After a substantial break from youtube posting, From Seed to Stoned (aka Jacob) is back. If you haven’t watched his videos, you are really missing out, as he is making some of the clearest and most watchable cannabis ‘how to’ guides on the web. We were particularly stoked to see his new series, “How to Start Growing Weed at Home” kicking off with our own Peyote Wifi as the strain of the show. The first of the series discusses kit requirements and germination. Below are the key ‘take homes’.
Step 1 – Kit Recommendations
Although grow tents are not necessary, they are recommended for an easier control of your environment and a more discreet set up in your home. Here, the Gorilla Grow Tent 5×5 is used because it provides a supple amount of grow space, and also allows for a higher vertical height making the growth of the plants less restricted than with some other tents.
For lighting, Quantum Boards are being tested due to the insane amount of popularity they have gained recently. QB’s are known for having a considerably smaller footprint and weight, tend to run a lot cooler than HPS, while also providing a way cheaper option for efficient lighting compared to some of the high-end lights. Spider Farmer’s QB was chosen as they have established a solid reputation and offer competitive prices compared to a company like HLG. The particular light is a SF4000 by Spider Farmer. They say on their website it can flower a 5×5 grow space, and although that may be possible, looking at the graphs it would appear there is a solid drop off towards the edge in a 5×5. So, this SF4000 is solely for veg, and an SF2000 will be added for flowering to help ensure a solid bud structure throughout the entire 5×5 canopy.
To keep the smell out a carbon filter is being used. Having tried various brands with each performing more or less the same, for this grow a 6” Fresh Filter was chosen.
Air Circulation and Exhaust System
A 6” hurricane duct fan is being used to power the exhaust system. This model doesn’t feature a fan speed controller, so a cheap iPower controller from Amazon had to be purchased. The Hurricane can push a ton of air and at full speed introduces to much negative pressure to the tent, so it is being run at its lowest setting.
A 16” Hurricane oscillating fan is pushing the majority of air around the tent. Maintaining constant moving airflow is really important when growing. Not only does it bring fresh oxygen to your root zones, but it helps fight off pest, cools down the canopy, and strengthens your stems making for hardy plants come flower time.
The oscillating fan will be pushing air at the top of the canopy, however having airflow at the bottom is also important, so a small clip on fan is also being used to keep the air moving at soil level. This is a great way to bring oxygen to your roots, and also help fight of fungus gnats.
Humidity and Temperature Control
Maintaining proper humidity during a grow is also essential. During veg, plants like higher RH levels, and during flower, its best to keep them lower. One of the easiest way to make a plant pray up in happiness is to introduce humidity. So here, a Pure Guardian 2 Gallon humidifier has been included.
An InkBird Controller is being used to monitor the temperature and RH. Not only can this control certain equipment based on your environmental goals, but it also has a easy to read screen which is placed outside of the tent so the levels can be monitored without having to go in and constantly bother the plants.
This particular grow is in a semi sealed lung room, meaning that the air from the tent is exhausted back into the room that houses the tent. Running a system like this is ideal if you plan to introduce Co2. To help cool the lung room and grow tent, a portable AC is used. The alternative to this would be to exhaust your air out of a window, while also pulling another line of fresh air from outside. A small iPower duct fan attached to some ducting can pull in that cool air introduced by the AC unit.
That is pretty much it as far as essential equipment goes. Depending on your environment, and house, you may not need everything listed, so make sure to keep that into consideration.
Step 2 : Starting the Grow
To start the germination process the seeds were soaked in a glass of water. Its recommended to use spring water, however tap water can also be fine depending on the water quality where you live.
After the seeds are placed in the water a seedling starter mat is used to keep the water warm while the seeds soak. You can get by without this, just keep the seeds in a warm place in your house. For the next 18-24 hours the seeds were kept in a dark room.
After 18 hours, all of the seeds have started to show the tips of their taproot – a sign of successful germination. Most if not all of the seeds will have sunk to the bottom of the glass, and for the ones that haven’t, a light push gets them to the bottom. After removing some of the water, the seeds and water were poured onto a few sheets of paper towel. Once poured, the seeds were separated giving a few inches between to allow the taproots to continue growing. The seeds were placed into a plastic Ziploc to help keep the paper towel moist during the germination process, and once again placed back on the seed starter mat to keep them warm, and in complete darkness.
A day later all of the seeds have completed the germination process. Some matured at different rates as can be seen by the length of their taproots. The seeds can be planted when their tap root is ¾ to 1 inch long.
The soil was amended with a Mycorrhizal Inoculant to help grow Mycorrhizae fungi, which can help a plant in numerous ways. To start with, it increases root size drastically allowing the plant to absorb nutrients at a larger, and more efficient pace. With inoculated plants, fungi break down the unavailable phosphorus and make it available to that plant. It essentially aggregate’s the soil which results in the roots having better access to water and oxygen. This means, bigger, healthier, and better yielding plants in the long run.
DynoMyco was chosen to inoculate the soil. DynoMyco works well in both acidic, and alkaline soils, and was created specifically for cannabis. It is very heavily concentrated so a little goes a long way. Even just one bag alone can amend 150 plants.
To start with you make a tiny hole in the soil using a pen, and then sprinkle in a small amount of DynoMyco. You can amend your soil in a few ways, either spreading in the hole you plan to drop your seed in, amending the soil as a whole, or even both. For this run, sprinkling in the hole was done with the plan to re-amend the soil at the time of transplant.
After the soil is amended, the seed was placed in taproot down and lightly covered with soil. It is important to note that the soil was pre-soaked to avoid watering and disturbing the seed.
After all of the seeds were placed in their new home, they were put into another ziplock bag, and placed in the grow tent. The bag is used to drastically increase the humidity at the time of propagation. You should aim for 70% RH while in the seedling stage. You can also use plastic water bottles cut in half and place them over the soil.
Over the next few days the seeds started to sprout, after which, they opened their first set of embryonic leaves called the cotyledons. Within a few hours the first set of true leaves appeared.
First week’s growth
Day 1 from sprout, the first set of true leaves forms.
Day 3, the true leaves start to fan out even more.
Day 5, the plant begins to grow its first node site.
Day 7, the plant is full steam ahead.
At one week old
So far the bags have been keeping a nice high humidity level for the plants. They haven’t needed to be watered much as you don’t loose a ton of water in the bags. It is essentially being recycled. However, it is important to check on them from time by time opening their bags, and getting some fresh air in there. You can tell based on their praying leaves that they are extremely happy, and are loving their environment. The combination of using a good soil, amending with DynoMyco, and keeping their RH high is what is attributing to overall health.
Already, you can see some differences in phenos. 1 of the plants has shot up, and started growing much faster than the rest, which is promising. The second largest boasts the healthiest look. No weird leaf mutations, nice coloration. The other two plants are smaller but overall look to be in good health. It is good to chart these early differences, but also important to note that it is impossible to judge a pheno in under a week.
All in all, the grow is off to a solid start. The next instalment will discuss feeding as well as implementing some early training to really set these ladies off. Stay tuned…