I hope everybody finds themselves well and healthy during these unprecedented times we are all enduring. It has been 5 months since I have created/written a journal but I have been growing this entire time. I’m sure most of us have been consuming more cannabis since March 2020
I have been growing for 2 years (since legalization in Canada) This journal will document the grow I started in June and is about 5 weeks from harvest.
My goal in growing cannabis is to grow the highest quality end product I can afford. I have been consuming cannabis for over 20 years and I believe I have relatively high standards and tolerance. I do not want to grow cannabis I will not enjoy. My setup has changed a bit since my last grow. I will post pictures in future posts. Here is the equipment I’m currently using
3x3 vivosun tent: in the basement in laundry room. Unfinished room with concrete floors and floor drain (saved my butt a few times) the tent is propped up on a deck or wooden box I built that has the same footprint as the tent but is about 12” high, raising the tent a foot off the ground aiding in draining the run off. The lower rectangular vents are all open but covered with a fine mesh filter material that blocks light and possibly pests but not air. In the future I will be upsizing to a 5x5 gorilla grow tent.
AC infinity 6” fan with auto humidity/temp controls. I use this to vent out warm air or humid air. I do not use a carbon filter as I do not live in prohibition land and the air is vented directly outside. As mentioned before I’m in a unfinished basement laundry room and the next room is an unfinished bathroom with vent ducting leading outside. I simply tapped into that and have a very fine mesh screen covering the end of the ducting inside the tent to prevent bugs entering the tent.
inkbird temp and humidity sensors:can be set to desired temp and humidity. Small heater and ultrasonic humidifier inside tent turn on and off as dictated by settings.
dehuidifier: I only use during the last 4-5 weeks of flower. It’s a Danby locally purchased at Home Depot. It’s big and it’s overkill for a 3x3. It doesn’t fit in the tent so I made a box out of cardboard and secured it to the vent blowing out the dry air and cut a round hole for ducting that leads into the tent. I installed a damper to regulate the flow of fry air entering the tent. The dehumidifier has a drain hose leading into the floor drain to avoid emptying the reservoir.
HLG 320w RSpec: this is the center piece and most expensive item in my setup. I figure if I’m going to do this “right” the lights need to be where you invest. Some of you growlight-O-philes might notice the light is 3feet long and so is my tent. It fits, but it’s wall to wall. This light will be 1 of 2 I will be using in my eventual 5x5 tent. Since 320w is probably overkill for a 3x3 The light does not move up and down. It’s mounted as high as it can go, the heat sink is mounted outside the tent on an aluminum cookie sheet drilled to nearby wall studs. This makes the light easily adjustable via dimmer on the heat sink and reduces the heat inside the tent. The light is plugged into a watt meter so I know how much power I’m drawing. My previous grows have been with a HLG 130w and although underpowered first a 3x3 I have never gotten less then 1/2lb per plant with one plant (critical + 2.0 Dinafem) at 3/4 lb dry weight. I’m hoping to get about the same if not more with the HLG 320 (currently set to 275w at 4th week of flower)
nutrients: I use @dr-coco nutrient schedule with all the GH products he recommends. I try to follow his schedule to a “T”. Personally this was the golden key to unlocking the potential bounty of the plant in a short period of time. Dr.coco’s schedule to me was like finding grandmas cookbook.
media: I use coco/perlite in about a 60/40 ratio in a 5 gallon airpot. I’ve used Canna coco and mo Koko both are pre washed and buffered. the more perlite I use the faster the coco appears to dry. During flower, when the dehumidifier is running it forces dry but warm air in the tent. This raises the temperature a few degrees although the humidity remains at what ever it’s set to it still drives up the EC of the run off through evaporation and burnt tips start to show. Even with 5x 1min. Fertigations daily so I keep my lights on temps under 80F and it appears to balance out.
I use a 20 gallon Rubbermaid garbage can As a nutrient solution reservoir. It gets pumped up 1/2 hydro tubing that enters the tent via an upper ducting hole leading back down the inside of the tent to a ball valve and a 6” hydro ring. I use a modified version of dr.coco’s drain pan system. Using gravity (propped up tent) tubing leads from the drain pan through a hole in the very Bottom corner of the tent and out to a collection bucket.
pest management: I have only run into fungus gnats on my indoor grows. A combination of mechanical traps are used such as sticky yellow traps, fine mesh covering vents and I covered the Outside of the airpot with a pair of leggings in hopes it would further deter the gnats from entering the airpot holes. I have also used a 1” layer of horticultural sand on the top of the coco to prevent a wet moist environment at the top. I also predatory mites, mosquito bits and try to keep the surrounding area clean and free of any standing water.
all electrically plugs and reservoirs are outside the tent with minimal wires inside the tent. I also use a combination of low stress training and manifolding to increase yield.
The last time I attempted this strain was on my third grow and I totally butchered it during my topping/training session. I topped all the nodes during a moment of inattention and needless to say I was crushed and so angry with myself. (See journal) I didn’t have another gorilla seed so I popped a sweet deep grapefruit instead. (see journal) I got my hands on another gorilla seed but this time, I took my time with the topping.
I only started to take pictures of this Gorilla on Aug 04. About 4 weeks after I flipped to 12/12. or about 65 days into the grow. The reason for this is I also have a few large plants outside in 30 gallon pots and I was busy building a small greenhouse for them. That and the whole family being home during covid gave me less free time and I simply didn’t have time to create a journal. But I have missed this community and wanted to contribute.
