WW auto 1st grow with a few questions

Hi all, I’ve been lurking here a bit and it’s seems like a great place to find any support needed.
This is my 1st indoor grow. I’m doing WW in ffof with hps lighting. If the pics load you’ll see my WW seedlings about 15 days from breaking soil. I feel that they’re a little behind because the 1st week I screwed up and had the timer set 12/12. No big issues yet but I’m wondering about light placement.

Right now they’re set about 30inches under a 150w Hps that’s set on 18/6. I have a new 600hps with digital ballast so I can set it 250/400/600. I havnt unboxed the new light yet.
So… should I leave the 150w for now and if so I feel like my 30” distance may be too far, your thoughts? Or, should I set up the new light and start out on the 250 setting? Thoughts about a good distance to start it from. I realize that the light placement will have to be adjusted on the fly so I’m just looking for general opinions!
Thanks a ton for any suggestions! I’m really excited to learn with this grow


You will get some plant stretch with HPS, but I think that height is good.


Do you think about having separate vegging and flowering areas? If so, you have two good lights for doing so with a little tweak to your bulb in the 150 watt fixture.

A metal hydride bulb is slightly better for vegging. I would set up veg space with that, and flower space with your new 600 watt fixture. If you use the 600 watt fixture you will want to run it on that through all of flower unless you have problems with your plants growing too tall to keep at least 20 inches away from the lights. Too close and you will have serious nutrient issues, better to turn down the lamp.


CMich, I wish I could split my space but legally I’m only allowed 5 plants. Down the line I may still do that once I learn to fill the space with 2 plants… I like your thinking tho.
You mentioned a tweak on the 150w hps, what would that be?

I’m not sure what @CMichGrower means by the tweak to be honest but @Covertgrower and him are right about it not being ideal for vegging plants.
HPS is far red and that will change the Morphology of the plants, not ideal but will still growif you want to learn how to maximize your 5 plants then look over at @Stonedrus he’s skirting rules of plant limits in an Intresting way.

If you haven’t unboxed the new light and can return it then I strongly suggest you return it and spend your money on an led fixture recommended by one of us.
Your 150 can veg your first grow while you wait on your led to to show up but for years going forward you will be thankful you went led and not HPS.

The best way to watch your plants to see if they are getting to much or two little light is the node spacing, if it’s to tight then raise lights if it’s to stretched lower lights… That being said HPS will grow short stocky plants because it’s far red lighting.so expect to have bush style plants.


Once you get it figured out you will realize that a 600 watt HPS is suitable for flowering no more then two plants in a space of about 12 square feet (think roughly 3x4 feet). I have a grow going with a 600 watt HPS light and just two plants, and even then it’s not ideal. One big plant would be better.

The minimum space per plant is 2x2 feet. I have some 3x3 tents and grow just one plant in that space.

You need to figure out a schedule that allows you to start seeds and veg in one space and flower in a second space so you can harvest one or two plants every 8-10 weeks.

As for your 150 watt fixture. HPS (high pressure sodium) bulbs and MH (metal hydride) bulbs use the same fixture. The MH bulbs are more blue making them better for vegging, the HPS are more red and better for flowering. You can use HPS for vegging but it’s not the best option available. One downside of HPS and MH bulbs is they need replacing on a regular basis because they loose their potency over time. I replace mine once a year. If you go to replace your bulb at some point you will find the MH bulbs are less money then the HPS bulbs, another reason to use one in veg. The tweak I was referring to is using a MH bulb.

You should use both you lights this first grow and try to maximize coverage for your 4 plants to get best results.

LED lights are the new thing and I’m not going to get in the debate, I’ve used MH and HPS fixtures for more then 12 years and added two grow spaces using LED lamps this spring. You can be successful either way. To get a LED light that covers the same space as a 600 watt HPS you would need to look for an LED light that uses 250-300 actual watts.

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@Nicky @CMichGrower
Thanks for your insights. I got this 600w light dirt cheap so I couldn’t pass it up. For the next few grows it will be my main flowering light. That said I’m interested in switching to led down the line a bit. The 600w light can switch between mh and hps but didn’t know if it was ok to switch to mh because the plants have been under hps since day 1. So If it’s ok to switch lights I’ll do it until flower then switch back to hps

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I would keep doing what you are doing, no need to change bulbs at this point. Keep it in mind for future grows.

Thanks CMich, I’ll leave things as are. I hear what your saying about the plants per grow space. My original intention was to end up with 2 not 4 but here I am lol… I’ll see how it goes and will probably remove at least 1 if not 2. I kinda figured with the autos that they wouldn’t get real big but I do plan on a little lst. It’s been and will continue to be a learning experience. I can’t wait for these guys to kick into overdrive. Thanks!

When I started out I tried growing as many as 8 plants under a 600 watt HPS. It was folly.

Don’t destroy any of your plants, use both lights and make a learning experience out of it. Do different things with them to see how it goes. I love experimenting.

Saying all the above I should make a confession. I am experimenting with what is called a SOG or “sea of green” grow. I was planing to grow 20 autoflowers in a 3x3 tent. I harvested an Amnesia Haze autoflower that hermied on me and was full of seeds. I started 23 seeds, discarded the 3 smallest and kept 20. 10 of them turned out to be males so I’m down to 10 in a 3x3. Day 42 since germination and they have grown far taller then I had planed, might have something to do with me cutting off all the lower branches to concentrate on just the top colas.

Lol, 10 in a 3x3 you have your hands full! I’ll keep all 4 going unless it get out of control, your right about the experiment thing. If it gets bad I can move 2 to a friends house and he can finish them.
This weekend I’ll set up the new light on the 250w setting and get the grow space cleaned up and organized. You have me thinking more about the double room thing, it’s actually quite possible to have 2 decent working spaces in there…

I’m going to run 4 in my 3x4 this grow, because I figured one wasn’t going to make it but it may be proving me wrong, Last time I did 3.

Your getting good advice all the way around, and besides the led Debate I would say go get a MH bulb but then again you don’t need to.
Your plants are still really young so you could totally take advange of a MH for another 3-4 weeks in the veg stage but you don’t have to…

Either way you’ll grow if your other parameters are good

Lol, we’ll see what happens when I revamp the room and set up the new light, it came with both mh and hps bulbs… hey Nicky thanks for the link to stonedrus, I’m about 1/3 of the way through the journal. His attitude is awesome and obviously has some mad gardening skills to boot! Great stuff.
Your garden is beautiful!


Yeah he’s growing monster photos, I grow autos because I like 9 week cycles. No idea what strain is my favorite so I just keep growing new ones haha!

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