Please help save my babies! 1st Autoflower

Hey all! Super new here but I’ve been reading the forums for couple months and have learned a ton! After 3 unsuccessful bag seed attempts (all male), I decided to upgrade my equipment and go the Autoflower route. Here is my setup:

Gorilla tent 8x4x7
Think grow model H 600W x2 running 18/6 with dark period from 10a-4p which is hottest part of day here in NE
AC infinity 8” in-line exhaust fan
DIY humidifier with 10 head mister and 120mm fan hooked to an inkbird controller
6” oscillating secret jardin fan x2
5 - gallon pots with FFOF

I ran out of pots and soil so had to use fabric pots and FF happy frog for 4 of them. I have 6 strains (2 plants each) being:

ILGM bruce banner, gorilla glue, & Girl Scout cookie

Another reputable bank: white widow, white LSD, & Magnum

Let me preface with the mistakes I know I made from jump… Too many different strains, but I also didn’t expect 100% germination!

After germination I put right into forever pots instead of solo cups for better initial root growth.

I definitely had some issues early on getting the environment right but now my daily averages are:

Temp: 74-81
RH 65-73%
VPD .07-1.1

I’ve come across so much conflicting info on VPD and levels for different stages of growth and only way to maintain them is with high humidity but not sure if that’s accurate?

Another issue running into with climate is my inkbird and ac infinity RH readings are anywhere from 8-12° apart even when right next to each other… wondering which should be calibrated?

I’m on day 34 and having what I believe is nitrogen toxicity on several of the plants, specifically the largest BB & WLSD but I’m really hoping some of you experts can help me out? I don’t think it’s overwatering as I’ve been super careful about not giving them too much…was giving them ~20-36oz per day of distilled water and I was beginning to think I was underwatering as most would be nearly bone dry next day…

Here are day 30 pics:



I have Since switched humidifier due to standing water. I should have tested runoff but as I wasn’t getting any due to size of pots and trying not to overwater I went for a heavy watering ~45oz with a super light dosage of Bergman’s veg nutes (<1/4 tsp/gal) and then several started drooping with yellowish hints and brown spots on end of leaves. I was planning on giving them a heavy watering with just ph water of 6 but wanted to see if I could be completely wrong as this is 1st time with autos… here is what happened day and half after watering… I have the lights 28” above at 65%



Any insight / guidance would be greatly appreciated as these babies were really coming along before this and I hope I can get them back on track…

@dbrn32 I see that you’re a moderator and have provided tons of guidance on other threads I’ve read and I was hoping you could possibly tag some members that could help me out? Appreciate y’all in advance and please lmk if I can provide info to help diagnose as I’m new here and tried to follow template seen used

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I’m not an expert on diagnosing problems, but those look like over watering to me. I use 5 gal. pots with happy frog, perlite, and fox farm fruit and flower 4-9-3, and I water a half gallon at a time, then wait until their pretty dry before doing it again. Usually every third day. Here is my gorilla glue auto on day 85. I estimate about 10 days




more or less.

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Hello, Im at work and only have short period of time to reply but here is thumb eyeball assessment.

I see this as good, fabric allows a little more flexibility throughout course of grow. They drain off better and help combat plants getting root bound. So don’t worry about it.

Nonsense, you can never have too many lol. Just sometimes requires a little more effort.

In my experience this works out opposite. Root expansion is wider in big pot but takes longer and plant growth is slow in beginning. This time can be critical with autos. Starting in cup gets plants going faster and as long as you time transplant well doesn’t choke root ball too much.

Keep your canopy temps up around high 70’s gor proper leaf surface temp, then try to dial rh into vpd.

Maybe neither. Running automation requires a lot of tuning and depending on how sensitive each is could just be working against each other. I ditched all this stuff and run my ac infinity fans in manual with my temp/rh sensors in middle of canopy. Then i just watch and manually adjust fan speed if needed.

I can see some dark green leaves. Best way to check is apply ph’d watering to runoff. Measure ph and ppm before and after and compare.

@Graysin @Newt @MidwestGuy @PurpNGold74 @Fieldofdreams @OGIncognito probably would’ve been by soon anyway, but just a few of the normal greeting party.

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Over and under watering can look almost the same. Rather than a measured amount daily, I recommend the drench/drought method.
Slowly and completely soak the soil until about 20% of what you put in drips out the bottom.
Do not water again until the pot feels light and soil is dry to at least 1 inch deep.
Oh, and welcome to the community. :tada:

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Here’s a simple method to determine your watering frequency. Water fully, as stated above. Do not water again until they start to wilt. Then subtract 12 hours.

Wilting and overwatering do look very similar, but you can tell.

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Looks like @dbrn32 has you covered like one of my wife’s quilts!

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I believe that is too low for soil. I shoot for 6.5-6.8 Ph.

:pray:t3: Much appreciated. Going to give these all a shot!

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I have a LOT to say but I’ll repeat what @HMGRWN said with a smidge more -

Plastic pots facilitate root problems. Not that they always cause them, but as you correctly stated, standing water is a problem - plastic pots lend themselves to standing water in their bottoms around the drainage holes, and as a result the root zone is consistently too wet.

Your formula of “X ounces per day” is a normal habit new growers try to get into but - and I mean this kindly - it’s just plain wrong.

