New growth very spindly and sick looking! Help!

Discussion in 'Plant Problems' started by lampost, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. lampost

    lampost Registered+

    So, on a few of my plants I've got some new growth that is really, really spindly. I've posted some pics. Also, the it looks like the outer leaflets of the 5 leaflets that make up a leaf are curled downward! Something is wrong and I'm pretty sure it has to do with my watering...

    These are clones that I transplanted 9-10 days ago into 7-8" pots. Pots are probably a little big. Soil is FFOF with a bit of perlite added, maybe 10%. There were really doing well. I'd watered with distilled water upon transfer and then tap water. My tap water seems like it might be nasty. It has a pH of about 7.8 - 8.0 based on pH strip readings. And I didn't have any pH down until now so I've been watering it with pH 7.8-8.0 water. Do you think this could be fucking it up? I'm getting a pH pen in the next couple days so I hope to have pH issues all ironed out soon...

    Attached Files:

  2. Italiano715

    Italiano715 Registered+

    How often do you water them, and how do YOU know when you think you should water them? Part of me wants to say it is your pH going by what you were saying, but the other side is telling me, that it may be possible overwatering... :wtf:
  3. lampost

    lampost Registered+

    Well, it is my first grow, so the overwatering is something that I'm concerned with.

    I determine when I need to water by lifting the containers AND using a $10 soil moisture meter. I'm only watering every 4 days or so and I live in an arid climate with 20% humidty. Often the top soil layer is TOTALLY dry for 2 days before I water. However, they are in larger pots than they require... straight from small plastic cups to 7-8" pots (not sure the volume, but probably a gal or more).

    The plant in the pictures was watered probably 20 hours before the picture and started exhibiting the symptoms today. The plant seemed like it needed water though... container was light and moisture meter was dry!
  4. lampost

    lampost Registered+


    Ok, I've filled out the troubleshooting form below. Hopefully, somebody can help me with this one because it's starting to happen to more plants. I don't think it's overwatering, if anything I'm underwatering. Here's the form:

    Soil Grows

    What is your experience level? First timer

    Your Equipment:
    .1) Type and wattage of lights. 1 x 1000W HPS
    .2) Distance from tops? 24" to 28" depending on plant
    .3) Reflector type? Air-cooled, enclosed
    .4) Is there a consistent fresh air supply? Yes, the grow room is in one sealed corner of the basement. It draws air from the rest of the basement and the basement has a fresh air intake
    .5) Do you have an exhaust fan and a circulation fan? Yes, there is an inline exhaust fan (160 cfm) cooling the lamp that also exhausts the grow room air through the hood. There's also an oscillating fan. It doesn't point directly at the plants because it's too powerful even in low, but it circulates the air in the room and keeps it cool.
    .6) What are the bulb wattages, kelvin ratings, and schedule? 1000W HPS Agrostar (w 30% extra blue). Not sure about the rest, but it's pretty standard. Emits 150,000 lumens.

    Your medium:
    .7) Specific brand and type of soil, (coco, peat based soilless...) and anything you've added to it. Fox Farm Ocean Forest with a small amount of coarse perlite added... probably only about 10% or less. I wish I would've added more, but heard bad advice that I shouldn't for organice gardening (may be true in flowering, but I don't think it is for freshly transplanted clones)
    .8) Size of container. Not sure, they are about 8" diameter at the top tapering down to 6" at the bottom, and maybe 6-8" tall. I would guess it could hold 1-2 gallons of liquid. They are definitely bigger than they should've been, but I hoped they'd grow into them. This was one of my concerns with overwatering. Water will sit in the bottom of containers because roots aren't there yet to withdraw it. So, I have been really letting the pots dry out pretty well before watering again. Top of soil is usually bone dry a day or two before I water. I'm going to try to water a little more frequently using less water. I know that's not ideal, but I think it'll help with oversized pots.
    .9) Did you use peat pucks (or similar) to root clones or germinate seedlings? No, clones were rooted in soil (or at least they were in soil when I got them).

