Gardening sounds like a fun activity to get into, right?
Then you realize you don’t have a garden.
And your apartment is starved of sunshine.
If you’ve had a similar train of thought, a grow box may be just what you need!
A grow box is an enclosed system that provides a perfect growing environment for plants, making it ideal if you don’t have a garden or you want to conceal your cannabis plant.
There’s a lot to unpack here, so let’s get started with our roundup of top picks for the title of Best Grow Box for Beginners.
Best Grow Box For Beginners: Our Quick Picks
Before we jump to individual reviews of the best grow boxes for beginners, let’s ask a simple question…
What Are Grow Boxes?
A grow box is an all-in-one container for plants containing the things plants need to thrive:
- Growing medium
- Ventilation system
- Water and nutrients
You know, basically everything a plant needs to blossom from seed.
(Everything except Brawndo, that is.)
Why Use A Grow Box?
Grow boxes are compatible with both soil-based and hydroponic gardening.
A grow box simplifies the entire growing process. This simplicity makes it well-suited for either beginners or gardening veterans with less time on their hands or who want more control over their growing environment.
These devices carefully control every detail of the growing phase, from the nutrient supply to the light to the ventilation. No relying on the weather or worrying about pests!
For beginners looking to begin their cultivation dreams from home, a grow box will let them experience the thrill of gardening without the labor that comes with it. Plant the seeds, add the water, and check in at the end of the growing phase!
In recent years, grow boxes have grown in popularity among cannabis growers due to their subdued outer appearance. Looking at them from the outside, they resemble nothing more than a filing cabinet. And that’s why they’re sometimes referred to as stealth grow cabinets.
Moreover, they’re compact and are well-suited for households with less space to spare.
That’s enough background for now, so let’s get to the reviews! If you want more information on grow boxes vs grow tents, why you should use a grow box, and how to choose the right one, skip to our buyer’s guide below.
7 Best Grow Boxes For Beginners
If you’re looking to get into indoor gardening, one of these 7 grow boxes is sure to meet your needs. Let’s start with our favorite.
1. SuperLocker 3.0 Grow Cabinet
|66″T x 15″W x 24″D
|6500K T5, 300W KIND LED
|View on Fullbloom Greenhouse →
The SuperLocker 3.0 Grow Cabinet is hands-down the most premium grow cabinet you can find on the market. If you can afford it, you can’t go wrong with this product.
The grow cabinet is a dual-chamber system that allows you to propagate, vegetate, and flower at the same time. At the top is a cloning chamber with a 6500K T5 bulb that can accommodate a maximum of 14 sites. Right below you’ll find a vegetative/flowering chamber lit by a 300W KIND LED grow light with a maximum capacity of 8 plants.
With a durable, fireproof exterior crafted out of 16-gauge steel, security is hardly an issue. The cabinet is pretty huge measuring, 66″ x 15″ x 24″, and looks a lot like a gym locker when closed.
Most experienced growers prefer going the DIY route rather than spending on a prebuilt machine. While DIY has its benefits, it’s a steep task for a beginner.
The SuperLocker Grow Cabinet is so easy to use that a child could use one for great yields.
Pros of the SuperLocker 3.0
- Heavy-duty durable exterior
- Equipped with everything needed to get started
- Holds up to 8 plants
- Multi-tiered for different phases
Cons of the SuperLocker 3.0
2. Cash Crop 6.0
|35″T x 17″W x 11″D
|View on Amazon →
The Cash Crop 6.0 ticks all the boxes (and more). The odor-tight grow box has several features making it suitable for a wide range of applications.
It’s certainly one of the more discreet boxes on this list. You’ll find a locker on the door, a very inconspicuous design, and it’s odor-tight, almost as if it was made for growing cannabis…
At the top and the sides are 150W LED grow lights that provide ample light for your plants while the cloning feature is very rare among products in the same price range.
The entire system comes pre-assembled so you don’t have much to do other than plug it in.
