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Noob's First Grow: Indoor, Coco, 4 Plants

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Looking good in the garden bard. That auto longhorn girl looks good just got to watch with timing up front to quad. I personally don't quad my autos. Just top and keep pulling her apart to keep good airflow and light thru it. If a branch takes off I'll super crop her to keep things even but that's only early on.
Keep up the great work as you will be rewarded soon.
Sounds like a good approach for next time... will try it.
 

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Question for anyone...can you share a good source for Fruity Pebbles seed? Feminized preferred. @Pennywise IIRC I think you were doing a grow with this cultivar? I couldn't find the reference though. Any source suggestions would be great! Thanks in advance.
 

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Good afternoon, everyone, and Happy Hump Day! I hope that everyone is having a good week.

Been almost a week since I did an update, but some exciting news to share today. First, here is where my four are situated....

My three photo-period gals are all doing well. Today is DAY 68 of veg. I am about to flip the lights to 12/12, but more on that in a minute. I haven't done much to them at all over the past week, just letting them veg away, after a pretty big defol last Thursday. They bounced right back, and hard to tell they got a major haircut.

Here they are: Green Crack, Trainwreck, and GSC (still showing remnants of the nute burn from several weeks ago):

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I am really happy with the Trainwreck and Green Crack - leaves look really good to me, nice flat canopy, and good horizontal spread.

My solo auto-flower, a Purple Kush, aka my "Long Horn" is also doing well - filling in nicely, and has some sparkle to her! It is DAY 30 of flower...

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And, finally, here are the four plants in their tent with my shiny new lights! I'm really happy with these lights - I spent a lot of time looking and different options. I'll post some more details about them later tonight, or in the next day or two.

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My plan had been to flip to 12/12 on Monday, but given the light-arrival was imminent, and I've just put them under them, I am now thinking that I will let them keep going on 18/6 for another couple of days before flipping. Maybe on Saturday.

Any comments or reactions appreciated!

Have a good afternoon everyone.
 
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Pennywise

Member of the Year: 2017 - Member of the Month: Mar & Oct 2017, Aug 2018, May 2019 - Plant of the Month: Aug 2017

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Looking good in the garden bard. You sure you're a nooby? Nice job.
Thanks Derby! I've grown a lot of different plants, mainly orchids, but this is definitely my first grow with cannabis. Made lots of mistakes along the way, as you know. Thank goodness I had lots of good advisors here to help when things started to go a bit off course! Now I am excited to flip to 12/12 to see what these gals will do.
 

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Yeah that auto didn't quite have the time to do what you wanted but you'll still end up with good meds that you know what's in them.
Yes! I have some DDA seeds coming from @Gary from The Vault. I would like to try a run of all autos at some point in the future. Hopefully I can move a bit quicker and get the training in better shape before they decide that it is flower-time.

Also, still on a hunt for Fruity Pebbles (fem, not auto). I know that they can be hard to find. Already have some other "fruity" cultivar seeds in storage. Seed collecting is kind of addictive. :)
 

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Good afternoon, everyone!

I have been meaning to get an update posted on my new lights. It took a few days, but here we go...

While my original inexpensive purple LEDs have been working just fine, my longer-term plan is to end up with a veg tent and a separate flower tent. Maybe in the fall I’ll get the second tent, and then I’ll use the purple ones in veg, but wanted a white-light, more intense light for blooming.

I did a fair amount of searching, through Google as well as here on 420, in particular on the Lighting forum. I was a bit constrained both by budget, and also by options available in Canada (otherwise paying a lot for shipping and duties/tariffs, etc.). I really wanted to try to support any one of the sponsors here on 420, but I wasn’t able to find something within my budget, or timeframe, or both. I am not particularly handy, and so I didn’t want to go the DIY route, at least for this first time.

I kept hunting, and as luck would have it, I came across a guy who is located less than an hour away from me, who offered what I thought were pretty good lights, for a price within my budget. No shipping, as I just drove out to pick up, which was a big win for saving money, and time. It was a bit of a gamble going with a lesser known option, but I think that it has worked out well!

I ended up getting two similar units from him.

The first unit is quoted as "238W," coming from three strips of 144 Samsung diodes each, for a total of 432 diodes. The LED strips are mounted to a pretty thick/rigid plate of aluminum, which acts as a heat sink. It has a Meanwell driver - HLG-185H-24A, which I requested on a long enough cord that I can keep it outside the tent to further reduce heat. The colour temperature on this one is 3000K, which I picked specifically for flowering stage. It has an efficiency rating of 2.3 umol/j, and 181 lumens/watt. I do not have an exact PPFD metric, unfortunately, but some rough comparisons suggest that it will be in the 600 range, at 18”. I believe that the vendor is working on a PPFD map for the future.

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The second unit is very much alike, but with a couple of key differences. The base colour of the three strips is 4000K, so skewed with a little more blue in the spectrum. The cool feature on this unit is that it has a “deep red booster sidecar,” which runs on a separate power supply. My understanding is that this additional red part of the spectrum is good for flowering. Therefore, I can run it the base unit at 4000K during veg, and then add in the red addition to the spectrum during bloom – the red LEDs don’t add a ton of additional lumens, but shift the colour slightly. Plus, it is just a cool toy.

