been topped or trained into multi cola plant.

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Cool will keep that in mind. Going to be a lot of trial and error either way!

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For sure. You’ll like growing this way once you get a feel for transition. Running 2 spaces you can get 5-6 harvests per year in with right strain. It keeps things moving and gets you a lot of variery but still pulls good yields.

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