Autoflowering plants?

Discussion in 'First Time Marijuana Growers' started by Natema420, Jan 9, 2014.

  1. #1 Natema420, Jan 9, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2014
    Hello all, any help with growing and getting the correct supply's for autoflowering plants would be helpful. This will be a long post and i don't expect one person to answer everything.
     
    For the purpose of this thread, i will be working off the advice from the beginners guide posted by  jcj77d as well as bongtastics guide for autoflowering. Any help or advice would be appreciated. (Please note that my growing experience is limited to a plant in a party cup i once attempted to grow in 2nd grade and my online research. Please be patient.)
     
     
    jcj77d
    http://forum.grasscity.com/absolute-beginners/382585-beginners-guide-get-you-started-growing-cannabis.html
     
     
    Bongtastic
    http://www.420magazine.com/forums/auto-flowering/125208-bongtastic-s-beginner-s-guide-autoflowering-cannabis.html
     
     
    1. Seeds:
     
    This part will not apply to me since i will be buying clones from my local store since i am in Colorado.
     
    But just for the sake of information, if someone can post links to a good honest seed merchant it would be appreciated.
     
    2. Medium to grow them in:
     
    I will take Bongtastics advise here and use Fox Farm Ocean Forest. 
     
    If there is something better that may get me a better yield, please let me know.
     
    3.Lights:
     
    This will my biggest issue. I know in addition to lights you will need some type of set up to hang the light from and im assuming there may be special converters and cords to buy to plug it in. So detailed info on a full light set up would be great.
     
     Jcj77d only mentions HID and fluorescent lights, but after doing some research online, i head LED lights can help with the full light spectrum and eliminates a huge electric bill. 
     
    1st question: Is this good information? There has to be cons with going with LED besides the cost. Any advice would be appreciated.
     
    2nd question: Assuming LED is the best route, and i picked HALO 25 WATT  from the link listed below, how many plants can grow under it, and would that light source work for the whole vegetation and flowering stage?
     
    Finally, I want to grow anywhere from 2-4 plants at a time. Maybe ill just start with two just for this purpose. If the HALO will not be enough for a max for 3-4 please post some links for an affordable light set up for about 4 plants.
     
    Also how far above the plants should my lights be?
     
    http://www.supergrowled.com/products/
     
     
    4.Pots & Containers: 
     
    My questions here is about switching the plant from one container to another. The  links say you only have to switch it to a 3 gallon container after germination and that is the only time you will have to re plot it. Is this correct? Is there a certain type of 3 gallon pot, and will a 3gallon pot be enough?
     
     
    5.Ventilation:
     
    I will be doing the growing in the back room of my house, so there is plenty of space. My plan for this is to buy a couple of table fans and having them blowing towards the window to help with smell and building stems. Would there be more to it then that, or does this even apply to AF plants.
     
    6. Thermometer/Hydrometer
     
    This is advised when growing regular plants, so i can know the exact temperature and humidity.  Is this also advisable for autoflowering plants? If so, what are the temperatures it should be kept at?
     
    7. Ph testing equipment:
     
    Jcj mentions this is very important, but Bongtastic doesn't mention it. Instead Bongtastic gives a nutrient schedule which i will follow for now. Once i am more advanced, i will work with my own schedule.
     
    8. Nutrients/Supplements:
     
    I will also use Bongtastics advice and go with the recommended nutrients
     
    Fox Farm Grow Big, Big Bloom, Tiger Bloom and Grandma's Blackstrap Molasses
     
    Am i missing anything or will this do?
     
     
    9.Watering&Light Cycle:
     
    18-6 light cycle seems to be the best option.
     
    Both bongtastic and jcj mention watering about 4-6 days or whenever the first few inches of soil is dry, so im assuming that's correct. But how much do i water them? Should there still be water floating at the top? jcj mentions a moisture meter that i may buy.
     
    According to Bongtastics nutrient schedule, he waters once a week after week 6 with all the nutrients.. But to counter that, he says you should water every 4-6 days early in life cycle and 3-4 later on in the life cycle. 
     
    So im confused, after week six will i be watering the twice a week? Once with nutrients, and the other time with regular water? Or just once a week with the nutrients?
     