The manufacturer offers quick support via phone or email so beginners who are stuck and unable to troubleshoot can quickly sort things out with a phone call.
Pros of the Cash Crop 6.0
- Each grow box is handmade (and it shows)
- Discreet and unassuming design
Cons of the Cash Crop 6.0
- Suitable for just 1-2 plants
- Doesn’t include extras like nutrients or ventilation fans
3. Grandma’s Secret Garden 5.0
|36″T x 20″W x 16.5″D
|150W Mars Hydro LED
|View on Amazon →
The aptly named Grandma’s Secret Garden takes discretion very seriously. It comes with everything one needs to get started. All you need are the nutrients and seeds.
Although compact in size, on the inside you’ll find abundant space for a plant to grow and a 150W Mars Hydro LED lighting system for ample lighting. The lighting system features two modes, vegetative and blooming, so you can have the perfect lighting for every growth phase.
Similar to other models on this list, the grow box is completely pre-assembled.
Pros of Grandma’s Secret Garden 5.0
- Holds 4 plants
- Adaptable growing environment
- Lifetime warranty
- Includes both vegetative and bloom lighting modes
- Features odor-suppression technology usually found in military masks
Cons of Grandma’s Secret Garden 5.0
- Wooden construction
- Ventilation fans can get noisy so the system isn’t as discreet
4. Yield Machine LED Grow Box
|48″H x 13.5″W x 18″D
|150W UFO LED
|View on Amazon →
The Yield Machine LED Grow Box is a high-end system with space for up to 9 plant sites.
Low-heat 150W UFO LED grow lights provide the required lighting for your plants, but it’s highly recommended you upgrade to a 300W LED dual-exhaust system if you intend to use all 9 sites. The lights are maneuverable for specific needs and can be moved vertically, too.
A full-fledged ventilation system, featuring an intake fan and dual exhaust fans, ensure constant air circulation in the grow box.
One pitfall, though: Thanks to its 4-foot height, this grow box is definitely standing out in any household. However, the narrow design and dark exterior help it blend in. On the other hand, the height makes it perfect for tall plants.
Pros of the Yield Machine LED Grow Box
- Robust ventilation system
- Low-heat upgradeable UFO grow lights
- Maneuverable lighting system
Cons of the Yield Machine LED Grow Box
- Tall height draws attention
- Locks must be purchased separately
5. Grobo Premium Automated Grow Box
|48″T x 14″W x 14″D
|View on Amazon →
Grobo has carved out quite a name for itself, partly due to their unique approach to grow boxes. A “do-it-all” grow box, the Grobo Premium is an automated grow box that does all the heavy lifting for you.
All you have to do is fill the tanks with nutrients and water, drop the seeds on the medium, and tap the button on the connected app.
Yeah. That’s it.
The grow box will use a range of sensors to monitor the plant and adjust the water and nutrient schedule accordingly. When your plant is ready for harvest, the app will ping you.
Once you place the seeds in the growing medium, which is coco coir, you enter the seed you used in the app. It will then create a custom growing schedule best-suited for that particular seed.
You’ll receive prompts at different phases of the plant’s growth. Some examples are, “You should trim this part of the plant and if you do, you’ll get better results.”
Sensors monitor the plant constantly and measure its height, making adjustments to the growing schedule or alerting you if external action is required.
The carbon filters successfully eliminate all odors while the LED lighting system mimics 18 hours of sunshine.
These features make the Grobo Premium Automated Grow Box suitable for a wide range of purposes, be it cannabis or growing vegetables and fruits like kale, herbs, and strawberries.
On the downside, the grow box is very small and can accommodate just one or two small plants.
