Whether you’re wondering what exactly a grow tent is or want to find out what the best grow tents are in 2023, we’ve got you all covered!
This article includes reviews and features for the best grow tents available on the market today and also teaches you what exactly to look for when picking the one for you!
We also share exactly what a grow tent is and why you should consider investing in one today.
What is a Grow Tent?
A grow tent, also known as a grow room, is essentially a portable enclosed frame that allows you to grow a variety of plants indoors.
Lightweight, sturdy metal poles that fit together easily make up the frame, which is then covered with a thick canvas outer layer.
This robust, long-lasting material, which is frequently made of nylon, polyester, or Mylar, is attached to a reflective inner lining that lines the interior of the tent. Typically, the inner lining is either reflective silver or white.
Indoor grow tents are available in a variety of sizes to accommodate all space constraints, plants, and personal preferences.
They are designed to capture and retain heat, light, and humidity at a targeted level, allowing you to manipulate and control a plant’s environment and encourage it to produce the desired results that you are aiming for.
This may involve growing plants faster, taller, or with larger fruit. You are doing something that a typical outdoor environment does not naturally permit: you are establishing and maintaining a controlled artificial mini climate.
Grow tents are great because they let you grow different kinds of plants that might not be able to grow in your area because they need a very different climate.
They’re great for plants that need different levels of light or temperatures at different times during their growth cycle (e.g., vegetation, flowering, etc.)
Grow tents allow for easy adjustments to be made to the environment, allowing you to keep the environment at the ideal level for as long as it is required.
How Does a Grow Tent Work?
Through the control of light, temperature, and humidity, Grow tents maintain the ideal micro-environment for your plants.
Let’s examine why these factors are crucial to the growth of your plants and how a grow tent can make the most of them.
All plants require light for photosynthesis, the process that allows them to grow and develop. This light is provided in a grow tent environment by powerful grow lamps that mimic natural sunlight. This environment, which is both lightproof and sealed, allows very little to no light to escape.
All of the light in the tent is reflected back onto the plant by the silver or white reflective lining, which greatly increases exposure while minimizing photon losses.
Additionally, it aids in shining light on the lower portions of the plant, which in a natural setting may be in the shade or out of direct sunlight.
Your plants are only exposed to light when you want them to be because this sealed lightproof environment works both ways, preventing light from entering and leaving.
The period of darkness i.e. nighttime is just as crucial to get right when simulating the natural 24-hour light cycle that a plant would be exposed to as the period of light i.e. day time. Grow tents are incredibly effective at delivering these conditions without any potentially harmful risk of light leakage.
Most contemporary grow lights can be dimmed and brightened, giving you complete control over the lighting within those four walls at all times.
If you want your plants to flourish, the temperature must be properly maintained, just like light. A grow tent’s semi-closed environment is perfect for this because it provides insulation, which, along with the reflective lining, assists in retaining the heat generated by the grow lamps.
You can completely control the temperature within the tent, adjusting it to meet the needs of your plant throughout its entire life cycle. A ventilation system will help you control the temperature and improve airflow.
Although tents are sealed, self-sustaining microclimates, they do have port holes and vents that can be opened and resealed to allow ventilation equipment to be installed and perform its function.
In this way, grow tents give your plants a safe, stable place to grow, no matter what the weather is like outside.
The humidity levels in your grow tent will be determined by the combined effects of temperature and light intensity.
Correctly maintaining humidity levels is equally crucial if you want to have a positive impact on your plant’s transpiration rate.
Transpiration is when water evaporates from the leaves of a plant into the air. This cools the plant, moves minerals and sugars to where they are needed, and keeps the turgor pressure in the parts of the plant that aren’t made of wood, which keeps the plant from wilting.
Mold and rot will spread and destroy your crop if humidity levels are too high.
You can control your humidity in an isolated, self-sufficient environment with a grow tent. Humidity will be just right if you use a hygrometer and thermometer to keep an eye on the conditions and make sure they are kept at the right levels.
In a semi-sealed environment, nothing is left to chance or at the mercy of varying weather conditions, which means that your humidity will remain constant and will not be exposed to external threats.
