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OfflinePed
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Registered: 05/31/13
Posts: 62
Last seen: 3 years, 2 months
First Grow - Trouble afoot?
    #678981 - 07/23/13 01:09 AM (3 years, 4 months ago)

Edit:  This thread can probably be closed.  After increasing the airflow into the space, and encouraging better circulation around the plants, their vitality has returned to normal.


I think I'm developing a problem and could really use some advice.  Answers to the requisite questions are at the bottom of this post, and full details about my grow can be found in my log thread, geekily linked in my signature below.

I'm growing two strains, Royal Medic (feminized) and AK47, the latter being an auto-flowering variety.  All 5 of the Royal Medic plants seem to be suffering.  The AK is just fine.

Specifically, the leaves of the Royal Medic plants are sagging, drooping.  Toward the end of the lumen cycle, they drop considerably.  I understand this bedtime-droop is a normal part of preparing for night time, and the leaves do lift substantially when the light clicks back on, but they retain a consistently droopy look for the entire 18 hours.  They sag so much that I've had to put down little squares of poly to keep the leaves from resting on the dirt and rotting away.

My first thought was that the soil was too damp, or not draining well, and that it would correct itself given a little time.  Now seven days since the last watering, the problem seems to be worsening instead.  The soil is still moist to the touch, certainly not wet, but the pots are considerably heavier than a bone-dry pot of the same size. 

The AK, which has been exposed to identical conditions, seems healthy enough.  Yet, all 6 plants seem to be growing a bit slow, seeming to prefer wide, bushy growth instead of upward, branching growth.  The stems of all six plants have thickened considerably over the past few days, and seem basically healthy.

I first noticed this nearly 20 days ago.  On July 4, a clear difference in the apparent foliar vitality of the AK was noticeable even in the first pair of post-embryonic leaves.  I called attention to it with a photo in one of my log updates, asking if there was any cause for concern, but when nobody said anything I just concluded that it must be a genetic trait.  Now that it's developed into what appears to be an unhealthy decline, I'm eager to find out what's going on and what can be done.

Here's some pictures showing the chronology of this phenomenon:







I should mention that on day 3 after the transplant, all six plants received more water than I had intended.  This was because I made an error adjusting the water's pH, which was discovered when the runoff tested around 3.5, which is far too acidic.  To prevent the acidic conditions from developing into a problem, I adjusted an additional gallon of water to a pH of 9 and distributed this evenly to all six plants, concentrating on the existing root zone. 

In total, three gallons were used watering all six plants, which is 2 quarts (1.8L) committed to each 5 gallon pot.

Thanks in advance for any insights and advice!

Peace ~


Answers to the Requisite Questions:

1. Are you growing from seed or clones? 

Seed.

2. How old are your plants? 

19 days.

3. How tall are your plants? 

Approximately 6 inches.

4. What size containers are they planted in? 

5 gallon pots.

5. What is your soil mix?

Sunshine Mix #4.

6. How often do you water and what type of water do you use and how much you give per watering? 

Last watering was seven days ago.  Each 5 gallon pot received 2 quarts (1.8L) of bubbled reverse osmosis water, fortified with DNF nutrients at 1/4 strength and a standard dose of SuperThrive.  A couple capfuls of H2O2 were added to the total of 3 gallons used.

7. What is the pH of your water?

The first 2 gallons where pH'd to 7.5.  When the runoff tested south of 4, I added an extra gallon of identical water, this time pH'd to 9.  This third gallon was one more than intended, but it seemed necessary because of the alarmingly low runoff pH.

8. What kind of fertilizer do you use and what is its NPK ratio?

DNF base nutrients, 2-2-2.

9. Do you foliar feed or spray your plants with anything?

Last foliar spray was 3 days ago, only one other spray prior to that, both using neutral RO water.  After reading that this practice was basically useless, I stopped it.

10. What kind of lights do you use and how many watts combined? (HPS, MH, fluorescent, halogen, incandescent "plant lights")

Single 1000 watt MH.

11. How close are your lights to the plants?

Currently at 16"

12. What size is your grow space in square feet?

I only know the cubic feet of 190 right now.  It is large enough to fit 6 five gallon pots, with about a foot (or less) of space between them and the walls.

13. What is the temperature and humidity in your grow space?

Day (18 hours): 23-29 C (73 - 84 F)
Night (6 hours) 18-23 C (64 - 73 F)
Humidity is consistently above 60%, sometimes into the 70's.

14. What is the pH of the soil?

I have only a liquid tester at this time, and since I've not been watering I have no runoff to test.

15. Have you noticed any insect activity in your grow space?

Apart from one ordinary house spider, none.

16. How much experience do you have growing?

Virtually none.


--------------------


Edited by Ped (07/26/13 06:43 PM)


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InvisibleHawksresurrection
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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Ped]
    #678983 - 07/23/13 01:50 AM (3 years, 4 months ago)

Well since you transplanted into a 5 gallon pot, the plant is not going to be able to use all the moisture, since it doesn't have roots throughout the container. 


Some strains are more sensitive than others as well.  At this stage you shouldn't be giving any nutrients, this could be a huge part of your problem.


--------------------
Dude she isn't as young as she use to be.

