Aurora Indica Feminized - LED - Soil - 4x4 - Grow I

First of all I just want to say "thank you" to this forum's community. Most of the information that I've learned about how to grow has come from these forums. Secondly, I am a complete rookie. I am going with an indoor setup that my goal was to keep it under $700. I tried to keep it affordable but doing it properly. I make beer and wine and I am a really good cook so I have an infatuation with making things for people to consume. I guess I enjoy the satisfaction of when someone tries a homemade product and really enjoys it. So now I am here and going to do the same! Just like with my beer making hobby, I figured if I drink beer why not make it? The same thought process goes for ganja.

I intend to keep this really organized and provide good pictures. I had to read a lot of different guides and forum threads to come up with how I was going to setup and grow mine. There is a ton of stuff out there and it's easy to get lost so I wanted my thread to show all the setup steps and my guesses at what the most correct choices are. The real answer is everyone can do it differently and still have great results, but there are some commonalities along the way. As the title states I am a complete rookie at this. I have helped friends but that was a long time ago with a totally different setup. We will see how I do! Enjoy and wish me luck :)
Re: Aurora Indica Feminized LED - Rookie Grower - Grow I

The Setup

At the End of this grow I will review all of this stuff I bought but this was my thought process on buying my current setup...

This whole this was kind of a difficult thing to decide. You really just have to evaluate the space that you have. Mine will be in a big basement. I am fairly lucky in that regard. It stays pretty cool down there and since this is started in the middle of May, it is only going to get hotter. I could see myself doing this for maybe the rest of my life so I wanted to get a good setup (nothing super fancy, but also not DIY project). I also ordered almost everything via Amazon or Ebay. I wanted to try LED lights. I mainly didn't want to have to deal with the temperature issues and LEDs put off far less heat and don't need to be hooked up to an exhaust fan 24/7. The color spectrums LEDs provide is intriguing to me so I went with it and I feel good about it.

Apollo Horticulture 48" x 48" x 80" Mylar

Tip : Measure out your space, you don't want any surprises.

Air Filter
iPower Carbon Filter attached to an Apollo Horticulture 6" Inline Fan with built in speed control

Tip : Figure out your tents square footage and get a fan that has enough ability to clear the air of the whole tent. You don't want to come up short and not be able to filter all the air out quick enough. Carbon filters help with the smell later on in the grow. Speed control on the fan was important as the fan is probably a little more power than I need.

Holmes lil blizzard 8" Oscillating Table Fan, Lasko 4000 Air Stik Ultra-Slim Oscillating Fan

I got the Holmes fan to hang in a top corner of the tent and blow down towards the plants. I go the Lasko fan to put in a corner. I have other fans I can use later on if these aren't enough.

General Hydroponics PH Kit and FloraGro/Boom/Micro

Just went with reviews on this one.

Roots Organic Formula 707

Lots of people use Fox Farms and at my local Hydro store it was 90% Fox Farms but they did have the Roots Organic that I wanted to try. I have two friends who swear by Roots. This was one of the only things I didn't get off the internet. Paying to ship dirt seems silly and there are plenty of Hydro stores.

Mars Hydro Reflector Series 96 x2

This is by far the toughest thing to decide. You can spend a ton of money here or spend relatively little but I am a believer of you get what you pay for. These are not the cheap ones but they aren't great either. They were within the budget I wanted to spend plain and simple. There are some really cool lights out there but they get expensive and for just a hobby I couldn't break the bank on it.

Tip : I'm not a huge orderer from Ebay but since this was the most expensive thing I looked on Ebay and found them to be almost $50 less than Amazon which I was greatly surprised. I didn't do this with the other stuff but really glad I did for the lights. It's the same exact product and supplier, they said it has to do with the deals they made with each website.

