First closet grow, struggling with the plants, any kind of help appreciated (w/ pics)

Discussion in 'Growing Marijuana Indoors' started by WWinston, Sep 28, 2012.

  1. Dear Grasscity community,

    First of all, let me thank you all, you have been a tremendeous help and assistance for me, learning it all that I know now, step-by-step. A big thank you!

    Following story is my journey to growing, my very first experience and I am trying to be as honest as possible, I made some ridiculous mistakes, I expect you not to judge me, I know how foolish I was.

    Long story short, I got interested in growing my own plants and managed to get some seeds from a friend of mine (totally unknown seeds, probably bagseeds).

    As a complete amateur, I managed to f*ck up the very first two seeds, by putting them into a soil that I dug up from my backyard ... hilarious, I know now.

    After that, I did some reading and used the wet papertowel method and germinated the seeds, worked out great. I briefly read about the soil that was required to grow cannabis, but never really managed to find anything that was perfect, most of them had ridiculously high potassium nutrient ratio (i.e 20/20/80, 30/30/200). The closest fit I managed to get my hands on was something like 13/13/26 N-P-K. As I was so excited to get this going, I went ahead and planted the germinated seeds in the soil mentioned. Another not so great factor is, that the soil included some of the micro elements as well, which I have read are not really good for planting a germinated seed into.

    I had no clue of what sort of lighting it required, so they basically just stood next to my window, receving some of the daylight and that's it ...

    First I built a small box, using a halogen light that didn't get hot at all, really low wattage. Covered the walls of the box with white papersheets and voila. Then I added a small ventilator to blow some air on them, that was supposed to make the stems stronger. By that time I felt like a serious grower!

    Then, I got introduced to grasscity community and started reading about the beginner's mistakes, I skimmed through the grower's journals and got extra bumped up. Super excited!

    I went to local hardware store to get some required stuff to turn a closet into a "growroom". I painted the inside plain white, cut a hole on top and added a solid 250x250 cm ventilator to improve air circulation (it is sucking out the 'used' air). I installed 4x 30W CFL bulbs (1800lumen, 2700Kelvin) and added a 80x80 cm ventilator to blow on the plants and get them moving, strenghtening their stems. It looks pretty neat by now and I am quite proud of myself. :) Check out the attached pictures.

    These two plants have been through a lot, as you could read above. I am really proud they have made it this far, unfortunately, they do not look as healthy & strong as I would love to - but evidently my previous actions are the result of it all.

    My stupidity continued by feeding the plants with a fertilizer we have in a house for tomatoes. It includes:

    N - 15%

    NO3 - 10,1%
    NH4 - 4,9%
    P - 3,52%
    P2O - 8%
    K2O - 25,2%
    K - 20,9%
    S - 3,5%
    Mg - 2,1%
    Fe - 0,14%
    Mn - 0,045%
    Zn - 0,025%
    Cu - 0,004%
    B - 0,025%
    Mo - 0,004%

    I am pretty sure it isn't all that great for my plants.

    So, I did more reading on fertilizers and got my hands on this:

    NPK - 9-3-3 with micro elements: B - 0,010%, Fe - 0,020%, Mn - 0,010%. I am aware that the perfect nutrients ratio for vegging would be 3-1-2, but I figured that the soil I am using has a high K ratio, therefore 9-3-3 would do as good. Thoughts on this?

    I even purchased a air-humidfier, as I thought the humidity 50% was not enough. I got the information from some YouTube growing tutorial, but thanks to this community, I know how false that information is. 50% is more than enough.

    Alright, so now we finally get to plants (check the pictures below). As I said earlier, they are not healthy and look pretty weak. It's quite embarrasing to say, but I believe they are ~6 weeks old (the small one is actually older by a week, so I'd say the bigger one is ~5 weeks old. I take the bigger one might be a male plant, because of the size, or maybe just different sorts). They moved into their new home (with 4x 30W CFLs closet) couple of days ago, I take they might have some lighting stress too.
    The plants itself look like they have been either under or overwatered, or is it just Mg defiecency? Last 2-3 times I always watered with nutes (9-3-3 one), approx. after every 3-4 days (I will start a watering journal from now on). There are few spots on the leaves, which I am not sure what to make of, but I am here to ask your help - is there a chance to make them happy, considering what they have been through. They deserve it, you know. The temperature in the closet is around 75f and humidity at 50%, sometimes higher.

    I am open to all the suggestions and recommendations, whether it is on the closet or plants themselves. I appreciate any kind of help you give. Thank you again!

