DIY Projects

Do-it-yourself projects are part of the fun when growing cannabis! We offer a number of DIY tutorials in our Table of Contents. On this page, we brought all the lists together to make finding the products easier. Here you can find all of the supplies and equipment that you need to build an automatic watering system, self-draining saucers, and an auto-pumping drain bucket. We also list all the products you need to buffer and prepare your own coco, to clone cannabis plants, and to make cannabutter. Browse below but be sure to read the complete tutorial for each project!

Auto-Watering System

An automatic watering system allows you to truly unlock the magic of growing in coco coir! They also make growing so much easier. We have simple instructions that anyone can follow to put together and manage their own automatic watering system for your cannabis grow.

Reservoir Tank

When selecting a bucket, barrel, tank, or tub for your reservoir there are a few things to consider.

Size: You want a reservoir that will hold enough water to run your system for at least a day or two. In a 4x4 tent I can use up to 3 gallons per day.

Height: Tall reservoirs allow you to use fountain style aeration. However the siphon effect problem may limit how much water you can fill in a tall reservoir.

Color: The reservoir should protect the nutrient solution from light as much as possible. Avoid clear plastic or white containers that allow light to penetrate.

14-Gallon Plastic Drum
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This is the reservoir that I use. It is tall enough to use fountain style aeration and large enough to hold water for at least two days. I linked a similar drum for the UK, but could not find a decent option in Canada. If this model is a good deal in your marketplace then I recommend it. However, if it is expensive or unavailable then you should be able to find an alternative online or locally.

Irrigation Pump

The pump that you need for an indoor watering system is not very large. It needs to be powerful enough to raise the water into the tent and provide some pressure to ensure equal distribution. However that task can be handled by pretty small pumps. About 300 GPH should be the minimum for any auto-watering system. If you have a large grow you can estimate about 60 gph per plant to determine how large your pump should be.

We recommend running one pump for up to 8-10 plants. Running more than 10 plants on a single pump makes it extremely difficult to balance the distribution of water among the plants. If you are growing more than 10 plants, you should set up two systems with separate pumps.

400 Gallon Submersible Pump
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This is the pump that I use in my system and it works perfectly. I have had it for over a year and have run 2 plants all the way up to 6 with this pump. This is a good option for almost all auto-watering systems for home grows.

Digital Timer

A good timer is important, but there are some over-priced cycle timers that are actually less convenient to use. I recommend a good digital 24 hour timer. It should allow you to set multiple events per day and control the timing and spacing of each event.

Digital Timer with one second intervals
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This is the best timer for automatic watering systems that I have found. It allows you to set watering intervals in one second increments, which allows fine-tuning an automatic watering system.

Oxygenation

When you keep nutrient solution in a reservoir it is important to keep the water oxygenated. Water with a high level of Dissolved Oxygen helps to prevent bad bacteria and is great for the plants. For small tanks, up to about 30 gallons, air-pumps and air-stones provide adequate oxygenation. If you run a larger reservoir or use organic nutrients then you should use a stirring pump to mix and oxygenate the solution. A stirring pump is a small fountain pump which should sit in the reservoir and run periodically to “stir” the nutrient solution.

Air Pump
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I use the hydrofarm air pump and it is perfect for most reservoirs. It is easily adjustable and plenty powerful for a reservoir up to 30 gallons.

Air Stone and Tubing
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Pawfly makes the perfect accessory kit to go with an air-pump. The kit comes with two air-stones, tubing and splitters that will allow you to use both stones with one pump and tube.

Stirring Pump
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A stirring pump is an alternative to air-pumps and air-stones. It is the preferred style of aeration if you have a large reservoir (over 30 gallons) or are using organic nutrients. Stirring pumps are small water pumps that sit in the reservoir and lift and stir the water. You can attach a small section of Poly tubing to the pump so that the water is lifted just above the surface of the water in the reservoir. Pumping the water just above the surface and allowing it to fall back like a fountain is one of the best ways to oxygenate water. If you use this “fountain style” aeration, then the pump should be run for a couple minutes every hour and prior to each fertigation event.

Aquarium Thermometer

It is best to keep the temperature of the water in the reservoir between 65-68f (18-20c). This temperature range helps to maintain dissolved oxygen and prevent infestation with anaerobic bacteria. Read more in our guide, “How To Manage Automatic Watering Systems”.

Digital Thermometer
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This is a simple thermometer to keep track of the temperature in the reservoir.

Main Water Line

This water line attaches to the pump in the reservoir and runs into the tent. I prefer “poly tubing” over “vinyl tubing” for the main water line. Poly tubing is a semi rigid tubing that bends gently and resists being crushed. When using the drip emitter system, you need to use this Poly tubing. With the Hydro Halo system, you could technically get away with using vinyl tubing for this task, however poly tubing is a much better option.

