PH Shooting down in Bubble Bucket

Discussion in 'Hydroponic Growing' started by Ronsampson, Aug 14, 2019.

  1. Hi! First post but long time lurker. I'm currently growing 5 Afghan Kush. 4 soil and 1 hydro I decided I'd throw in a bucket to screw around with. 65 days later the hydro has dominated the tent. I've had to raise up the soil plants so they can get any light.

    Seeds are regular Afghan Kush. I'm using GH Flora Series. I res change weekly but its getting to be a huge headache to get it in and out of the tent. My plan currently is to buy another bucket and connect it as a res to feed the bucket and just change the spare res in and out while leaving the plant in place inside.

    My issue is for the past week or so my PH has been shooting down. It caused a severe lock out for maybe a day or two. The PH had dropped from 5.9 to well under 5. I kind of stopped testing it and paniced once it went under 4.8 to be honest. It pretty much started when I began 12/12 a week ago.

    A few things happened within 72 hours of flipping. The PH Shot down. Rust spots appeared in the center of some older leaves. Rust and hardened edges appeared on some newer growth. It looks like it tried to direct those things to fan leaves but a slight bit got onto other leaves. As far as I understand it, the drop in PH locked out nearly every nutrient there is. So all of those signs were deficiencies AFAIK. I could be wrong but it seems the obvious answer.

    1. Why did the water PH shoot down once the plant realized it was flowering time? It has almost always risen after res changes.
    2. Will those leaves recover? Damage appears very minor. I'll get a picture tomorrow. It's night time for them at the moment.
    3. Do I need to find a 10gal bucket for it? The rootball has filled up the bucket. It's starting to be a suction effect to get it out of there. Can hydro be rootbound??
    4. Now that I'm a week in, can I start feeding it 1/4 strength flowering nutrients. I read that it needed an even mix of NPK for the first week of flowering due to the intense growth that occurs to bulk it up.
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  2. Thanks for any help you provide. I'll also note here to avoid my first post being overly long:

    First grow so take it easy on me for rusting up my girl lol.

    I calibrate my pen at least every two weeks and sooner if I see huge swings in PH that don't make sense. I own 4 meters with 3 being cheaper models and one being a high end one with more options and more calibration points for accuracy. I know the meter was accurate and doubled down with my PH dropper solution.

    I feel like it looks bushy as all hell in pictures. It really is. I know why they say Afghan Kush is a bush of a strain now. I get it. I have cut off 1/4 of the plant 3-4 times. Each time it has regrown faster and more dense it seems. I have got to a point where I'll leave it as is for flower. I don't want to stress it and I have good airflow into, out of, and around the tent. That's a 4x4 tent and the plant is just about 3 feet wide each way. I have had to wedge my soil girls into the corners unfortunately. They are also smashed a bit from the negative pressure :(.
  3. My pH changes faster when my plants are stressed. If my fan is blowing too hard and tearing up my leaves, my lights are too close starting to cause taco leaves even if my temperatures get too high on the canopy I can see it in my leaves but I can also usually see the effects on my pH.
  4. I lost my original post when I try to moderate it. Main thing that helped mine out was adding great white which is what I use for beneficials in my water. When my water started to go bad my pH started falling fast.
  5. As you've discovered, hydro blows soil away.

    Checking pH and ppm can be error prone if a representative sample of reservoir fluid isn't taken. Small pockets of fluid could have different values than the average values. Try to make sure the bucket is well mixed before measuring. Your average pH might not be what you think it is.

    5 Gal buckets (or smaller) are prone to fast pH changes, which is why some of us prefer large, multiple plant reservoirs.

    Weekly reservoir changes will keep nute companies happy, but won't help your plants much.
    I just finished a grow without ever changing the reservoir, even once.
    The plants thrived, but I use 13-15 usable gallon reservoirs.

    A bit of plumbing, plus the following storage reservoir could greatly simplify your life. I've got this thing hooked up to a couple of 20 Gal ActiveAqua reservoirs with top feed and airstones. It can store several days worth of reservoir fluid.
    General Hydroponics Controller Complete

    Don't worry about fertilizer, except about overfeeding.
    Plants could thrive on veg nutes thru flower if they had to.
  6. Definitely understand hydro>soil at the moment. It's like they are completely different plants to be honest.

    I actually made the mistake of misreading the GH feed chart for its first month of life and it saved me a lot of headache. I thought it said 10/7.5/2.5 per 5 GALLONS. So I was accidentally feeding it 1/5 strength thinking I was feeding it what they wanted me to. When I realized that I upped it to 2/5 strength and it actually nitrogen burned some leaves. Those numbers they put on there are crazy. I understand that AfgKush is a heavy feeder as well and it was burned. Can't imagine what some light feeding strains do when subjected to their recommendations.
  7. I grow only autos in hydroponics, and a ppm(500) of 480 recently burned my plants.
    Ignore those feed charts.
    Increase ppm if the plants ask for more food by eating fertilizer, while leaving water behind, which lowers ppm.
    Decrease ppm if they ask for less food by drinking away some of the water, while leaving fertilizer behind, which causes ppm to rise.

