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INeedMeds Green Crack In A Waterfarm Started Feb 2018

iNeedMeds

Active Member
Hey everyone, welcome to my first journal here on 420.

The strain I'm growing is Green Crack feminized, that I got from Crop King Seeds. I chose this strain because I have fibromyalgia, and I'm looking for good strain for dealing with chronic fatigue. Something to vape all day. It's mainly indica.

I started the seed on February 19. It split in the 14 hours of soaking in water. Once a decent tap root formed in the paper towel, I transferred the seed to a 1.5 grodan cube. 4-5 days later the cotyledons were out, collecting light. After 3 days, leaves were out and the tap root was coming out the bottom, so I transferred into my DIY waterfarm. She's been in there now for 3 days under some T8 6500K flouros.

System- DIY waterfarm made from 3.5 and 5 gal. pails. Holds 3 gal. of hydroton, with 2.5 Gallons of nutrients between lower bucket and control bucket. Self topping water system using 5 gal water jugs.
Lights- Currently using two dual 48" T8 shop lights with 6500K bulbs. Will be installing 600w HPS light with a wing reflector.
Cabinet is home built with 2X4's and panda film, measuring 3.5' X 3.5' X 7'.
# of plants- 1 Green Crack
Yield- I'm shooting for about 8 ounces. I'm sure I could get 1lbs, but I can't keep, and don't need that much.
Nutrients- FloraNova Bloom (Lucas Formula)
Current ppm(500 scale)- 490ppm or 1.0EC Half strength, but enough to pH stabilize.
ph-5.8
Cabinet temperature- 25°C
RH%-45-55 Would prefer 65%, but it's winter, and dry as a popcorn fart.

Here's some pics of my green crack seedling about 1 week old.


If you look close, the leaves have tilted themselves towards the light. She'll be much happier under 600watts.
 
hi mate.
your setup and grow method sound similar to my own.
il stick around to watch this one if you dont mind, im new to the forum and been looking to catch a waterfarm journal from the beginning. :peace:
 

iNeedMeds

Active Member
Got my 600 watt HPS yesterday, along with a 4" inline fan and carbon filter. Need to make a trip to home depot this evening for some duct work. It's not the fanciest light, but the price was real good. Got the light for $200 for the e-ballast, bulb, and reflector. The inline fan and 4" X 16" carbon filter was $165. This is Canadian dollars too, so like $281 for the lot in US dollars. The build quality is actually pretty good too. It's dimmable at 250w, 400w, 600w, and super lumens. I'll only run the 600w setting, but it's still a feature some like. Once I get it all installed, I'll take some pictures of my whole setup. I think that for people who are interested in DIY setups, will very much appreciate the setup.
 

iNeedMeds

Active Member
Not much has changed. I'm now on a 18/6 light cycle. pH is around 6.0, and the ppm is around 500. I've added some RO water to make up for whatever evaporates. I noticed a little bit of brown tips, but it's most likely do to the low humidity issues I was dealing with after installing the 600 watt HPS light. Temps are around 79-80 during the day, and 71 at night. Humidity is around 40% now. I'm still messing with the intake setup. I'll share once I get it fully sorted out. The drip rings are doing great, with no salt build up on them. I run the ring with the holes up, which gives it a sprinkler type effect. Prevents plugging. The panda film prevents splashing. Plant is very perky with a nice healthy green shade to it. The light is currently hanging about 24". I think I'll be able to reduce this more as the plant grows, and I get fresh air ducted directly to the plant.
As she gets bigger, my game plan is to top her just above the third node once she has 4-5 nodes. Will probably make a clone from this cut, and keep her bonsai style, just in case she's a keeper. I'm basically just watching my nutrient concentration, and will start upping the concentration if it starts a downward trend. Once I have two tops, I plan to train them outward like a spiral, creating a yin and yang type design to fill the canopy. I'll top or tie any branches that try to get to tall. I'll flip 12/12 when I feel the circle is nearly complete. After the first 3 weeks of stretch, I plant to strip them down to improve light penetration. It's definitely on it's way. I figure I'll have to veg for about 3-5 weeks. Should be fun. Hopefully I can update a little more in the future once I get my final intake setup squared away.
 

iNeedMeds

Active Member
It's been a week, so I thought I'd share some pics. pH seems to stay at 6, and isn't really adjustable with the FloraNova Bloom. I've adjusted it, but it just buffers back to 6.0. Growth has been very steady, and the plant is super healthy, so I'm not too concerned. I would use the Flora series micro+bloom, if I or anyone else wanted to have more precise control over the pH. A little bit of tip burn has occurred do to humidity drops when the humidifier ran out of water a couple times. Set an alarm on my phone to remind me to refill it. PPM have been lingering around 530-560. Low humidity spikes the ppms a little. My ppms are fairly low compared to what the Lucas formula suggests, but my humidity is usually in the 40's making the plants transpire a little extra than needed. I figure I'll have to up the concentration to about 700-800 for flower.

