Deficiency or burn or lock-out or...?

Well things are starting to break down with my first grow and I need a little direction as I feel I read conflicting information online and I have conflicting symptoms.

I have two plants, both white widows, one still in veg, one in week three of flower, both seeds were planted January 8.

They have always “seemed” a little weak, not robust, but they grew. This is what I know:

Turns out I have been watering with 5 to 5.5 pH water since day one. Guess I should have calibrated the meter sooner.

soil is Aurora Roots Green Lite
Nutrients (General Organics Go Box) at 1/3 to 1/2 strength every third watering.
Watering about every third day.
5-gallon fabric pots
Light On temp is around 75.
Light Off temp is around 68.
No circulation fans, but exhaust fans run about 30 seconds every minute and a half (so a 25% duty cycle)(anymore than that drops the temperature too low (to basement ambient).

Once I calibrated the pH meter, I flushed both plants with about 3-4 gallons pH6.2 water. Run-off is in high 6 to low 7 range. I never checked the run-off before calibrating the meter.

In my mind I have conflicting indications - tips that look like nutrient burn, but yellowing that looks like a defiency (nitrogen/phosphorous?).

Any opinions are appreciated, I really don’t want to lose the flowering plant… What do I do next? Thanks everyone.

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I think you still have a Ph problem. High 6 to low 7 is too high. Try to get it down to 6.5. If you’re really close to 7, then yes, you can have nutrient lockout.


You have a number of different deficiencies from nitrogen, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous respectively, of course with your pH numbers, the observable symptoms are probably not from lack of fertilizer causing the deficiency but lockout of fertilizer.

I think you have taken the right corrective actions to begin balancing things out. Instead of flushing again I would just begin watering with your 6.2pHed water until your run off is coming out at 6.5 or so

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Thanks to both of you Raustin and TDubWilly. I did try another flush this morning and got the (veg) plant down pretty easily to 6.5.
22 gallons later and needing to get to work, I still couldn’t get the flowering plant to move from 7.0.

I guess I should stop the flushing and just start treating with water/nutes @ 6.2 next watering?..
thanks guys.

The nutes should bring the Ph down by itself, but yes, around 6.2, 6.3 would be good.

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Update and thanks.

So it’s been a few weeks of paying more attention to pH of watering and feeding - turns out my original claim of feeding them really acidic water was also completely wrong. Because of a couple screw-ups on my part they had been getting 7.2 pH water not abnormally low pH but rather high. (the sad part is I’m supposed to be an engineer and it still took me weeks to figure out!!-long story.)

So I think they both are much better if a not little charlie brown Christmas tree scrawny - I assume the lack of size is the result of a lifetime of neglect and LEDs not quit as robust as I had hoped?

Anyway, off to figure out my next steps - thanks everyone.


Looks alright to me! She’s getting there, keep it up :+1: