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Vulx Volcanic Soil Amendment: Corporate Introduction

Mr. Krip

Grow Journalist
420 Staff
I don't think you want to use Vulx in a hempy. Maybe with Coco but I can't see it holding, at all, in perlite. I suspect within a couple of waterings, all the Vulx would be in the res. Keep in mind, Vulx is essentially a rock dust product in a very fine powdered form.

It's best for soil grows, and I'm quite confident it WILL help with ProMix - just not ProMix that's already been amended with the high brix kit which (guess what? :hmmmm: ) already has rock dust in the amendments! :D
 

Vulx

420 Sponsor
Vulx does not contain any identical ingredients to the Brix Kit - and does not behave as most rock dusts do, which mainly work to remineralize the soil. Vulx also works as a crystalline carrier network for water and nutrients, holding on to them via adsorption, absorption, and chemisorption and making an "availability superhighway" for roots. The mix does contain some trace minerals, but this is not its purpose.

We have had customers that have tried Pro Mix before and noticed no significant difference between the control plant and the Vulx plant - so while it may be true that Vulx won't work with High Brix, at this stage it is hard to tell. For me it is an almost certainty that the ingredients will show an effect with the Kit all the same - but it's impossible to say for sure either way.

We are testing Pro Mix in our upcoming case study so we will be able to say with more certainty what is happening, and subsequently we will test with Pro Mix and High Brix - but we are limited in both number of plants and the fact that we would need to wait 30 days to make proper use of the Brix Kit.
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
I don't think you want to use Vulx in a hempy. Maybe with Coco but I can't see it holding, at all, in perlite. I suspect within a couple of waterings, all the Vulx would be in the res. Keep in mind, Vulx is essentially a rock dust product in a very fine powdered form.
I had given thought to the likelihood near certainty that at least the majority of it would end up in the reservoir (although I do not buy "big and chunky" perlite). Some of those thoughts:

The reservoir's only practical exit is at the top (of the reservoir). I do not water to runoff every time. Even when I do, I do not water at the same flow rate that a firehose has ;) . Assuming that the product does not float, much of it should remain in the reservoir. And the reservoir is where the nutrients are, the water is, the most active roots are...

With the suggested application rate being quite low, unless the sample size being sent comes in a thimble, there should be enough for more than one application. Although I do not believe that I would have any reason to routinely reapply the product... With several small hempy setups, I should be able to run one control plant, one single application, and one with multiple applications. Perhaps even more - again, I have not had any discussion with the company representative in regards to sample size. If it's large enough, I will use it in the aforementioned (excepting the control plant(s)) along with soil setups and possibly even in a DWC (I use a mag drive aquarium power head for the bulk of my aeration, and am not at all concerned about pump damage due to this product; the water input/output is relatively large, and the only filter is at the end of the air line which only "sees" air. I used the last one for five years and it was still working when I gave it away - and this one has never been out of the box...). The DWC would have to be in a later grow, though (finite grow space).

I occasionally do things... somewhat differently than the average person does. Much of the reason for that is being poor and needing to cut costs (and the occasional corner ;) ). But there's also the fact that, in some ways, I am like a (nearly) 50-year old child when it comes to experimentation, gadgets, and wondering, "What if..." Here's a thing: Some time ago, a really good friend decided to send me a quantity of cannabis - and she was feeling very charitable. But she decided to throw a few fossils into the box for "ballast." I do believe that I enjoyed receiving the fossils even more than I enjoyed receiving the cannabis (and I'm a "fiend"). So this ought to be fun, even if the result ends up being "Yep, you were correct - this product does not provide any noticeable benefit when used in a hempy setup and should not be marketed for that purpose." Plus... At that point in time, the people at the company will know one way or the other, instead of merely being able to make an informed guess. Experimentation does not need to produce a positive result in order to produce a beneficial result.

I do have an ulterior motive <SHH!!! (lol) >. I'm hoping that the company representative (et al) will be so intrigued by the possibility of it having at least some benefit to the hempy grower that he(?) will be feeling especially kind when he(?) packs the box for shipment, and ends up throwing in a little extra to do with what I will. Instead of a traditional in-ground food garden this year, I just grew several types of pepper and some tomato plants in rather small pots. The peppers did okay. Frankly, for the container size, I felt that they were good producers. The tomatoes... not so much (I did not place enough thought into strain selection, IMHO). I feel that they would have performed better if there had been a way to cause the plants to require less water and nutrients. It would be awesome if there was a little bit of the Vulx amendment left over next Spring to try in some container fruit plants. <SHRUGS> If not, no worries!

