I bought 5 Amnesia Haze and 5 Jack Herer seeds from ILGM. Of the 10 seeds I ended up with 4 plants that produced buds. I lost 2 of the A.H. seeds upon opening the package. I searched the floor for an hour and couldn’t find the missing seeds. Of the 4 remaining seeds 2 plants died because the stems where too stringy to support the plant. 1 plant I gave to a close friend who summarily killed it. One J.H. plant was so weird it did not look like a marijuana plant, after 12 weeks it was terminated.
All seeds germinated in 3 days. After 6 weeks, the plants reached from 3 to 5 inches tall and were transplanted to 5 gal.(19L) plastic kitty litter containers. I drilled holes at the bottom of the containers for drainage and covered the bottom with about 4 inches of washed marble chips. At this time my grow room was partially built, I installed a 1000w LED at 35” (89cm) above the plant tops.
At 8 weeks lots of changes. The plants recovered from shock of transplanting and started sprouting more branches. I started using a half dose of 5-1-1 fish fertilizer from home depot in every other watering (2 weeks between feedings). I lowered the LED to 24” (61cm) over the plants. Temperatures were maintained between 68 and 76F (20 to 24C). The plants started emitting a strong order.
At 10 weeks the A.H. plants reached 19.5” and JH 11”. At this point the grow room was completed, sealed from light and air and lined with mylar. I installed a 4inch duct fan and filter and opened an air intake hole fitted with a fan to force air into the room and increase circulation. The plants started to grow about an inch a day and I started pruning some of the lower leaves and branches. A few days later I gradually started to top the plants to produce more vegetative growth.
At 12 weeks I changed timer on lights to 12/12. One AH plant was 45”, the other was 37” and the JH’s were 30 and 28”. The 45 incher was tall and stringy. The others were lower and more bushy. Buds and tendrils started to appear. I pruned lower branches again, the buds were getting heavier, so I installed tomato plant trellises to help with support. While fitting the trellises, I split the main stem of one of the JH plants. I repaired it with duct tape and the plant did well after that. I started using Big Bloom fertilizer supplemented with the 5-1-1, I noticed the tips of leaves turning brown (too much light?) and some leaves turned yellowish (wrote about this in other posts). I was not aware I was severely over feeding the plants and the soil PH was out of whack, too acidic. The buds however appeared to develop nicely. The waterings were now every 4 days, and over the next few weeks went down to every 2 or 3 days.
About 4 weeks before harvest I had an emergency and had to relocate the plants temporarily. The plants were jostled quite a bit and they were exposed to 40 degree (4c) temps for about 30 hours. It couldn’t be helped. Concurrent with this emergency relocation, the soil in one of the JH was so toxic I had to do an emergency flush. I added lime pellets to help with the PH, but at this point there wasn’t much time for a good soil remedy before harvest because the tendrils were golden and the thc sacks had turned cloudy. This relocation calamity was probably more stressful on me than the plants.
At 20 weeks I harvested and hung plants upside down to dry for 3 or 4 days. In about another week or 2 all will be cured. Total yield from 4 plants, dried bud, is 70g. I was disappointed with the yield (I expected between 2 and 4 lbs.). On the plus side, the smoke is kick ass. Especially the A.H., a sativa which turned out really well. The J.H. has a darker more immobilizing high, but is potent nevertheless.
Errors I made: Soil: I used Miracle Grow organic potting soil straight out of the bag. This soil has lots of peat moss and retains moisture, so I watered about once every week. I waited (sometimes more than a week) until the soil was dry before the next watering. The soil was sucky. I ignored warnings in this forum not to use M.G. products. Next time will use Fox Farm froggy soil.
1000w LED was probably too much. The LED covered a 4 X 5’ footprint really well. An 800w would have been fine. My room is 7 feet long, so perhaps 2 600w LEDs would have worked well. To mitigate transplant shock next time I will use disposable pots that can be ripped off instead of turning the plants upside down and shaking them until they come loose. That was bad for the roots. Because the soil retained so much moisture, I probably misjudged when it was dry and could have stunted growth by not applying enough water. When I emptied the dirt from the containers I was surprised to see that the roots grew only about ½ way down the container. I will use 5 gal fabric grow bags in the future.
I started the J.H. about 4 weeks after the A.H. This made it tricky to grow all the plants in the same grow room, especially when it came time to adjust the lighting cycle.
Bad PH was undoubtedly a key factor in this grow. I wasn’t aware that my tap water was at PH 8, while my soil was PH 5.2. I messed up with water and nutrients. Next time I will monitor PH closely, use distilled water on the plants and do a proper scrog. I am planning for redundant light and duct fans and filters incase of a malfunction. I am thinking about replacing my grow room with one perhaps 1 or 2 feet bigger in all directions. In all, it is not hard to do a grow however the plants require constant attention. I’m looking forward to a bigger and better grow #2.
Thanks to all in these forums that helped with advice and direction on testing PH. Especially @dbrn32 @1BigFella @Myfriendis410 @Donaldj @Nug-bug. Others helped as well. If you have any thoughts or comments about this experience, I’d love to hear them. Thanks again.