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Need help with my first hydro setup
Posted 02 June 2010 - 11:15 PM
Posted 03 June 2010 - 12:04 AM
Start off with the Lucas Formula (do a search for it here or on the intermet). For Lucas you need (G)eneral (H)ydroponics Flora Micro and Flora Bloom. Mix according to the directions.
Do you have a pH meter? ppm/EC meter?
No I don't yet I am trying to find an cheap one and do i really need a ppm/EC meter? and I tried to get the info off the GH website and I was kinda confused
Posted 03 June 2010 - 12:10 AM
Assuming, again, that your rain water has a ppm of 000 you can follow the Lucas Formula instructions and your ppm will be damn close. The pH, however, is uncertain, though likely to be a little below 7.0 .
When I was using Lucas (starting with 000ppm and 7.0 pH), my pH was around 6.1 after adding nutes. After a while, I knew what to add to make my reservoir happy.
So, if you are starting with pH neutral water, then your pH after adding nutes will be a little on the high side and you won't know by exactly how much.
Posted 03 June 2010 - 02:18 AM
when you mean liquid do you mean the one i use the drops with or one made specifically for liquid? and can you help me with the lucas method question too?
Yes, the numbers are milliliters per gallon of water. For Lucas, grow is not used, only micro and bloom.
So, for 0-5-10, you would use 5 ml micro and 10ml bloom per gallon of water (or 1 teaspoon micro, 2 teaspoons bloom per gallon).
General Hydroponics Flora Series Feeding Strategy - Lucas Formula
0-5-10 - For Vegetative cycle (18/6)
0-8-16 - For Flowering cycle (12/12)
The numbers above indicate the number of milliliters (ml) of Flora Grow, Micro or Bloom formulas that I use in one gallon (US Liquid) of nutrients.
You will notice I dont use any of the Flora “Grow” formula, do not need to, the Flora "Micro" provides plenty of Nitrogen.
There are two ways to work with this formula:
1. Top off the reservoir daily using a pH corrected water solution as required to maintain full reservoir level. After adding back an amount of water equal to the amount of your reservoir capacity you should change the reservoir and put in fresh solution.
2. Top off the reservoir daily using a pH corrected 100% strength nutrient solution as required to maintain full reservoir level. Continue to use this nutrient solution without dumping the tank unless the PPM rises above acceptable levels.
Between vegetative and flowering cycles you should dump your nutrients, then flush (possibly with Clearex) to remove salt buildups, then change to the other feeding program. Always shake your GH nutrient bottles before using them!
For young plants, just transplanted into the hydro setup, give them 50% strength nutrient mix to prevent overfeeding them while their young. Gradually bring up the mix to full strength as they grow over the next few weeks or so.
The lucas formula is normally intended for use with RO or near 0 PPM water.
NOTE: The Lucas formula eliminates the need for Epsom salts to correct (Magnesium) Mg deficiencies in most normal feeding programs recommended by manufacturers. Cannabis needs a lot of Magnesium to thrive.
The Flora Micro is providing the Nitrogen and the Magnesium in the proper balance, thus there is no need for the Grow formula and little or no room under the maximum acceptable ppm limit of 1600 @ 0.7 conversion.
Calculated EC/TDS levels:
0-4-8: 946 µS
0-5-10: 1184 µS
0-8-16: 1894 µS
TDS @ 0.5 conversion:
0-4-8 = 473 ppm
0-5-10 = 592 ppm
0-8-16 = 947 ppm
TDS @ 0.7 conversion:
0-4-8 = 663 ppm
0-5-10 = 829 ppm
0-8-16 = 1326 ppm
Addback Calculator - (For Advanced Users)
Say you were running the 0-8-16 formula, at 0.7 conversion with a 22 gallon res. When you first fill it up, your ppm will be around 1330.
