In general what's more likely, low PH or high PH?

  • Thread starter Capital_Florica
  • Start date
  • Tagged users None
Capital_Florica

Capital_Florica

77
33
Also, is it more likely to put in too much pelletized garden lime or not enough?

Hello friends.

Dealing with one hell of an issue. Plants are beyond crippled, new growth nothing but a shriveled, deformed mess. They're clones, maybe a month + two weeks, all started healthily. This all began around two weeks ago. They were up-potted yesterday, which I should have done a week ago. Not root bound but something in the entirety of the soil is off. Providing new soil will hopefully alleviate immediate crisis though only temporarily. I'm thinking that the PH is either rock-bottom or sky-high. New growth is so crippled I'm fascinated to see what it is. I've watched them like a hawk and will be able to spot this issue in the future from a mile away. Important to note that old-growth, aka the two sets of, 4 total, fan leaves that developed before this mess kicked off have shown little problems compared to new growth. The first symptom seen on them was petioles getting redder. Followed by fan leaf inner veins turning brownish. From there you could notice slight deformity though it wasn't something that happened on the entire leaf but in certain spots. Any new leaves looked shriveled and dehydrated per se. When this happened, I either used a drip of FF Grow Big or Big Bloom mixed in with water. Thinking it was a lack of one of the mobile nutrients. Also from the slight chlorosis. I wouldn't think it would have been enough to make an impact, it was that little. Unless I'm remembering incorrectly and it was way more than I thought. But that is unlikely. I have always been wary of any nutrients in the beginning stages of veg. For the most part, they have gotten nothing but tap water, always set aside a couple of days to lessen chlorine content before being given. Which was given to indoor and outdoor plants of different varieties all throughout the summer without issue.

I've gotten a half dozen flower garden seasons under my belt. But only a single one with cannabis. So I need some of your historical experience to advise where I fucked up. I'm using Coast of Maine (COM) Stonington Blend, perlite, and peat, nothing more. What I've thought was the problem since the beginning is the addition of peat to COM has dropped the PH. I've never added any lime and in doing so my PH after a couple of weeks is rock-bottom and never goes back up, I'm thinking. I have tried to water in lime on the top, and also drop a couple of pellets into a water bottle, let it disintegrate, and then water that in. I haven't gone crazy, making sure to do a little at a time. The petioles and browning of veins are still apparent but not spreading. And as I said, other than that, the leaves look healthy. But new growth is beyond fucked, almost couldn't be worse. Essentially no growth, but what does grow is shriveled, browned tipped little green. So likely one of the immobiles, which are affected most by low PH.

Seems very unlikely it's a nutrient deficiency due to the absence of nutrients in the soil. They're too young to have used up everything thus far. Something, I presume Calcium from what I've read, is locked out from either low PH or high PH. Which, might be due to either me putting too much lime in or not enough lime in. Given my tap water wasn't a problem the last 8 months. Given I have used little additional liquid nutrients. Given that using COM and perlite alone should never cause anything like what I'm experiencing. I've always concluded it had to do something with the peat and PH. Everything should be good to go once I get the PH under wraps. Now, maybe I have added so much peat that they have actually used all the nutrients up in the soil. I don't know. Maybe so much of the roots are sitting on inert peat that they're fucked. This is why I'd love it if someone could look over my process and point out areas of concern. Surely I could go buy a PH and soil meter to test all of this but until I figure it out, I refuse to. I want to learn what the plant is telling me without those tools initially. I have a good recollection of the symptoms that brought me here. Many will say to throw these plants out and take more clones. But again, I want to figure out what is wrong and what went wrong in an effort at learning more. I want to observe the initial signs of them getting healthier and then see what is required to nurse them back to full strength. I'm no rush. At this stage, I'm here to learn more than focus on quality, weight, or potency.

Pisses me off though because I timed the topping perfectly. They were kicking ass so I'm partially dumbfounded and questioning everything I know about gardening. Before this clusterfuck, I was planning to put them into flower around the beginning of January. These are the first six clones that I've ever taken. From my own mother plant and all. She is in the same mix pretty much, maybe a bit less peat. Has experienced some browning of petioles and brown inner veins but nothing near as severe. She's probably 5 months old at this point, been in the same pot for at least 4 months. Aside from understandable signs of being root bound and a bit of NPK deficiency, she's been doing just fine.


I'll be very relieved if the answer is that I just didn't add enough lime 🤪 Thank you all in advance for your time.
 
mysticepipedon

mysticepipedon

2,820
263
I think you are correct that the peat dropped the pH. Stonington Blend is a good, high-end soil that should be around 6.2-6.3 out of the bag.

