NYGC Blues: AK Bean brains: Traditional Blueberry
First Journal and first time growing in coco for me! We'll see how this goes.
2x2 and 5x5 tents, with 120w and 600w LED's
4" exhaust fan, along with box fans for circulation
Automated drip fertigation system
humidifier with humidistat at 60-65% depending on temp
Average temp is about 60 night, 70 day
Germ'd 6 seeds in a wet paper towel for a couple days, 3 had roots, 3 were duds 🙁
Dec 13 (Day 1)
Planted into a quart sized nursery pot and put under 120w on 24/0. Watering every 2 or 3 days.
First batch of water was 185ppm, 3.93ec, 5.95 ph, following dr. mj's GH feed chart.
Same batch of water on Dec 16 tested again at 200ppm, 4.00ec and 6.37ph
Dec 17 (Day 5)
Switched from 24/0 to 18/6 light schedule
Dec 20 (day 8)
Changed water to "early veg" on the high frequency fertigation nute chart. It's just a little bit higher dosage of micro, grow, and bloom than before.
My water came out at PPM 547, EC 1163, PH 6.15
Target numbers were PPM 550, EC 1100, PH 6.00-6.20
I've been cutting back on the amount I've been watering but increasing the frequency to once every day or 2. With the amount I was watering before, the coco would stay wet for about 2 to 3 days.
Dec 24 (day 12)
Transferred to final 3 gal fabric pots. Roots were coming out of the drainage holes on the bottom of the nursery pots. I probably transplanted too early though, the stems are still pretty fragile and the roots weren't developed enough to hold the coco together at all. One of the stems fell over and didn't want to stay upright, but the leaves on it are still looking great and facing the right way!
Dec 26 (day 14)
Finished setting up the auto watering system today! and after lots of flex seal, it's running with pretty minimal leaks! I've got a 14 gallon tank with a submersible water pump that runs water to 3 irrigation spikes inside my tent. Im planning on taking some clones later on to get up to 6 plants, so ill have to poke some more holes in the supply line then.
I've got the pump on a timer to run for 10 seconds every 12 hours. Which ends up giving the plants about a half solo cup of water every day. I might have to adjust the amount, but I think it's pretty close as is
The first batch of water that I put into the rez was at 535ppm and 6.02 ph.
This post is going to be all about mistakes! Buckle in!
Dec 27/28 (days 15 and 16)
This is only my 4th grow, I've been having a lot of fun learning everything behind this hobby. But with that being said, in the grand scheme of this, I dont know shit!
My last 3 grows have all been in soil, so I have plenty of previously good habbits, but switching to coco end up being bad: specifically watering. I was treating the coco just like soil. Throw in a solo cup of water, get some runoff, wait until the soil is dry and repeat.
With the coco, I was just throwing in a solo cup of water, expecting to see some runoff like i did in soil, but when nothing would come out, I'd shrug it off and walk away because I didnt want to over water it. Then I would wait for the top of the coco to get light brown and dry again before another watering. Which is apparently all wrong!
Seeing some VERY slow growth, I started to wonder if something was wrong, so I reread some articles on this site about nutrients and watering, high freq fertigation, and all that. Completly changed everything I was doing!
So, since the last update I have:
Increased the frequency I water to 5x daily on my timer, at lights on and then every 4 hours after.
Increased the amount I water to 13 second cycles on the timer. Shooting for about a half cup of runoff in 3 gal pots. I dont remember the math on why I was shooting for that amount of runoff, but I do remember there was a formula involved in the article that got me there 😋
My other mistake wasn't due to a lack of experience with the medium, more just a lack of brain power over the course of many weeks. I have been using the nute mixing chart that the Doc has on this website for General Hydroponics series nutes. Following it to the T! except for one minor detail...
I didnt see that it was in ml/g 😏
I would make my 5 gallon batches of water with all the recommended amounts from each bottle, except at the dosage for 1 gallon. So my plants have been surviving on 1/5 of what they should have been having this whole time! No wonder the leaves are starting to get so light, theres hardly any N or Mg in it!
So we'll see what the next week brings now that I've corrected 2 MAJOR mistakes!
Thanks for the great articles Doc!
Still trying to return everything to equilibrium after all the earlier mistakes in this post 😏
My EC's were getting a little out of control lately, slowly climbing up into the 1600's. It took a pretty hefty flush at half strength nutes to get it down to within 200 or so of my input EC. Over the last couple days though, it seems like its steadying out. To stop it from climbing up again, ive increased the timer to water for 16 seconds for each of the 5x daily waterings, which should be around 3/4 of a solo cup each. Ive also ordered some of those watering halos for each of the plants. That should do a better job of spreading out the water so that it soaks the coco a little more evenly to stop spotty evaporation.
