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Greetings all from newly legal Massachusetts!  Many have said before me what a great spot this is, so I will just offer thanks to the whole DGC for quality info and support.  I just received my first Recharge Kool-aid kit and I’ve pulled down a full DGC subscription.  I’m still catching up on old podcasts but I knock down 2-3 a day so I’ll be current in another week or so.  125% playback speed is about all I can handle before Scotty starts to sound like a speed fiend.

I’m 24 days into my first grow (4 plants in 2×4 tent) and your expertise has carried me through over-watering (didn’t put drain holes low enough on cup), nute burn (Roots Organic basic soil (even amended) is too darn hot for seedlings), straight RO water inducing PH twisting (what do you mean my water is empty?) and lights that were too close (5W LEDs can burrrrrn).  Yep, I’m a 45 year-old newb.  The good news is the worst has past and my 4 charges are still alive and well on their way to better things after a rough start.  2 White Widow and 2 Gold Leaf plants are perky and actually starting to stink.  Shout out to ILGM’s genetics for surviving my stupidity.

On to my question.  I ran into a buzz saw of multiple issues at once.  The order below is how I sorted through my potential problems.  I thought this might help other newbs.  When you think you may have a compound issue, which ones do you fix first?

  • Lighting (too close/ too far):  I dealt with this one first (dialed down light and raised it up) because it was easy to change and not an “in the cup” issue.  Its still not clear how much of an issue this was given everything else that went sideways, but I’m pretty sure I put the seedlings in the red zone.
  • Watering (too much/too little/poor drainage): The big issue.  I was definitely over watering, but the real culprit was improper drainage.  It took me a week to figure this out.
  • Nute Burn: burnt tips on every lower leaf.  I needed to flush, but wanted to dry out first (would you have done this first?)
  • Temperature (air & roots): no big issues.  Air is now 73-79;  roots are upper 60s to low 70s
  • Humidity: Its fairly steady @ 45% (any attempt to add more humidity turns my tent into a rain forest.  The tent walls are colder thanks to my marginally heated basement hovering around 60-62 degrees)
  • Water Source: I’m using RO but started out naked (ugh).  Now adding CaMg+ to 200 PPM.
  • Transplanting (potential root bound): I finally moved them from Solo cups to 1 gallon fabric pots, but I definitely waited too long.  Even though the greens up above were stunted, the roots were cranking at full steam.  All 4 plants were moderately root bound at 3 weeks.  Response since the move has been GREAT.  My plants have all apparently found religion because they have been praying for the last 3 days!  Can I get a hallelujah?!?!?
  • PH – largely ignored.  My RO rolls around 6.1.  Other than Cal/Mag and some microbes (working through my Oregonism XL before opening the Recharge) I’m not adding anything else until the soil nutes are spent.

So I consider myself lucky.  I did a little bit of almost everything wrong, but came out the other side still whole.  I’m just curious how you grow vets would have attacked my newbish self-induced foolishness.

Peace, love and tokes,

Frost Wrangler