Cannabis needs wet/dry cycles, and the roots need the opportunity to breathe. They draw in air just like we do, but from the root zone rather than the open air (that’s where they do the respiration that we commonly think of for plants - CO2 in and oxygen out). By adding just some water every day, you’re perpetually dampening the root zone and preventing the plant from breathing. She’s slowly and steadily suffocating as a result. She may also be chronically under-watered, but she’s been overwatered historically. By that I mean water too frequently, rather than too much water by volume.

This is the method to ensure the plant has the opportunity to breathe and avoid overwatering (in the frequency sense). My caveat is I dont rely on the 1 inch deep rule, because - as noted above - plastic pots do not dry out evenly. I will pick up a pot and feel it when it’s been freshly watered. It’s heavy. 5 gallons of real wet soil should easily be 50 lbs if not more. A good way to counterbalance that is to lift up the same pot once it’s bone dry. It will feel a lot more like the 20ish pounds that the full bag of soil felt like when you first got it. I personally don’t like lifting 50lbs when I don’t have to, so I try to tip the pot over instead of lifting - if it tips, it’s ready to water. If it doesn’t, it’s still too wet.

Nitrogen toxicity is unlikely - reason being as described above. Root problems are the hardest and easiest to diagnose, because they can look like anything, including a toxicity or deficiency. Think about how irrational some people (my wife) get when they’re extremely hungry. Or about how people behave when they can’t breathe. Imagine being really hungry because you can’t catch your breath long enough to eat. That’s what’s happening to your plant when her root zone is compromised.

The good news is it’s really easy to fix. Just leave it alone until she’s good and dry.

Here’s an example of under-watered plants wilting.


I let my ladies droop like this every other day. No real reason - I’m just a bad plant parent.

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My last watering was at 6.6 so was worried that might be adding to the issue…

Appreciate the detailed reply and feedback! I’m going to see how they look when they wake up in few hours and apply this method once dried out. Would drilling more holes in the plastic pots help?

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@Jelspad so I’m super late to the party and you’ve got some fantastic growmies already chiming in so let me just say Welcome to the best Forum ‘onTHEline’ lol!!! :wink::sunglasses::seedling:

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Yes. More holes = more better. If you can drill some into the sides from the bottom up about an inch, or even 2, and more in the bottom itself to ensure better drainage, they’ll dry more evenly and thank you for it in the long run.

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Don’t loose it Growmie with the wealth of knowledgeable cultivators tagged here and pointers from @dbrn32 theyll be back on track in no time. I can’t stress how important keeping a journal with run off numbers for nutrient and water days and always to liberal run off. This will rinse away the salts from the previous feeding so they don’t build up in the root zone creating some nutrients from being absorbed. I do see some sign sign of heavy nitrogen. I would go in with PHd water at 6.8 and to liberal run off, collect a sample after a few ounces have ran out and test your PH and PPMs. Soil likes a wet to dry cycle, over watering is related to frequency versus quantity so go to liberal run off on those days.

:point_up_2: couldn’t have said it better :love_you_gesture:

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Welcome to the forum :grin: Other than the auto seeds. I have zero in common with your grow. lights and soil. You have some good help in here. I will only offer up this one point of advise from what I have learned so far.
DO NOT get hung up with all the numbers, vdp chats and every thing.
Since this is your first grow. I would recommend getting a book to keep notes in from day one to the end. It will really come in handy the more grows you do. I literally did a million things wrong my semi first grow. All males too. I switched to autos as well.
I was lucky and had a few in here help me on my next grow. I have notes for every grow. And I can look back and see the crazy humidity I ran. They loved it in flower. But for what ever reason. I got lucky and had enough air flow to not get bud rot. Over time. You will learn what and what you can’t get away with for your grows. My advise. make a lot of mistake, but just enjoy your grow. You will remember the things that didn’t work much better than what did.
With that. Good luck with your grow here. I will try and tag along.

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Thanks everyone for the giving a newb quick replies and guidance! Really appreciate it being so new here! When they woke up I drilled about 10 holes 1”-2” up from bottom and 6 on the bottom, all 1/4”. Got a little extra drainage from a couple of them. I did some additional lst on most before I had to work but finished up and took these.


GSC


BB


GG


WW



WLSD


Magnum

I have been keeping a journal but I def need to be more precise with ph, tds and watering metrics…

More on watering. up until day 9 I had domes on them and was just misting. Day 13 put ~20oz in each, no run off. Had some drooping but I was also dialing in light height and temp/RH. Day 18, 10oz. All the ladies looked super healthy. Did soil ph test because didn’t get runoff (thought it was bc of 5gal pots and didn’t want to overwater), all btwn 5.9-6.6 (lower end was the HF soil, not OF). Day 21 I used a moisture meter that appeared accurate and they were dry so gave them 15oz. Took lights to 24” @60% (now at 30”, 65%) Day 25-33 same thing which I realize was my mistake thinking bc they were dry few inches down they needed more water. On Day 31 (36 today, incorrect earlier) I added the little bit of nutes and the two girls that were the tallest have the issues which is why I thought it might be nitrogen toxicity or light stress…

Either way I’m going to follow all of your watering instructions when they wake up tomorrow. Appreciate y’all and hope you won’t mind following along and dropping some more knowledge on me🙏🏼

Oh couple close ups of some leaf damage for diagnosis.



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This is funny @Newt !!

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They look badly under watered if i was you i would water until run off until u get that water out the bottom of the pot but they will come back give them some recharge

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@new2-420 its almost as funny as your avatar!! :fu:t4::fu:t4:

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@Fieldofdreams :joy: :joy: :joy: :call_me_hand: :call_me_hand:

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