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Advice needed, first time outdoor grower

jeeves07

New Member
My plants seemed to be growing slow.


I started by soaking few seeds overnight in a glass cup, and germinated them using the paper towel method. It took about 2-3 days for the seeds to germinate, I initially planted them in egg-crates and later on transplanted the seedlings into solo cups. I used regular organic garden pot mix. Outdoor grow getting summer sunlight duration 14-18 hours. Watering them with pond water.

The seedlings started to blossom in the solo cups but the plants did not increase much in height. Leaves network developed even though the plants were tiny.

Now I've transplanted them into bigger pots from solo cups. I'm worried about the size of the plants as the height is low.

Should young plants be protected from excess sun?? they are being watered regularly to keep the roots cool and the plants seemed to be green and growing. I'm just curious since its the summer and the temperature gets high during the afternoons should I keep the young plants under cover or some shade?
 

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jeeves07

New Member
Would post better pictures henceforth, bear with me for the moment.
 

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Stunger

Well-Known Member
They don't appear right to me.

A few years ago I was given a Girl Scout Cookies seed, when it sprouted it inexplicably grew only maybe 4 inches high but with 8 nodes of miniature leaves, until I pulled it. It should have had the same soil as the other plants I had that grew normally, because the other plants grew fine in the same soil it remained a mystery that I thought was perhaps due to a 'duff' seed. But from your pics it seems all of your's appear like that so I am curious if you get any suggestions as to what the issue could be, as surely it isn't the seeds. Good luck.
 

DeeCee112

Plant of the Month: Mar 2020
In a pot you need to make sure they have good drainage, that soil looks thick, clumpy and over watered to me! They also look under fed, what are you feeding them with? I'd add some perlite and make sure you are allowing the cups/pots to dry out between watering.
 

jeeves07

New Member
I'm feeding organic live garden compost. the temperature during the day reaches 102-105F so the soil even though looking thick and clumpy gets dried up. I'm thinking to add perlite though the pots have good drainage. Should I just add them from over the top or do I mix it with the soil in the pot it might disturb the plants.
 

SmokingWings

Well-Known Member
@jeeves07, I am going to take a stab at this. It would help if you could tell us what date the seeds went into those clear cups in the first msg and what date the little plants were put into the green pots. That way we know how old the plants are now and how long they spent in the clear cups.

In the first msg your photos do look just like @DeeCee112 says. They look over watered and the soil in those cups looks soaked. In photos #4 and #5 I can see what looks like ponding or puddliing of water on top of the soil. I have to ask if you made any holes in the bottoms of those cups to allow the excess water to drain out.

In the second msg you have photos of the small plants in the green pots which look like hanging flower pots and most of the hanging pots I have used all had good drainage holes in the bottom. You mention that the daytime temperature gets up to 100 or more and even though the soil looks clumpy it dries out. How do you test to tell whether the soil is dry? How often are you watering? Keep in mind that at that size of a plant and in a pot that large they would take a week or more to absorb enough water to make any difference in how dry the soil is. Maybe longer.

What I see are dying plants. Plants that have not built a good root system. The plants are small, look like about 2-3 inches, and have no roots or maybe just a few small thin hair roots. The yellow green color indicates that photosynthesis is at a minimum. The spacing in between nodes of a plant that is that small is another indicator of a weak root system.

Another thing is that each set of leaves is smaller than the previous set. The plant is absorbing what it can through the sides of any portion of the stem that is below the soil surface and through whatever remains of the main tap root. By the time a young plant has as many nodes as those each set of new leaves should have grown larger than the previous set by the time a new node starts showing.

If you are thinking of adding some perlite it does have to be mixed in with the soil. It will not work to just put some on top of the soil. Carefully take the soil and plant out of one pot. Then carefully break the soil up a little bit. If the plant has been in the green pot for a week or more it should show a nice white root system that goes all the way to the edge. If it is hard to find the roots and the ones you do find are not bright white then the root system is in bad, bad shape. Mix the perlite at a ratio of 1 part to 2 parts soil. Replant the small plant and do not water until the soil is bone dry.

Can the plants be saved? Yes they can but it probably is not worth while. It will take a couple of months just to get them back to looking like they should. And even then they will not produce well at all. It is as if the damage is permanent. If you do save them the best thing to do with them is use them as mother plants for producing clones. The clones often do not have the same problem growing roots as the original plant from seed had.

Been there. Gone through it myself. Right now I am trying to save two different Gorilla Glue plants that had problems from the day the cotyledons poked through the soil. But, I want the clones if at all possible.

Good luck. Let us know what you find out and what you do.
 

jeeves07

New Member
10.04.2020-- soaked the seeds in water.
11.04.2020---Moved to Paper Towels
13.04.2020-- Egg crates
22.04.2020-- Clear cups
10.05.2020-- Green Pots

I did make holes at the bottom of the cups and also around the sides. The soil might be looking overwatered because the picture might be from just after watering.

Yes, the green pots are hanging pots and with good drainage. I have been watering them once daily. The soil in the pot crack up during the day time because of the heat. and also i do the finger test to see if the medium is having moisture.

I'll have to agree root system was not well developed which i noticed while transplanting them in the green pots.

They have been increasing in height since being the green pot, though not that well but still I'll give them another week till the next seeds do not germinate.
 
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SmokingWings

Well-Known Member
10.04.2020-- soaked the seeds in water.
11.04.2020---Moved to Paper Towels
13.04.2020-- Egg crates
22.04.2020-- Clear cups
10.05.2020-- Green Pots

I did make holes at the bottom of the cups and also around the sides. The soil might be looking overwatered because the picture might be from just after watering.