You can control what goes in and out of your Grow tent, which is another benefit. This makes it less likely that insect pests will get into your plants, and it also makes it less likely that mold spores or plant diseases from outside will get into your crop and kill it.
5 Reasons Why You Should Use a Grow Tent
Grow tents are incredibly useful for all kinds of gardeners, but if you’re still on the fence about whether or not to buy one, here are five reasons why we believe you should consider it:
1. Total Control
Numerous environmental factors contribute to the development of robust and healthy plants, including controlling the temperature, humidity, lighting schedule, and light intensity, ensuring proper air circulation, etc.
As you gain more gardening experience, you will feel much more at ease not only controlling these factors but also manipulating them to produce larger, healthier plants.
But many people who are new to indoor gardening struggle even to maintain stable environmental conditions.
The fact that grow tents are made to make creating and managing these environmental conditions simple is without a doubt the best reason to use one.
2. Avoid Pests and Infestations
Anyone who grows plants outdoors can attest to how simple it is for pests to infest your plants and how challenging it is to get rid of them.
So as long as your plants and equipment are clean, you should be able to keep pests and diseases at bay.
3. Energy Efficient
The mylar interior expands the grow tent’s reflective surface area, enhancing your light’s efficiency.
Your plants will receive the best light possible thanks to this design, which prevents any precious light from being wasted. This, in turn, makes grow tents incredibly energy efficient.
4. Versatile and Adaptable
Grow tents are an excellent way to make use of space without completely changing it. You can easily grow plants in a grow tent in your garage or even in a spare bedroom.
Once you have completed your grow cycle, you can completely deconstruct your grow space without any issues.
Tents are also extremely adaptable when transitioning from the vegetative to the flowering stages. They also make the transition from soil to hydroponics extremely simple.
5. Grow Any Plant You Like
Regardless of what the weather, light, or humidity conditions are outside, you can easily grow indoors with a grow tent.
And a grow tent actually makes it easier to grow any kind of herbs, vegetables, fruits, or flowers you want without any trouble since it’s so customizable.
Using a tent helps you create a mini-artificial environment with the exact conditions you need all in the comfort of your own home.
So, whether you’re living in the North East and it’s winter time, or you’re down South wanting to grow plants that don’t fit into your USDA zone, you can grow anything you like with a grow tent.
What to Consider When Buying a Grow Tent
We’re sure by now you’re convinced about getting yourself a grow tent! If that’s the case, here are the factors you need to consider when choosing the right to grow tent for yourself:
Measure the area you plan to set up the grow tent in, taking careful note of its length, width, and height. To make setup and maintenance simple, the tent should be just a little bit smaller than the available space.
You should also think about your gardening objectives and the size of the tent that will help you achieve them. The main question you should be asking is how many and how big of a variety of plants you want to grow.
What tents you want to look at are heavily influenced by the size of your plants. Another factor to consider is whether you want to begin continuous harvesting or grow in distinct cycles.
Continuous harvesters typically require one tent for vegetative growth, another tent for flowering, and possibly a third tent for curing and drying the harvest.
The number of plants you can grow in each size of tent depends on the plant strains and container sizes used. Auto-flowering strains are suitable for growers who prefer to grow a larger variety of smaller plants and harvest them more frequently.
Some people like to grow just a few plants and train them to spread out very wide. This is called the SCROG (Screen of Green) method.
Lastly, some people want to grow the biggest plants possible, so they will have fewer big plants. Therefore, our recommendations on plant counts for each tent size are merely suggestions. Your actual number of plants may differ.
It will assist you in determining which size is best for you based on how many plants you intend to grow, your budget, and so on.
Small Grow Tents
- 2’ x 2’: 1 to 2 plants
- 2’ x 4’ or 3’ x 3’: 2 to 4 plants
Medium Grow Tents
- 4’ x 4’: 4 to 6 plants
- 5’ x 5’ or 4’ x 8’: 4 to 10 plants (most popular size)
Large Grow Tents
- 5’ x 9’ or 8’ x 8’: 9 to 16 plants
- 10’ x 10’: 12 to 18 plants
Extra Large Grow Tents
- 8’ x 16’ or larger: 16 to 32 plants
Number of Chambers
As we mentioned above, many growers prefer to have two distinct tents for the vegetative and flowering stages.