-niteowl


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OfflinePed
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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Hawksresurrection]
    #678986 - 07/23/13 03:02 AM (3 years, 4 months ago)

This problem first appeared when they were still just brand new sprouts.  Since I sterilized the soil in those cups (not in the 5 gal pots), and since I'm using low-TDS RO water, I fortified the initial moistening with the same DNF base nutrients at 1/8 concentration.  As the plants grew larger after transplant, I observed slight yellowing in the leaves of some of the Royal Medics, which I interpreted as a slight nitrogen deficiency.  This is what prompted me to add 1/4 strength nutrients to their first watering:  it seemed as though the 1/8 strength was not entirely adequate for their needs.  Although the yellowing disappeared almost immediately, did I overcompensate?

Although my inexperience means I have only this guide as a frame of reference, I can't see any signs of nutrient toxicity, and tend to rank this low on this list of suspects.  The leaves are not especially dark, and I've not observed "the claw", two symptoms which fit with the drooping as indicators of excess nitrogen. 

My inclination is to diagnose this as overwatering.  However, the AK--which shows no signs of distress aside from its somewhat lethargic growth--causes me to doubt this conclusion.  With that said, how would you recommend I supply nutrients when both the soil and the water are nutrient-poor at the outset?


>> Some strains are more sensitive than others as well.

Extrapolating from this, is it reasonable to suppose that a difference in susceptibility to overwatering explains the divergent trend between the two plants, such that the AK's apparent health no longer casts doubt on my initial diagnosis?  Is it likely that the Royal Medics are overwatered, and if so, is there anything I can do to help them over and above waiting for the medium to dry?

I don't mean to inundate, but how significant are humidity and temperature to the problem of overwatering?  My extractor is only pulling about 170 CFM per minute out of that 190 CFM space, possibly even less.  Will doubling the airflow help to bring those numbers down, accelerating the evacuation of moisture from the soil by way of evaporation and/or improved foliar transpiration? 

Thanks for you help,

Ped


--------------------


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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Ped]
    #679001 - 07/23/13 12:20 PM (3 years, 4 months ago)

Well you should triple  the air flow in your grow room.  The standard for FAE is 3 times the CFM of your space.


The royals could also just be really shitty genetics.


What do you mean that you sterilized the soil?  My water comes out of the tap at 15 PPM, about as low as you can get without more filtering and what not.  The soil itself has nutrients.


--------------------
Dude she isn't as young as she use to be.

-niteowl


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OfflinePed
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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Hawksresurrection]
    #679006 - 07/23/13 02:28 PM (3 years, 4 months ago)

Sterilize isn't really the right term.. I pasteurized the soil in the starter cups at 180 degrees for an hour.

I did this because fungus completely took over before my first round of seeds could get started.  I was advised to pasteurize the mix next time, and told to add a small amount of nutrients to replace what was destroyed in the pasteurization process.


--------------------


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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Ped]
    #679030 - 07/23/13 10:45 PM (3 years, 4 months ago)

If you are using it straight from the bag, it should already be clean.  If not I would recommend using a different brand then, or look to see if they are coming in from somewhere else. 

I've been using store bought soil for about a decade.  I've never had something come in with a new bag.


--------------------
Dude she isn't as young as she use to be.

-niteowl


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OfflinePed
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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Hawksresurrection]
    #679054 - 07/24/13 04:39 AM (3 years, 4 months ago)

Yeah, later on it was suggested to me that the seeds themselves were the culprit, that they carried the infection.  They were from a different vendor.

A couple of the plants are showing some improvement.  One is still on the decline, though.  Its leaves are fading in the centre, and their droop is getting bad.  The rest are pretty much the same, lethargic, on the low side of healthy, but not apparently in acute distress.

I've got a new fan in the mail.  It will triple the airflow easily.

When purchasing all my gear, the guy at the shop said this Canfan S600 would do the trick.  I objected several times, insisting that it wouldn't even pump a third of the volume popularly accepted as rule of thumb.  He said some shit about "you can't believe everything you read" and "I use this fan at home" (yeah right), and being a newbie I eventually defaulted to his judgement.


--------------------


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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Ped]
    #679069 - 07/24/13 01:12 PM (3 years, 4 months ago)

Never trust the people at grow shops, they just want to sell more shit for the most part.

I highly doubt fungus gnats came with your seeds.  They more than likely were just in the environment to begin with.


--------------------
Dude she isn't as young as she use to be.

-niteowl


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InvisibleMycophile
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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Hawksresurrection]
    #679074 - 07/24/13 02:56 PM (3 years, 4 months ago)

Quote:

hawksapprentice said:
Never trust the people at grow shops




Yea most of them have no idea what the fuck they're talking about, I usually end up teaching them stuff and I'm only an amateur grower.


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OfflinePed
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Re: First Grow - Trouble afoot? [Re: Mycophile]
    #679081 - 07/24/13 04:11 PM (3 years, 4 months ago)

>> Yea most of them have no idea what the fuck they're talking about

Lesson learned.


Yesterday I decided to get proactive about the sagging leaves.  I had read that Cannabis, like most plants, transpires moisture and waste out the bottom of its leaves.  This made me think that the square pieces of poly I put down to keep the leaves out of the dirt were actually doing more harm than good, creating something like a bowel obstruction.

So I rolled up the squares of poly and stuck 'em in the dirt below the stems, making little stands for them.  I also cut off some of the foliage underneath, as it was shaded anyway, jacked up the fan to "windy" speed, and disconnected the exhaust intake duct from the top of the room and brought it down above the plants.

24 hours later:



Edited by Ped (07/24/13 04:14 PM)


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