Yes, the green pots are hanging pots and with good drainage. I have been watering them once daily. The soil in the pot crack up during the day time because of the heat. and also i do the finger test to see if the medium is having moisture.

I'll have to agree root system was not well developed which i noticed while transplanting them in the green pots.

They have been increasing in height since being the green pot, though not that well but still I'll give them another week till the next seeds do not germinate.
At that size, even with all those small leaves I cannot believe that there should be a need to water the green pots every day. You have to let the soil dry out a bit more between waterings which makes the plant roots search for moisture and that means that the roots have to grow. If you keep the soil wet all the time the roots have no reason to grow. Using the finger method of checking how wet or dry the soil is just tells you how wet or dry it feels to your finger. It only tells you how wet the soil is for the first inch or so.

Also, watering them to keep the soil cool does not always work. The water in the wet soil can get just as hot as the air, 100 degrees in your case, and acts as a heat trap meaning that it stays hot and will then take a lot longer to cool off.

There is a tutorial on the best way to water a plant in a pot. It covers how to tell when the soil is getting dry. I do not agree with everything in that tutorial but the basics are so spot on. The link to the thread is below. It is a rather long thread but I suggest you start reading at the beginning and go through to the end. It starts off talking about larger pots than you have but the principles are the same. Even if, in the long run, you do not want to save these small plants, the information will help you on the next growing.

Here is the clickable link....
The Proper Way to Water a Potted Plant
 

jeeves07

New Member
At that size, even with all those small leaves I cannot believe that there should be a need to water the green pots every day. You have to let the soil dry out a bit more between waterings which makes the plant roots search for moisture and that means that the roots have to grow. If you keep the soil wet all the time the roots have no reason to grow. Using the finger method of checking how wet or dry the soil is just tells you how wet or dry it feels to your finger. It only tells you how wet the soil is for the first inch or so.

Also, watering them to keep the soil cool does not always work. The water in the wet soil can get just as hot as the air, 100 degrees in your case, and acts as a heat trap meaning that it stays hot and will then take a lot longer to cool off.

There is a tutorial on the best way to water a plant in a pot. It covers how to tell when the soil is getting dry. I do not agree with everything in that tutorial but the basics are so spot on. The link to the thread is below. It is a rather long thread but I suggest you start reading at the beginning and go through to the end. It starts off talking about larger pots than you have but the principles are the same. Even if, in the long run, you do not want to save these small plants, the information will help you on the next growing.

Here is the clickable link....
The Proper Way to Water a Potted Plant
Thanks for the link the thread is really insightful.
I'm going to restrain from watering and get the plants into dry/wet soil cycle. Overwatering which lead to poor root development has limited the growth of my plants. Let's see where patience gets us.
 

Havocsm1

Well-Known Member
These guys covered it but Ill add those temps are way too hot. It's hot where I live too and I can't grow weed outside without a green house. You need small pots like solo cups and uppot. That way there's no guessing , just water to run off. Good luck dude
 

CanadianJim

Well-Known Member
You might want to consider loosely wrapping some light tan or white fabric around those pots to help keep them from heating up too much in the sun. Some people from places like southeastern California, or Nevada sometimes use shadecloth to help keep temps down. There are pics somewhere but I can't remember where.
 

Grandma Weedstein

Well-Known Member
10.04.2020-- soaked the seeds in water.
11.04.2020---Moved to Paper Towels
13.04.2020-- Egg crates
22.04.2020-- Clear cups
10.05.2020-- Green Pots

I did make holes at the bottom of the cups and also around the sides. The soil might be looking overwatered because the picture might be from just after watering.

Yes, the green pots are hanging pots and with good drainage. I have been watering them once daily. The soil in the pot crack up during the day time because of the heat. and also i do the finger test to see if the medium is having moisture.

I'll have to agree root system was not well developed which i noticed while transplanting them in the green pots.

They have been increasing in height since being the green pot, though not that well but still I'll give them another week till the next seeds do not germinate.
Would it be possible to grow the plants indoors until they get bigger? Over 100 degrees F seems really hot for such young plants. They might be able to handle it once they’re established, but trying to start them in those conditions might be more than they can handle.
 

jeeves07

New Member
I have wondered what was happening to the little plants.

Sad to say that the original poster has not been around since the 21st of May.

I'll add more soon. and the plant in red pot is older and from the rest.
 

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jeeves07

New Member
The plants have been drinking the entire water fed to them in the green pots within 24hrs, looking at the condition and the size of the plants would it be advisable to re-pot them in a bigger pot. I was planning to move them to the red pots (picture of which I have uploaded). Are the red pots big enough to be there final pots?? Any other suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks
 

SmokingWings

Well-Known Member
Looking good, a lot better than they were in the earlier photos.

In theory, yes, the red pot would be big enough to be their final pot, but remember that the larger the pot the larger the plant. There are many threads on the message board from growers who have their plants outside and they seem to do great with 3 to 5 gallon pots.

Do you know the size of the red pot?
 

jeeves07

New Member
It would be a 3 gallon pot., I have some 5 gallon too.
Im more confused with is it the right time to move them to newer bigger house or should I wait few days. Is it that a bigger pot promotes rapid growth, because since I posted them pictures plants havent grown as such they were few days earlier and been apprehensive that maybe the pot is limiting them.

I know I'm far from it but around when could I expect the pre-flowering stage wherein I could establish the females from the males. They sprouted around Mid-April though did have a rough start with my watering so I was just curious about when.

And also any suggestions for LST or pruning??
 
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FelipeBlu

Well-Known Member
I would go with at least 5 gallons outdoors.

If you sprouted in mid-April, you should be able to find preflowers at the nodes. Look carefully.

I top right below the 5th node, and then start bending the lateral stems over. You can see LST on my current plants, starting at post #148 (page 8).
 
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