    Closet itself:

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  2. Plant no. 1, ~6 weeks, weaker/smaller one:

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  3. Plant no. 2, ~5 weeks, stronger/bigger:

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  4. I just started my grow:) I'm pretty excited! Hope the rest of yours goes well!
  5. Those droopy leaves look like overwatering. And just so you know, the problem with using a fertilizer or a soil with nutrients added for seedlings is that seedlings don't need any nutrients (it's not that they don't like micronutrients). Also, cannabis has very similar nutritional requirements as tomatoes, so using the tomato fert was smart. The tomato fert would be better than the one you decided to use since it has more micronutrients. There's really no such thing as a "perfect nutrient ratio", each strain and even each plant is different and will have different needs. That's why you're better off with a fertilizer that contains a wide range of nutrients. Don't give them fertilizer every time you water. That's too often.

    That soil looks really wet and soggy. I'm sure they are waterlogged. You need to add some perlite or other aeration amendment (you want 30% of your soil to be perlite or another aeration amendment). Also, those pots are rather small. Transplanting into some better, well-draining soil and a bigger pot would do a lot to alleviate the problem. hth
  6. Thank you for taking time and replying. I appreciate it.

    So, when I move the plants into a new pot, should I change the soil for something better (i.e 50-30-20 or 50-25-25 NPK?), also, should I remove most of the current soil or it is way too risky, I might do some serious damage to the roots? Current pH of the soil is 5,5-6,5, that should be fine, right? I ordered a digital pH tester, so I should get it soon and tell you the exact pH.
  7. Agree on the overwatering. You are overthinking your first grow, worrying about micronutrients, etc. After you transplant to the bigger pots with soil with aeration, water them with water and then leave them alone until the pots feel light. Don't give them fertilizer for at least a couple of weeks. Then use one of the commercial nutrients used for cannabis in very light doses. Don't smother them with care.
  8. Don't remove any old soil from the roots. In fact, don't mess with the roots at all. The farther you can stay away from those roots, the better. What do you mean a soil with NPK 50-30-20? Soils don't come that heavily amended. Are you talking about a fertilizer? Like utc said above, you are overthinking this. If you can get them in some well drained soil and manage to leave them alone they should recover.
  9. Yes, sorry, I was a bit too enthuastic. :hello: I meant 30:20:15 or 20:20.20 ratio in percentages, NPK. My current soil has 13:13:25 + micro elements, if I am not mistaken. Should I mix the perlite in the new soil and then simply put my plants with the current soil in a bigger pot? It does not make any difference, that there is no perlite in my current soil? Sorry, if I sound a bit silly with 21 questions, but I don't want to go wrong. =)
  10. Yes, mix the perlite into the new soil. The roots will grow from the old soil into the new soil. It's not ideal that the current soil doesn't have any perlite, but you'd do more damage to the roots trying to remove the old soil than the old soil will cause. I still don't understand what you mean by this "I meant 30:20:15 or 20:20.20 ratio in percentages, NPK. My current soil has 13:13:25 + micro elements". I'm not aware of soil that is that "hot". What soil are you using?
  11. I can't remember the name nor the brand of the soil, don't have the package nearby either, but I will find it out by tomorrow.

    Any experience with Canna Terra Professional Plus+ soils? It says the NPK is 12-14-24. Thoughts?
  12. I don't, I grow completely organically, but I googled it. That is some crazy expensive peat moss and composted bark fines!!! There is nothing special about that mix except the price. You could just buy peat moss, bark fines, some lime and perlite and make the same thing for a whole lot cheaper. You are using chemical nutrients anyway so it doesn't matter if the soil contains nutrients. If you really want nutrients in the soil, add some granular slow release fertilizer. With chemical growing the important thing is to have a well-draining soil, it doesn't really matter whether there are nutrients in the soil since you will be adding them. I use the same ingredients that soil uses plus more (and minus the chemicals obviously) in my soil mix, which is superior in every way to that stuff, and it costs me about $5-7 per cubic foot. Since I reuse my organic soil, I never have to spend money on "nutes" or anything like that. hth
  13. I ended up ordering the soil anyway .. ~$12 for 25L didn't seem all that much. :rolleyes: Plus, I read some great reviews on it.

    Anyway, I got another question, the younger, but stronger plant, can I plant it deeper in the soil, perhaps it makes the stem stronger and it might induce some new roots? I've added a picture. Thanks guys!

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  14. hows are the ladies?

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