I started to notice pistils about 7-8 days after the flip, around Aug. 08 so if I don’t count the transition period I would say this is about 3 weeks of flower.
So at around week 4 of flower I turn on the dehumidifier to get the rh below 65%. Without this it’s impossible to get the Rh low enough to what I consider safe to avoid bud rott. Add in 3-5x fertigations daily and the need for a dehumidifier is obvious. Unfortunately the dry air provided by the dehumidifier is also warmer then I would like. This part of Easter Ontario, Canada gets almost tropical weather from July to August. This year we hit record highs of several Consecutive weeks of 95f+The humidity is the real problem here and it often feels more like 110f with thunderstorm warnings daily. I do have central air conditioning in the house but my flower tent is in the laundry room which is the least well insulated room in the house. But if I keep the house at 70f if my AC infinity can keep the tent at 78-80f.
I recently purchased a 20”box fan to keep lots of air moving in the laundry room. I’m wondering if I zip tie 3/8 coiled copper tubing to the fan grill and pump ice water through it from a camping cooler if this would lower the room temperature a few more degrees. I’m also taking the breeders advice n started a bit lower on EC then what normally would I haven’t gone over 1250 at any point and started to get burnt tips so I dialled it back to around 1150ec. That and think the 5gal air pot is a bit wide for my 6” Halos and I still hand watery every few days. I’m going with 3gal airpot next time 70/30 coco/perlite.
Just about finishing up week 5 of flower. Dinafem’s website says 58-63 days for flowering. So I gave myself 9 weeks. I’ll start checking the colour of the trichomes at the beginning of week 7. Today for the price of a decent quality Oz I purchased a used 11000 btu portable air conditioner. I have it exhausting out an unfinished/unused bathroom fan vent straight outside. I can keep the temps under 80 In the tent and this should help keep my runoff EC at a reasonable number. Last summer my tent wouldn’t get below 80 with the exhaust fan running full speed 24/7. Lights on or off didn’t matter. I increased fertigation to 8x At 90 sec. each and I still got some leaf burn and foxtailing. My laundry room was around 77 at its peak. By cooling the laundry room I’m using it as a lung room and the air being drawn into the tent is much cooler. Now I can easily create a 8-10f difference between lights on and off.
I was lowering my input EC by 200-250 so my runoff wouldn’t be off the charts and I was still getting burnt tips.
Flowers are developing nicely but I’m getting the most fungus gnats this summer. At least I got the numbers down I’m not seeing any flyers and much less live larvae in my run off. I HATE FUNGUS GNATS
This pic was taken on day 40 of flower. It’s a bud from under the canopy where not as much light gets through. This is a frosty bud for me. keep in mind I’m no @lovin_in_her_eyes but This plant is the frostiest I’ve grown and there still is some time left.
this one is from closer to the top of the canopy.
I have had 2 major differences in this grow. 1st: it’s the first time I’m using this HLG 320W rspec from start to finish. And 2nd I have been able to control environmental conditions better then ever due to an AC I have put in the lung room. I’m able to create a 10f temp diff between lights on/off.
Good lights, good environment and of course I can assume the genetics are sound as well. Three good cards to stack the deck in my favour on this grow.
About to start week 7.
Dinafem was not joking when they said she’s a light feeder. I havent exceed 1250 EC all grow, my run off has always been within 200EC since flowering began and I started to get burnt tips. Run off EC was never higher then 1450. So I lowered the input solution EC to between 1100-1150 and the tips didn’t really get worse. Run off EC is about 1250
I purposely left some of the lower fans until now. I wanted to see how big they would get. It’s about 12” x 12” at its tips.
definitely the frostiest plant I’ve grown. The trichomes look pretty much all cloudy maybe 90%. Flowers are swelling nicely and the buds are stacking into golf balls one on top of the other. I’m switching to the last week of nutrient solution on @dr-coco schedule, finally the home stretch!
Well it’s coming to an end, it’s day 61 of flower. the trichomes are just about where I want them and I’ve been flushing for 3.5 days. the lights are off and will remain off.
this was the first grow where I pretty much felt totally in control the whole time. I was able to notice and identify issues when they arose and find a solution that solved the problem. I really focused on getting the environment right on this grow. Making sure I had a good temp difference of about 8-12f from lights on to lights off. I never got higher then 78f for average temps. Although I did have a spike of up to 80 for a day or two. I purchased a Used portable Ac in Order to achieve this much control. But I think it payed off. I only really need to use it the last 4-5 weeks if that happens to be during summer.
This has been my best grow so far and I have to attribute that to CFC And @dr-coco for making all the information and guidance so easily accessible, not to mention making himself accessible for guidance and of course the rest of our wonderful community here. the HLG RSpec quite obviously played its role as well
I’ll probably harvest tomorrow morning
Well this grow was great, from start to finish a smooth ride. A few hick ups like calcium deficiency in early veg (tried a new brand of coco) some fungus gnats, more then I had previously encountered and springtails in my run off! Never had that before. Still, being able to solve or at least deal with the issues well enough to make the plant thrive most of its life. I lost sleep over this one but she was my best yet. I attribute that to a few things such as this wonderful community and Dr.coco. The HLG 320w Rspec (I got it up to 275W at its peak in flower) and this is the first grow I use Real Growers Recharge. After dry and trim the one plant got me 467grams. they are sitting at about 65%rh now. so I think I can say it was a 1lb plant. @dr-coco this ones a wrap!