I remember it like it was yesterday. I was in 9th grade... A freshman in high school. It was a warm September afternoon. Humid as hell, in true South Florida fashion. The school year had just begun, and I was just getting my feet wet with all of the new classes, the new schedule, and being what I thought at the time was some sort grown up... BAHAHAHA... I digress..... On the way home, my friend Alton seemed a little giddy on the bus. Just anxious looking, yet with a twinge of a smile at the corner of his mouth. We had been best friends since I had moved there 4 years earlier. Something was up with him, and I was determined to find out what it was. I asked him what he was so excited about, but wouldn't tell me! Of course I jostled him a bit to pry the good news from him, but it just wouldn't work! We were best friends! We told each other everyhting... After a few seconds, he smiled and told me to "just wait till we get off the bus..." to which I shrugged and turned my gaze back out the window. Long before the bus had come to a stop, Alton glanced over with that smirk again, grabbed his bag and was impatiently waiting to get the hell off this yellow paddy wagon. He had some pretty good news... I was just glad that I was about to get let in on the juicy gossip!... Were one of the Krazinski twins pregnant again?!.... Did he find $100 bill?!!!.. What was so fuckin special about..... ......We had gotten about 15 steps when the bus pulled off, he turned around, and looked me straight in the eye. His grin was just about as big as I had ever seen it in those past 4 years. Which was a little less then a third of our lives at the time... And in his hand...... was a film canister. Just a regular old 35mm black Kodak film canister with the standard grey plastic top. "Open it..." "What is it?" "......Weed." Now, at the time, sure.... We had all heard of D.A.R.E. So my first reaction was not one of utter excitement. Truth be told, I was a little freaked out that he was just standing there with it! That shock was short lived and was quickly overcome by a burning curiosity (forgive the pun.) So I opened it. Looking down into the the dimly lit film can, it didn't look so threatening... a small... kinda brown... kinda green... kinda compressed piece of something you would casually flick off of you if it had fallen from a bush. There definitely wasn't anything to be admired. "Smell it man." It had only been about 8 seconds since I was first introduced weed, and already it felt so comfortable in my hand. Hell! It may as well been film. So I exibit WEED up to my nose and took a sniff..... It has been proven that your sense of smell is more closely tied to memories then any other sense the human body possesses. That smell came blasting back to me as if through space and time all at once to a time when I may have been 4 or five, and my mom and her friend were watching me on the deck of our buddy's sailboat. We were in Marathon in the Florida Keys where I was born... When my toddler nose smelled a sweet earthy pine smell aloft in the air. I peaked down the companion way just to glance at my dad and three other friends of the family sitting around smiling and one woman was sucking on what looked like one of the pretzel sticks I was always hitting mom up for in those days... but this one was bright Orange on the end! How intriguing... ....but that smell.... "Come here, Jordie..." My mom playfully picked me up and set her on her lap. "Whats dad mom?" "Just talking about grown up stuff... You want some pretzel sticks?" And that was the end of that.... POP!!! My dad was smoking weed on the boat when I was a kid... I didn't say it out loud at the time... this was all still too new to me, but now there was as big a shit eating grin on my face as there was on Alton's now. "Okay, so what are you gonna do with it?" "We're gonna smoke it! Within minutes we were back at his place both amped with excitement, intrigue, and most of all curiosity. His older cousin had left a soda can steam roller out and Alton had seen it when he was over on the patio. We did our best to craft one of these world famous (and used in a pinch) pieces of paraphernalia, and we ran off in to the scrub pines behind his house. We sat there Indian style, lit the lighter, and passed around what was the inaugural smoke out of a life filled with the passion for this gift from Gaia. The woods became a happier, brighter, more inviting place. Even the dirt seemed more interesting. We smiled, and laughed until it hurt. then laughed some more. I walked out of the woods that day with a new outlook on Life and Buffalo wings. I haven't looked back, and I would't trade a day since. And that's how we arrive at present day. Hey Fellow Blades!!! I'm Jordan. Just thought I would start this first of grow blogs for me with the story of how it all began. It has been almost 15 years to the month since that GLORIOUS September day. I now live in Venice, CA. where arguably some of the best medicine on the planet can be found. I happen to be "balancing my chi" at this very moment actually with some XJ-13. But that's another forum all together. Lets get down to the knitty gritty, shall we!! I got some nice clones from my local dispensary down on Abbot Kinney. 