Apollo Horticulture Grow Light Rope Hanger 1/8" with metal gears x9
UV Glasses
BluePrint Controllers EZGrow Timer
Pro Cal Premium Nursery Pot 5 Gallon x5
Envisioned Velcro Straps Variety Pack
Tierra Garden Soft Ties for Gardening
AcuRite Indoor Temperature and Humidity Monitor X2
Gardeneer Trellis Netting
Dr.Meter Moisture Soil Water Hydrometer
Hyrdofarm 12" Green Saucers
Apollo Horticulture 2 ft 8 Layer Collapsible Mesh Drying Rack Net
Belkin Surge Protector

Re: Aurora Indica Feminized LED - Rookie Grower - Grow I


There are a lot of opinions on germination. I am going to list the common methods and the one I chose

Method 1 - Just plant it! Plant it in good wet soil and store in warm place or humidity dome. This is more of the old school style because you are letting mother nature do its thing. With indoor grows and the ability to control the environment this doesn't seem to be the popular choice

Method 2 - Let soak in water for 24-48 hours and then plant. This method usually involves soaking the seeds in warm distilled water or warm tapwater to activate the seed. Then you plant the seeds and put under humidity dome.

Method 3 - Let soak for 24 hours and paper towel. This seems to be the most popular method. You dump the glass of water onto a couple paper towels on a plater or in a dish and you will be able to see the taproot grow. Most wait until taproot is about 1/2" long and then plant. The downside to this method is the hairs on the roots can break getting stuck on the paper towel fibers when lifting it off. The upside is you get to see the whole process and know how seed is doing.

Method 4 - Plant seed into starter pellet and pour water to moisten. These starter pellets are supposed to be loaded with nutrients and easy to transplant.

I chose to go with method 2. It seemed the most logical to me. Get the seed started and plant it basically. I didn't want to risk damaging the seed or roots so i shied away from using the paper towel. Didn't feel like I needed the starter pellets and just planting the seed seems like it would just take a little longer. With method 2 I was able to see the little taproot starting to come out right as I planted. I kept the glass of water in a cupboard with a top on it so it stayed dark and no bacteria or dust could get in it. I have 5 seeds and 4 looked good. One didn't pop but I planted it anyways. I used solo cups and cut holes in the bottom corners. I filled them with soil and had pre moistened the soil with the distilled water. I then put that under the lights to warm up for a couple hours. I pulled those out and planted each seed with the taproot down about 1/4' down. Barely covered with soil and then put dome on and back under the lights. To my delight all 5 worked! Took the Dome off and now the fun begins! I am trying to keep my humidity above 50% and my temperatures between 70-85. I will be running the lights 24/7 for a good while in the beginning and possibly during most of the vegetative stage.


Day 1 - First leaves

Day 4 - First True leaves came on Day 2 but look defined Day 4
Re: Aurora Indica Feminized LED - Rookie Grower - Grow I - May 2016


Weed is legal where I live so you can buy seeds at shops. They are ridiculously expensive I feel though. I don't have much experience with seeds and I really didn't want to buy clones as they are even more expensive so I looked online. Ordered my seeds from Nirvana and I wanted to do an Indica strain so that it stayed a little shorter. I wanted High THC if possible. I really had no idea what I was looking for when I did this though and how well it was going to work if at all. After browsing for a bit I chose Aurora Indica. The yield size was a bit larger than most and it met my other qualifications. I really like Northern Lights and have had some great Afghani so I figured why not.

The one thing I learned was that it is probably best to search for seeds that are beginner seeds. These ones are usually pretty easy to grow and make a lot of mistakes with and you will at least get good product and a good yield. The more fickle and harder growing seeds are the "dank" usually though. I didn't read this tip before I got mine. AI is supposed to be kind of middle of the road in difficulty to grow. I do pretty good research and have watched tons of videos and read tons of articles so I don't feel like I'm an unknowledgeable beginner so maybe it will work out just perfect.

After germinating the seeds all exactly the same, here is my first guess on how each of the 5 will turn out. I ranked them 1-5 with 1 being the best one.