    Your nutrients and water:
    10) Source of water? (tap, bottled or filtered) What's it's ph before adjusting? I started using distilled and then switched to tap water. Tap water sits out for 24+ hours. Chloramines in water, so I also use an aquarium chlorine/chloramine removal product to remove chloramines. Tap water is at pH 7.6-8.0. I haven't been adjusting up until now, so it's being fed this water. TDS is 150-200ppm, but appears to be closer to 150ppm.
    11) Method of checking water ph. (ph pen, test strips, aquarium test kit...) Was using 5-in-1 test strips (Nitrite, Nitrate, Chlorine, Hardness, pH) from pet store, but just picked up a $125 pH pen. My source water was verified at 7.6-7.7 tonight.
    12) Method of adjusting water ph. (phosphoric acid, white vinegar, hydrated lime, PH Up...) Just purchased pH Down, but haven't watered yet.
    13) Specific brand and N-P-K ratio for each bottle. List dosages (quantity per gallon) and current feeding schedule. Clones have only been in soil for 10-12 days, so I haven't fed anything yet since FFOF should support them for a few weeks.
    14) How often are you watering between feedings, and how much per watering? Haven't fed yet. But I'm watering every 4th day approximately. I'm watering until I start to get runoff out the bottom. But I'm wondering if I should water a little less since I have over-sized pots... then I can water a little more frequently. Right now I'm letting soil get pretty dry before watering again, but they haven't really showed obvious signs of underwatering/overwatering. No droopy leaves, there's still good turgidity.
    15) Any additives or tea's? (Superthrive, CalMag, molasses, Mother's Earth...) I did have some spider mite eggs and spider mite damage on the plants. I didn't see any adult spider mites, but I saw some young, clear mites. I sprayed with Pyrethrin spray (Fox Farm Don't Bug Me) once and then I've started a neem oil spray routine. They are getting sprayed every 3rd day for now with neem until I put my No Pest Strip in. I've been VERY careful measuring out the neem oil solution and I'm certain that the neem oil ITSELF isn't a problem. Although, I'm not sure if the neem oil affects the soil conditions like pH, TDS, etc. I did drench the plants pretty good 1-2 times to where the solution dripped on the soil considerably.
    16) Are your ph levels stable, or do they fluctuate? Not sure. I haven't been monitoring as I didn't think I'd run into problems this early. I just bought a pH pen and I'll be carefully monitoring my feed water AND my soil runoff.
    17) What is your ingoing water's ph? ...your runoff ph? I have been watering with pH 7.6 - 8.0 water. I will be pH'ing water to 6.3-6.8 in the future. Haven't been monitoring the soil runoff pH yet.
    18) Do you foliar feed? If so, with what, how often, and at what time do you spray? No, occasionally spray water and neem oil to help prevent spider mites.

    Your growroom:
    19) Indoors or outdoors? Indoors, basement
    20) What size of closet, room or hut? Room is about 4' x 5' and 6.5' in height. It is not entirely sealed. There are gaps in between walls and ceiling and some of the walls for intake
    21) What are the temps and humidity levels while lights are on? ...With lights off? Relative humidity is pretty constant at 20 - 30% varying little. Temps with lights on range from about 70-82 degrees. Temps with lights off range from about 60-70 degrees. The room is poorly insulated and temperatures do fluctuate many times throughout the day. When the furnace kicks on it heats up quickly and when it turns off it cools down quickly. I haven't sat and watched, but I'd imagine it can fluctuate the full range 70-82 degrees very quickly and a few times over a day...
    22) Have you seen signs of insects in the growroom? Yes, I had spider mites, but they seem to be pretty well under control for the time being. I'm going to add the No Pest Strip once they're healthy to make sure it remains that way.

    Your strain:
    23) What strain are you growing? (Indica dominate or Sativa dom?) I've got a few different ones going, but this seems to really be affecting my Mr Nice (G13xHash plant) which is pretty much indica, but I've been told it grows like a sativa. Looks like it's starting to happen with my Purple Kushes and LA Confidential to a lesser extent.
    24) From seeds or clones? Clones that came with spider mites.
    25) Is this an autoflower strain? Nope, none of them are autoflowers...

    Please give me any suggestions you might have. My best guess is that's a pH issue. It does have "the claw" on the tiny new growth leaves. Do you think a couple waterings with pH 7.6 - 8.0 water could throw pH out of whack to get these problems. One of the plants has some deformed leafs/leaflets that are really driving me nuts wondering what's wrong. Pics of those are here:

    I suspect it's the same problem, it's just worse in the plant with deformed leaves!
  5. lampost

    lampost Registered+

    Well I busted out the pH meter.

