I just started my first grow about a month ago from seed and had the plants outside. Then I got a 2x4 grow tent and a 300w vivosun light. Unfortunately I used miracle grow moisture control as my medium and I think that is my first issue. The Soil is holing on to water for a week+. The grow started around March 1st, and they were in plastic pots. I transferred to fabric 7gal pots 4 days ago to get more air to the roots but the soil is still pretty moist (watered after transplant).
To make things worse, I believe I brought some pests in the grow room from outside. I believe they are spider mites and I have been spraying the plants with a sprayer and adding neem oil about once a week (been treating for 2 weeks). I haven’t used any nutrients yet, but I got the fox farm set and will start tomorrow. I also just picked up a ph and ppm pen so I can start tracking all of those stats.
I topped the plants last night because of my limited height in the grow room.
For having all of these issues, the plants don’t look too bad, but I want to make sure it’s worth the investment of time. Can anyone offer any advice on how to get my pest and soil moisture under control? Did my medium choice doom this grow?
Looking forward to the feedback.
First: NO NUTES! Miracle Gro soil and supplemental nutrients is a sure way to nuke your plants.
The other problem with MG products is they are not ‘buffered’ for the PH that cannabis prefers. If it were me I would repot the plants in something like Fox Farms Happy Frog and just water until the plants tell you they need something.
Every time you water it releases timed-release fertilizer that is harsh and bitter as well as being too strong for the plants. That said; a lot of growers (myself included) used it successfully on my first grow although the smoke was not that good.
Do I pick the miracle grow out of the rootball when transferring and try and spread out the roots as much as possible in the new medium?
Looks like I can get fox farm ocean forest on amazon delivered Thursday.
And I am using the bondie neem oil spray heavily every 4 days. After I spray I’m leaving the lights off for about 7 hours.
I really appreciate the advice. Hopefully I can save the little girls.
I’ve never seen spider mites on small plants in veg. Usually only after the plant is flowering and it’s immune system is becoming compromised. Spider mites leave webs everywhere. If you are seeing other critters crawling in your soil you have fungus gnats which is from over watering.
Watering practices should be only water when plant is about to wilt.
I would try to carefully pull the plant along with it’s root ball and MG soil and just transplant into Happy Frog (not Ocean Forest–too hot). Do a thorough flush when you do and you might also add some beneficial mycorrhizai (called “Mike” or “Mykos”) from your garden supply along with something like Rooting Powder (HD sells it).
Superthrive is another supplement you could use (it’s a B vitamin).
If you don’t already; purchase a decent PH meter and TDS meter. NOT one of those 3 in 1 soil probes but a good meter that you can calibrate. I like the Apera for PH and there are a crap ton of cheap TDS meters.
You will only want to run water for the next several weeks. If using tap; let it stand for 24 hours and if a municipal water report shows chloramines you may have to use a chlorine remover. A lot of folks buy an R/O device which solves most problems related to water.
You will also want to pick up PH up and down, and some kind of calibration solution.
Do you have access to a garden or farm supply store or nursery? At a local farm supply store 1.5 cu ft bag is $18 for happy frog or ocean forest. Amazon is almost $40. Bezos has enough money. Check the place for the trio to. 7 gallons is almost one cubic foot. That is a lot of beans $
I’m in LA so farm stores are hard to find. But found some bags on gardener.com for $26 with free shipping. Getting 4 bags delivered by next weekend.
Question about the neem oil… should I stop applying given it’s a different pest? And should I start low stress training now, or wait for the new soil?
Once again, I appreciate the advice. You guys are awesome.