AI #1 - This had the longest and strongest looking taproot when planted. It looked just about perfect

AI #2 - This one was not too far behind #1. Just a touch shorter in length on the taproot

AI #3 - This one was noticeably behind #2. Still looked healthy and could see a root coming out

AI #4 - This one was the same as #3. It had a little curl to it towards the seed which is why it's #4

AI #5 - This one hadn't even popped yet so I had no idea what was going to happen.
Re: Aurora Indica Feminized LED - Rookie Grower - Grow I

Day 5 - Now I am current with where the plants are and my posts! My goal is to post every 3 days or when something important happens worth noting. So far I am pretty happy with my start here. All 5 of the plants are healthy looking. They all are growing relatively straight up and down. #1 and #2 look a little better than the other 3. #2 is a little shorter than #1 but about the same leaf length currently. #2 is actually my only shortish one of the 5. All the others are bout 1.5 inches tall and it is about 1 inch. The next best looking one is #5 and then #3 and then #4.

The 2nd set of leaves is starting to grow on #1 and #2. I can't fully tell if the ones coming in for #3/4/5 is another set or continuation of the 1st but I think its another set. I'm happy so far that they haven't really stretched out too much and that they are all relatively growing at the same rate. #4 looks like its about a day behind the others in looks. We will see how it does but no spots, or discoloration or twisting so far so I think my measurements are good! I also watered today with a spray bottle and watered just the soil with water PH to 6.5. I dug my finger down a little on the soil and it was pretty dry of most of them.

I also have the 8" Blizzard fan hanging from the corner of my tent but not pointed at the seedlings. It is on to move air around and give the seedlings a swaying motion, strengthening the stem. When they are stronger I will point it down at them and start my standing oscillating fan. Every morning I run my inline fan for a minute to clear out the air. It's just to not have stale air in the tent.

Here is an individual picture of #1 which is probably my best looking one.
AI #1
Look very impressive in there for a rookie! You must have been lurking a while doing your research... Glad you've come to share and learn with the rest of us newer growers. So with that said, welcome to the grow family, goodluck and...

KiG :green_heart:cheers
Snidrajsed - I basically started researching and ordering equipment on 4/20 as a present to myself for doing well financially this year so far. Also as in everything I do it will save me money in the long run so that also helps justify the spending. There is a lot of information on these forums. I have just taken what seems the most logical to me. Most successful grows have similar equipment too so I just compiled what I felt bast for my budget. I think it should work! Appreciate the compliment. Hopefully not too many rookie mistakes ;)

Wildkat - Remember I'm new to this but I feel like I've done good research! Hopefully any mistakes I make you can adjust being just behind me. I'm currently at Day 5 since sprouting above soil.
Day 6 - Good Morning! I think I have made some slight discoveries this morning by reading my AcuRite Indoor Temperature and Humidity Monitor. I still think these things aren't perfect as far as readings but they work well to give a solid picture. I pop the battery out sometimes to reset the data its collecting so I can monitor what may happen in just a night. Thats how I figured out what I did last night.

For the 2nd straight night I've reset the AcuRites (I keep one at soil level and one sitting on one of my lights), the temperature has increased at night! Mostly during the day its 76-79 F. At night it somehow has been going up to 83-86! That isn't where I want my temperatures to be at night so I had to figure out what was going on, and with a 2nd confirmation happening twice in a row I had to figure it out.

Long story short I had read a lot about even in indoor tents, temperatures going down a significant amount at night. When I first set all this up I had adjusted my house temperature to 72 at night instead of the normal 70 during the rest of the time its on. I felt like this would even out the cold at night, as mine is in my basement so I felt like it would really apply to my situation. I was very wrong. I have oil heat and one of the first ducts is right by my tent. I did that by design because the basement is colder than the upstairs where the actual thermostat is so it would help keep the temps up. The air when it comes out of the duct is almost 90. By setting the thermostat to 72 it was causing that 90 degree air to be pushed out more often and giving no time for my tent to ever really cool down much.