    I mixed up some water pH'd to 6.5 and watered a couple thirsty plants. Started to get a bit of runoff and took some readings. The runoff was pH 6.8 for all three plants I watered.
    So, I think I had a bit of a pH problem and the soil was probably at about 7 or so I'm guessing... I think FFOF is buffered with lime so I'm assuming the pH didn't go much above 7. So will soil at pH 7 start to cause any lockouts and twisted or deformed plants like this? I'm going to water with 6.3 - 6.5 from now on.

    Hopefully this will solve the issue as it doesn't seem like any of the diagnosticians are around...
  6. lampost

    lampost Registered+

    Well, it doesn't look like pH of 7 would cause many problems at all...

    Could a soil temp above 75 degrees cause this (side effect of root damage)? I read that in Cervantes book, but it seems like it'd be a very common problem for people to have soil temps over 75 degrees with HID lighting, especially with small plants.
  7. mainegrown

    mainegrown Registered+

    my soil temp is over 80F.. and i dont have the same problem on all of my plants..
    some of em have the claw look and some dont.. one has UP curled leaves :wtf: and the one with curled UP leaves has some of the best buds :wtf: :wtf:
    my observation is it is probably a nute lock up from unused nutes in the soil.. i am gonna be feeding the gurls one more time then they are going for 10 days with no nute.. so i will be able to say of it is an over abundance of the nutes or not..
    my question is : have you fed the gurls at all yet? and if so what % of the recommended dose?
    other question: do your leaves have any sign of mag deficiency?
    hope all turns out well
    ~MG a.k.a. le Maine développé
  8. lampost

    lampost Registered+

    No, I haven't fed them yet. Just water... it's only been about 12 days? I've heard FFOF can go at least 2-3 weeks. Will probably hit them with some Grow nutes at day 18-21. Plants looked slightly better 1 hour after watering last night, but it could've been in my head. No signs of Mg deficiency as far as I can tell. Bout to go check them again...

    So you're showing a similar problem?
  9. Rusty Trichome

    Rusty Trichome Registered+

    #2) If possible, since you're air-cooled...lower the hood to about 18 inches, and test for heat at the top of the canopy using the back of your hand. If your hand can can the ladies. Closest is bestest. (without burning, of course)

    #7) Organics are fine if you plan ahead. The nutrients in organics are slow to release, so usually last longer. Perlite is innert. (changes nothing except the density of the soil) Did you read the Fox Farms info about the Ocean Forest?
    FoxFarm Soil & Fertilizer Company
    Will take a bit for the organic nutes to fade, so your ladies will take a couple/few weeks to balance. (it shocks them to have access to nitrogen sources in flower)

    With the organic soil I use, (Filthy Rich by Dr. Q) I still transplant about two weeks into flower. For their first fertilizing I go light with the flower nutes, but the next week I put 'em on their permanent weekly dosage. But then again...I start 'em in 2 cup pots, then progress into slightly larger pots as needed. From the 2-cuppers, I go to 1 gallon, then 2 gallon then 5 gallon and so on. The reason is...during every transplant I'm only adding handfulls of fresh potting soils, instead of a giant pot of the fresh stuff.

    8) Never let them sit in standing water. Ever. Oversaturates your soil and causes root rot. When watering...I go with an "add a pint, wait a minute" method of determining ammount of water to use. Add a pint, wait a minute...if no runoff, add a pint, wait a minute. If no runoff...add a pint, wait a minute...till a small trickle of water runs-out of the bottom. The number of pints needed for this trickle is the maximum you should add on watering day, and likely you can go easy with the last pint. (or cup, or half gallon...depending on the size of your container)

    #10, 11 & 12) Bring your ph down to range. 6.3 to 6.8 ph maximum. In a pinch, (and only temporarily) lemon juice or white vinegar work, A 60$ ph pen is a very wise investment. (Milwaukee makes a good one)

    #18) Do not use neem daily. That stuff will clog the plants respritory pores, and suffocate the plant. Always go in later to rinse-off (spray with properly ph'd water) to remove from leaves. Never spray without raising the lights. Lower 'em again once leaves are dry.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2010
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  10. BenHerb