And that brings me to the final portion of this ramble: IF this product is able to provide any real benefit to the hempy grower, it seems like that would be wonderful. Hempies are generally perlite (only) grows, or else perlite makes up the bulk of the medium. It has ZERO buffering ability. Ergo, anything that can help provide any kind of pH buffering would be great; the hempy style of growing has been called the "lazy grower's best friend," so not having to be quite so anal about pH would be a plus. Reduce water requirements? It's a hydroponic growing method, lol - 'nuff said. Reduce nutrient requirements? Always a good thing. Increase yield? Ditto. So it is worth trying, IMHO.
 
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Vulx

420 Sponsor
So the grower is getting in more stuff every day! Still waiting on the PAR meter, CO2, Freyja's Fungal Rich soil from Aliki gardens, grow tent, coco coir, and a couple of other things. Should have that all in by Monday.

As you can see, he's still setting up the grow room. But still, progress!

He's growing Amnesia Haze from Crop King.

The setup is below - 5 of us are getting together in a co-op grow and we get to keep the spoils! You'll see that we're not testing "50% fertilizer vs. 75% fertilizer" - for a few reasons. The plant will be fed what she needs based on what she asks for. We'd rather see what happens when we change application rates. And as you can see, we threw in Promix as a "let's see" type deal since we haven't seen any good luck with it so far.

We'll put this all in the Grow Journal once we get started in earnest, too, along with all the brands of what we're using.

Freyja's MixCocoCoco/Perlite (70/30)Royal Gold TufurPromix
ControlControlControlControlControl
ControlControlControlControlVulx'd (150g)
Vulx'd (75g/5%)Vulx'd (75g)Vulx'd (75g)Vulx'd (75g)
Vulx'd (75g/5%)Vulx'd (75g)Vulx'd (75g)Vulx'd (75g)
Vulx'd (150g/10%)Vulx'd (125g)Vulx'd (125g)Vulx'd (125g)
Vulx'd (150g/10%)Vulx'd (125g)Vulx'd (125g)Vulx'd (125g)


 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
If it's from Crop King Seeds, it's an autoflowering strain as that business doesn't buy a photoperiodic version of it. Or maybe the Spanish breeder who wholesales some strains to CKS doesn't offer one, IDK.

You do have a point. Not (IMHO) so much that it's an auto strain in and of itself, but that grow experiments in which only one (or one set) of variables is meant to be changed - and in which it's that thing that is being investigated - probably shouldn't use seed-grown plants of either (photoperiodic or autoflowering); instead, cuttings of the same size should be taken from the same mother, at the same time. To do otherwise introduces a pretty big variable.

One can attempt to mitigate this by using seeds that were produced by selfing a female plant (and I suspect that's how a great many feminized commercial cannabis seeds are produced in the first place). However, even then, there's still some chance at variation between one plant and another. Rifleman selfed a Sweet Seeds Dark Devil Auto, producing over a thousand seeds (IIRC), and quite a few have been grown out by folks - and we've seen some level of variation among them, even though they came from the same generation and parent. Most turn purple, and do so relatively quickly. But some only did so late in flower, and seem to recall that some didn't at all. Another way to help when using seed-grown plants to compare different things would be to grow out a substantial number of them, lol. In other words, instead of growing one for each different thing one wishes to compare, grow a set of five, ten, twenty, et cetera. Then the experimenter can either average each set or drop the one at each end of the range of results (of each set) and then average each set.

Or use clones from a (photoperiodic, of course) mother plant.

However, with that having been "said," one cannot track a grow from seed to harvest when using clones. And with a product such as this one, people are likely to be curious about whether it tends to cause a change in seedling development, early-to-middle vegetative growth period, etc. At least I would. Early root development can mean a big difference.

So there's probably no perfect way to go about it, methinks. . . .
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018
So there's probably no perfect way to go about it, methinks. . . .
Definitely no perfect way to go about it, though I did run two identical AK-47 clones (and I do mean identical!) in a Vulx comparison grow last spring. Unfortunately, the recommended amounts of Vulx were still being worked out, not to mention I was in ProMix HP (which seems to be their least successful medium).

Still, autoflowers have a built-in variability with the ruderalis genes that I think makes them unsuitable for any type of comparison. Great if you want to grow autoflowers, but not good at all for something where the idea is to reduce variability as much as possible.