1 Tahoe OG http://www.medicaljane.com/review/tahoe-og-strain-review/ 1 Cheese Quake (came 1 week later) http://tgagenetics.com/Strains/cheese-quake.html 1 Girl Scout Cookies http://www.medicaljane.com/review/girl-scout-cookies-strain-review/ , It's nice to know that they are female and I got a good head start on vegsince they were already 7" tall off the bat. I am using 2 gallon plastic grow bags. There is a 1" layer of coarse perlite lining the bottom of the bag to act as a base for the medium to drain out into. THE MIX!! I am using an organic (mostly) soil-less mix with a Coco Coir base. 60% Coco Coir 30% Perlite 10% Organic Worm Castings (the reason I say Mostly soil-less) I also added 2 tbsp domelite Lime per Gallon of Mix as a PH buffer, nd about 2 cups of granulates Mycorrhizae bacteria to the whole 9 gallon batch to enrich the soil by eating the organic material and crapping out plant power. THE NUTES! I decided to go with a one part base from Botanicare called ProGro. Every other feeding I will add 3-4mL CalMag I also add 5 drops of water per gallon of Superthrive for supplemental hormones and vitamins. I'm just starting to add 4-5mL Liquid Karma (Botanicare bloom supliment) I dont like to be TOO careful and never go more then 3/4 strength of recommended strength. They just want you to burn through your nutes so you have to buy more. And you run the risk of nute burn. Mind you I am only feeding 700ml of nute water through the pots every 2 days. Use 100mL Syringe THE LIGHTS! For the veg part, I had started them in the box I built with 3 - 55w 6500K PL-L CFL lights. and the 400w MH light with cool tube being vented by a 4" Vortex centrifugal exhaust far. We live on the second floor so our vent goes right out the roof! The ballast is one that can switch from MH to HPS which is awesome. THE BOX!! I basically built the box out of that 1" thick mylar coated insulation board that is sold in 8'x4' pieces. if you want exact dimensions, just ask. I will give you the measurements. Painted the inside FLAT WHITE (no gloss white is not more reflective) Made a PVC arch with eye hook bolts to hold up the lights on hood yoyo's. I was going to do an automated drip system, but the first digital timer didn't have an earth plug (ground). so I just got accustom to hand watering every two days. The Coir is impossible to over water and readily drains. This is deff bringing that precious O2 down to those beautiful white root hairs. All in all cost was under $300. About $150 for the light and fan off Craigslist (there are a lot of "growers" out here) and less then $150 @ Home Depot for the rest... Minus the nutes which I got at a local hydroponic store. And the clones. $15x3 so $45..... Well I guess call it under $400. but at $350 an OZ for good meds out here, well worth it. I have a 120CFM computer fan acting as a booster into the box and the 4" vortex as the active exhaust. Have maintained negative pressure inside the box. Even though it's legal for me to grow, I will be getting an inline carbon filter to keep the neighbors from having to smell the skunky gals. I had to take down the grow box about 9 days into the girls making it into their new digs due to the building doing a series of renovations due to a city inspection. I STILL dont want them knowing, so I took down the main box, and converted the base into a light fixture for just the CFL's to mount on. The inspection happens on the 6th, so just 3 more days and I will put it back up!! THE PLAN So I have decided to SCROG these gals. If i'm only going to grow 3 plants, I'd like to try for 2-3 oz per plant. At the rate things are going, it's not that far from non-fiction. I look forward to doing a few videos durring the flowering portion of this adventure. So farthey have been vegging for 29 days. and I have 4 days till the HPS comes out and they get their flower on. So in a few days, the giants you see in the photos will be bent all the way over to train them into the screen. I am well aware that it should have been started probably 3 weeks ago, and it was!!! But with all the inspections, plans CHANGE!!! haha Sue me. So being that this is my first grow journal... Come one come all!!! and we can watch these babies get fully funkey together!!!! Please feel free to ask any questions or leave any comments... Just lets keep it positive. I will ask that we all speak to each other with respect. Leave your first time stories if you feel inspired! Keep it Classy, And stay tuned!!!