However, some tents contain multiple chambers that serve the same function. These tents are extremely useful, with chambers for propagation, vegging, and flowering.
This keeps everything more organized, but the majority of these tents have little room for vegetative. Because of this, we still recommend getting two separate tents so that you can grow bigger plants and get more harvests.
You can let seedlings and clones grow in a special tent for propagation, and you can have a separate tent just for harvesting. This will enable you to create a perpetual harvest and a steady stream of flowering plants.
Reflective Canvas Thickness
When buying a grow tent, also pay attention to the thickness of the canvas. This is because the higher the thread count, the more durable it is.
Durability can be a crucial consideration for long-term use, particularly if the tent will be moved frequently, increasing the risk of accidental scuffs, punctures, and tears.
Even though all grow tents are light-proof, those made of thicker material will last longer and provide a little bit more insulation from heat and noise. If your tent is located indoors, you may not require as thick or sturdy walls as you would for an outbuilding or shed.
Tent thicknesses range from 1680D canvas thread count to 210D. The D here stands for denier and is a measure of the linear mass density of fibers.
Ducting Ports, Cord Ports, and Windows
Every grow tent will come with a variety of ports of various sizes through which you can run ventilation ducts and electrical cords.
In order to ensure a light-proof tent, the best tents will have dual-cinching ports that enable you to completely block out any light emitted through the port.
Many gardeners can benefit from the numerous windows and other mesh vents that some tents offer.
Make sure to look at where and how big the ports are in each tent to make sure that your equipment will fit in the way you want it to.
Steel tubing is commonly used for the frame of grow tents, with a variety of materials used for the tent’s corners and connecting pieces.
The weight limit of one tent may be different from that of another tent of a similar size depending on the materials used for the poles and corner pieces.
Make sure to check the tent’s weight rating to make sure it can support all of the equipment you plan to use inside it.
If you exceed the weight limit, you can use additional support methods, such as additional bars to distribute weight, if necessary.
Other Durability Factors
Other factors to consider include the quality of the seams and stitching, as this will ensure that there are no weak points in your grow tent. Checking for needle holes where the tent has been stitched together is also important as this will allow light to leak in.
Quality zips are another thing to look at since if your zips break then the whole tent will become useless unless you find a way to get it fixed which usually isn’t easy or convenient.
Also check what material the frame is built of, as well as the corner brackets.
Best Grow Tents in 2023
Now that we’ve gone over everything there is to grow tents, including what to consider when buying one, here are our top picks according to different sizes in 2023:
Best Overall 2 x 2 Grow Tent: AC Infinity CLOUDLAB 2×2
Size:24” x 24” x 48”
Frame Material: Alloy Steel
Plant Quantity:2 plants
Perfect for: Hobbyists
When looking for a compact grow tent, look no further than the AC Infinity CLOUDLAB 2 x 3.
It features a durable steel frame with reflective diamond mylar lining that diffuses and reflects light. Its second chamber with a removable tray and Velcro wall divide accommodates vegetative or seedling plants, making it easier to control conditions specifically.
Growers can keep an eye on their plants inside of the AC Infinity CLOUDLAB without having to open the door thanks to the viewing window that is included in this model. This helps maintain the ideal conditions for plant growth.
Cable management is made easier by the fact that the controller mounting plate allows controller wires to pass through into the interior of the tent. This ensures that there is no light leak.
It also features a double-cinching duct port design closed on either side to reinforce the lightproof sealing. You’ll also receive a waterproof floor trap and a built-in tool bag with this compact grow tent.
Best Overall 2 x 3 Grow Tent: VIVOSUN D325 2×3 Grow Tent
Size: 24” x 36” x 53”
Fabric Density: 600D
Frame Material: Metal
Plant Quantity: 2-3 plants
Perfect for: New Indoor Gardening Enthusiasts
The VIVOSUN 2×3 model is the best choice if you want a high-quality grow tent with a multi-chamber design. It has an observation window for simple plant checking and an interior made of Mylar reflective material to maximize light and heat distribution.
You can hang some serious grow light hardware from the hanging bars as they can hold up to 100 lbs each! Plus, the floor tray will catch any excess water or soil.
