Plants still look very unhappy

  • Strain; Chocolope/Gorilla Glue/Gold Leaf
  • Soil is Kellogg Organic Plus with perlite
  • PH of runoff is 6.4
  • No nutes, TDS of runoff was 220 ppm with my super soft tapwater, recently started adding CalMag+ and runoff is 350-380ppm
  • Indoor
  • Lights are Viparspectra PAR700 LEDs at 24", 18/6
  • Temps; Day 83, Night 72
  • Humidity; Day 65, Night 85
  • Ventilation system; Yes
  • Humidifier in big tent
  • Co2; No

I just got some coir and will receive FF Ocean Forest Monday and I have some 1.7 gallon pots. I also have FF trio nutes but not using them, I did use half strength Big Bloom (.5-.5-.5) twice earlier at about 2.5 weeks but stopped. These girls are at 4.5 weeks from when they broke soil and look to be way behind schedule. Should I transplant them into better soil? This crap I’m using has pieces of sticks/wood in it. Thanks for any help!

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Your plants are hungry, feed them those nutes!


And if possible, don’t use your super soft water if it’s super soft from a water softener. The salts from your softener can cause issues.

Try saying that 5 times real fast.


Thank you both. I was told no nutes yet so that’s why I havent been using them. They looked fine when very young. I’ll give em half strength Grow Big next water, unfortunately I just watered at lights-out this morning.

My water is just naturally soft at 40 ppm with no softener. Good if I was brewing a Pilsner lol. I use pH down to get it to low 6-ish.


You think I should just water again tomorrow morning with half strength Big Bloom and Grow Big? Runoff was 10% max today.

Oh, you’re watering to runoff? Yes, I think they really need some nutes, so I would feed them at half strength tomorrow and then let them dry out.

Yes I water and then it runs off a minute or so later. As you can see from pics I can’t even get the entire surface wet before it just seeps thru.

I’d suggest getting bigger pots by at least double the size. The plants will out grow the pots you have pretty quick and limit their potential. Plus it would give you a chance to transplant in much better soil. If you had autos that pot size would work out. I’d guess you are root bound if the water flows through that easily.


Water them. Just water in veg.




First off, some interesting, basic facts…

Your marijuana plants need 18 essential elements. They get carbon, hydrogen,
and oxygen from atmosphere and water. They get the 15 other elements via their
roots. These elements are sometimes grouped as major, secondary, and trace elements.
The groupings are determined by how much of each element is needed–some are needed
a lot more than others, but all are necessary.

The major elements are nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The so-called secondary
elements are magnesium, calcium, silicon, and sulfur. Some people group these seven
elements as “macronutrients” because they’re required in larger weight amounts than
the remaining essential elements your plants need. Those are called micronutrients,
and they’re very important even though your plants don’t need as much of them. We’re
talking about iron, zinc, copper, molybdenum, boron, manganese, cobalt, and chlorine.

Until recently, silicon wasn’t even included in the essential element list, but modern
research on marijuana plants indicates your plants use silicon to build strong cell walls,
resist pests and diseases, and to create THC glands.

Nutrients problems most likely to reduce growth rate, THC percentages, and harvest
weight often involve nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and calcium. But problems with
deficiency or excess of any of the 18 essential elements is likely to cause serious
trouble for your marijuana plants.

How do you know your marijuana plants have nutrient deficiency or excess? Look at your leaves.
If they’re not lime green, upright, and looking like the perfect marijuana leaf photo
accompanying this article, your leaves are trying to tell you something.

But here’s a twist…it may not be your organic fertilizers, soil, or hydroponics nutrients
that are actually causing the problem. Signs of nutrient element shortages or excess may
merely be a symptom of the real cause of the problem. For example, low temperatures
interfere with nutrient uptake. So you can’t solve a temperature-related nutrient
deficiency problem by increasing your nutrients dosing…you solve the temperature
problem instead, so your marijuana plants can take in what they need.

The Right Amount of Nitrogen
Makes Your Marijuana Healthy and Green

Nitrogen makes up 78% of the dry volume of our atmosphere and plants need to
capture it if they want to grow at all.

No doubt you already know nitrogen is the big N in the N-P-K on your hydroponics
nutrients bottles, and it’s a big, important ingredient for your marijuana growing success.

Unless your plants are in the final weeks of flowering phase, yellow leaves
(especially lower leaves) are signs of trouble, and the troubles are most often
a nitrogen deficiency. It starts with the bottom leaves and works its way up until only the newest growth is green.

On the other hand, if your marijuana plants are overdosing on nitrogen,
the leaves will be extremely dark green.