Now I have the temperature set to 70 in the house all around and this should even the heat out on my tent. I guess my basement doesn't get a ton colder at night than the day (excited if my basement doesn't fluctuate as much as I thought it would). It is fully underground. Glad I discovered this early. The two seedlings on the right of the tent (where the heater air hits) always seemed to be a little dryer and both plants were seemingly smaller than the other 3. I have a fan going so it should even the temperatures out but I bet those two were running hotter than the other 2 and that might be part of why they are a little smaller. Maybe I will see a bounce back today or tomorrow. I did give those 2 a little extra water this morning.

My humidity at night also was getting to right about 40% which is the lowest I had seen. I think this heater issue also plays into that factor so it should stay in the 50% range that I want at night. Contemplating buying a humidifier but I don't really want to spend that much more money so maybe next time. I think I can keep the humidity up myself with a spray bottle and I wont have to worry about the dreaded humidifier white mold.

Any comments on my theories (right or wrong) are welcome! How many people actually use the humidifier? I live in the Pacific Northwest so dryness and lack of humidity aren't really an issue as much I think. I have my lights currently at 36" and I am going to drop them to 33" today and see what happens as well since I think the seedlings are doing well and can handle it.

Now some pics!

Side by side comparison of my largest leaf length (#2) and my smallest (#4)

Side by side comparison of my tallest (#1) and my shortest (#2)

Best looking one under(#1)

Family Photo
I wanted to get an idea of what these really looked like under normal light so I took my best one (#1) out for a second to snap a quick photo. I was pretty happy to see the color on it. In the pictures under the LED the inner part of the leaves look brown so I wanted to make sure that wasn't the case under normal light. I think it looks pretty good so far!

Day 7 - Happy 1 week mark! I'm very happy with the way that my plants look. #3 and #4 which were smallish seemed to perk up today a bit more. Maybe moving the lights down to about 32" from 36" helped. Also my temperature problem is relatively fixed. Temps did not get above 81 last night and I think the low was 76. The only concern was the humidity.

It went down to 40% and I'd like it to be between 50-60% during veg stage. 40% seems to be as low as it goes for now which is great! I added a wet towel today in a plastic tub in the corner that sits under my fan. I think that will keep the humidity up more consistently. I was just spraying a bottle in there every few hours but I realized that was more spiking it than anything and I read a couple journals that used a wet towel if they needed just a bit more humidity. This will get changed and washed daily to prevent any unwanted bacteria to grow.

One side of my tent, the right hand side where my house heat vent is, seems to just dry out faster than the other soil-wise. I watered the ones on the right side a little yesterday and they were drier again today! I gave the middle one and the two on the right a tad more water again today so with shutting that vent maybe they'll all be just about even again in watering again. They all felt about the same weight now.

This might just work out for the best though as I would really like my temps to be more like 73-78 rather than 76-81. There are other vents down there so this is just closing the one thats directly on the tent. At first I thought this would help by placing the tent there to keep it warm, now I realize its just a little too hot on that one side. This might help with my overall humidity now as dry air wont be blowing at it off and on. Will be interesting to see if #4 and #5 perk up more because of this. The warm air might have been stressing them out a bit and hindering their growth!

Family Photo. (Top Left - #1, Right - #3/ Middle - #5/Bottom Left - #2, Right - #4)

#1 is still the largest but #2 is catching up soon. For now #1 wins. (Just a little spay mist water on it, Oops!)
This is what I am finishing up now; the Aurora Indica..

Nice, your grow looks solid. I am doing some research on the hydro grows as I may switch to it on my 3rd grow. Overall what's your opinion of the Aurora? I pretty much just chose one of the first strong Indica's I could find on Nirvana's site. Lol!
I'm far from an expert grower so I don't know that my results can be counted but so far I'm not impressed.

I just finished up a grow with Wonder Woman in the same setup which yielded just under 9oz, this grow is looking to be about half that..

