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Please diagnose leaf issues before it gets worse!

Philtronics

New Member
High everybody, this is my first post, hope I get it rite! I keep trying to do Hydro but it's not cooperating. It worked great back in the 70s, using pea gravel and EcoGrow fertilizer but this time it's driving me crazy. Using a Flo-N-Gro system (with the Ocean-Anus) controller, which might be part of the problem. Previously I got a terminal case of root rot, due to standing water in the bottom of the buckets. A fatally-flawed design, in my opinion.

Anyway, for lack of a better idea I'm trying the system again. Using Dyna Gro Foliage Pro, 400ml in 40 gallons of tap water. Label recommends 2 - 3 tspn per gallon, so it's at the minimum end of the range. Also there's about 200mL of Pro Tekt in there. PH is fairly stable, hanging around 6.2. Medium is expanded clay pebbles, slightly bigger than pea gravel but some of it still falls through the inner pots into the buckets. Also when it floods the inner pots come disconnected from the buckets and float upward, so tape is required to hold them in place. Did I mention this is a very lame system?

As usual, everything was running along fine. I took cuttings from a Super Lemon Haze mother plant (doing great in dirt) and basically stuck them straight into the hydro system, under the 400W halide (color temp 7000 degrees) and they came around after a couple weeks, and started to grow like crazy. But, to my dismay, after several more weeks the leaves started having problems.

Here are a couple of pictures - nothing on the web seems to look exactly this way, but I get the impression that it's a Ca or Mg deficiency. Or, maybe the roots are going bad again. I'm going to pull out the pots and trim off the roots that are hanging down into the stagnant bilge water, just in case.

Noting that the tap water here is very clear, showing only about 20ppm, I figured it might need some Cal-Mag. Added enough yesterday to get the ppm up by about 100. Too early to see if it does anything.

With luck, somebody will say "oh yes, I've seen this before and the problem is XXX". Thanks!
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Philtronics

New Member
OK, so how can I insert a picture? It gives you the option to insert a picture from a url, but the image is on my hard drive. Arrghhh.
 

OlderGrower

Member of the Month: Dec 2015
Try using the tab on the lower left side of the window were you post your post, marked "My Photos" or use the 3rd from the last icon on the bar above if you are looking left to right. If you look real close it is a camera. it is the one to the right of the one that is insert image
 

Philtronics

New Member
Tried that, it says "You do not have any photos uploaded to the gallery or no images match the filtering options set." I must be a moron or something. Trying it again by the url method, pls. standby..
 

OlderGrower

Member of the Month: Dec 2015
before you can post pictures on the site you have to upload them to the gallery on 420. They have a great little tutorial you can read that explains how to do it.
Go up to the top of the page and you will see gallery, place your mouse over it and a drop down tab will appear, click how to guides, or just go straight to upload photos in the same place if you are computer savvy.
Hope this helps
 

OlderGrower

Member of the Month: Dec 2015
Speaking of uploading pictures, I need to upload my pictures for my journal update for today.
Hope my last post helps you figure it out. Will check in on you when I get finished doing my update.

Good luck mate
 

KidGrow420

New Member
I am no expert with hydro that is a fact but I do believe 6.2 PH is a bit high for hydro. would be great for soil though.

Yup 6.2 is way to high. Unless your familiar with the territory and know what your doing.. Try to keep your hydro PH levels at or around 5.4 -5.7 just to be safe :Namaste::48:
 

Philtronics

New Member
Really appreciate your help! I did it the hard way. First downloaded a free FTP client, then uploaded the images to my server. Edited the url in the post, checked it, resized the pix and uploaded them twice again, and , and now we have images! Will do it your way next time, looks simpler.
 

Rifleman

Member of the Month: Mar 2016 - Plant of the Month: Nov 2015
6.2 is way high.5.8 is optimum but you like a little drift to each side. If you have roots in stagnant water you have a problem. Get an air stone into it soon. That looks like a cal mag def. Remember the damaged leaves will not go back green. Watch the new growth. Hope this helps you. :)
 

Philtronics

New Member
Consensus across the internet seems to be 5.5 - 6.5 pH for hydro. My current setting of 6.2 "should" be OK, so it's somewhat of a confusion factor. I will turn it down to 5.8, but not sure I trust my meter beyond a certain point. It has a single-point calibration which I can set with a 7.0 test solution, but at other pH values it might be off.

This lame hydro system has standing water in the bottom of the buckets. The roots come out the bottom of the meshed pots and hang down into the water. I will pull them out and slice off the roots that are escaping. The confusion factor is that other people seem to use this system without it being an issue.

Also, going with the cal-mag theory - since the leaves kind of look that way, and also the tap water here has only 20ppm of stuff in it. Confusion factor is that Home Brewer says that cal-mag shouldn't be necessary with Dyna Gro.

So there could be three different things going on, or maybe it's a combination. Nothing makes 100% sense. I can barely stand it!
 

Weaselcracker

Nug of the Year: 2016 - Member of the Month: Sept 2015, Nov 2016 - Nug of the Month: Oct 2016 - Plant of the Month: May 2016 - Photo of the Month: Nov 2020

I think it's not so much that we can keep the ph any one spot within that range and expect the plants to be completely happy. Seems to me the ideal is to have that complete range available to the plants. As you can see from the chart a bunch of elements are missed if we go high or low. It also seems to me that ph tends to creep upwards, therefore I try to water/feed at the low end and hope that the range will be covered afterwards.


It's almost always a combo of factors because due to the interconnected nature of everything it's basically impossible to have a nice simple easy deficiency problem. But the calcium deficiency shown in the pic is fairly clear.
I'd add a bit of calmag as a safeguard and lower the ph and try to not get too deep into analyzing everything because yes it will drive you insane.
 

Philtronics

New Member
The pH chart is kind of shocking - looks like one particular pH won't get all the nutrients absorbed, so it will need to range a bit. That's supposed to be a "feature" of Dyna Gro - the pH stays nice and stable!

I will do exactly as you suggest, and also will trim off the roots hanging down into the water. Will check in with some results in a couple days. Meanwhile, everybody please keep sending in those helpful suggestions! Thanks!

P.S. I can predict the future, there will be a msg. coming soon about "purple leaves in bud cycle". Fun stuff! ;)
 

Elzee

Member
If you are using a Flo n gro system. you need an air stone in every bucket no oxygen in the water will cause root rot also id recommend a liquid compost solution to combat bad bacteria and build good bacteria. If you have root rot it will cause your plants to yellow anywhere the effected roots feed the plant because that part of plant is no longer getting any nutes.
 

Philtronics

New Member
Thanks everybody, it looks like this story might have a happy ending. I added enough cal-mag to increase the total ppms by about 100, and reduced the pH to 5.8 - which was not so simple. This pH "stick" meter seems to go out of cal by about 0.2 pH points at the drop of a hat. The adjustment screw has about half a turn of hysteresis, so it's hard to get a repeatable result, much less a trustable result since has just a singe-point calibration, and there's no way to correct for both "gain" and offset errors in the electronics. But, I did my best.

Also hacked off the roots hanging down into the standing water, notwithstanding some advice to the contrary. I've done it before and the plants show absolutely no negative effects - not surprising, since the entire basket is crammed full of roots. There's definitely no shortage of roots! It's kind of a shock, compared to the roots growing in dirt.

I'm a bad scientist to change all these things at once, but the new growth seems to be just perfect. No trace of that weird yellow discoloration, and no blotchy dead speckles. It's only been a few days, but so far so good. Will advise in case things take a turn for the worse, otherwise no news is good news. :)
 
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