Here's some pics before I defoliated the plant to expose lower shoots to light.
Here's a pick of after I pinched off the fan leaves. Plants tend to devote energy to the parts that are exposed to light. Now that the shoots are exposed to light, the plant will put more energy into developing those branches. In the next couple days, I'll purposely start stunting the top shoots by topping them, so that the plant increases shoot growth as lower branches compete to become the new top shoots. I also raised my lights up 6-8", hoping she'll start stretching a bit. I went with the HPS over MH bulb because I figured the HPS would encourage a more stretched out easily trained plant. Nodes are less than 1/2" spacing, so I can't even imagine if I had gone with the MH bulb. Should be interesting trying to train her into a respectable yielding plant.
 

iNeedMeds

Active Member
Here's some info on my waterfarm.

So basically, the waterfarm is constructed with two pails. One 3.5 gal. and one 5 gal. I'm using a waterfarm farmkit, because I wanted to see how the GH lift pump and drip ring performed. I test ran it a few days, and didn't really like it. I found it very hard to get a consistently even flow from the various drip ring holes. It seemed destined to plug, and cause me issues.

Here's my solution:
So what I did is dismantled the drip ring and ran it under hot tap water to soften the plastic. Once it was pliable, I reassembled the drip ring with the holes facing up and out. Once positioned, I cooled it under cold tap water to set the shape. I tried straight up first, but the water fountain effect wasn't desirable. Now the nutrients shoot out of the drip ring in pulses. The nutrients splash towards the edge of the medium so the roots work outward, and prevents over-watering when the plant is young. I always cover my hydroton with poly to prevent algae, which doubles as a splash guard so the nutrients stay in the bucket. The real benefit is that it doesn't plug. If you look in the picture, the salts are building up on the ring, but 1/2" from the holes. The pressure keeps the holes clear, and all the holes deliver similar amounts of nutrients per pulse. Works very well. It's been running for 2 weeks now with no plugging, or even signs of salt build-up in the holes. I also run it 24/7, because it doesn't give time for nutrients to evaporate and leave deposits. I highly suggest this mod.

Another issue I've read about is roots getting into the reservoir. I know some people just drill a bunch of holes to allow them to grow through, and then add an air stone. I didn't want my roots in the reservoir, as it's not ideal to be displacing the limited reservoir volume with root mass. The pH and EC would become very unstable, and those aren't problems I want to deal with. So instead, I lined the root chamber with landscape fabric to keep the roots out of the reservoir. I drilled a lot of holes in the bottom of the pail. Then I added a single layer of clay balls to space the fabric up, to prevent blocked drain holes. After that I put the fabric in and filled it with 3 gal. of clay balls. Hopefully this keeps the roots out of the reservoir, without any negative effects. Maybe it's just me, but what is the point of using the air lift NFT system if you're going to DWC the reservoir? Might as well just use pails with net cup lids, and just do DWC.
 

iNeedMeds

Active Member
Here's another veg update. Started training her to spread out. I also topped it since the last post. I bumped the ppm to 700, and the pH is sitting at 5.8. I'm very happy with the stability of floranova bloom. I plan to flip to flower on April 14. When I flip, I plan to drain the reservoir.

Here's some pics of the plant being trained.

March 28
March 30
April 1
 

iNeedMeds

Active Member
Hey guys. It's been a while since I've posted. I ended up having to go to flower early. Apparently the root blocker I used, won't block Cannabis roots. I also ended up with too much light issues, as my cheap reflector was creating bright spots at the edge of the Canopy. Had to make some braces and reshape the reflector, which is working fine now. Plan to get an adjust a wing for the next crop.

I figured out that the roots had hit the reservoir because up until they did, I had a solid pH of 5.8-6.0. As soon as they had significant growth in the reservoir, the pH plunged to somewhere around 5.0, and locked out sulphur, which quickly showed up as bleached out top leaves. This was tricky to diagnose because of the light damage that took place simultaneously. Part of my daily routine before the lights go off, is to take a nutrient sample and check the pH and EC readings. When I found the pH issue, I drained everything and replaced the nutes. Next day, same problem. Picked up the bucket to check out the reservoir, and sure enough, roots.

I fixed the pH issue by replacing RO water with tap water. The calcium carbonate in my tap water works as a pH buffer, but I'll require more regular nutrient switch outs to prevent Calcium precipitating the sulphur. I've used tap water to buffer the pH before growing lettuce. By mixing tap and RO water at specific rates, I can create a well buffered solution at a desired pH. I'm not too concerned with the roots, as I have a second airlift pump in my reservoir that aerates and circulates. The roots are super healthy white, which is great.

So I flipped to 12/12 on April 10. I've been upping the concentration and have settled at maintaining 780ppm, 1.6EC. I have a bottle that automatically tops the reservoir, which I mix to around 900ppm. The plant is very happy at this concentration, so I'm going to leave it there until it tells me otherwise.

Here's some shots of the first week of flower. I'm missing one day.

Day 1, April 10:
Day 2, April 11: MIA
Day 3, April 12:
Day 4, April 13:
Day 5, April 14:
Day 6, April 15:
Day 7, April 16:
Day 8, April 17:

At the end of day 14, all the fan leaves will be stripped from the plants, and I plan to make a trellis net to secure each growth shoot and even the canopy.
 
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