Smach's 2022 Virginia outdoor grow

smaccio

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This will be my second year growing outdoors in central Virginia. I learned a ton last year - especially here at MP, and finished the season with 20 ounces of really awesome product from two plants. One of the things I learned is how helpful it can be to keep track of every phase of the process. I did it on a legal pad last year, but that has the disadvantage of no pictures. I've decided to keep my journal here this year. It's mostly so I can keep a record of my process, but maybe my experiences will help the next new grower along the way. This weekend I'll germinate feminized photoperiod Girl Scout Cookies and I'm trying the autoflower route as well with some White Widow seeds. The late-season rains and humidity are a constant challenge here, so I'm interested to see how the shorter-season autos do. Stay tuned...
 

bigsur51

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my pleasure smaccio , sometimes we get lucky

you have to deal with rain and high humidity , we get baseball hail and 80 mph winds

if it ain’t one thing it’s another

don’t forget to spray your plants with some Spinosad and spray on a regular basis…I think the instructions say to spray every 14 to 21 days

and if you get any powdery mildew , buy some Oxidate , that stuff is 100% effective at combating and knocking down the PM immediately

and it off gases in like 24 hours so it’s pretty safe to use late into flower
 

smaccio

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my pleasure smaccio , sometimes we get lucky

you have to deal with rain and high humidity , we get baseball hail and 80 mph winds

if it ain’t one thing it’s another

don’t forget to spray your plants with some Spinosad and spray on a regular basis…I think the instructions say to spray every 14 to 21 days

and if you get any powdery mildew , buy some Oxidate , that stuff is 100% effective at combating and knocking down the PM immediately

and it off gases in like 24 hours so it’s pretty safe to use late into flower


I'll definitely get onto the spinosad. Looks like a winner.

WPM is a constant problem here. I will definitely pick up some Oxidate - thanks for the recommendation. Potassium Chloride was the best solution I hit on last year. A buddy recommended "AGrowlyte." Ever heard of it?
 

bigsur51

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I'll definitely get onto the spinosad. Looks like a winner.

WPM is a constant problem here. I will definitely pick up some Oxidate - thanks for the recommendation. Potassium Chloride was the best solution I hit on last year. A buddy recommended "AGrowlyte." Ever heard of it?


no Sir , never heard of it so I looked it up and it sounds like some serious stuff

if you already have AGrowlyte there is no need for the Oxidate

Oxidate is di-hydrogen peroxide

ingredients of AGrowlyte


The active ingredient in Agrowlyte is hypochlorous acid (HOCl). Other HOCl products exist, but Agrowlyte is the only product of its kind to be tested in a university environment, in real-life circumstances.

Agrowlyte is extremely effective. But the other major benefit is that HOCl is USDA certified as a “No rinse Organic” crop applicant. Once applied, there are no other steps that need to be taken to protect the crop or surrounding areas.
 

smaccio

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It'is on! 12 hour soak, and within 36 hours 5/5 germination for both strains. These go into Happy Frog potting soil in solo cups in a clear tub. The tub makes watering neater, allows light in, and makes moving them outside and back inside easier when that time comes. Naturally each cup is labeled.
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smaccio

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These are some leggy girls right now. Sprouted 12 days ago. 2-3" tall and stem thinner than spaghetti. I've been leaving them outside all day most days and the weather has been ideal. I have the pots full of soil and ready to transplant, but they're so easy to deal with in the tub that I'm putting off potting them.

I have 3-gallon fabric pots for the autoflowers. I guess I should have put the cracked seeds right into those pots rather than the intermediate solo cups. Autos are in veg for such a short time that you may lose valuable time recovering from a transplant...something like that? I don't think it'll be a problem to drop them into the pots in the cup and cut the cup from around them. We'll see.

I'll be doing my Girl Scout Cookies in 10-gallon pots since I plan to keep them a little smaller / more manageable this year. Planning to top them to keep 'em bushy. I have skinny bamboo stakes which I will use for support. Stay tuned...
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smaccio

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So here's my redneck greenhouse setup.

The tub gives wind and critter protection and makes watering and moving the plants around easier (like, back inside if we're expecting frost or nosy visitors), and the little piece of wire fence keeps birds and squirrels out.

Remember: even if it's legal to grow where you are, you don't want the security risk of random propane deliverers, neighbor's lawn crew, etc seeing your plants, lest you want those plants to disappear a week before harvest in the Fall.

A piece of plexiglas keeps heavy rain off (these little ladies won't take much of a pounding at this early stage) but allows sun and ventilation.

Thin pieces of bamboo with plant wire tightly wrapped around the bamboo but loosely looped around the stems helps support the seedlings. The bamboo can be pulled up little bits at a time for a couple of inches as the plants grow.

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smaccio

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Week 3:

I may remind myself of stuff in this way from time to time (this is primarily a season-long note to self, after all):

What did I learn last year? Last year I learned that no matter how many times a day you check your plants, they just do their thing. Obsession was good during the first go round, but my huge whole one year of growing two plants taught me a bunch, including to chill. (Growing only a handful of plants affords you the opportunity to obsess, I reckon).

Autos are in their 3-gallon "forever" pot, if that's what you want to call a 12-week home. Each one gets its own cage to keep out critters (squirrels, rabbits, and nosy Basset Hounds). The kind of thing you can do if you only have a few plants... They're about 3 or 4 inches tall with a couple of nodes.

GSC still in the solo cups in the bin. I transplanted one into a 10-gallon fabric pot over the weekend and the seedling seemed so delicate I decided to wait on the other two. They all seem good.

These glory days of spring have been perfect growing. Sunny and mostly warm. Enjoy it now, 'cause when the humidity hits the fun is over until the middle of October!



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smaccio

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Week 4:

We were out of town for the long weekend. Since we were predicted to (and did in fact receive) a good rain on Saturday, I decided not to have somebody babysit. I went ahead and potted the GSC and I bunched the pots up under the scrubby plants next to the shed and let runoff rain drip on them. It seemed to work out fine. Weather continues to be good for growing.

The GSC are 6-7" tall with a couple of nodes. It's interesting...and I remember this from last year, the stems on the GSC thicken above the skinny part where it comes out of the ground.

WW are shorter by an inch or two, but by and large seem healthy. On one auto the top of the root area was exposed by runoff over the weekend, so I put some potting soil over it. Remains to be seen how that goes.

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smaccio

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Week 5:

They're coming along just fine. Getting munched by some kind of bug. Gave them a squirt of Spinosad. I mulched the surface of the pots this week to keep rain from washing away the potting soil around the roots.

GSC are up to about 12" now. Autos about half that. Looking healthy but still hard to imagine they'll produce anything.

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smaccio

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Caterpillars! I should have known. They were later last year. I threw the bT at 'em. I shoulda picked up that it was caterpillars earlier. Clear evidence with the leaves eaten between the veins, right? And that little black spot that I thought was poo...I had a lot of that last year when I also had caterpillars...under magnification I'm not sure.

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sharonp

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Caterpillars! I should have known. They were later last year. I threw the bT at 'em. I shoulda picked up that it was caterpillars earlier. Clear evidence with the leaves eaten between the veins, right? And that little black spot that I thought was poo...I had a lot of that last year when I also had caterpillars...under magnification I'm not sure.

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I am in Virginia, the caterpillars are going to get worse. It is a bad year for them already.
 
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