Newbie has questions!

Discussion in 'Growing Organic Marijuana' started by BabyLungs, Jul 31, 2012.

  1. I'm growing just a couple plants for head aches, sleep aid and of course the unavoidable recreation.
    I have a few concerns about my plants. I'm trying to grow them totally naturally and I recently (within the last week) have been seeing some concerns. Here are some photos of my plants.
    They are about 5 weeks old and have never been under any lights or anything. Organic fish fertilizer and rain water for these guys.
    Transplanted once then once again in the same size pots to get them deeper in the soil. The first time there wasn't much of a root system. The second time however I fear I hurt them a bit.
    Once I noticed the plants started to smell I also noticed some yellowing and holes in the leaves! :( I have brought them inside to try and isolate the problem. I thought it may have been bugs or a fungus or something.
    I do quite a lot of my own gardening (fruits veggies herbs and things) so Im also thinking maybe my other plants have spread something to them?
    I had been watering them twice a day so I thought they may have been getting too dry (its been hot where I live lately) so I put them in about half an inch of water in a basin. Could I rot the roots doing this?
  2. #3 jerry111165, Jul 31, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 31, 2012
    You could definetly rot the roots. You needs some drainage in that soil if you can work it out as well. It looks wet and heavy from the pics.

    If those were my plants, I would transplant them soon into a decent soil mix that can breathe and let them stretch thier feet/legs a bit in bigger containers. The small pots may be constricting. Overall they look healthy but not being able to breathe could stunt them.

    Good luck.

  3. I just spent the last several hours reading the forum. looks like I need to find my self a PH tester and see what the soil is doing. Also, i guess ill have to make a solution to water them with? or am I fine to just continue using the fish fertilizer every 2 weeks?
    I have some professional film grade fluorescent lights I put the plants under to do a 24/0 for a while. I think that will help them catch up. From everyone else's plants it looks like mine are really stunted! They are at least 35-40 days old and the weather has been really good so something is slowing them down.
    one thing I couldn't find anything about was minimum temp. How cold can the plants get at night before they get uncomfortable? :p
    the humidity is really high where i live (like 70% at least) so i don't think i need a humidifier. I actually have a DE-humidifier for inside the house to bring it down to 65%.
    Hoping someone says something soon because im worried about the little guys (hopefully gals).
  4. Hey! you replied while I was typing that reply. Okay, i have a potting soil mixed with a small amount of sand and some soil from my back yard and a bit of compost. It is a very heavy mix. Would you suggest straight soil at this point then? The bottom of the pots are held together well but the tops (because they were previously usually dry) would be loose.
    Do they look alarmingly small for being 5-6 weeks old?
  5. They should be bigger.

    Get some sphagnum peat to mix with your compost. Use the peat at around 60% to 75% and the rest compost. If you want to add (a little!) bit of backyard soil, that's fine but don't overdo it.

    If you have quality compost (what is your compost? What does it consist of? How old?) then this will buffer and stabilize your pH. We don't need no stinking' pH adjustments with Organics.
  6. Ok, so, on top of your peat and compost you will need some food. Do you have a local landscape store or nursery you can get a few organic amendments at? Right now you haven't spent anything but the peat, which, as they harvest this up in your neck of the woods, should be very inexpensive.

    The plants need some food. As yours are already growing, you don't really have time to make a proper soil mix, which usually takes a month to sit and "cook", or "nutrient cycle" after mixing. A little 5 pound bag of an "all-in-one" organic blended fertilizer would be a good thing, as well as some kelp meal. Don't starve the plants.
  7. I'd put them in 2 or 3 gallon containers. You don't have the time to let the mix sit and "cook" for any real amount of time so just use your best judgement and go light with the fertilizer. It MUST be organic fertilizer. You can also top dress the pots with a few teaspoons and work it in with your fingers.

    I'm not kidding about the kelp meal - its an excellent organic fertilizer - get it. You can also make a tea to feed the plants with the kelp meal - just soak an eighth of a cup of the meal per gallon for a couple of days. If you have a fishtail air pump and air stone it's nice to aerate this tea, too, but is not absolutely necessary.