The buds just have not swelled up the same way they did with the WW. I had a lot of stretch which led me to double SCROG the plant. I'm probably just wasting a ton of the plants resources between the first and second screen. There are a ton of bud spots and I'm trying to hold it out a couple more weeks so we'll see how it finishes.
I'm far from an expert grower so I don't know that my results can be counted but so far I'm not impressed.

I just finished up a grow with Wonder Woman in the same setup which yielded just under 9oz, this grow is looking to be about half that..

The buds just have not swelled up the same way they did with the WW. I had a lot of stretch which led me to double SCROG the plant. I'm probably just wasting a ton of the plants resources between the first and second screen. There are a ton of bud spots and I'm trying to hold it out a couple more weeks so we'll see how it finishes.

I guess we will wait and see then! The plant sure looks like it could hold some huge buds. I wanted to get something beginner friendly but when I ordered them I didn't look and some people say these are intermediate. I've done a lot of forum reading so I think I can hang! I definitely am interested in your yield though and then seeing what mine does. I'm a rookie, ya never know what is going to happen. Anything you might notice along the way feel free to chime in!

I think I am pretty happy with the lack of stretch so far (long ways to go) of my plants as that was kind of a concern from other journals. I have them on 24/0 lights for veg and that should help and so far I've got plenty of light it seems. I've also read that air flow helps them not stretch out so I started running a fan pretty early and just had it pointed straight across. It hangs from the top corner of my tent at about 5' so it was no where near the plants but did create some air flow in the tent. The seedlings shake a little which makes them "stronger" and I assume growing in width instead of height.
I can tell you have done your homework. You will do fine. Leave your ego at the door and this community will bend over backwards to get you the kind of harvest we all want. Love the set-up and your choice of strain. I almost bought the Aurora before deciding on the OG Kush and Carnival for my second grow. Can't wait to watch you do your thing. Ask questions here and other journals. Welcome Asesino.

Day 8 - I keep finding out new things. This whole thing is just one big science experiment to me. It's fun trying to tweak minor things here and there. I know rookies love to tweak with things and end up causing more harm than good but I'm not doing anything with the plants directly and just tweaking the environment to try and perfect it. Why not?

Plants all look great. All 5 of the plants had really dry soil and were very light. This is the first time I've let it run that dry. I think I read somewhere it is good to have a day or so like that. Anyways I decided it was time to water and I watered all 5 with 6.5 distilled water. The water moved through the cups pretty quick so that was good. I measured the water that came out and it said 7.0. I have a better ph monitor coming soon in the mail. Mine only says the ph in .5's. I've been misting and barely watering (when the right side of the tent was running hotter) with 6.5 so if it comes out 7.0 thats fine.

The wet towel in the tent idea has worked very well! The humidity stayed between 55-63% for the night. I checked this morning and was at 55% and obviously decreasing as the towel dried out. I let it go until I got home 8 hours later (15 hours total) and it went down to 42%. I probably need to change it every 12 hours. Very happy with my DIY humidifier! As the plants veg more the humidity will go up naturally so maybe at some point it will just stay at 50%+ without the towel. As for now, this has given me a 15-20% bump in my 4'x4'.

I fixed the fan I have in the corner. It was still oscillating but getting caught up on a zip tie and it was just annoying more than anything. The next thing I was very happy to discover was that my temp stay at 79 all night and all day. It did not change at all. After having the tent door open for a picture it dropped to 77 right away so I know it works fine. Basically my humidity stays around 60% and my temp is 79 all day. I will test this tomorrow but I'd like to keep the humidity between 55-65% all day and keep the temp around 79. By the way is 79 too hot for the tent? I for some reason keep thinking its too hot and that I want it to be a few degrees lower but it just stays at 79 without me doing anything so I keep it there. I must say I have already enjoyed trying to perfect this setup.

My best looking plant is the shortest in height (#2)

My current setup. The towel in the back is draped over a plastic container to catch any dripping water and expose the towels surface area to release proper moisture into the air
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