This VIVOSUN model is also made of tough, waterproof material and has a door with a hook-and-loop fastener that makes it easy to open. A pair of handy hanging straps and a zippered closure adds even more practicality.
In addition, the tools can be kept neat and easily accessible in the inner tool organizer. The size is small enough that it should easily fit inside a closet or other small spaces.
Best Overall 2’ x 4’ Grow Tent: The BudGrower 2×4 Grow Tent
Size:24” x 48” x 60”
Frame Material: Steel
Plant Quantity: 2 to 4 plants
Perfect for:Mid-level gardener
If you want a 2 x 4 grow tent, then there’s no better option than this grow tent by BudGrower! It features hand-stitched, heavy-duty zippers with an incredible military-grade canvas that’s designed to stand the test of time.
The overall fabric density is an amazing 1680D, with a 670D reflective mylar interior. With an all-steel metal frame, you’ll be able to hang all kinds of lights and ventilation systems with ease.
You’ll also get multi-size vents with this model for different ventilation systems, including filter straps for hanging filters, and an observation window to monitor plants easily.
You can get this model in three other sizes, so even if the 2 x 4 isn’t the one for you, maybe one of the other ones will be!
Best Overall 4’ x 8’ Grow Tent: VIVOSUN S848 4×8 Grow Tent
Size: 48” x 96” x 80”
Fabric Density: 600D
Frame Material: Metal
Plant Quantity: 12 to 24 plants
Perfect for: Enthusiastic, more experienced gardener
The VIVOSUN 48 Grow Tent is the best way to start growing plants indoors. The tent’s Oxford exterior is tough and long-lasting, and the tent’s PE, Mylar 98% Reflective interior is the perfect non-toxic combination.
The back doors make it easy to get in and out, and the tool compartment helps you keep your growing tools in order.
With its spacious interior, the VIVOSUN 4’x8′ grow tent can accommodate 12-24 plants in 3-gallon pots. The plants can be seen clearly through the large front window, and the one-year warranty gives you peace of mind.
Best Overall 5’ x 5’ Grow Tent: Gorilla Grow Tent 5×5
Size:60” x 60” x 83”
Frame Material: Powder-Coated Steel
Plant Quantity:4 to 10 plants
Perfect for: Experienced gardener
If you’re looking to use some heavy-duty equipment in your grow tent, then this grow tent by Gorilla is the one for you!
Its solid metal frame can hold up to 300 lbs of weight, and you can even get the 12” height extension that’s sold separately to fit as much equipment as you need.
You’ll also get a strong, flood pool to catch any runoff or water spills. The thread density itself is considered ‘ripistant’ and can contain odor, noise, light, and heat within the tent itself. It also features an infrared-blocking insulated roof to keep the outside cool.
Luckily, you can get this incredible grow tent in many different sizes, so head on over to the site to find the right size for you!
Best Overall 10’ x 10’ Grow Tent: VIVOSUN S108 10 x 10 Grow Tent
Size:120” x 120” x 80”
Frame Material: Metal
Plant Quantity:12 to 18 plants
Perfect for: Professionals
This grow tent from VIVOSUN is the best one on the market if you’re looking for a large one that can truly be used in a professional setting. It’s made of 600D Oxford canvas that’s lined with a reinforced PE layer and includes a 100% reflective Mylar lining.
With smooth zippers upgraded with a black inner lining, this grow tent is designed to effectively block out all light from leaking. You also get easy-viewing windows made of transparent plastic to check the growth of your plants with complete ease.
The air vents at the bottom are perfect for heat dissipation, and this model includes plenty of openings for duct fans, lamps, electrical cords, etc. It also comes with a removable floor tray to keep things clean.
And the best part is that you get all of this with a 1-yearmanufacturer’s warranty to be able to enjoy your grow tent in peace!
There you have it, the best grow tent in 2023 for all types of gardeners. In case you’re looking for complete kits featuring everything you could possibly need to get started, then check out our article on grow tent kits!
Melissa Pino is a biologist, master gardener, and regular contributor for Planet Natural. Melissa’s work focuses on promoting environmentally-friendly practices, helping people create healthy gardens and finding ways to achieve overall health and wellness.