    Too little fertilizer won't do much harm, but too much can.
    I believe 350-450 ppm is optimal, but the plants need less food in late flower when very little plant mass is being added, and only to the buds.
    Overfeeding can stunt growth.
  8. Following this post as I'm also on my first indoor grow (10 outdoor grows) I've also got 4 in soil 3 weeks old and 2 in dwc buckets not even a week old yet,just to learn both...I've learned a tonne reading this already about hydro....just wanna say thanks for the great info...

    I got a question for the guy who started this thread or anyone for that matter and I apologize for hacking your thread man...

    How much faster do say dwc bubbler buckets grow a plant compared to soil if everything is the same _ nutes, strain ect..?

    Let's say both were vegged for 6 weeks would the one in the dwc be twice as big of everything was done the exact same on the exact same taken clones?
    Thank you in advance..happy growing

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  9. No problem at all. The difference for me was massive. I'd say 3x faster by day 70 so far. I will post the plants next to each other tomorrow so you can see. The hydro looks like the queen of all plants near the soil girls. I wouldn't do this again to be honest. The growth rate is just way too different. My 70 day old soil plants look like my hydro did on day 40ish. Keep in mind that was the point when the hydro really took off so it has grown leaps and bounds faster than them since then. They did stay close to each other in growth rates for about 30ish days though. Once you see even a small mass of roots reaching into the water, it's game on for that plant to rocket past the soil.

    I'll post measurements so you can understand the difference once its time for them to be awake. The picture above is of afghan kush at 65 days from seed to give you an idea of the growth rate. I trimmed a significant portion of the plant multiple times and it kept bushing out again. It's extremely dense growth as well. Earlier it was difficult to find the main tops when I was searching for them in the bush.

    I would be prepared to have stands for the soil plants to be raised up quite a bit so their canopy stays somewhere close to the hydro. I'm using Fox Farms for the soil and GH for the hydro. I will likely only use hydro in the future due to the significantly shortened veg. It's very fast. I feel like it benefits the person who is meticulous for the details, but it also will kill plants in no time for someone who is screwing up and not fixing it in a reasonable time. The payoff is nice though.

    Feel free to ask other questions in here or PM. What size is your growing area?
  10. My closet room is 2x5x7 and my tent is 2x2x6.5 and I have a cloner for rooting the clones and a minni tent 1x1x2 for vegging seedlings and clones under a t5 before they go in the tent or the 2x5x7 room I'm using a 315cmh with a Phillip's master color for veg and a ushio hilux 3000k bulb for bloom with a 250watt mh for veg as well and 250watt hps for bloom.both 250s are used with the 315 565 watts but the 315 cmh is equal to about 450- 500 watts of a normal hps or mh lamp so it's closer to 700_750 watts...ive seen 1 lb grows with a single 315 cmh....I'm using 5 and 7 gal fabric pots with air domes on the bottom to feed air to the root zone.i use clay pellets for drainage and to protect the air domes from getting plugged with wet soil. I have a/c piped in and charcole filter hooked to a 190 cfm exhaust fan to keep temps down in summer and a voltage regulator hooked to the 2x2 tent fan as it's too much cfm for it.. I'm in a 60/40 mix of pro mix hp and coco... i added perlite, mycoryzae and soil activator to the mix ,I'm using advanced nutrients full line up and added cyco xl during week 3 of veg and im some fucking glad I bought that stuff(cyco xl) temps run daily 77-79 night 74-76.. relative humidity is 45 ish... my soil ph is 6.1.. I run a ph of 5.8-6.2in my water or food.. my ppm now during veg week 3 is 750ppm ...I'm growing 3 gorilla glue #4 in soil and 1 king tutt in soil under a scrog in the 2x5x7 closet and I've got 1 DJ short blueberry x OG kush and 1 Bruce banner #4 in the dwc buckets and there 6 days old
    ..I've got 4 gorilla glue in the oxy cloner and 6 king tutt......this is my first attempt at indoor growing and ya I'm in waaayy over my head and skill level.. considering I've never grew anything besides getting my clones ready for outdoor grows under a florescent light..this is my first attempt at dwc hydro buckets and first attempt at cloning in a bubbler cloner as well and I have 7 clones in the dome trying to root using Rockwell for the first 5 for them and lost 1 so 1 using the cloning machine so its all fucking confusing and stressing me out and my health took another hit I've had 3 appointments this week and more blood work tests and de apts next week but that's another story......I may flip my lights early if the dwc plants grow as fast as u say they do I'll run outta room in that 2x2 tent in 8 or 9 weeks time with 2 plants?am I correct? I guess I could trim her down but how big will the root ball get in 8 weeks?? I could flip the lights in the 2x2 tent I guess if they get too big....its fun dont get me wrong but I should of kept it simple.fuck I ramble on a lot too see Haha thanks a lot man and that's my set up and what i got going on I'll post a few pics tomorrow if ya wanna have a peek? Cheers