1/2 inch Black Poly Tubing
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50 feet is probably much more than you will need, but it is tough to find in shorter lengths.

Water Distribution Options

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I have used two different systems for distributing water to the plants. I originally used a system with feeder lines and drip emitters. I have since “upgraded” to using Hydro Halos. Both systems work well but have different advantages and disadvantages.

Hydro Halos offer superior water distribution. I can go weeks without hand-watering the plants because the distribution of water does not leave any dry spots within the media. The drawback to Hydro Halos is that they really can only be used in final containers – leaving you to hand-water all through the first several weeks.

Drip Emitters offer much more flexibility. You can put just one in a seedling pot and then add more as the pots and plants get bigger. The drawback is that you will end up with a lot of water lines running around and it can be difficult to set enough emitters in large pots to get good saturation.

Hydro Halo System

I think that the Bloom Brother’s Hydro Halos are the perfect option for a DIY drip system for indoor cannabis. They have greatly improved the distribution of water in my system from the dripper lines that I used to run. This can reduce or even eliminate the need for periodic hand-watering. They are also easy to use with Ball Valves to control the flow to individual plants.

6" Hydro Halos
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I recommend the 6” Hydro Halos for air-pots up to #5 and most fabric pots up to 3 gallon.

9" Hydro Halos
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If you use fabric pots that are 5 gallon or larger, you should opt for the 9” Hydro Halos instead.

½” Vinyl Tubing
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I prefer to use Poly Tubing for the main water line, but Vinyl tubing is required to actually connect the Halos to the system. I run the Poly tubing to a connector and both the poly and vinyl tubing can attach to the same connectors.

Connectors
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This is a simple set of connectors that includes all of the pieces that you will need. Both the poly tubing and the vinyl tubing can attach to these connectors. Dip the tubing in hot water to make attaching it to the connectors easier.

Ball Valves
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You need to use a ball valve for each halo. The ball valves attach to the Vinyl tubing and allow you to control the flow of water to individual plants. These are required if you use halos.

Drip Emitter System

The drip emitter system offers more flexibility than halos. However, they do not distribute the water as effectively. If you set up a drip emitter system you should plan to hand-water at least once per week to flush out salts that can accumulate in the regions of the pot that don’t get well saturated by the drippers.

End Cap
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This system works by plugging the end of the main poly tube that comes into the tent. That forces water into the small feed lines that run to each plant.

Small feed lines: ¼” PE tubing
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This is the tubing that will attach to the main water line and bring water to the plants. You can use one, two, or more lines per plant.

Clamp and Pierce Connectors
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You may be wondering how the small feed lines attach to the main water line. There are several solutions, but clamp and pierce connectors are the easiest by far. You simply squeeze them onto the main water line and then slip the small feed lines over the fitting. They come in sets of 5 and you will need two connectors per plant.

In-Line Drippers: 1 GPH
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These in-line drippers help to distribute the water around the pot. You simply cut the small feed lines and then slip each end onto the inline drippers. I use two to four per pot. This set includes 25.

Terminal drippers: Adjustable Bubblers
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At the end of each small feed line you will need a terminal dripper. I use these stream bubblers. The water pressure in created by the pump is not as high as normal water pressure. The bubblers are designed for outdoor use on full water pressure. On their labels, there are pictures where it looks like they spray water around – but in your indoor automatic watering system, they will just leak. Since they are adjustable, you will be able to control how fast they leak, but they will not really distribute the water. You need to distribute the water using at least 2 terminal drippers and 2-4 in-line drippers per plant!

Self-Draining Saucers

Self-draining saucers remove the run-off from the plants easily and effectively. If you are moving plants around or using a shop vac then this wil be a huge improvement to your grow set-up. If you plan on using automatic watering, these are the best way to remove water from the plants without supervision. They are easy to build and save a ton of work throughout the grow.

Note: In addition to the items listed below, you will need a 2x4 cut into 8" sections along with wood screws.

Saucers

You want a durable saucer that is thick and fairly rigid. Avoid the cheap flimsy saucers!

Hydrofarm 14" Saucer
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These Hydrofarm saucers are a must. They are light and rugged and deep and perfect! The 14” model will accommodate up to a 7 gallon fabric pot and is perfect for the plant elevators described below. They come in sets of 10 so you can make 5 Self-Draining saucers per pack. Don’t worry if you think you don’t need that many, you’d be surprised how handy extra saucers can be!

Drain Lines

3/8"ID 1/2"OD Clear Vinyl Tubing
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These lines attach to the saucers and move the run-off water to the catchment.

Filter Washers

3/4 Inch Hose Connector
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These little washers serve several purposes. They hold the drain line, provide a surface to attach to the bottom of the saucer, and prevent debris from cloging the drain lines.

