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MFMc

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I smoked quite a bit through the 70s 80s but essentially haven’t touched weed but twice since then. I found that the new stuff is insanely potent. I can’t believe that there has ever been discussion about whether or not old-school weed was as potent as the new stuff is.
Anyway, retired, not much disposable income but a burning desire to grow some great weed. I have some pretty fair experience growing culinary herbs and vegetables from seed. I am pretty sure I can find a way to not overwater as is the rule with many culinary herbs. I have now been growing those herbs under lights for several months with great success, handfuls go into Romaine salads.
I am building a 5 x 6 x 6’ tall grow room in the basement w walls of reflective insulation. The upper left wall has a 6 inch exhaust fan and the whole lower right wall has adjustable sliding vents. I have eight of these lights
A5675DC8-2E81-4310-85B2-B29425B97B1D.png

will they work? Will I need an HPS bulb for the budding period of autos such as ak47? I guess I mean will the HPS be a big improvement? If so, would 600 W be enough?
do seedlings really start in dry soil with only a humid tent over them?
given the different lighting cycles, how would it be possible to grow autos and fem seeds simultaneously? I have many more questions but the lighting is the big question and I’ll leave the rest for another time. Thanks!
 

pute

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Welcome MFMc, this is a great place to learn. Since you are talking Autos I will leave it to those who grow them. Seeds need moisture to germinate. I grow from seeds and clones and they do best with a HPS in flower. I am sure there are some LED guys that would argue that point.

Have a good time and enjoy the site.
 

bigsur51

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Hello MFMc and welcome aboard.

Those 8 florescent full spectrum bulbs will work from start to finish.
I have done it before with 8 42 watt bulbs , from start to finish and harvested a pretty decent crop. Your mileage will vary depending upon which strain you are growing , nutes , techniques , etc.

Will 600 be enough? The short answer is yes. i have also used 600 w HPS from start to finish and harvested decent crops.

I have always kept my soil or rapid rooters wet when germinating seeds in a dome and tray.

I am no auto expert but I think the autos will flower no matter what the light cycle.
if that is true , one could grow regular plants at the recommended light cycle and the autos would just do their thing regardless.

Enjoy your retirement. I am retired from about 40 years as a licensed journeyman cement mason.

cheers
 

MFMc

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Hello MFMc and welcome aboard.

Those 8 florescent full spectrum bulbs will work from start to finish.
I have done it before with 8 42 watt bulbs , from start to finish and harvested a pretty decent crop. Your mileage will vary depending upon which strain you are growing , nutes , techniques , etc.

Will 600 be enough? The short answer is yes. i have also used 600 w HPS from start to finish and harvested decent crops.

I have always kept my soil or rapid rooters wet when germinating seeds in a dome and tray.

I am no auto expert but I think the autos will flower no matter what the light cycle.
if that is true , one could grow regular plants at the recommended light cycle and the autos would just do their thing regardless.

Enjoy your retirement. I am retired from about 40 years as a licensed journeyman cement mason.

cheers
Thanks for that. It already appears that there’s a really decent group of people here, not always the case in forums such as these.
We tradesmen may well be a dying breed. I’m four years retired journeyman machinist. terminal burn out I came to despise metal in any form, and now live a wood-centric life with a fireplace and small woodshop.
Anyway...image.jpg
I bought this to get me through my first grow. For the autos I’ll be putting 4 seedlings in Happy Frog, and 4 into Miracle Grow, just to clock the difference. I’ve made some 4 gallon cedar planters for the autos, and have some 7 gallon cloth pots for the fems. Do I really need to add fertilizer to the happy frog and miracle grow?
 

BoCoGrow

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Hi and welcome to Marijuana Passion!

do seedlings really start in dry soil with only a humid tent over them?
From an auto grower I highly respect: Never let the soil dry out. Soil can become hydrophobic if allowed to dry so it will repel water. This in turn will create dry pockets in the soil and roots there will die. If your soil has accidentally dried out use a surfactant to help re-wet it, such as yucca powder. Don't let soil remain soggy by watering too much too often. Root rot, damping off, molds, fungus gnats and other problems start in soggy soil. When you do water water the entire pot. How to learn when to water starts before you plant the seed. Fill your container with fresh soil and weigh it (heft it) this is the lightest weight and consider it a dry pot. Now slowly water until the soil will no longer absorb the water and run-off begins; weigh the pot (heft it) this is the maximum water, the wettest the pot can get. The difference between wettest and driest is the maximum water weight, for ease of explanation lets just say the water weighs 20 pounds. When the pot loses 10 pounds (half of the water weight) it is time to water again. There is an art to watering.

From me: During the germination and early seedling stage, they like high humidity, upwards of 70%+ under domes or under 2L bottles that have been cut in half. Either way, you do need some holes in the domes for airflow. I would take the domes off perhaps the day after sprouting because that high level of humidity can end up killing the seedlings ("damping off").

given the different lighting cycles, how would it be possible to grow autos and fem seeds simultaneously?
I am no auto expert but I think the autos will flower no matter what the light cycle.
if that is true , one could grow regular plants at the recommended light cycle and the autos would just do their thing regardless.
Autos can grow under 24/7 lighting, and many people do. However, a lot of folks and breeders recommend 18/6 in order to give the plants a chance to rest. You can grow photos right along side them in veg, but when you want to flower your photos, you'll need to separate them since the photos need 12/12 lighting to flower. Well, conceivably, you could grow autos under 12/12 but you will reduce the yields.

