I am late into my first ever grow, and am, of course, planning the next grow.
For the sake of clarity here is my set up today:
Grow Room: 4x4x80 tent
Light: King Plus 1500w LED (I am going to get a second one of these soon so I will have two)
Medium: 3.5 gallon DWC pots with clay pebbles (6 spots, but for this next grow I am only going to use 4)
Here is my thought for germinating my seeds and producing seedlings suitable for placing in my bubble pots:
I have a 10 site cloning system (basically a small tote with ten holes, air stone, small pump). What I want to do (assuming someone here will validate this will work) is germinate the seeds as you would in soil, but instead in rapid rooters. So using a seed germination tray, pop seeds into rapid rooters that have been soaked in PHd water. Once the seeds have sprouted and seedlings have appeared, then I thought I could move the seedlings into the cloner. This way I can provide them oxygenated, PHd and PPMd water until they have roots dangling from the rapid rooters and can be moved into my bubble pots.
Thoughts? Is the intermediate step of putting them in a smaller hydro system (the cloner) reasonable or unnecessary? Seems like a lot of people who germinate with hydro have an issue going from seedling to vegetating plant due to water not getting to the roots early in the plants life. I suppose the other option would be to go directly to the bubble pots but put the water levels up to the bottom of the rapid rooters? I like the idea of using the cloner because it will be a lot less work to manage the water in a single small reservoir for 4 seedlings than it would be in 4 3.5 gallon reservoirs.
One last question: If I want to germinate and mature those seedlings in my grow tent, what is the best configuration for my light? 18/6 schedule? My first grow, I started my seeds in soil and transplanted them to larger pots (6" pots) until they had 5-6 nodes, then moved them into the hydro system (washing the roots was a PITA). While my plants all made it, I’d certainly like to avoid all that work AND the stress on the plants. Anyway, during the seedling phase I just put them in a window sill. Now that the winter months are coming I’m not going to be able to do that.