Ebb and flow root problem

The seedling are almost 3 weeks old and have been gradually doing worse day by day. I’ve posted pictures of the roots and they don’t look health, also to help out i’ve red circled some of the root points which you master growers may look. The circle points are where the roots are ready to break (dark brown), they look sickly and ready to die.

It’s week 3 for these seedlings although the roots have grown somewhat long they look unhealthy and the canopies also say otherwise. I don’t think ebb and flow is for me :frowning:

Water : R.O
PH : 5. 8 to 6
PPM : 80
Water temp : 18-19 Degrees C

16 feed and drain cycles a day

Lighting system 240W qb full spectrum Shezenbrite at 50% strength.

15inches away from canopy

1 Like

Roots look like they were folded in the circled spots. Seems to me like they need more food. 18 feeds so that what about once every 45 mins or so. U might wanna see about getting a too feed system to top feed also to make sure everything is getting wet I don’t know the whole setup but seems to me like something is missing from this equation

1 Like

I don’t grow hydro, but that wet cardboard is asking for mold and mildew. You should really try to get a plastic top on the setup. The cardboard will disintegrate and get in your water, pumps, hoses and valves and anywhere the water flows.

1 Like

Said it before in your other thread but your plants are hungry. They need food. 500-700 PPMs now would be wise.

They also look like root rot is creeping in. Are you using Hydroguard? If your water temps are really 18-19°C, then my other thought is light Leaks. Instead of cardboard, I’d get spray paint and paint your lid black - then white. Since you’re in the middle of a grow, for right now I suggest removing the cardboard and covering the lid with aluminum foil to prevent light leaks.


Will try that and up the nutrients. No hydro guard

Nah they defo get wet to the top, root rot is creeping in somehow. Maybe too many feeds?

Light leaks. If your water is legitimately staying under 68°F, light leaks is the only other way it happens.

Hydroguard is a lifesaver. Trust me.

Whatelse can i use instead of Hydroguard. This is readily available.


A few more pics, confirms root rot. Btw im using COCO husk chips as my substrate. Now im gonna feed every 3 hours (8 times a day). No point in upping the PPM with roots that look like that. :frowning:

That’s the closest alternative I see. I’ve never used it personally but the idea is the same - beneficial microbes to live in the root system so rot can’t take over.

1 Like

Yea, i’m gonna opt for this one, plus ill reduce the feed cycles (to 8 times a day), should i start with new seedling now or try to solider on, these babies look pretty beat up.

Also trying to get my hands on some hydroton clay pebbles. Btw i thought coco husk chips were supposed to host beneficial microbes…i guess not.

I would put some time into trying to recover these - the best way to avoid a problem in the future is to learn how to cure it. I haven’t had root rot creep in since keeping my reservoir nice and chilly and making sure I had ample light blocking so algae couldn’t grow. But I’d be lying if I said it was easy or fast to figure out.

Rot root is mainly caused by poor aeration and moist conditions. Feeding oxygen rich solution to plants one could hope enough oxygen is being provided to the roots.

Come to think of it i barely give the roots enough time to breathe in the solution, hardly 2 to 3 minutes i think. How long do you soak your roots?

I’ve stopped feeding entirely for the moment and the roots are now, putting out hairs. Maybe i was feeding them too much? I got like 3 air stones bubbling in my res, which i keep around 18-19 Degrees Celsius, one would think my reservoir is oxygen rich?

Indefinitely. I’m growing in DWC and RDWC, not running ebb & flow. I have 2 airstones in each container that houses a plant and a large ring of aeration tubing + two more stones in my reservoir.

How long is your grow cycle, how big do you allow your plants to grow. You are using a water chiller, which controls your temp, in a perpetual flowing cycle, correct?

1 Like

My grow cycle is as long as it takes my last plants to finish - I.e. right now I have two clones cut from the plant I have currently flowering. The two clones are vegging in DWC - no air chiller and no water pump. Just standalone 5 gallon buckets with air stones. They are in hydroton clay pebbles as their medium.

When it’s flower time, I move them to the RDWC system in my flowering tent. It’s 3 5 gallon buckets interconnected with 2” pvc piping and uniseals, and end at a bucket with just a water pump in it. The water pumps out of the final bucket and through a chiller down to 68°F, then into a 27 gallon reservoir (where there is the air stones and aeration tubing) and it gravity feeds back into the system with the plants. Let me go take some photos for ya.

1 Like

It’s a disaster zone in here but here’s the 2 DWC buckets. They are “connected” but don’t have water flow because they were originally supposed to go into the RDWC system and I cut the holes in the wrong spot.

Here’s the RDWC system (again, it’s a righteous mess)

The water is molasses-stained and the other grossness is mineral buildup from the nutes and my hard tap water.

Here’s the mother of the 2 clones:

And here’s is a clone of a different plant:

The mother plant is a beauty. So you’ve never had root rot problems in your DWC (for your clones)? Btw why use hydroton in DWC?

I think your RDWC is working flawlessly. Could you show the whole system in landscape, im having trouble figuring out where the chiller is positioned.

You are using perlite and coco as well or is that separate from your RDWC?

1 Like

I haven’t ever had an issue since I blocked all possible light and dedicated it to veg only. Light temps from flowering get so high, a chiller became a must, which is why I went to the RDWC for the flowering tent.

My net pots all have a strip of “tent Fix” tape around the top where my hydroton doesn’t always reach. I found even with a full net pot I still had light leaks. This solved that.

I’m using hydroton for all - I am using soil and perlite for a few soil grows (which I truly detest, I will be glad when they’re finished)

My flower tent is like this:

Res and chiller are outside the tent to capitalize on tent space. The rest is inside.

1 Like

How long would you say a RDWC grow cycle lasts? Doesn’t that bottom inch of water drain from your buckets? But maybe that doesn’t matter much because of perpetual flow of water.

1 Like

I suspect it could be as little as 12 weeks, but estimate 14-16 more realistically if starting from a seed. 4-6 weeks to veg and 6-10 weeks to flower.

And yeah, the water pump at the end of the line means the only empty bucket is the one pumping the water. Even then I keep it full enough that that generally doesn’t happen.