Turning the lights back on in the stinky attic

Discussion in 'Grow Journals' started by stinkyattic, Sep 5, 2019.

  1. Sep 5, 2019 #1

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    Hello fellow garden gnomes! It's been a while since my electric bills were abnormal, and, since no responsible carbon footprint can last, it's time for some melt-your-romex-level draw!

    Well... maybe not quite THAT much.
    : )

    I have been gardening indoors for close to two decades but took a hiatus for a few years. Two jobs plus an apprecticeship/night school takes a toll on Plant Time but it all paid off and my one job now keeps me comfortably busy with a few hours here and there to grow some devil's lettuce, which is my favorite vegetable (avocadoes aren't vegetables, or it would be a close race).

    I'm going into this with two goals:
    1) rebuild my genetics collection
    2) have fun!

    I'll be running this as a pretty detailed grow log from seed to harvest, using simple methods. When I crop hard, my weapon of choice is containerized hydroton ebb n flow, but I am trying to find good mothers at this point, and I tend to keep moms in dirt, so that is where we shall begin.

    Just one request, I'm trying to keep this thread on track and compact. Questions are very very welcome! I look forward to discussing topics that come up. But I know that there can occasionally be a tendency to hijack with long (sometimes cut-n-paste) monologues and if I can request that we try to avoid those... it would be much appreciated. I've been around the block and worked as a consultant to other growers and truly enjoy growing, and if you have quick tips, advice, all that jazz.... cool beans, but a three page manifesto about how I can improve my technique by checking out your for-profit website... just pm me lol. I hope this does not come off in the wrong way; I've just seen it all before and its exhaustimg to wade through. I love interacting with the online amateur (key word: amateur meaning in it for the love <3) grow community and cut my teeth at canncom, which has since gone the way of the dodo, but taught me so much and that was 100% because of great conversation!

    This will hopefully the longest wall of text on this post lol... I sincerely hope y'all find it entertaining, at the very least! Oh and there might be some random food porn/recipes mixed in ...but sue me.

    Let's get growing!
     
  2. Sep 6, 2019 #2

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    Setting up shop

    I have a nice little walk in closet in a semi-walkup attic, crouch on the stairs, or hit your head on the ceiling. It has always been a cozy little veg room and lab, but unusable during the worst part of July without some major construction on the climate control end of things.

    Gear:
    4 bulb t5 fluoro
    MH400
    2 el cheapo led panels that I haven't been able to get the lingering sweatshop odor out of
    Couple fans , big one for the plants and little one for the sucker who has to tend them

    All that other stuff n junk: washing machine drain pan to prevent another drywall disaster ( cautionary tale for a long winter's night, tell ya later), comfy perch, bunch of expired fertilizer I drug outta the cellar, water testing and pruning tools, the usual.
     

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  3. Sep 6, 2019 #3

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    Now for the beans. Mah beeeeanns!!!

    I'm starting with Sweet Cindy from the venerable Bushy Old Grower who is a true pioneer of indoor growing for the average person. Ive grown and loved several of his classic strains; the 2000s versions of BlueMoonRocks, Sour Bubble, Bogglegum, and a couple others. The Sweet Cindy drew me because I have grown Sweet Tooth#3 (strong plant, not the most interesting flavor, but overall rewarding) and the clone-only original C99 (tasty as all heck but the stems... like toothpicks, but too weak to even pick your teeth with!)

    I scored a fresh pack from GTA mere DAYS before the USPS moratorium on international money orders to Canada went into effect. 10 day total turnaround, very solid.

    Seeds are in a plastic snap case with 2 layers of premium paper towels, a sprinkle of water, seeds spread out (if one goes bad I don't want it to spread), another layer of paper towels pressed on top, closed, and stuck somewhere warmish. I'm putting them on a shelf above a lamp where I know it will be hospitable.
     

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  4. Sep 6, 2019 #4

    umbra

    umbra

    umbra

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    a teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide mixed with the water will help prevent molds and fungi from starting
     
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  5. Sep 6, 2019 #5

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    There's no starting concentration (35% industrial? 5% drug store?) of the peroxide or a dilution rate (teaspoon per what volume?).A teaspoon of industrial h2o2 plus a teaspoon of water will kill them; a teaspoon of drugstore in a pint glass of water is a safe ratio... I've never had issues though. Clean hands, clean container, in the dirt the moment a tail peeks out.
    Imho, the biggest risk factor is cold temps which slow them down and they lose the race against time, where mold is virtually inevitable, given long enough :)
     
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  6. Sep 6, 2019 #6

    umbra

    umbra

    umbra

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    5% of H2O2 teaspoon to cup of water
    heating pad set on low with a towel in between pad and beans
     
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  7. Sep 6, 2019 #7

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    Yup. That's something I'd do if I don't see tails in a couple days, for sure, plus cleaning the containers and putting in fresh paper towels.
     
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  8. Sep 6, 2019 #8

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    My heat source for this project is a table lamp with a low wattage cfl in it, a piece of card to balance the container and block light, and a folded bandana. Fancy.
     

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  9. Sep 6, 2019 #9

    umbra

    umbra

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    that'll work
     
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  10. Sep 6, 2019 #10

    stinkyattic

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    It always has ; ) this ain't my first rodeo. Yee haw!
     
