New grower stunted growth?

Hi this is my second grow, first was 4 autoflowers.

This time I’m doing Northern lights, and one autoflower (just to see if I have improved on the last grow) it’s in the material pot, I take it outside when my lights are off.
Anyway back to my question, it’s been around five weeks now since I cracked the seeds and they look a little small compared to some iv viewed at this age on this forum and it has made me concerned.
I’m using a 250w hps light currently (have a digital ballast to up it to 400 and 600 eventually)
I did have the light about 6 inch away for the first three weeks (put my hand under to make sure it wasn’t to hot) but after more reading that may be a little close so Iv moved the light further away (16inch)
My lights are on 18/6, my temps are between 21-28 C
My water is at 5.8ph and the last feed Iv done the nutrients at half strength (feed before was 1/4 strength)
I have a fan on the plants while the light is on blowing over them and I rotate the plants every four days.

Can anyone see any glaring errors I’m making?

Thanks for the help

Welcome to the forum, great people around to help. What soil are you using?
When you say take them outside, when your turn off your lights, are you saying during the 6 hours of dark?

They’re small for 5 weeks IMO.

It has to be light insufficiency. I’m running 5 plants under two 600w LED and they’re at 29 days and they’re significantly bigger than that.

Growing in Coco. I’m only taking the the one autoflower (in material pot) outside during the 6 hours of darkness.

I’ll up the light power and see how I get on. Thanks

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Yeah I would invest in a light meter…make sure your plants are getting atleast 850 lumens per second…they sell PH, light, and moisture reader combo at any hardware store for like $10. If you don’t see any improvement in a couple days than it may be an issue with the soil.

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Thanks upped it to 400w after your previous reply and already noticed an improvement.


Doing well now.

Thanks for your help everyone

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