    BenHerb Registered

    Plant Care

    Thanks Rusty. Good info.
  11. KaptainKron

    KaptainKron Registered

    The previous waterings at pH 7-8 were significantly detrimental to the plant in my opinion. Now that you have that ironed out, you're on the right track....
  12. tevfik

    tevfik Registered+

    Is there CO2 supplementation?
    Where is your thermometer?
    What is the actual temperature on canopy under direct light?
    Can you attach some side view of your plants with pots?
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2011
  13. MadSativa

    MadSativa Registered+

    Im going with improper ph. I see some issues with how you ansewerd the Ph question in your list. PH should be at 6.0 for soil and 6.3 max usualy 6.3 for soil is oiptimal.
  14. johnnyblaze326

    johnnyblaze326 Registered+

    well im having the same problem..
    all the info is there i think ask anything else and i can tell u ! i have this info down below on word pad so i can copy and paste it with additional info as needed when i need it i can go look back .easier than typing everything over and over again

    there is 2 problems that are adressed down below

    today on 2-7 i go into the grow room to water with ph adjusted water to 6.5 as always and i noticed the claw affect on some of the younger growth ..happend in my last grow at the same time but last grow i never changed my ph cause i didnt have a ph meter now i do ..i calibrate it on a consistent basis tap well water ph reads at 5.9-6.0 everytime

    well ive got a small problem comming in to flowering on my 3rd grow! i started 12/12 on 1-22-11
    i have some curling tips pointing down and a couple curling up really pissing me off some newer growth doing some funky stuff too ...

    i need to get this problem fixed . over fert maybe under fert or something else ...Im 16 days into flowering i flushed on 1-26-11 with tap water adjusted to 7.0
    on 2-1-11 i watered plants with 1 3/4 tsp per gallon of tiger bloom ph adjusted between 6.5-6.8
    i cant wait to finish this soil grow ...last time with soil for a while i have all the equipment to run 4 4x4 flood trays and 4k lights cant wait ....
    i have also noticed slightly redish stems on a couple plants normal or def.ive read that this is normal on some strains

    How long has this problem been going on? started in flowering
    What STRAIN are you growing? NL & Ai from nirvana
    What was the establishing technique? (seed or clone?) seed
    What is the age of your plants? seeds popped out of soil on 12-14-10
    How long have they been in the soil mixture they are in now? 1 week before flowering
    Were they in the same mixture when they were seedlings/smaller plant? If not, what mixture were they in before? seeds started in FFLW untill roots took hold then taken to 1 gallon pots with FFOF . then on 1-15-11 i transplanted to 3 gallon to finish out in 1 week for stress recov before i put into flowering
    What PHASE (seedling, vegetative or flower) are the plants in? flowering 16 days in 12/12
    What Technique are you using? (SOG, SCROG etc) el naturale with a small pruning at the bottom for air circulation went up about 3 nodes up from bottom
    What size pots are you using? (Include how many subjects to pot) 1 plant per 3 gallon pot
    What substrate/medium are you using? What brand of soil mixture are you using?(percentage of perlite, vermiculite...etc?) FFOF
    What brand Nutrient's are you using? FF grow big big bloom and tiger bloom
    How much of each nutrient are you using with how much water? *Knowing the brand is very helpful* i didnt use Grow big at all during veg only used big bloom at veg time 6 TSP gallon
    How often are you feeding? water water feed
    If flowering, when did you switch over to using Bloom nutrients?ive only foliar fed once on 1-24 no ill effects didnt want to put anything into soil till i get this figured out i used 1/4 tsp to a gallon
    What is the TDS/EC/PPM of your nutrients used? sorry no meter yet on the top of my list to get next
    What is the pH of the "RUN-OFF"? when i did a flush on 1-26 run off was 6.5 ph of water fed to plant was 7.0-7.1
    How often are you testing pH/ppm/EC/TDS? i test ph every watering 6.5 everytime
    What method of pH test was administered? Using Strips? pH pen? digi pen
    How often are you watering?when pots are light
    When was your last feeding and how often are you feeding?i foliar fed with tiger bloom on 1-24
    What size bulb are you using?1000 watt digi hps aircooled hoods
    How old is your bulbs?only been run for 2 flowering cycles
    What is the distance to the canopy?18-20 inches from middle plant maybe 15 inches on edge of tray
    What is your RH Factor? (Relative Humidity)did have problem with low humidity in the grow tent at 29% but in flowering room its between 40-60%
    What is the canopy temperature?75-78f
    What is the Day/Night Temp? (Include fluctuation range)never above 80 during the day never below 73 at night have a small heater in room to turn on at 75
    What is the current Air Flow? (cfm etc.)
    Tell us about your ventilation, intake exhaust and when its running and not running ?8 in vortex vented through 1 hood i have 2 hoods but that side of flowering is a month behing the ones in the pictures
    Is the fan blowing directly at plants?nope just over the top of them it moves the leaves every pass though
    Is the grow substrate constantly wet or moist?i dont think it is i dont have a moisture meter but when lifted they are light in weight
    Is your water HARD or SOFT?not sure i think soft well water i dont havesalt build up or calcium build up . clay in the well water that is in the groud and it is visible some what if it sits in a container
    What water are you using? Reverse Osmosis (RO)? Tap? Bottled? Well water? Distilled? Mineral Water? well
    Has plant been recently pruned, cloned or pinched?cut 3 -4 nodes from bottom for aircirculation
    Have any pest chemicals been used? If so what and when?never seen a bug besides a couple black flies but never more than i can count on 1 hand
    Are plant's infected with pest's?i hope not if so im fucking blind