Now you have been growing for a week, and some of the water has been taken up by the plants, some has evaporated, and now your res is at 947 ppm. You need to get your ppm from 947 to 1330. Here is the equation:
((target - current) / target) * 8 ml per gallon * res gallons = Flora Micro (ml) double this figure to get Flora Bloom (ml)
((1330 - 947) / 1330) * 8 * 22
(383 / 1330) * 8 * 22
0.3 * 8 * 22 = 53 ml Flora Micro
53 ml Flora Micro, double that and you get 106 ml Flora Bloom. So 53 ml Flora Micro and 106 ml Flora Bloom to add back to your 22 gallon res to get you from 947 to 1330.
Using Hard Water GH Micro
I had been experimenting with using the Hard water Micro as a substitute for the normal Flora Micro, this to account for my hard 350 PPM water and the lack of a large enough RO filter at the time. It has worked well for me. I just kept my reservoir below 1150 PPM @ .5 conversion and its all good.
One tip - do not pH down this stuff, the hard water micro will drop pH gradually over the next 24 hours, for example I mix up a batch, it is at like 6.2, the next day, its at 5.6-5.8 after running in the system for a while. If I pH downed that to 5.7 before putting it in the system, it ended up as low as 4.8-5.2 by the next day.
My conclusion, the hard water micro was buffering the alkaline crud in my water, it just doesnot do it ASAP fast like the phosphoric acid.
Using GH Flora 3-part liquid nutes:
0ml of Grow, 8ml of Micro & 16ml of Bloom per gallon of RO.
The method you use to maintain the nutrient levels in the reservoir, after you’ve mixed them, depends on the equipment you have & your level of understanding. There’s a simple change-out method & an add-back method. Both are very successful with the add-back having a higher yield but also being a bit more complicated & requiring an EC/TDS/PPM meter of some sort. I highly recommend anyone new to the community to use the simple change-out first & to only use pH drops or a pen for it. It will allow you to concentrate on the plant more.
Simple Change-out method
This simple method for using the Lucas formula only needs pH drops or a pH pen to be successful with. Let’s use a reservoir that holds 10 gallons of mixed nutrient solution as our example.
Using GH 3-part: 10 Gal
Add 80ml of Micro & mix it in well.
Add 160ml of Bloom & mix it in well.
Adjust pH to 5.2
Mark the level of the nutrients in your reservoir. Keep the level of the reservoir the same by adding RO water & keep track of how many gallons you’re adding.
Once you’ve added back the original number of gallons you mixed (in our case, 10 gallons) it’s time to dump the reservoir & mix a fresh batch of nutes.
That’s it! (wasn't that simple? )
You’ll notice that I didn’t mention adjusting the pH again. That’s because you won’t have to. All you should do on your first grow is check the pH daily & mark it down. Keep track & see the pH swing as it goes up & down through the life of the res. Watch the plant too & write down any changes you see in growth. If your pH bottoms out below 4 you have root rot or some other issue, adjusting your pH won’t help.
!!!!!!Note On 400w HPS & Lower Power Lighting: You May Find That Your Plants Don’t Have Quite Enough Light To Grow Properly In A Full Strength Solution. Start With 0-5-10. Increase To 0-6-12 If Your Ph Steadily Rises & Goes Above 6.1. Keep Adjusting The Strength Until Your PH Swings Between 5.2 & 6.1 Without Going Past Those Points. Make Sure You Write Everything Down So That Once You Figure Out What Your Plants Like For Your Situation You Can Mix That Strength To Start With The Next Time.
Just Remember That If Your PH Goes Up Out Of Range Over Time & Doesn’t Come Back Down, You’re Not Feeding Enough. If Your PH Slowly Goes Down & Down Below 5.1, You’re Feeding Them Too Much. (This Is Of Course Assuming That Everything Else In The Garden Is Good.)!!!!!!
This Is Not Mine
Edited by Wasabe, 03 June 2010 - 02:21 AM.
Posted 03 June 2010 - 02:38 AM
Edited by mooseman82, 03 June 2010 - 02:49 AM.
forgot a question
Posted 03 June 2010 - 02:47 AM
Oh man thanks so much that really clarifies a lot. so now I understand what to do for veg and flowering but what do I do from germ to pre-veg? just water? And should I correct the pH with drops if it goes below 5.0? I am also looking into a good seedbank is planetskunk trustworthy? I am using a 400W MH lamp in a 2x3 grow box is this ok?