With the increase in watering amounts (and a weekend trip to vegas coming up!) Im getting tired of sucking up the runoff water with syringes everyday so my trays dont overflow. So I took a look at the auto draining trays and pump to waste system thats in the tutorials! Everything should be coming in on the 3rd of January, so im pretty pumped for that! I'll definitely have some more pictures to post when that's all set up.
Right now, the plants just seem to be growing a bit slow. It looks like there's some signs of a calcium deficiency and also a magnesium deficiency going on, which would explain the slow growth. The leaves are looking wavy on some plants, and im getting some light chlorosis spots between the veins on all of them. After going into the chat and asking for some help with how to fix it, I got the simple one sentence answer: "add a bigger dose of calmag"! 😆 Duhh! I still need to get used to this whole growing in coco thing instead of soil.
My take-aways for the week are:
monitor the EC and correct it sooner
respond to deficiencies sooner- ive seen them for a while and just decided to ignore it and see if it went away. Probably blaming my earlier mistakes for why it's looking like it is now.
Been a while since my last update! Just got back from vacation in Vegas so had to take a couple days off 😎
Veg growth has still been slow, but its picked back up over the last 3 days or so. I think everything was going so slow because of quite a bit of water retention in my fabric pots. They looked like they were having issues with root rot/no oxygen, and the bottom few inches of the pot were always soaking wet to the point where I could wring out water. I dont have any great pictures of the leaves when that was going on, but I'll see what I can find to upload.
I got a 6 pack of 3 gal air pots to take care of that issue, and it looks like its worked pretty well! I had to transplant from the fabric pots over to the air pots, and I heard the roots ripping the whole way through in 2 of the plants 😑 The one that I was more patient with is looking perfect on the new growth! The other ones have some claw leaves, but the new leaves are looking pretty good.
I also got some watering halos to help with keeping the ec steady. They spread the water out around the whole pot instead of the drip spikes where it was just the one spot.
I started low stress training the plants right before vacation too, looks like its working pretty good! The lower shoots are getting some light and growing.
and i got a great present from a friend! he decided that he just wants to grow autos right now, so he gave me some photo seeds that he had, along with one that was germinated. So now ive got the 3 blueberry plants, and one gelato! I'd like to keep one as a mother plant, so we'll see what looks good in the end!
the shell coming off killed the first set of leaves, so its been pretty slow to start, but it has been slowly chugging along without any real leaves to help out for a while!
Hey guys, been a bit since I've posted, but just wanted to throw an update in here while I've got some time!
I think I finally have this coco stuff figured out! The chatroom keeps coming in bigtime for me, so thanks again to everyone in there!
I stopped being stubborn and threw the space heater that I use for gaming into the tent. My feet are blocks of ice now, but the tent is a nice 75 in the middle of winter! My plants were showing all kinds of deficiencies before that I think were because of the enviroment. It always hung right around 60f with the light on. So it was cold as balls in there, and the plants definitely didnt like it with how slow they were going! Now im seeing them get bigger every day!
I also took out the stands that I was using for the runoff auto drain. So Im back to pouring out the saucers every 2 days or so which sucks, but the plants arent getting light burn anymore, so Ive got that going for me 🤠
And I took the Gelato seedling out of coco, because it didnt do anything for about 2 weeks now. As soon as I moved it into a coco super soil blend with my vermicompost, it started kicking ass! Still super small, but its got a 2nd node on it now.
Just a quick update because I've been forgetting about this for a while! My 5x5 has filled up like crazy in the last month! I put a space heater in there to bring the temps up out of the low 60s, and everything TOOK OFF. I had no idea that they were that picky about temperatures, but it completly took them out of hibernation!
I also caved and bought a clone king after about 20 dead clones. First try on the clone king and I was 12/12 rooted! Now I have way too many clones and am trying to pawn them off on friends for some beer 😝
And for people who say cannabis isnt a gateway drug.. it definitely is. Into growing vegetables! 😆 A corner of the tent has been dedicated to butternut squash, mint, basil, and chives hahah
Ive been wanting to try out growing semi organically to see what its all about. So I took one of the best looking clones, and turned it into my new mother plant! I threw it in a 5 gallon fabric pot with a mix of 33% coco, 33% Happy frog, and 33% homemade vermicompost. Any time I move the soil a bit, there's tons of little creepy critters roaming around keeping the worms underneath it (hopefully) happy! I havent seen them since I transplanted into it, and laid down a cover crop though, so maybe we'll never know. I've also got a compost tea brewer on the way from buildasoil, and am looking forward to trying it out!
Planning to switch to flower as soon as I get a little electrical issue sorted out. I had an outlet shoot some fire out when I turned on my shop vac! But I was working it pretty hard, so honestly not surprised it happened haha. Im adding another 20 amp breaker to the box in the next couple days to spread the load, then it'll be time to toss the scrog on and see where it goes!