My first grow - Sort of
Hi, This is my first grow, sort of. I have a background in agronomics so plant, soils and biology are nothing new to me. This is my first soil grow of cannabis, I've dabbled before with an Aero-garden (we won't talk about that). I'm in Arizona so it's now completely legal and I'm so excited!
I'm growing Afghan feminized auto. I'm using RO water bought at a local dispenser. I have 12 inch pots with eight quarts of soil each. The soil is Expert Gardener (Walmart brand) it has very low NPK .05-.03-.06. It seems to be a pretty good blend, a light potting soil with very little mulch. The lights are a combination of two GE led grow lights with a balanced light spectrum and I've utilized the lights that came with the Aero-garden which are a full spectrum florescent. The closet I'm growing in is two feet by 3 feet and I've lined the walls with insulating emergency Space blankets. I have an oil filled electric heater and keep the room about 73 to 78 degrees f. The only humidity I've provided are three pans filled with water, it may help a little. I also have a low volume 4 inch fan providing some air circulation.
I pre-germinated the seeds on Nov.16. They sprouted and were planted straight into the 12 inch pots on Nov.20.
On Nov.25 I had some spider mites. I treated the pots, soil and room with a 9 to 1 water and isopropyl. I tried to get as little as possible on the plants themselves as they didn't seem to be attacking them. The problem cleared in a couple of days.
This is Nov.30. Ten days after planting. I've been watering a little every day in the beginning.
Also on Nov.30 I gave them their first feeding (probably too early). I am using Fox Farm Grow Big which is a 6-4-4. I started with 2 tsp. per half gallon of water divided between the three plants. So about two and a quarter cups per plant. I noticed some leaf curling the next day. I let the soil dry out for a couple of days, and the curling got better.
Dec.2nd. gave a little water. Dec. 4th. fertilized again but with only 1 tsp. of fert to a half gallon of water. They seemed to take that ratio better.
Dec 6. 1 qt. water only - Dec.9 1 tsp. fert./ half gallon h20.
December 10th - Three weeks since sprouting.
One of my three plants has stunted growth (not pictured). I am assuming just a bum seed or I did compress the soil a little more in one of the pots, this could be the one. This pot also has sprouted several mushrooms over time that I remove when I see them pop up. I am assuming the bagged soil came with it. I have read that mushrooms aren't bad in your cannabis grow but I can't help but think they have aided to the stunted growth.
Thanks for reading.
Having observed my pictures-do you think my fertilizer/water is on schedule?
Seems to be working out to fert every 4 to 5 days with water every 2 to 3.
What is your opinion on my one plant with stunted growth? How do you feel about mushrooms?
Should I trim back some of the larger leaves to allow more light to the inner plant?
I want to train back the plants to increase vertical growth and budding sites. Is it too soon to do this? Should I wait till my first flower appears? Do you have better suggestions on increasing yield?
Since this is an auto plant, should I keep the lights on 24/7 or should they still have a break?
I don't have a Ph meter, I'm assuming my RO water is good. Should I invest in one? Does it make that much of a difference?
Should I invest an a humidifier, again, any big difference?
All ready planning for my second grow. I get it now" I'm not so much addicted to marijuana, but I am addicted to growing"
Thanks in advance for your time and experience if you've chosen to address some of my questions.
Welcome to Percys man! With feed, cannabis plants do not eat alot compared to other plants, so go very light on the feed.
If you have nutrients in that soil already, do not add any food to your water for at least 2 weeks. They wont need any until then. It is very easy to over feed them so just keep that in mind, and you should be fine with everything else mate.
Welcome to Percy's Jeff. Nice detailed write up !
I have an oil filled electric heater and keep the room about 73 to 78 degrees f. The only humidity I've provided are three pans filled with water, it may help a little
I have an oil filled heater also, mine has a level top. I have placed metal pots/pans on top with water, evaporates much faster ... or maybe you are already doing this? If you are ignore this convo, lol
Should I invest an a humidifier, again, any big difference?
Yes, humidity plays a big part in the plants ability to breath. Too much humidity causes mold/mildew and not enough will stunt growth.
Hey Jeffrey, sounds like you already got the bug!! I hope you really enjoy your grow (and the next one!) Great advice given above and a great introduction given by yourself! It’s great you can grow legally, this makes learning a little bit easier perhaps in some ways!
looking forward to seeing how your grow develops, good luck bro
I'm seeing it's recommended near 80% for vegetative and closer to 50 for flower.
Arizona you say, good for arthritis, nice and dry. Humidity depends on temperature, if you want to get scientific VPD (vapor pressure deficit) charts are online, it can be calculated, or there are electronic monitors which are expensive...so not! Who wants to get scientific?, lol. The temp for VPD uses canopy temp not grow room temp which are different usually. I just finished veg and I had mine set for 65% with a temp of 26C, my canopy temp was 24C. My humidifier couldn't get it any higher. I don't think I would go near 80, powdery mildew alert! Here's one of those fancy charts...
I live in a very dry climate - Arizona- and I don't have a humidifier in my grow room yet. I have read you can mist your plants once a day it this can help. This is seems contradictory, I have always thought you want to keep your foliage dry.
Do any of you use this method? Do you feel it's beneficial? Should you NOT do it in the flowering stage?
BTW - It is snowing right now and my outdoor humidity is 25%.
You can leave water out in a bowl or several buckets and let it evaporate if you want to raise humidity. More surface area means more humidity (add more or less buckets) also you can try turning your extraction fan down as much as you can.
You can also leave soaking wet towel or similar to wick moisture into the air.
trial and error and monitor humidity levels til you get what you’re after.
in uk it’s not a problem I have to deal with. Here the opposite, high humidity in winter, as our weather is wet cold and mostly shitty lol
hope that helps a bit
Great advice from @Chillbert. Is your tent in an enclosed room? Mine is in my bedroom, so I added a humidifier. I need to keep my inline fan going all the time when the light is on due to heat, which with autos is 20 hours per day all the time. As a result, the only way I could control my tent environment was by controlling my bedroom environment. For me, that means in winter I use my window to control high temps and the humidifier for moisture. (make sure your thermostat is not in the same room)
I would not mist unless I was totally sure my air circulation would not leave any water drops to get stagnant and start issues.
Another American grower lol, no worries Jeffery, we stick out really easily because we constantly want to use our Fahrenheit scale on temperatures.
💡 Jeffrey You can speed up the evaporation process by aiming a fan at the water surface btw
Also, my humidifier was purchased used for $20, so it does not have to break the bank.
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