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  11. Sep 6, 2019 #11

    umbra

    umbra

    umbra

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    Didn't think it was, but … new stuff, different spin, things change
     
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  12. Sep 6, 2019 #12

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    I'm a luddite, as you will come to find out. Technology is great but sometimes ya can't improve much on the classics. Your bike museum is a testament to that !
     
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  13. Sep 6, 2019 #13

    The Hemp Goddess

    The Hemp Goddess

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    You might want to look into leak detectors if you do hydro on an upper floor. They are quite inexpensive and can alert you at the first sign of water. I do like the washing machine drain pan idea, but it may not be big enough to contain a large leak. If you own your home, a washing machine pan drain can be plumbed to the outside, like a water heater T & P valve or to an appropriate drain.
     
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  14. Sep 6, 2019 #14

    stinkyattic

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    For sure. When I switch back to hydro I'll be installing secondary containment with a float switch to discharge out the window. What a mess that was!
     
  15. Sep 8, 2019 #15

    stinkyattic

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    Well THAT escalated fast... between Friday night (48hours) when the cracks appeared to this morning (3 -1/3 days) some of the taproots shot out to the OH $&*#! level. I had to work all day and then straight to a cookout and really should have taken a detour home to plant in between.
    This is much more taproot than you want to come out before planting!
    Taproots are extremely brittle and can snap off easily, killing the whole thing.
    I set up some clean nursery cells with foxfarm light warrior seed mix, pre-wet it, tamped it down, poked holes, and GENTLY PLACED the seeds taproot down in them, then scattered some loose mix over them, not pressing down, and watered-in with a squeeze bottle. Just room temperature tap water, nothing added.
    Now they are on a proper seedling heat mat. No dome. I don't use them for seed starting due to risk of fungal/bacterial attack.
    The one pic holding the seed shows the point where a root has begun to emerge and this is a perfect time to plant. You can just see the tip starting, and it's easier to handle without damage.
    I chose light warrior (technically a soilless mix) for texture and added mycorrhizae. With long taproots its tough to get them inserted in grow plugs without breakage. This is a safe mix since I let them go too long.
    Ok now we wait, and yeah I'm gonna go fix my manicure now to pass the time, it's a mess : )
     

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  16. Sep 9, 2019 #16

    stinkyattic

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    Came home to some nice lil sprouties. Most of them are still wearing their hats, which I learned many years ago not to mess with.
    Cheap LED lights for now, since my T5 is pretty warm and I don't want to risk the soil surface drying out too much while I'm at work. As soon as they're a little better established I'll put them under it. At this rate, I'm guessing that will happen within the next couple of days.

    The heat mat is a vintage NGW unit that I yanked out of a jumbled bin of garden detritus down cellar. Still works like a charms. Those things were indestructible. It's thicker and rubbery -er than the comparable hydrofarm version and can take some abuse.

    I had 13/14 seeds fully germinate before planting, and the last one was puffed enough that I tossed it in a pot too. So I think we're going to see 100% from this batch o beans. Go, BOG!
     

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  17. Sep 10, 2019 #17

    The Hemp Goddess

    The Hemp Goddess

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    Looking good! The strain sounds great. I have a special place in my heart for C99.
     
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  18. Sep 11, 2019 #18

    stinkyattic

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    Not much to report this morning, hats are off the ones that came up, but ive got a couple that haven't emerged from the dirt yet. Hopefully they didn't dry out, and are just pokey. The others are looking great and in some cases already have a set of true leaves.
    So while I'm waiting... tested the MH400 and it's not getting to full brightness. I know the bulb is old, so I went to buy just a new bulb and came home with a new gently used switchable ballast and an almost new bulb for 20 bucks for the set. And 4 sacks of my favorite medium, canna bio plus soilless mix. So fluffy!
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019
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  19. Sep 12, 2019 #19

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

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    We have reached the one week mark. They went under t5s this afternoon, with a big fan blowing near, but not on, them. It's moving air but not a hurricane yet since they're tender and a couple haven't broken dirt yet. Still hoping, but I'm afraid my 10 hour work days were a couple hours too long between waterings. Light Warrior is light, as advertised. Shoot.
    So this is where we're at:
     

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  20. Sep 12, 2019 #20

    stinkyattic

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    So, I know I promised (read= threatened) food pr0n so here we go, since waiting for grass to grow is like watching paint dry, and vis a versa.
    Super duper challah French toast!
    4 slices stale challah, or if you can get polish eggy bread that's good too.
    3 eggs
    1/4c half n half
    Pinch each cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar, salt, and black pepper. Yes pepper, trust me
    Whisk.
    Cook some bacon, set aside, drain but don't clean the iron skillet. You used an iron skillet, right?
    Add a tablespoon butter to the bacon residue. Leave it on low heat like how you cook bacon gently.
    Quickly dredge 2 slices challah and toss them in the bacon butter blackened bits of whatnot mix, flip when dark gold.
    Repeat . The batter is good for 4-6 slices.
    Serve with dark maple syrup and if you feel fancy make some sides:
    Strawberry sauce-
    A cup of chopped strawberries, 2tbsp each sugar, lemon juice, and brandy, cook on super low 10 mins, turn off, add another splash of brandy while still hot, black pepper also recommended in this.
    Leftover batter crepes- whatever is left over from the French toast dredge, eyeball it and whisk in half its volume white flour. This happens to be a conventional crepe batter. Pour it on the hot dirty skillet, swirl to coat evenly, flip once with a cake icing knife, eat for dessert.
    Yay breakfast for dinner.
     

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