Why can't this grower at least use photoperiod seeds?
 

Vulx

420 Sponsor
I chose autoflowering with an understanding of these concerns because it has a faster life cycle and is more self-sufficient.

When growing from seed there is always going to be variables between plants, there's just no way around that. Photoperiod plants (even clones) would greatly increase the amount of time and energy required, and the level of difference between plants we are looking for is of a magnitude that even with some variations between controls it should be patently obvious.

I appreciate the input, and I did take the time to make some phone calls and messages to commercial cultivation managers to run this by them. Like the conversation here the response was mixed. What seemed to be prevalent was that every person has an opinion on clones vs seed vs seed autos.

When I framed it as "we can generate a big difference in 70 days" the conversation seemed to change to "well if you can show that then I'd really pay attention, but would want to see other strains later."

Will need to think on this some more. Thanks for bringing it up!
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
I'm happy that you're even bothering to do this kind of thing at all. There are a lot of companies out there that would simply expect its customers (and potential customers) to rely on / believe in "shiny" ad copy. And maybe show a picture or two of some quick-growing leafy houseplant :rolleyes:.

You sell a product that you believe in, and are trying to lean about its benefits (and rate of same), and seem to be willing to show us went you discover, as you discover it. Thanks for that!
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018

Vulx

420 Sponsor
Alright, so I pretty much hashed it out, and we're sticking with the autos unless I get a rock solid argument from one person on whom I am waiting for an opinion. For the following reasons:

1. Beneficial Variance

We want to demonstrate that even though there is a variance between plants in autos, the results are so substantially different in Vulx that you can rely on the fact:
  • results will be consistent
  • results can be seen across geno/phenotypes
  • feminized auto seeds are, as @TorturedSoul mentioned, probably harvested in this way, so the results are consistent across a strain that is consistent enough to be a "flawed" control - but still a good enough control.
Essentially, yes there is a difference between autos grown from seed - but the range of the difference will never be able to be explained by that fact alone.

2. Speed

Not only are these results able to be published faster, but we also prove that results are demonstrated quickly in practice. One of the MAIN questions I get is whether this is a "slow release" type "rock dust," and to be able to demonstrate a notable difference on a 70 day cycle will be quite telling.

In fact, someone that I posed this question to said the length of time was not enough to demonstrate differences, and when I said he should see his results in two weeks he kinda changed his tune.

3. Opinions

Everyone is going to have an opinion on the way that we do this. Cannabis is a very opinionated and polarized industry, and very much like me everyone is... kinda stubborn. No matter WHAT we do - it will be wrong in someone's eyes. What matters is that we stay true to ourselves and do the best we can within that framework.

I have a vision for the case study, and that will resonate with some people, and with others it won't. If I'm going to be honest with myself then that is just something I'll have to live with. On the other hand if I just... show you all what you want to see then we lose that integrity and the results are flawed from the start.

4. Cultivator Unconcerned


The person we are working with to do this study would make more money growing photos, as it takes longer. He says that for what we want to demonstrate, no matter what anyone says, he still believes autos are the best. And since I rely on his expertise, and that he is not making this decision alone, I trust him.
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018

Vulx

420 Sponsor
It's your experiment, your thread, and your product. But the variability of autoflower phenotypes is not opinion, as my pictures demonstrate. I hope all goes well!
I don't mean to say that it is an opinion - what I mean to say is that people will have opinions about our choices no matter what. Didn't mean to sound like I was singling you out or something I wouldn't do that.
 

InTheShed

Member of the Year: 2018 - Member of the Month: Jan 2018, Nov 2018 - Grow Journal of the Month: Aug 2018 - Plant of the Month: Oct 2018

Vulx

420 Sponsor
To be honest with you guys what this is really about is a chance to get growing. I 100% believe that our popularity in commercial farms will drive the retail side of it (on which to be quite frank we make much less). Most of those big guys are still in their "trial period" and don't want to commit until they harvest the bud and have it tested - which I'm totally understanding of. But the preliminary results (at least in soil and coco) have been pretty much what we have anticipated so I don't see any trouble there. Couple of farms on board already!

I just want to grow. We'll either get a discernible result or we won't - and if for whatever reason we don't get one (pests, phenotype variance - whatever) then we will get the chance to do it again!

This is fun for us, and the fun is the most important part of it for me.
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
Mmm, cow...

That's one of the four food groups. Let's see ya got yer cow, ya got yer rabbit, ya got yer squirrel, and there's one I never can remember. I think it's green?
 
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