If the plants are worth keeping to you, replant ASAP in some un-messed with COM soil. Shake off as much of the olds stuff as possible.

It takes time to change the pH of soil, especially if you're just watering in ground limestone from the top. (Don't waste your time with pellets — it would take powder.) If you do it that way, write off this grow as a learning experience with a meager yield.

BTW, consider getting a Bluelab pH pen.
 
Capital_Florica

Capital_Florica

77
33
Post some pics.. I'm sure you'll get some good responses!

They look pretty rough. There isn't much to see since I've pruned off most of the fucked up leaves. I also always get horrible photos under the HPS. I haven't found a good app or even settings I can use on Photoshop to improve the color. I'm getting a 1000W MH soon though and then I'll take some pictures and probably document a bit of their recovery and a write-up on all I learned.

I think you are correct that the peat dropped the pH. Stonington Blend is a good, high-end soil that should be around 6.2-6.3 out of the bag.

If the plants are worth keeping to you, replant ASAP in some un-messed with COM soil. Shake off as much of the olds stuff as possible.

It takes time to change the pH of soil, especially if you're just watering in ground limestone from the top. (Don't waste your time with pellets — it would take powder.) If you do it that way, write off this grow as a learning experience with a meager yield.

BTW, consider getting a Bluelab pH pen.

Greatly appreciate the input Don.

I'm going to pull them up tonight. shake off as much from the roots I can, and then repot with significantly less peat. The reason I've been adding peat is to make the COM less muddy. It's some pretty thick stuff and will hold water for far longer than I'm comfortable with. Making it super easy to overwater in the beginning when roots are just getting established. What could I substitute for the peat that would provide the same function? Coco? A lot more perlite? Maybe some oyster shells? I'll have to do some Googling. Sounds like I need to cut way back on the peat though or mix in a lot more lime upfront. Will grab some of the powder online, good idea. I'll have to experiment. I also don't like how the peat becomes hydrophobic fairly easily. So I think maybe a replacement would be the wisest choice.

Yeah, I've heard it can take some time. I figured with such small containers and a drench it would have more and faster of an effect. Apparently not though.

Will definitely pick up a Bluelab pH pen. I am curious how low it actually is. The growth is surprisingly pathetic. It makes me really curious to see the recovery because the first sign of improvement will be beyond obvious given how bad they are currently. My eager green thumb had them too close to the 400W for the first week plus a couple of days. I've got temperature under control so I didn't realize it until past when I should given they didn't curl or show usual signs. I'm just having fun brother and trying to learn as much as I can along the way. I have a 10' x 10' room to play with. Only the 400W at the moment but a 1000w coming from Santa Claus. It was a learning experience before it even started. These clones I rooted with nothing but water and COM. Took a good two weeks but they rooted, and I was fucking thrilled. Couldn't have been doing better before the PH dived.

PS: I've been curious if the drop in PH could have been hastened from adding Dynomyco. The acidity from peat is due in part to the microbial decay process. What a pain in the ass that would be that adding Dynomyco and thus increasing microbial population in turn increase rate at which peat was broken down thus increasing the rate at which PH dropped. It seems kind of absurd that this all was experienced within the first weeks of life. It's not like I did 50/50 COM to peat, though maybe close to 40/60 but probably closer to 30/70. Then again, I'm still learning the ropes and the peat undeniable has had a larger impact than I ever imagined it would. I'm probably just overthinking things at this point. 😂

Gonna go spread some of that COM mud out on a tray to let dry some before repotting this evening!
 
Neuro

Neuro

If you plant ice, you're gonna harvest wind.
189
63
Keep in mind, not all peat is created equal. Canadian sphagnum peat tends to be much more acidic and accounts for about 80% of peat sold in North America. Try not to buy Canadian in this instance.
 
Capital_Florica

Capital_Florica

77
33
Keep in mind, not all peat is created equal. Canadian sphagnum peat tends to be much more acidic and accounts for about 80% of peat sold in North America. Try not to buy Canadian in this instance.

Great point, didn't think about that or realize there were differences between types of peat. I know I have Canadian, so will make sure to avoid it in the future. Thanks!
 

Similar threads

G
Replies
16
Views
647
Edinburgh
Edinburgh
R
Replies
5
Views
119
Ronan526
R
T
Replies
1
Views
370
CannaKryptik
CannaKryptik
C
Replies
0
Views
39
CannaR05
C
P
Replies
0
Views
102
paranoidperson
P
Top Bottom