    i do also have a line of nutes that i havent used yet which is
    Chaching resin production probably wont use this run
    Gravity bud hardener
    Bushmaster for the ones that try to get outta control in stretch
    snow storm ultra more trichome production ganna use this along with gravity

    After doing a little research today i think that the ffof might be to rich to transplant into then flower a week later but this is my personal opinion

    Attached Files:

  15. Rusty Trichome

    Rusty Trichome Registered+

    The claw is from low ph, the burn is from overfertilizing.

    When using the Fox Farms line, keep in mind that the necessary micronutrients are in the Grow Big and the Tiger Bloom. Big Bloom is nothing more than a catalyst tea designed and formulated to compliment the other two, but is lacking in the micronutrient department.

    Check online for Fox Farms Weekly Feeding Schedule. A "water, water, feed" schedule can easily lead to "water, water, overfeed". Pick a feeding day and stick to it. Plain, properly ph'd water inbetween if necessary. Quite a few nutrient products are labeled as if it is a stand-alone nutrient, and Fox Farms is one of 'em. Always check online for the company's feeding schedules, regardless of the company or product.

    CalMag is nothing more than synthetic unsulphered molasses.
    Use care when using the other additives you mentioned. If overdone, they can kill.

    I haven't heard of the FFOF being too hot for flowering. Just keep in mind the slow release of the nutrients when you resume feeding with flowering nutes. (half doses to begin with...) Yes, you do want to restrict nitrogen in flower, but there isn't enough in the soil to worry about.
  16. johnnyblaze326

    johnnyblaze326 Registered+

    how can my ph be off i water with 6.5 everytime and i calibrate my ph pen every watering ...I had this same problem at the exact same time last grow and last grow i didnt have a ph pen at all.....grrrrr when u say stand alone nutriets does that mean nothing should be used besides fox farm products
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011
  17. Rusty Trichome

    Rusty Trichome Registered+

    Nope. In peat-based mediums you'll want to keep ingoing to between 6.3 and 6.8 ph to prevent nutrient lock-out(s). (per Fox Farms weekly feeding schedule, which are also the makers of the Fox Farms Ocean Forrest potting mix he's using)
    Lower for coco, even lower for hydro. In my garden, I shoot for an ingoing ph of 6.8ish. Mainly because the buffers will start to fade, and your soil ph will take a dive. Aiming for the low-end of the ph range is unnecessarily flirting with disaster.

    However, a lot depends on your potting mix and what ph it is buffered to.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011

    VEGASKUSH Registered

    Ok to get back to the person who started this, I do believe you are either over watering (to much nutrients) or might have takin bad clones. Have you checked the root development? You said you wait about 4-5 days to water wich is way to long. Should be watering about every other day. Check all ur nutes and make sure ur not giving to much at one time! :thumbsup:
    Let me know...

    All comments made here are for entertainment only! :jointsmile:

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