It is true that autos flower based upon age and not the amount of light. The two autos I'm growing right now, for example, started showing sex 15 days after they sprouted. That is typical: two weeks of fast veg and right into transition to flower. Note that growing autos is not easier than growing photos. Autos grow so fast that if you screw up, the plant may not have time to recover, whereas with photos, if you screw up in veg you can just keep them in veg until they recover and flip from there.

Do I really need to add fertilizer to the happy frog and miracle grow?
I've never used miracle grow, but I've heard from others that it is crap for cannabis. And yes, you will need fertilizer for happy frog. I'm currently growing in Ocean Soil, which is more heavily amended than Happy Frog, and my soil petered out right after week 4. I use Build a Flower top dress kit to amend my soil.

By the way, I'm by no means an expert. I did closet grows in SF over 20 years ago, and given the passage of time, completely different setup, new to autos, etc., I consider myself to be a noobie again. Just sharing where I can.
 

bigsur51

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Do not use ferts in the miracle grow , it will burn the plants......water only....maybe some calmag later

last time I grew in happy frog , I only amended it with teas and worm castings
 

BoCoGrow

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I should add that autos are more sensitive to fertilizer than photos, so 1/2 the recommended strength is the rule of thumb, with 550 PPM being the high end of the range in late flower. A common pattern is water-water-fertilize. Don't try fertilizing more often, but rather, increasing the PPM each time you feed.
 

WeedHopper

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I use 18/6 with Autos and it works real good. You can also do 20/4 although i didn't see a big difference.
I use FF Ocean Forst and also FF Happy From soil and i mix about 20% Perlite.
This is a Gabagoo Auto at about 8 weeks.
20210405_170828_HDR.jpg
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20210405_170847.jpg
20210405_170820.jpg
20210405_170815_HDR.jpg
 

MFMc

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Welcome MFMc, this is a great place to learn. Since you are talking Autos I will leave it to those who grow them. Seeds need moisture to germinate. I grow from seeds and clones and they do best with a HPS in flower. I am sure there are some LED guys that would argue that point.

Have a good time and enjoy the site.
Thank you.
 

MFMc

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Hi and welcome to Marijuana Passion!



From an auto grower I highly respect: Never let the soil dry out. Soil can become hydrophobic if allowed to dry so it will repel water. This in turn will create dry pockets in the soil and roots there will die. If your soil has accidentally dried out use a surfactant to help re-wet it, such as yucca powder. Don't let soil remain soggy by watering too much too often. Root rot, damping off, molds, fungus gnats and other problems start in soggy soil. When you do water water the entire pot. How to learn when to water starts before you plant the seed. Fill your container with fresh soil and weigh it (heft it) this is the lightest weight and consider it a dry pot. Now slowly water until the soil will no longer absorb the water and run-off begins; weigh the pot (heft it) this is the maximum water, the wettest the pot can get. The difference between wettest and driest is the maximum water weight, for ease of explanation lets just say the water weighs 20 pounds. When the pot loses 10 pounds (half of the water weight) it is time to water again. There is an art to watering.

From me: During the germination and early seedling stage, they like high humidity, upwards of 70%+ under domes or under 2L bottles that have been cut in half. Either way, you do need some holes in the domes for airflow. I would take the domes off perhaps the day after sprouting because that high level of humidity can end up killing the seedlings ("damping off").





Autos can grow under 24/7 lighting, and many people do. However, a lot of folks and breeders recommend 18/6 in order to give the plants a chance to rest. You can grow photos right along side them in veg, but when you want to flower your photos, you'll need to separate them since the photos need 12/12 lighting to flower. Well, conceivably, you could grow autos under 12/12 but you will reduce the yields.

It is true that autos flower based upon age and not the amount of light. The two autos I'm growing right now, for example, started showing sex 15 days after they sprouted. That is typical: two weeks of fast veg and right into transition to flower. Note that growing autos is not easier than growing photos. Autos grow so fast that if you screw up, the plant may not have time to recover, whereas with photos, if you screw up in veg you can just keep them in veg until they recover and flip from there.



I've never used miracle grow, but I've heard from others that it is crap for cannabis. And yes, you will need fertilizer for happy frog. I'm currently growing in Ocean Soil, which is more heavily amended than Happy Frog, and my soil petered out right after week 4. I use Build a Flower top dress kit to amend my soil.

By the way, I'm by no means an expert. I did closet grows in SF over 20 years ago, and given the passage of time, completely different setup, new to autos, etc., I consider myself to be a noobie again. Just sharing where I can.
Thanks for hugely useful detail! You do sort of sound like an expert.I decided against miracle grow, but instead am getting some plain potting soil which I ll amend with
Build a Flower, 2 gal bag on its way. I like that you can’t burn the plants with this top dressing and given the warnings about the short veg time and that I am a newbie it seems like the best course for autos. I ll add an inch or so to start. Should I add more at budding?
 