Silicone Sealant

Gorilla 100% Silicon Sealant
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This is used to attach the drain lines to the washers and to seal up the screw holes. It is not strong enough to attach the washer to the saucer - you need super glue for that.

Super-Glue

Brush-On Super-Glue
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When I first made these saucers I tried a ton of different sealants. Super-glue is the only one that provided a reliable long-term seal. I have now used the same saucers for almost two years with no leaks.

Auto-Pumping Drain Bucket

An Auto Pumping Drain Bucket removes the waste water from your tent automatically. Water can enter the bucket at a height of only 2”. This allows you to minimize the height that you have to raise the plants. The Drain Bucket that we explain in our tutorial is designed to work with our self-draining saucers. This is the system that I (Dr. Coco) designed and have used in my own grow tent. It is reliable and very effective. You will love having this drain bucket.

Drain Bucket

You need two buckets for this automatic drainage system. One sits in the tent and holds the pump. It is the "Auto-Pumping Drain Bucket". The other sits outside the tent and is the final catchment. I use 5-gallon buckets for both.

5-Gallon Bucket with Lid
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The Auto-pumping drain bucket only needs to be large enough to hold the pump. I use a 5-gallon bucket because I have the space for that in my tent, but you could use a smaller bucket. The bucket should be large enough to hold the pump and have a lid. The Final Catchment Bucket can be as large as you like. A 5-gallon final catchment is adequate for several days with my 4x4 tent.

Shallow Pan Condensate Pump

This is a pump that is designed to sit in a tray (or bucket) and turn on automatically when the water reaches a certain height. This is the “shallow pan” model, which turns on in only 1.75” of water and shuts off again when water is about 1”.

Little Giant Shallow Pan Condensate Removal Pump
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The pump is expensive but be careful about cutting corners here. I did a lot of research and if this is your problem, this pump is an excellent solution. I have owned this pump for over a year and used in on 4 different grows. It is one part of my grow that I can simply forget about because it always does its job.

Rubber Grommets

1/2" Rubber Grommets
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You drill holes in the bucket to allow the drain lines from the saucers to enter the bucket. These grommets hold the drain lines in place.

Drain Line

½” Vinyl Tubing
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You may already have this for your drip system. This is the outflow line and can be run to another bucket that sits outside the tent.

Preparing & Buffering Coco

When you buy brick coco, you are responsible for turning it into a superior growing medium by rinsing, buffering, and mixing with perlite. All of the products that you need are below. Be sure to see our video and read the tutorial!

Rinsing Coco Coir

10 Pound Brick of Coco
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These bricks will convert to about 30 gallons of media once buffered and mixed with perlite. Different brands are available in different markets. The products linked are the options that I would choose in each marketplace. It is ultimately up to you to then buffer the coco and transform it into a superior growing media for cannabis. The product that you start with matters less than the process that you follow to prepare it.

11" Perforated Strainer
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If you choose to get a brick of coco and prepare it yourself, then you will need a strainer to rinse the coco. This is the best strainer that I have found to do the job. The holes are plentiful and just the right size. The strainer itself is as large as it can be and still fit in a 5 gallon bucket. Be sure to check out the video in my tutorial to understand what you are going to be doing with this! This strainer is much better than the one that I used in the video.

Buffering Coco

General Hydroponics CaliMagic
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You will need CalMag supplement during the grow and for buffering. For buffering you can use a 150% to 200% dose. That is 7.5-10ml per gallon of CaliMagic.

7-Gallon Fabric Pot
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Although these pots are pretty large for growing in, they are ideal for buffering. They hold a lot of coco and are able to fit nicely inside of a five-gallon bucket.

Mix with Perlite

Whether you use a prepared coco product or a dehydrate brick, you should mix your coco with perlite.

One Cubic Foot of Perlite
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One Cubic foot of perlite (about 60 quarts) is the perfect compliment to a 10 pound brick of coco. Together they make about 30 gallons of finished media. I have used the Espoma bag that is linked and it has a good mix of particle sizes.

Cloning Supplies

One of the cool properties of cannabis plants is our ability to clone them. Vegetative propagation allow us to maintain our favorite cultivars and can be a central aspect to a grow operation. If you are interested in cloning check out our cloning tutorial! Here we offer a condensed list of the products that we recommend for cloning cannabis plants.

Rooting Hormones

Rooting hormones encourage cuttings to produce roots. It is possible to clone without supplemental rooting hormones, but to increase speed and reliability we recommend using the "double dip" method with both rooting gel and rooting powder.

Clonex Rooting Gel
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This is for the first dip. You take a fresh cutting and coat the bottom portion of it with this gel.

Rooting Powder
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This is for the second dip. After coating the bottom portion of the cutting with rooting gel, cover it in this powder. The gel help the powder to stick and the two products work together to stimulate the production of roots.