     
    This will be a long project. I don't expect to start immediately seeing as how it was be an expensive start up. So any advise will be used at a later time. Also when i actually do the dive in to growing, im sure more questions will pop up, so ill try to keep it updated!

     
  2. Yo man, welcome to GC. There is a TON of great information on this site. I was on this forum reading, posting, and researching for probably almost an entire year before I started growing. I started out budget growing in DIY boxes I built myself using CFL lights, PC fans, and bagseed. I've now upgraded to legit genetics, hydroponics, and HID lighting in a tent. I am by NO means a pro at this, but I'll answer what I can...
     
    MEDIUM:
    You mentioned FFOF. You can not go wrong with that. It was my medium of choice when I was growing in soil. Some people prefer to add some perlite to the FFOF for better drainage, etc. I've never done it and have always used FFOF straight out the bag and it's done wonders. But it wouldn't hurt to add some perlite.
     
    CONTAINER:
    When I was in soil, I started all of mine (from seed) in plastic solo cups. But make sure you put some holes in the bottom for drainage. Otherwise, the water just sits at the bottom and can create all sorts of problems. Once I got to about the second node, I would transplant them to either a 3 gallon or a 5 gallon. Bigger container equals bigger plant. I do like growing autos in smaller pots, FWIW. I would try to limit it to one transplant. Every time you transplant it shocks the plant a little. It ain't gonna kill her so don't worry about that. Just keep it to a minimum. Don't keep her in the starting container (in my case, a solo cup) too long or else you'll stunt her and have possible root issues.
     
    VENTILATION:
    Good to have some fans in there. But you need to focus on air exchange. What I mean is, the fans in the grow space will just be circulating air. It won't be bringing in new air. You want to bring in fresh air and exhaust the old, stale air. There's a fancy mathematical equation that tells you how much air you need to exchange per square foot. But I've never delved into it. Just get some air exchange going.
     
    TEMPS:
    This isn't a huge deal. I've had my boxes spike in the 80s, or as low as upper 60s. So honestly anywhere in the "normal" range and you're fine.
     
    NUTES:
    I was a big advocate of the FF trio you mentioned (Grow Big, Big Bloom, Tiger Bloom). I used them exclusively when I was in soil and saw good results with them. With this being your first grow, I would definitely go with that. Just make sure your first time feeding them start at 1/4 of the strength they recommend. Then the next feeding, go to half strength. Then to 3/4, all the way until you're at full strength. Each time you feed at a different strength, watch the plant over the next day or so for nute burn. You're basically dialing it in and finding out what the plant can handle. If you see nute burn, flush, and then the next time feed with a lower strength. And don't feed nutes with every watering. Feed every other watering. As far as molasses, I've used them in the past but not often. Nothing wrong with it, I just didn't see any huge difference causing me to keep using it. If you do use it, take whatever amount you're using and dissolve it in some warm water. It mixes much easier that way. Another piece of advice about water. You can use tap water no problem. But most tap waters (especially if you're on city water) have chlorine and other dissolved solids in them. So fill up your bucket or whatever you're using to water, and let the water sit out uncovered for 24 hours, that way most of the dissolved solids will burn off. Then check the PH and as long as it's good, you're good to water.
     
    As far as when to water goes, this is something you'll learn as you go. Before I started everyone talked about the best method is to pick up the pot and see how heavy it is and then you'll know if you need to water. And I like to deal in absolutes so I didn't like that. But once I got into growing, it really is as simple as that. Pick up the pot after you water it and see how heavy it is. Then pick it up when it's bone dry and needs water. You'll see the difference. You can also watch the plant. If it gets all wilty and shit and is dry, water her. You will be amazed at how quickly she perks back up. I'm talking in mere hours.
     
    LIGHTS:
    I have zero experience with LEDs so I can't advise on that.
     
    Are you going to be growing in a closed box or container? Or are you using an entire grow room? Let me know more about the setup. Hope that gets you started.
     
  3. Check out the link in my signature for what an LED can do with autoflowering seeds.
     
    In terms of photoperiod, I would recommend doing 24/0 rather than the conventional 18/6. Auto's need to get as big as possible, as fast as possible.
     
  4. #4 unixhelp, Jan 9, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2014
    1: Seeds as far as i know autoflowering plants are not supplied as clones because they only have a set lifespan and alot of the plants life would be "used up" in the process of rooting the cutting.
     
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