1) Personally, I don't add any nutes for the first 10-14 days. On day 1, I germ the seed in plain water (7.0 pH, 000ppm). Day 2-3 I place the seed in its medium (Grodan, Rockwool, Stonewool, whatever) and continue to use only pH neutral water until I can see roots showing out the bottom of the medium. Once I see roots, I place the plant in its hydro home and start the nutes at 1/2 strength for 1-2 weeks and then go full veg nutes.
2) Hopefully your pH won't drop that low, if it does that usually means that you have used too much pH down (or vinegar, lemon juice, etc).
3) Seedbanks are personal preference, for the most part. I have used 3 banks in the past and I highly recommend Attitude Seeds. The prices are ok, the shipping and customer service are top notch, and they usually send free seeds with your purchase.
4) That 400w MH lamp will be great for veg. I would recommend using an HPS for flower but if MH is all you have, then supplement with "soft white" compact fluorescent bulbs to "maximize the spectrum".
Posted 03 June 2010 - 03:21 AM
Cannabis Seeds Attitude Marijuana Seeds is favored by many canna-fans. Check 'em out, they usually give at least 1 free seed per purchase...the more you buy, the more freebies you get. The only other seed bank I can recommend is Dr. Chronic. I have used this site without fail 3 times, but I still recommend Attitude these days.
The thing about seed banks is, they sell other breeder's seeds. The seed bank is a middle man, they buy seeds from the breeders and re-sell them. Reputable seed banks seel seeds from reputable seed breeders. You can buy the same (as close as can be classified as "same") seeds from one seed bank to another, the difference is price, mail time, and customer service.
Posted 03 June 2010 - 03:57 AM
In my 6 foot and 8 foot height spaces, each plant has a 2x2 screen over it. Each plant is vegged (from clone) 2 weeks or less.
In my 17 inch cabinet, I currently have several plants under an array of just over 200 watts. But, each plant goes straight to flower from clone. (No veg, plant starts flower as soon as the cuttings root).
Posted 03 June 2010 - 04:52 AM
what do you mean by a 2x2 screen? wow so how do you clone you just take a cutting and hope it roots? that is prob more efficient. if I want to do that in a small space what would I need to do and do you have one master plant you keep alive and such?
Think tomatoes...you grow a tomato plant and put a cage around it because the fruit is so heavy that the plant can't support it on its own.
Putting a screen over a marijuana plant is similar but it's used more for uniform growth. Here is a couple pics of one of my current screen grows (A.K.A. SCRoG, or Screen of Green...which is similar to (S)ea (o)f (G)reen). These ladies are 1 week into flowering and I will keep moving the tops to a different hole every day, this "trains" them so that when I stop moving the tops around, they will each grow at the same uniform rate...makes efficient use of the light(s).
The pics show a 4x4 screen with 4 plants under it (each plant has a 2x2 screen over it).
Cloning - There is more than one method. I use Rumpleforeskin's Aeroponic Cloner. I use 1/4 strength nutrients with that machine and my cuttings take root in 5-8 days. You can use plain water and get roots from you cuttings in about twice that amount of time.
If you keep a mom(s) then you can take cuttings from it and grow them out into lovely ladies. The upside is that the genetics never change, your plants are always the same.
The drawback is that the genetics never change, your plants are always the same.
You can neglect the hell out a mom plant and still keep her around because all you want is a couple cuttings every now and then, which means she doesn't need much space, light, or nutes to keep her alive.
Edited by Wasabe, 03 June 2010 - 05:14 AM.
Posted 03 June 2010 - 05:21 AM
Posted 03 June 2010 - 05:31 AM
You don't have to have a clone area, but I find that it's quicker and easier to use clones than seeds.
Harvest...is a combination of personal preference and strain. I have one strain that is ready in 55 days, one that is ready in 60, and one that is ready in 70 days. A lot of folk say to harvest when the trichromes are 70% amber, some like 50/50.
I'm going to bed now. Research in the GrassCity until your eyeballs bleed. I've been growing for 10 years and reading on the City for 6 years...I learn new stuff every day.
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