Pruning Snips

Cloning is not the only time that you will use these snips! 

Fiskars Non-Stick Softgrip Microtip Pruning Snips
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These Fiskars snips are really the best on the market and every grower owes themselves a pair. We linked the non-stick version because that feature really helps when trimming up sticky resinous colas. However, if their primary role is for cloning you could save a little and get the regular version.

Germination Media

Jiffy Pellets
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Jiffy Pellets are my preferred germination and cloning media. They are simply dehydrated peat. After re-hydrating it becomes a perfect media for growing seeds or rooting clone.

pH Meter

This is another product that you may already have. However, pH is important for clones, so if you don't have a way to measure and adjust you will need to get one!

Apera Instruments pH20
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Dr Photon and I both use and recommend this Apera Instruments pH meter. It is easy to use, reliable and accurate. I have owned it for a year now and it has proven very consistent and rarely needs calibration. It also comes with small jars of calibration fluid, rather than powder. It is a great balance of quality and price for a pH meter for home cannabis grows!

pH Control Kit

You need to have a way to adjust the pH of your water and your nutrient solution. We recommend that you use products engineered for this task because they allow significant pH adjustment with very low doses and have minor impact on the EC of the nutrient solution.

General Hydroponics pH Control Kit 
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For the US and Canada we have linked the General Hydroponics pH Control Kit. It comes with both pH up and down. It also includes a color test kit for measuring pH. This is all you need to start managing the pH of your nutrient solution. We recommend using a pH meter (see below) instead of the color test but having the color test is great for periodic verification. The kit linked in the UK is the best available option.

Humidity Dome with Light

Super Spouter Delux Propagation Kit
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A humidity dome helps to create the ideal climate to grow sprouts, seedlings, and clones. It is best to keep the humidity relatively high when cloning and during the seedling stage. This dome will make it easy to maintain the correct humidity. It also comes with the perfect light for using during the rooting stage.

Seedling Heating Mat

Waterproof Seedling Heat Mat
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This is not a requirement, but a seedling heat mat provides the best environment to root clones. Using heat will lead to faster rooting and more vigorous root growth.

Heat Mat Controller
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A heat mat controller comes with a thermometer sensor that you place on the mat. You plug the mat into the controller and the controller will turn it on and off to keep the temperature where you set it (80f/27c to germinate cannabis seeds).

Plant Sprayer

Plant sprayers are used to provide foliar treatments or to raise the relative humidity for seedlings and clones.

Pressure Sprayer
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Pressure sprayers are the best way to apply foliar treatments to plants. They create a very fine mist which distributes the foliar treatment properly and limits the formation of large droplets on the plant surfaces.

Cannabutter

One of the great joys of being a home grower is the ability to use your trim to make a variety of different products. Cannabutter is always a favorite! Most of the things that you need to make cannabutter should already be in your kitchen. However, there are a couple special things that you might need to get.

Our cannabutter tutorial is coming soon!

Cheesecloth

Cheesecloth is used for straining the hot infused butter from the plant material.

One Yard of Natural Cheesecloth
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You can run several batches of cannabutter with this much cheesecloth. It should be double or triple layered when you pour the hot butter through it. The butter will drain through the cloth leaving the spent plant material behind. It is a good idea to squeeze to get all the butter out, but once the butter is removed the remaining plant material is waste.

Silicone Oven Mitt

You may already have these, if not, get them before making cannabutter. 

Silicone BBQ Gloves
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When you get the butter in the cheese cloth there is no better way to squeeze out the extra butter. It is far too hot to do it with your bare hands and any other type of pot holder will absorb the butter. Getting these will increase the amount of butter that you can yield from each run!

About Our Product Recommendations

At Coco for Cannabis, our mission is to help growers maximize the success of their cannabis crops by providing scientifically accurate information and sharing proven growing practices.

The products that we recommend are the actual products that we chose to purchase and use ourselves. In a few cases, we recommend products that we would buy if we needed them. We do not accept advertising and will not recommend any product that we would not buy for ourselves. We offer this guide as a resource to growers.

We may receive a referral when you purchase products through this page. This is the main revenue stream that keeps Coco for Cannabis up and running! When you click through our links and make purchases you are supporting our work! As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.

Whether we receive a referral does not influence our recommendations. For example, when products are cheaper to buy locally, we’ll tell you that rather than just recommend a more expensive online option.

Disclaimer:

The information on cocoforcannabis.com should not be considered as financial, legal, or medical advice. You are responsible for knowing and following the local laws that pertain to cannabis cultivation, possession, and use. Decisions to grow cannabis should be made in consultation with a lawyer or qualified legal advisor. Decisions to use cannabis should be made in consultation with your doctor or medical professional.