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Right now, I have both units squeezed into my 2x4 tent, and it is bright! Each aluminum plate is 9x23”, so they just barely fit. The footprints of light of course overlap, so I think I will be pushing over 1000 PPFD, at least for most of the canopy, and I get good light right in the corners as well. Each Meanwell driver has a built-in dimmer screws, one that controls voltage and the other controls current. I played around with the adjustments, as well as with my new “kill-a-watt” meter. I can dial in the wattage on each, any where from about 50W all the way up to 270W (vendor recommended not going past 240W). Right now, I have each one set for 180W, about 18” above the plants. With a total of 360W, divided by 8 square feet, gives me 45W/ft. Might be a bit too much, but it has been three days, and girls look good so far.

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Someday, probably not until this fall or winter, these new lights will be moved to a new 4x4 flowering tent, and I’ll bring my original purple LEDs back to use in my current 2x4 tent for veg. At that time, I might get a third one of these new units. That would give me up to 3x240W divided by 16 sqft = up to 45w/ft. Would be happy to turn down the intensity, if required, but nice to have enough power if needed.

Finally, I wanted to say thanks to @Old Salt - he was really helpful and patient as I was considering different light options.

I love this white light!

So now I am off to do a big defol this afternoon, as I will (finally!) be flipping to 12/12 and let these babies start their flowering gig.
 

Derbybud

Photo of the Month - Mar 2018
Your going to love those lights. QBs ran at 70-80% run cool and super efficient and set at the right height will be more than your plants will need unless you input some co2. Nice find close to home like that as you can bounce ideals off the guy who is making them. Garden is looking real good now get them to the finish line.
 

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Your going to love those lights. QBs ran at 70-80% run cool and super efficient and set at the right height will be more than your plants will need unless you input some co2. Nice find close to home like that as you can bounce ideals off the guy who is making them. Garden is looking real good now get them to the finish line.
Yes! These new lights are running even cooler that the purple ones did. Of course, there are no fans generating heat, and the driver is outside the tent. The passive heat sink of the aluminum plate gets slightly warm, but hardly noticeable. So all good there.

Alas, no CO2 pump on the horizon for me. At least, not for a long long time!
 

The Bard

Well-Known Member
Good afternoon!

Hope that the weekend is treating everyone well. Gorgeous day here in Ontario - instant summer.

The humidity has been creeping up in the tent, as a result of a whole bunch of factors: the furnace is not running much these days (which dries out the whole house); there is a lot more vegetation in the tent now as the plants have grown; the old LEDs generated more heat (which lowered RH). I do have a small dehumidifier in the tent, but I am learning it is pretty useless - I haven't found a better one that will fit in the limited space that I have. So just running the inline exhaust fan constantly to bring in fresh air. And the oscillating clip-fans keep things moving as well. Pretty dramatic change from just a month ago, when the humidifier was cranking to keep things in the range.

After getting my new lights installed a few days ago, yesterday was spent getting the plants ready for flipping to 12/12. All three of the photo-gals got a good defoliation. The approach I used was not to go too crazy. I took off a lot of leaves that were shaded underneath the canopy, to allow airflow down below. Also took off some that were blocking bud sites, or overlapping, just to avoid any mildew problems. But I didn't go as far as I have seen in some places, where the branches are almost stripped bare. My logic is that the plant still needs to photosynthesize to generate energy for the upcoming stretch, as well as bud formation. As long as the bud sites are getting a good dose of light, and there is good air circulation, I think that is enough. We shall see if that was a good strategy. FYI, it is DAY 72 of veg. I will keep counting veg days until I see pistils, which will mark the first day of flower.

Here are the three of them, post-trim (in order - Green Crack, Trainwreck, and GSC):

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I reset the light timer today to 12/12. Just the way timing worked out they will actually be in total darkness for about 18 hours before the lights come back on to start 12/12.

I also just mixed up the new batch of nute solution that I will be using. They had been at an NPK ratio of 3:2:3 for the past several weeks (at various EC levels, based on the plant's tolerance). They will now move on to a 1:1:1 ratio. Not a big change, but a little more P. The EC levels will still be customized based on what I have seen each plant tolerate (or not tolerate, in the case of my poor GSC, which is extremely sensitive - she is getting about half-strength). Cal/mag continues to be a major component of their meals.

From here forward, the three photos will be left pretty much alone, apart from a leaf-tuck here and there. Around 3-weeks from now, they'll get another defoliation. Let the stretch begin!!

Finally, my one auto, Purple Kush, is marching right along. Here are some pics of her (DAY 34 of flower). She is quite sticky and stinky!!

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Have a great afternoon!
 

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The Bard

Well-Known Member
Happy Friday, everyone!

Just a quick update...

1) My three photo-gals are all doing great!! It has only been about a week under the new lights, and a few days since flipping to 12/12, but the stretch is definitely on. Even my GSC (the burn victim from a nute error on my part) is looking happy. I will take some photos this weekend an post a better update.

2) I got a new toy - an inexpensive USB microscope. The pictures are not of the greatest quality, but with my shaky old hands and poor eyesight, I find it WAY easier to take a look at trich colours than using a loop. My here are a few images of my auto-girl, Purple Kush. In order, the images are of 1) sugar leaf; 2) bud site; 3) pistil. Vast majority are clear, a few milky, and just a touch of amber on the sugar leaf (which ripens earlier). Microscope was not expensive at all, but it is very fussy to use and try to get focus to stay in place. PS: cool to see the purple pigment in some of the trichs.

Give I am hoping for a good balance of THC:CBD, I going to let her keep going for a bit - it is only DAY 39 of flower. She is still putting out new hairs on the bud sites. Probably at least two weeks to go.

Sugar Leaf:

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Bud:
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Bud:
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Pistil:
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Have a great weekend!
 
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