    Another good tea to water with can be made from alfalfa or alfalfa meal. Same directions as kelp meal, but don't mix it into your soil. It will heat up the soil and can/will burn your plants. The tea or topdressing wont.
  8. Fantastic! Many thanks indeed. You reckon I should transplant into bigger pots right now when I get the new soil mix?
    That's a relief about the Ph stuff.
  9. Otherwise, do they look okay? The yellowing? Spots? Some of the leaves look eaten by something... on one plant in particular.
  10. With your soil being so damp, your roots can't fully function which means your plant isn't getting everything it needs, that is why you have stunted growth.

    Also if your soil isn't well-rounded your plant won't have access to the minerals it needs one it can breathe.

    I would seem it's not one thing or another, but a combo of problems.

    Mix some soil like Jerry stated, and transplant once it's cooked, your still looking at 2-4 weeks of stunted growth and stress but that's something you can't avoid right now.

  11. On my lunch break at work I picked up some organic peat moss and this stuff called organic sea soil. Only went to one place so I didn't find any alfalfa or kelp but the sea soil has kelp in it.
    Pardon my ignorance but what is cooking? Is that when you mix soils and they decompose producing lots of heat?
    Moreover, how do I know when it has cooked? Any way to speed this up?
  12. Do you mind posting the ingredients list of the Sea Soil?
    And your spot on with the cooking, your allowing the microorganisms in your soil to start breaking down all the amendments you put in, alfalfa is the hottest thing you can add, so since your not adding it I would say 1 month of "cooking" should be fine.

    During the first 2 weeks you will want to thoroughly mix your soil, keeping it moist but not wet. You will feel your soil heat up after mixing it, and within 4-6 weeks it will be ready to rock and roll.

    Any luck on finding a Rock Dust? Lime is meh, can kill off microbes if applied to heavy, the main reason for a "Stone Dust" is to create surface area for your microbes to bred.
  13. Microbes?! This is getting a lot more in depth than perhaps I was ready for.
    I'm really concerned about the waiting a month issue because the plants look worse and worse by the day. Posting some photos from today...
    I will post the fish soil ingredients when i get home this evening. (in the middle of moving)
    This photo is to show the leaves disappearing... :'(
    This Photo is to show the yellowing leaves. These are three different plants...
  14. Transplant into that new soil mix now, in the meantime start building your own soil so by the time its transplant ready so will your mix.

    Learning curve isn't to hard just read.
  15. [quote name='"BabyLungs"']Microbes?! This is getting a lot more in depth than perhaps I was ready for.


    Haha your not wrong babylungs!

    I started out on a mission to grow some ganga and now thanks to these guys I'm more interested in growing microbes and roots :)

    It's daunting at first but the more I start to understand the easier it seems (not to mention slap yourself obvious).

    Your in good hands here, good luck !!

  16. BL - what's in the fish soil?

    Many of us here make strong soils to really push plants to thier limits - hence the need for a 3-4 week "cooking" time. This is due to the addition of soil amendments, such as kelp, alfalfa, seed meals - etc. as you are not adding a bunch of these items, you should be able to get away with planting right away.

    If you really want to get all that you can out of the genetics of your plants, I might suggest a stronger mix. Let us know if you're interested and we can direct you towards threads that can help you mix your own soil - the good stuff. In the meantime you could mix the peat and store bought soil, making an arier mix than you are in right now. I would still continue feeding with your fishy goop too here and there.

    Originally Posted by BabyLungs
    Microbes?! This is getting a lot more in depth than perhaps I was ready for.

    These microbes are THE essence of organic gardening. They are everywhere - in the form of assorted soil bacterias, protozoa, nematodes, etc. they break down organic matter and believe it or not, help carry food to your plants roots. Without them we might do a tenth as well as we do - but that's a whole other story.

  17. #18 BabyLungs, Aug 1, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 1, 2012
    It's finding the time I find hard! For example it is now 2 am and i am only just posting on my own thread. Gotta be up in <8 hours but im reading! Thank god its my day off tomorrow...