Either way, nitrogen problems mean big trouble for your marijuana plants because nitrogen is
absolutely necessary for plant survival because nitrogen is a primary elemental support for
protein synthesis, growth, leaf development, metabolism, and root health.

If you oversupply nitrogen, you get marijuana plants that are too tall, thin, and gangly.
It’s harder to get successful flowering from plants that have been overfed nitrogen.

If you see that the very tips of your leaves are yellow, that’s an almost sure sign of nitrogen
deficiency, which occurs most often during a fast-moving grow phase or when you’ve switched
to an improperly-configured bloom fertilizer during flowering. Many brands of hydroponics
nutrients do not contain the right ratios of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, or they
contain the elements in forms that are not easily available to your marijuana plants.

These potential nutrients problems are especially harmful in flowering phase, when your plants
only have 12 hours to run their photosynthesis metabolism.

Nitrogen deficiencies first show up as leaf tip yellowing, especially on lower leaves.
Then it spreads to affect entire leaves, and moves up the plant. When you do research
on marijuana strains before you buy seeds or clones, take note of the strains that are
said to be heavy feeding. Those will likely want higher parts per million of nutrients,
and they are hogs for eating nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus. In bloom phase, your
marijuana plants want less nitrogen, and more potassium and phosphorus.

The only time you tolerate signs of nitrogen deficiency is when you’re more than halfway
through flowering phase. During those closing weeks, your marijuana plants are focusing on
floral production so they sucks stored nitrogen out of leaves rather than doing the work of

That’s why you don’t need to add extra nitrogen (beyond the amount found in a properly-configured
flowering base nutrients product) to flowering crops after they’ve passed the midway point of
flowering cycle: excess nitrogen during flowering negatively affects bud development, taste, and aroma.

Fixing Nutrients Problems to Save Your Marijuana Plants

If you’re absolutely sure your marijuana root zone pH, grow environment, water, and other factors
are what they should be, and your plants are still showing signs of nitrogen deficiency in soilless
hydroponics marijuana growing, it almost has to be that something’s wrong with your base nutrients.

What are your remedies? If you’re growing in soilless hydroponics using synthetic hydroponics
nutrients, you have it pretty easy.

First, make sure your pH meter is working perfectly (or use the new pH Perfect base nutrients
that automatically buffer and adjust pH to the ideal sweet spot). Flush your
plants (I prefer
Final Phase or Flora Kleen), dump your reservoir, fill with reverse osmosis
water, and feed with
quality hydroponics base nutrients. When I say “quality hydroponics
nutrients,” I mean a reliable
brand of hydroponics base nutrients other than the brand you were using when
the nutrients deficiency

You can also experiment with slight up and down adjustments of nutrients
strength (ppm) or nutrients
water pH and see if that corrects the problems. For example, many of us
follow the dosage instructions
on nutrients bottles and end up with 500+ ppm during flowering. In some cases,
that’s too much, and what’s
really strange is that using too much nutrients can result in nutrient deficiencies.

So try changing your dosage 50-100 ppm in either direction, and see if it makes a
Try adjusting you pH from 6.2 to 6.0. Different nutrients interact with root zone
material and
water differently, so that you might get absorption of 12 elements, but the pH is
wrong for three
other ones. Even small adjustments in pH (unless you’re using pH Perfect base
nutrients in which
case it doesn’t matter), can affect individual element’s absorption.

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Thanks Garrigan65! Lots of good info there. I was conflicted with the ‘no nutes, especially if you have hot soil’ advice in some articles yet when I looked at troubleshooting pics they all indicated deficiencies. So I was looking for something more global like pH , soil composition, and water make-up. All things I needed to do anyway but I probably should have listened to what the plants were trying to tell me… “We’re just hungry bro”.

They look much better now and are growing faster. They immediately did but I transplanted anyway in a mixture of about 75% FFOF and 25% coir plus coffee grounds from that morning and a few handfuls perlite, one transplant a day. I snipped a few gnarlies at the bottom.

They look way better than they did. If your ph is in check I’d say your new growth will look much better. The old leaves will probably stay looking the way they do. As the new growth takes off your plant will continue to look better.

I just looked at how old your post was. How are your girls doing now?

They were doing fine until I watered and measured runoff at 5.2-5.6 pH. So I flushed them and they looked OK for about a day but then they got a bit wilted. However, I had just ran new lights that day and I think it was just too much light. So I turned them down. They just got transplanted to 5.5 gal pots and seem to be recovering. Here they are sleeping today. I have 3 of them pulled/secured at an angle so they might look more wilted…and off center.


Your ph is low. Shoot for 6.5

They’re looking good despite the low ph. Sounds like you have a plan to remedy that.

Updated pic just because. Bottom right had some sort of deficiency (iron?) but is greening up. It was worse.