Pros of the Grobo Automated Grow Box
- Efficient LED lighting system
- Security lock
- Can be controlled with an app
- Nutrient dosing control system
- Discreet and compact
- Carbon filter
- Dual-intake filter
Cons of the Grobo Automated Grow Box
- Suitable for just 1-2 plants
6. Growzilla Vertical Grow Box
|68″T x 23″W x 16.5″D
|150W Mare Hydro LED
|View on Amazon →
The Growzilla Grow Box is simple enough that it can be used by a beginner but, at the same time, packs a wide range of advanced features aimed at professionals.
It can house up to 4 large plants and, with simple instructions, anyone can quickly get a hang of how the system works. Note that if you’re using soil (which is included) you can grow just 2 plants.
Powerful Mars LED lighting–the equivalent of 150W HID–offers light to your plants while keeping energy consumption to a minimum.
The Growzilla is quite tall, measuring close to 6 feet in height, but a well-designed exterior ensures it doesn’t look like anything more than a regular storage cabinet. To keep things further under wraps, there’s an odor-control system and lockable latches that offer protection against prying eyes.
This grow box comes with a lifetime warranty and instant technical support.
Pros of the Growzilla Vertical Grow Box
- Easy-to-follow instructions
- Lifetime warranty
- Sleek, modern design
- Comes with fans, including oscillating fans
- Adaptable growing environment with an in-built propagation center
Cons of the Growzilla Vertical Grow Box
- No cloning chamber
- Tall and narrow design doesn’t let plants bush out. Not recommended for densely-branched Indica varieties
7. Hellogrower Stealth Grow Box
|30″T x 15″W x 15″D
|View on Amazon →
This grow box by Hellogrower should definitely be the go-to option if you’re looking for something stealthy.
While some may be put off by the fact that it can hold only 2 cannabis plants, the Hellogrower offers many benefits absent in competitors.
For instance, the box features 2 fans that assist in removing exhaust air while drawing in fresh air.
As is the case with other grow boxes on this list, it includes everything you need for a successful yield. All you need are the seeds. A 150W LED lighting system delivers light to the plant without consuming too much power, and it can be controlled with a timer.
To top it off, the grow box includes a carbon filtration system that removes any unwanted odors.
Pros of the Hellogrower Stealth Grow Box
- Carbon filter system removes odor
- Plug and play system
- Great ventilation system
Cons of the Hellogrower Stealth Grow Box
- No warranty
Grow Boxes vs Grow Tents
Grow boxes often are confused with grow tents. The two are similar in functionality, and most manufacturers are guilty of using the two terms interchangeably, but they have key differences worth noting.
First, a pair of similarities.
- Both are ready-made kits meant to make gardening indoors easy. They include built-in irrigation systems, grow lights, ventilation systems, etc.
- Both are easy to maintain and are supported by a range of intuitive features and accessories. You will see advanced features like power-saving measures, smart capabilities, and automated timers on both.
The differences narrow down to size, design, and materials used.
- A full-sized grow tent is massive. It can easily fill up an entire room. Grow tents range from anywhere between 2×4 feet to 10×20 feet and are usually manufactured from durable fabric materials such as woven Nylon.
- A grow box is sturdier and smaller, generally measuring under 6 feet tall at their largest. They’re narrow in length and are manufactured from a range of materials such as wood, plastic, or steel. High-end models emphasize looks and blend in with the rest of your interior decor.
- Grow tents aren’t as versatile as grow boxes. They don’t look good everywhere and hiding them is a difficult task unless you’re using a room that you can lock away from outsiders.
- Grow boxes can fit just about anywhere and are designed to look like a cabinet or other piece of furniture. Even if the design is bland, you can throw a tablecloth on the box and continue your incognito growing.
Bottom line? Don’t be misled by the term “grow tents.” Always check the material and size specifications before you pull the trigger.
8 Reasons To Use A Grow Box
A grow box has many advantages, but if you’re still on the fence, here are a few reasons why grow boxes are an excellent option for beginners.
Grow boxes come in a range of compact sizes, making them well-suited for small rooms, apartments, or those lacking a garden. The smallest grow box available currently measures at just 30″T x 15″W x 15.7″D.