MFMc

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I use 18/6 with Autos and it works real good. You can also do 20/4 although i didn't see a big difference.
I use FF Ocean Forst and also FF Happy From soil and i mix about 20% Perlite.
This is a Gabagoo Auto at about 8 weeks.View attachment 271045View attachment 271046View attachment 271047View attachment 271048View attachment 271049
Unbelievable! Do you have enough for the whole class?
I ordered a bag of perlite which I ll add to my happy frog and to some plain potting soil as well. Thanks for the motivation.
 

BoCoGrow

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First, I apologize in a way for coming across like an expert. I got burned with bro science when I first got back into growing after a 20+ year hiatus. I planted 6 seeds in coco and pulled them all around day 15 and threw them in the trash. So I went back to what I know, which is soil, and I've been reading "What a Plant Knows," "Teaming with Microbes" (both of which I recommend), watching the extremely fascinating Future Cannabis Project videos on YouTube (which can be upwards of 3 hours long), interacting with longtime growers on various forums, and watching Dr. Bruce Bugbee's YouTube videos on growing cannabis. Just trying to share what I've learned. Definitely seek out different sources to cross-check what you are hearing, including what you are hearing from me haha. For example, here is an auto grow guide from Mephisto Genetics, which is a highly respected breeder in the auto world. But there are some topics that are fact and not my opinion, such as that autos flower by age and not by light, and that autos are more sensitive to nutes than photos, generally speaking (some strains are more hungry, others less so).

You can see what I'm currently growing here: BoCoGrow's Roc Bud Inc auto grow update

Sorry, you mentioned "plain potting soil" in your response to my post, which suggests you might be switching to a medium that is devoid of nutrients. Doing that is your call and I can't help there. Seedlings have enough food to cover the first two weeks of life, but from then on, they need to be fed. If you are going with a neutral potting soil, then you will need to figure out the right feeding regimen, which may be through trial and error. I use Ocean Forest, which tends to run a bit hot and thus burns seedlings. To correct for that, I fill my pots with Ocean Forest, and then I scoop out around 3-4 cups of soil in the top center and fill that with seed starter mix. I plant my seeds in that and that gives the seedlings a bit of time to get their legs before they hit the amended soil.

RE Build a Flower, I would suggest amending the soil when the plants begin transitioning from veg into flower. Roughly 1-2" across the soil. Build a Flower will get hydrophobic as well if you go too long without watering, so you can cover the top dress with something like barley straw mulch to keep it moist. Then, later in flower, you would add another 1" or so on top of the barley straw and cover that with barley straw again. A lot of folks recommend adding blackstrap molasses and other items, but again, given the 20+ year hiatus in growing, I'm trying to ease back into it and will experiment and augment my grows as I learn more.

This is all just scratching the surface by the way. There are topics such as fermented fruit extracts, fermented cannabis root ball extracts, use of humic acid and soy-based amino acids, etc. that people are using nowadays that still blow my mind when I think about it. Please do feel free to reach out with questions, though I may redirect you to someone else I know who is far more experienced than I am.

Edit: P.S. Build a Soil also has videos on YouTube in which they talk about growing, so since you liked how they went about creating their Build a Flower, you may want to check out their videos (and blog) as well.
 
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Hippie420

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I grew my first RDWC hydro crop using nothing but Miracle Gro & Shultz ferts, with a little added Epsom's salts. In hydro, or even dirt, your plants will let you know when you over fertilize. With my first grow, I learned not to grow indica and sativa together. What will turn the leaf tips brown on an indica will flat out kill a sativa. Lesson learned the hard way.
If the very tips of the leaves turn brown, you're just about perfect. YMMV.
Marijuana is just a weed, after all. Sometimes we overthink things (at least I do). I always found the KISS method works best for me.
Oh, and Welcome to the fray! There's nothing quite as nice as getting slapped silly by something you've grown yourself.
 

WeedHopper

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Hippie is correct. I use to always look for a little TURN AND BURN and then i knew i was where i needed to be with feeding.👍
 

MFMc

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I grew my first RDWC hydro crop using nothing but Miracle Gro & Shultz ferts, with a little added Epsom's salts. In hydro, or even dirt, your plants will let you know when you over fertilize. With my first grow, I learned not to grow indica and sativa together. What will turn the leaf tips brown on an indica will flat out kill a sativa. Lesson learned the hard way.
If the very tips of the leaves
Marijuana is just a weed, after all. Sometimes we overthink things (at least I do).
There's nothing quite as nice as getting slapped silly by something you've grown yourself.
 

MFMc

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Hah! A couple of great lines there.
Im afraid that I overspent and prob overthought (could that ever apply?) this project, but I have a history of overbuilding and over prepping my work. Anyway, I’m prepared.
And I wasn’t aware of the difference of fertilizer requirements. That is helpful. Thank you.
 

sharonp

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I don't think it is a good idea to keep your soil damp after a couple weeks. You want the roots to grow because that is how your plants get their nutrients. So, water every so many days and let it dry out a little in between.
 

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