Water and soil PH questions - need help!


#1

I need some help figuring out what I need to do with my soil and my well water to get the PH right. I apologize, up front, for what’s sure to be a long and rambling post; but I can’t think of a concise way to post what I’m struggling with. Lol. I’m waiting on a PH and a TDS tester and I’m still waiting on native soil tests, so I can’t be real specific; but an old soil test from a place nearby was 7.8 (I’m pretty sure this place will be similar) and I know our well water is hard so its going to be PH elevated also - likely with a lot of calcium in it. So, I’m hoping we can talk theoretically here. I’m just trying to wrap my head around the theory of what I’ll need to do.

I want to experiment with both planting in super soil I mix up (i.e. FoxFarm Ocean, worm castings, etc) and planting in native soil - I don’t mind mixing in some nutritional additives to the soil. Or native soil has some clay in it and is actually pretty good soil for growing lots of crops - there’s a lot of agriculture in our area and I’ve had pretty good success using it (slightly amended) for veggies and other plants. I plan on using a drip system from my well and I just found a product called the EZ-Flo 2020HB that can inject a PH modifying solution into the water line/drip line that will (supposedly) adjust the PH to a reasonably close range, once it’s tuned properly. It’s only $85 so it’s a reasonable option. I REALLY want to use a drip system I can automate because I won’t always be able to check my garden every day and it’s so hot around here much of the year that a drip system is absolutely the best way to grow anything around here. Where I get lost is how to end up with the right PH so that my girls can uptake what they need. For example, if my water is alkaline/high PH and I can’t get the system I mentioned to work, should/can I try to acidify my soil (particularly my native soil) so that the end result is around 6-6.5? Like, if the water it 7 can you mix soil at 5 so that the end result is 6? Or, is that a bad idea? Do I HAVE to amend the soil and the water to achieve a 6-6.5ph in both to get a good harvest?

I could sure use some advice here - my brain is swimming and feels like’s drowning in this subject. LOL!

@Mrcrabs @TDubWilly @PurpNGold74 @Happy_Pappy @tanlover442


#2

Lots of words. Need a few outdoor growers opinions mostly. @Covertgrower @Countryboyjvd1971 @mountainman1 ? @Happy_Pappy. A few more names. Know any outside peeps or quick tips?

Im not sure going into 7 soil with 5 is the best idea. Think ive heard someone say go slowly with the pH change so you dont overshoot it. Not sure. Could be just into soil with plants growing already. But someone will correct me if im wrong. Im not the best advise on this subject. If i find a few more outdoors people i will let you know. Ive also heard ‘clay-based’ soils arent the best to grow reefer in but again. Take with a grain of salt. Best of luck though


#3

Yeah, clay hampers drainage and I’m sure that’s one of the issues. I generally mix in some sand , mulch and compost to help with drainage and aeration. But there’s a lot of nutrients in that clay. I’ve never messed with checking PH or anything for my veggies but I’ve had some great successes with them in that soil.

I was just giving a theoretical example with the soil and water example - wondering if that’s how the theory works, in general. Does 5 soil mixed with 7 water actually provide a plant with 6ph? Or is that not at all how it works?


#4

Another scenario might be: if the soil I mix is good (PH-wise) and I top dress with something acidic and water with hard water, will the top dressing drop the PH. Is this possible and how could you calculate what you’d need to do?


#5

If your soil is anything like mine after about two inches I start hitting clay like you said good for some crops but for me they clay is not to Mich of an issue as I dug into a grassy area now they fight for the nutes as well but all the extra roots help to break up they clay just an idea


#6

Interesting. I let the clay in my yard stop me. Now i may just plant one in the ground :smiling_imp::smiling_imp: just an experiment so to say :joy::joy:


#7

Or try any kind of cover crop that does well as a companion plant like clover but careful with that as rabbits and deer like clover if they are in your area also I heard grains like barley and alfalfa work great and makes it more no till type of grow you grow it out and cut it down leave around base of plant it breaks down adding nutes to the ground while the composting part of it over time will naturally amend the soil for better soil


#8

Is this the Promix you mentioned as “the orange one?” @PurpNGold74


#9

That is the HP. Is has the myco and i think comes with perlite as well


#10

Here is the magic potion ive come to believe ill continue to use. 12 quart bag of FFOF. 0ne 8 quart bag of Black Magic perlite. Two double hand fuls of gypson. It equals exactly a five gallon container. All you have to do is water for 90 days. Love it. Start using your PH meter when it arrives. It wont hurt the plant to water some without it.