2. Stylish and blend in with furniture
This varies from person to person but hey, you can’t turn down a stylish addition to your living room.
While you can find grow boxes that put form over function, there are several options that pack the essentials in a smart and elegant design that wouldn’t look out of place in the most modern of households. If design is a priority, you can’t go wrong with a grow box.
3. Security and protection
Grow boxes are well-built and often feature hinged locking doors to keep out meddling visitors.
Most grow boxes look like a standard cabinet and won’t look out of place in your garage or living room. They’re also light-tight and odor-neutral.
DIY grow box makers sometimes get creative and build boxes that resemble wardrobes, stereo speakers, and fish tanks, but this comes at a cost because they trade grow volume for stealthiness.
If you have young kids or a landlord who turns up unannounced, a stealthy grow box could be just what you need.
Pro Tip: If you have a room or wardrobe that can be locked, a grow tent is a better option as it can make the best out of the large space.
4. Plug and Play
Grow boxes feature everything a plant needs to successfully grow and come assembled. A pre-assembled grow box takes the guesswork out of the equation. You don’t have to bother with maintenance or setting it up after unboxing. Simply place the seeds in the medium and plug the system in.
Grow boxes are heavy, but this also makes them very durable, especially when compared to grow tents.
Grow tents see considerable wear and tear over time with connecting areas and zippers the most common culprits. Grow boxes generally last several seasons before showing signs of wear and tear.
6. Faster Growth
Since grow boxes feature the best nutrients and the right dosages, plants are able to grow 30-50% faster than average, often delivering a higher yield.
Nutrients are delivered through the water solution according to a schedule, and the extra oxygen in the medium further promotes root growth.
7. Pathogen-free and disease-free
It’s hardly a secret that pathogens and pests can severely disrupt the growth of a plant and, in extreme cases, kill it. Due to its contained and isolated environment, a grow box has fewer problems with bugs, diseases, and infections.
And since weed growth isn’t an issue, your plant won’t be competing for food and water.
Common complaints with the growing media, such as poor drainage, texture, and structure, aren’t issues here either.
8. Highly adaptable
A grow box is highly customizable and lets you fine-tune specifics like ventilation, temperature, and humidity. Some options allow altering the feeding schedule, too.
Since you’re in control of every vital aspect of the environment, your yield is maximized and the plant will produce the highest possible quality. Grow boxes can be used to grow mature plants, clones, or even seedlings.
4 Factors To Consider When Choosing A Grow Box
Knowing what you should look for will make it easier to narrow down your shortlist.
As mentioned above, grow boxes come in an exhaustingly long list of sizes, so your first consideration should be its dimensions. A small box is very compact and will fit in most nooks and crannies, but you’ll be limited in both the quantity and type of plants you can grow. If you ever decide to expand your hydroponic setup in the future, you may need to invest in a larger grow box.
Most grow boxes come with grow lights. These lights are generally LED, T5, or CFL lighting and yes, they do matter.
T5 Grow Lights
- Best for vegetables like lettuce and growing seedlings
- Inexpensive but high energy consumption
CFL Grow Lights
- Cheap and commonly fitted in smaller grow boxes
- Not suited for all plants, especially fruiting plants
- Contain mercury
LED Grow Lights
- Wider spectrum maximizes vegetative growth
- Lasts longer and is the most energy-efficient option
- Most expensive
If you’re growing cannabis, discreteness is a key factor. Some grow boxes let you use a lock, offer built-in locks, and are odor-neutral.
Pro Tip: When choosing your grow box, opt for a small and dark box that blends in with the rest of your home’s decor.
Grow box prices are as varied as their sizes, so you have to decide how much you’re comfortable spending.
If you can foot the bill, a larger and more advanced grow box will offer longevity and produce great results for years. However, if you’re just getting started or prefer a grow box for its design and ease of use, a smaller and more affordable option may be the wiser choice.