Near end of hardening off, want to transplant tomorrow, plants look a bit droopy


I have been growing three plants under lights indoors. They are currently in 8 inch pots and their final homes will be 25 gallon cloth pots outdoors. All feminized photoperiod plants. I am using notill soil. Topped with worm castings and straw mulch (same as the 25 gallon pots).

Over the past week I have followed this schedule to harden them off before I transplant them to the 25s outside permanently:

Day 1: Early morning, shady location. 2 hours, back inside.
Day 2: Early morning, shady location, 4 hours, back inside.
Day 3: Split 3/3 hours morning/evening, partial sun, back inside.
Day 4: Repeat, 4/4 hour split
Day 5: Repeat, 5/5 hour split
Day 6: Out in morning, all day full sun, back inside in the evening (after 12hrs)
Day 7: Repeat, but out earlier and back inside later.
Day 8: Out early as possible, leave out overnight, transplant in the morning to final homes outdoor. <----I am on this day currently.

But my plants don’t look super happy. They don’t look incredibly bad, but I can tell something isn’t right.

Here are some photos:

Sorry for the bad blackout photoshop in some parts :sweat_smile:

The leaves are somewhat drooping down, and the newest leaves at the top are sort of “boaty”. The stems are pretty red/purple, not sure if that is normal or not.

Only things I can think of are:

  1. They are simply too big for the 8 inch pots and need to be transplanted (can’t see roots coming out the bottom, though)
  2. The hardening off plan I followed (just got it from googling) was not good and has done something negative?
  3. Overwatering
  4. Underwatering

I have no idea though. They were thriving inside under the T5. No sign of any issues at all until the hardening off phase this week.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Should I go ahead and transplant them into their final 25gal smart pot homes tomorrow? Should I hold off?

I think it’s just telling you it is ready to get in that big pot. She wants some more room to put her feet down!! Either that or over watering. Over watering will resolve in 2 to 3 days. If it is needing a bigger pot your issue will only continue to worsen to me though it looks more like it is too dry or needs a bigger pot asap


My guess would be as @Ironman26 suggested, looks like they’re more than ready for some extra leg room! A transplant may be on deck here…:grin:


I second this.


Thank you all so much for taking the time. Honestly, that’s why I put that potential reason at #1. Glad to know my instincts are good!!!

Seriously thank you all so much for putting my mind at ease, will move them into their final homes today :slight_smile:

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Give them a good watering - let them bounce back and then transplant. Looks like you had so much root mass they were absorbing the water at a higher rate than your watering schedule. You’d be fine to transplant now but I always like to let them heal for a few days to reduce the shock of transplant. Can also use some azos on root ball for same effect. Good luck!!

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Thanks, I actually already transplanted them though :sweat_smile:

They were only looking root bound about an inch from the bottom of the pot, so seems like it was good timing. They are looking better currently, think they might be alright! I did use Myco as well.


I no had the same problem with one of my gold leafs got root bound in a five gal fabric pot let it veg little too long so didn’t have a bigger pot I cut the bottom off the one it was in and put in another five gallon fabric pot little more than half way full and spliffed em together then just loosened up the roots gently and she settled right in over the next day or so here’s a pic of her now

I have to put some bamboo poles up the buds are starting to come together and she’s starting to feel it

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I’d pluck a few of those big fan leaves off though open up the bud sites and lower in the plant to some light she’ll really benefit from it I like going around in a spiral down the plant they seem to love it. @greenblood they do look nice though

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