    All great input fella's. I can't express how much I appreciate it! I really look forward to contributing to the forum in my own way in the future when I (hopefully) know what I'm doing.

    As soon as I read to transplant I went ahead. I mixed the peat moss about 5:1 with the organic fish soil stuff. All i could find for ingredients on the fish soil was "forest fines" and "fish" and "fish fertilizer". I also saw that the stuff had been composting for 2 years before they bag it.
    I noticed the peat moss smells a lot like the old growth forests around where I live... the whole brick was only 6 bucks and probably makes a dozen gallons AT LEAST of medium.
    anyways, some info about this repot:
    plants are anywhere from 2.5 to 5 inches tall. Top half of the soil was loose. Bottom half held together by roots on almost all plants. The smaller ones obviously not so much. I gently loosened the soil with my fingers being incredibly gentle. put in about 3-4 inches of my peat/soil mix after it had sat for a few hours with periodic vigorous mixing into much larger pots. The mix was cool on my hands so i thought it was safe.
    burried the plants up to the first set of leaves again. Some still have the leaves they had when the sprouted. Should i bury these?
    I made a less than 1/4 inch thick dressing on top of the peat with the fish soil as suggested by the fish soil bag.
    This is the top super thin dressing of straight compost/fish soil i put on all six pots, it looks thick but thats only because i was thorough on getting total coverage. you can still see some of the light brown peat poking though.
    This is the peat...
    This is the composted fish soil stuff... I was amazed at how BLACK it was!!!
    In they went!
    And kept inside at 60% humidity and about 22-24 degrees C (so like whats that in F... 70 something? We canucks are insane with our 0 degree freezing and 100 degree boiling water thing I know but I'll get the hang of F soon enough. And under some florescent filming lights. Not sure what the wattage is but it seems decent. They are pretty bright lights as the pictures show. Maybe they aren't that bright by indoor growing standards but for now just while they are inside at night i think they do okay.
    Some things worth mentioning I think are:

    The plants smell like weed. Strong enough to mask the fish fertalizer i had in the soil (from watering) before.
    The plant smell also over powers the peat and fish soil. I think this is a good thing yes?
    I also see some new leaves coming out of where the branches come off the stems.
    The largest plant, Phillip, even had roots trying to escape the smaller pots which i carefully made sure stayed intact.
    I don't think i lost any roots transplanting and i removed all the old soil except for what was clinging to the roots near the bottom but i did loosen them up on purpose.
    The new pots actually weigh ... maybe the same or ever so slightly more than the smaller soaking wet ones did. The peat is super fluffy yet the plants are large enough now that they stand up straight. Was having a really bad time with them falling over before.
    I got the peat moist so it would mix better when i mixed it with the compost stuff ergo i didn't water them at all since it was still pretty damp. Hope that was the right thing to do and i hope you guys don't hate me for saying ergo.

    OH one last thing! When i brought the plants inside when i got home tonight i noticed the plants had a shiny film on the leaves. This film wasn't sticky or anything that i could tell. Just thought it was odd. the plants looked much healthier after sitting in the sun all day than they did last night.

    I also have 2 strains among each other. Is this not a good idea? Can you spot them? :D
  18. I got the peat moist so it would mix better when i mixed it with the compost stuff ergo i didn't water them at all since it was still pretty damp. Hope that was the right thing to do and i hope you guys don't hate me for saying ergo.

    Boy do I hate this guy for saying ergo... *lol*

    You did mix compost(fish soil) in with the peat, right? Peat on its own doesn't have much nutritional value...

    When you water, try soaking some of the fishy soil in some water and aerate it with a fishtank air pump. If you have any, add a teaspoon of molasses to this tea and water with it.

  19. [quote name='"jerry111165"']

    When you water, try soaking some of the fishy soil in some water and aerate it with a fishtank air pump. If you have any, add a teaspoon of molasses to this tea and water with it.


    ^^^Step one of the 3 step conversion program

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