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  11. Hey what's the fan looking type thing by the bottom of the bucket in the second pic of the plant in the bucket in the kitchen ? Is that the pump for your air stone or something else?

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  12. That’s my aquarium chiller probe. My solution was getting close to 80F earlier in veg. The extra heat seemed to cause faster growth rates I noticed but running a high temp in the water can leave it open to the introduction of root rot bacteria. So I try to keep it around 70. The probe lowers the water solution around 5 degrees F from ambient temp.

    I’m actually starting to think the roots are getting too cold at night. The ambient is right around 65 at night at canopy level. So I’m assuming the water is under 60F which is a bit low and maybe what’s causing her to acidify her water overnight as it’s stressing. Need to place it on a timer.
  13. Ahh h2o temp has been 72 _74 (a bit hight from what I've been reading so I've been putting frozen bottles of water in 3 Times a day to keep it at 68 ish...but ya a cooler would be ummmm a little more practical lol deff gonna have to look into 4 of those as I just picked up 2 more buckets cause after seing how these 2 work I wont be going back to soil nope my OCD cant take the fan blowing dry soil and perlite around the floor lol.

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  14. #14 Ronsampson, Aug 16, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
    Yeah the frozen bottle thing got old for me very fast. It would float and knock my netcup loose, eventually they were a pain to place in there without wedging them into the roots lol. I think the bottles work better if someone has a separate res they can manipulate without bothering the ladies.

    Here’s the plants next to each other around day 65 from seed for the soil and day 57ish for the hydro since it was started later as an afterthought lol. The difference has been something to see. All seeds were from the same pack. View attachment 2663069

    EDIT: Also I measured it. She's about 3 feet tall and 42 inches wide. I'd say it might help you, but Afghan is known to be a dense and large plant overall, just not tall. Not to mention it's a heavy feeder so it's a strain that can really shine in hydro. So you may not have an issue depending on your strains/mothers. I'd say just be prepped to flower early if you need to call it.

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  15. Ahh nice man...I have no problem flowering early lol actually ya i will have a problem if my bloom room plants ain't ready shit I'd have no place for my mother hmmm thanks man I wouldn't of thought of that..

    I have 2 seedlings in buckets now 6 or 7 days old and I'm not due to switch my lights in my scrog for 10 or 14 days soo the seedlings will be approx 17 to 21 days old then 8 or 9 weeks flower so that means my 2 dwc plants will have to veg in my 2x2x6.5 tent for 10 to 12 weeks according to my math that's 70 to 84 days in veg they will have to be trimmed multiple times and will my root ball end up getting too big?

    Fuck this was also a after thought cause I wanted to learn hydro and had 2 seedlings started for soil but threw them in the buckets thinking ok these will die for sure as I've never attempted it and was only on week 2 of my first indoor grow ever so figured for sure these will die but I'll learn from it and start over so I cut 10 clones to learn with thinking I'll kill the first 4 probably 6 till I get the hang of it....nope only 2 days of stress from the transplant they diddmt grow at all then bamm the little fuckers took off and are about 2 inches tall now 7 days old and doing phenomenal lmao soo I got a question for ya and I'll send a pic tomorrow when lights are on so you or anyone else can see how unfull my scrog is and answer this question

    Should I flip my lights now where I have 2 dwc buckets in veg in a 2x2 tent where as if i flip now I gotta veg the 2 dwc for 8 or 9 weeks or let my scrog fill in a little more like 1 or 2 more weeks and let the dwc buckets veg for 9_11 weeks and trim the fuck outta them as there only vegging under a 150 hps in the 2x2 tent...will my root ball get too big by 9 to 11 weeks?

    So let the scrog fill in more or flip now and make room for the dwc that's even if I can veg the 2 dwc for the minimum 8 weeks I'll need for bloom and probably end up being 9 weeks by the time the tricomes are amber ffs .....nope diddnt think they were gonna survive at all and now got a issue

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  16. Only 3 under scrog and 1 beside the scrog and it's a different strain. 3 gorilla glue 4 and 1 king tutt this was taken 18 hours ago 20190816_104307.jpg 20190816_104315.jpg 20190816_104411.jpg

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