#11

I’ve never dealt with well water but im assuming that your ph can be adjusted with a ph down or ph up addded to your well water. For the soil are you going into the ground or pots or bags?


#12

Well then Krusty, you need to take a trip to Georgia, ill show you whats up. Lol


#13

Growing pot in pots.Cool beans.


#14

If growing straight in the ground , you should be good say between 6.0 -7.0


#15

I think he was asking if the ground is around 7.0 ish as is… would 5 going in be the right approach.


#16

No I wouldn’t get as high as 5ph it will kill any of the good microbes in the soil, 6.0-6.8 is ideal , if it were me and I was growing outsude in the ground that’s the way I’d go


#17

How do I quote someone’s post? I’m on a lot of forums for my various interests but I’ve never seen software like this forum and I can’t, for the life of me, figure out how to quote someone.

@Happy_Pappy Thanks for that recipe! I just found a place much closer that carries a bunch of FF products including the Ocean Farm. So, I’m going to go get some of that. @mountainman1 suggested using it on the bottom one 3/4 and topping with my a less hot Happy Frog so that the seedling can start in the milder soil and be strong enough to handle the hater Ocean Forest by the time it reaches it - such a great, simple solution!

@Mrcrabs - My issue is the fact that I want to use my automated drip system because I can’t be here to water every day. If this injection system I found (mentioned in OP) works as advertised, I can simply adjust the PH. My question really applies only if the system doesn’t work. I’m trying to see if there’s a good solution where I could use my well water as-is (with an elevated PH) by compensating in the soil I use?

Since this is my first grow in decades, I’m gong to be doing a bunch of experimenting: I’m going to plant auto-flowers in containers and in holes in the ground; and I’m going to plant a couple photos in holes (amended native soil) and a couple in bags (premium soil) to see what works best for me.

I was only posing the suggestion of an acidic (5ph) soil if I was going to water with well water that was 7. Assuming I didn’t lower the water PH. I was wondering (hypothetically) if that scenario would give me the same effect as soil at 6ph and water at 6ph?

It sounds like I don’t have any good option except to lower the PH of the water. If this injection system doesn’t work, I’m just going to have to water by hand. :frowning:


#18

Before you open a reply, highlight the phrase you want and a grey message “Quote” will appear. Click that and a reply box opens with it in it.


#19

A couple of things I would say after I call @Bogleg @FloridaSon @Big123 in.

You can adjust the soil PH with dolomite lime: follow the instructions on the box. If your soil is heavy in clay it would be wise to assure you have good drainage. Otherwise it would be best to plant in a raised bed IMO or pots. Cannabis is fairly shallow rooted but needs exceptionally fluffy soil to aid in air to the roots and good drainage. Composted organic material and perlite is always a good idea. You could introduce coco or Promix too instead but they are nutrient free and would need amending as well.

You have a lot of challenges before you even stick a seed in the ground. If this is your first time doing this you might use a good commercial soil like FF and work on the other parameters one at a time. Just a thought.


#20

Nicely said @Myfriendis410, I grow a little different than most, I use biochar to use as a buffering agent, but I also charger my biochar in my compost pile and have begun charging my biochar in black soilder fly bins, so far my super soil has been staying in check I haven’t seen any deficiencies yet and yes before I started using biochar I used lime in my soil to buffer ph. They’re lots of organic recipes out there, but sometimes it easier to just purchase commercial soil , good luck im excited for you my friend,and we will start figuring stuff out once you get your meters. Also jiffy natural and organic seed starter is a good one for seed germination