Aug 26, 2018

Top Dressings for Bloom

7 comments

Hello! I will be top dressing as I transition my plants to bloom in a couple weeks. List your favorite top dressings for bloom below! Chef B mentions how potassium and sulfate are among the most important factors for bloom.... He is correct. Sulfur and nitrates account for 50% of photosynthesis' energy use, and potassium is very important for shipping sugars in the plant and washes out of soil very easily so it must be replaced constantly.... I am aiming for lower N, and raise P, K, and S. I hope to keep the major cations Ca and Mg in balance the entire time as well, which can be difficult I have learned, particularly if adding potash which I might do. Medicine man/teacher Chef B also says that phosphorus develops big root balls which is not what you want for bloom... I have heard an extra dose of P right at or before transition time makes for faster developing and bigger flowering sights however. Please comment if you have any knowledge on the topic. To start, here is my plan for 7 gallon smart pots which has worked for many other plants besides cannabis for me before: -1/4 cup guano (0-11-0) -1/4 cup kelp (1-0-2) -Either a little bit of soluble potash (K) or soluble kelp (0-0-50 or 0-0-1 respectively) -EWC and compost on top Do y'all think I should add more kelp or guano? 1/4 cup is half of the recommended dose from the store (1/2 cup per 1 foot of soil), and I am unfamiliar with adding these amendments to a cannabis plant's regime. First time all organic grow woot woot. Any help, experience and/or ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Aug 26, 2018

Maybe some earth worm castings or seaweed extract to go with what you mentioned above and unsulfured molasses and you should be covered as for the 1/4 cup 1/2 i would go with more kelp as 1-02 is not alot you cannot overdose a plant from kelp or seaweed extract unless its high numbers, go with a 1/2 cup kelp and 1/2 of guano. hope this helps good luck man im sure you'll dial it in.

Aug 29, 2018

O yeah definitely man! I mentioned EWC and seaweed extract. So spot on lol. And interesting, sounds like the right move to go with the recommended dose. They'll be able to handle it. I've seen a tomato bush grow top growth rather than fruit from how much N is in the 1-0-2 kelp. Must have soluble N. I've also burnt fully grown sunflowers slightly with it, just from 1/4 cup. I'm not sure if the rating is accurate lol but a little N shouldn't hurt. Plus both tomatoes and sunflowers are sensitive to fertilizers. My only worry would be delaying flower possibly. But I highly doubt it would delay flower with these girls

Aug 29, 2018

One trick I'm going to use when that time comes is about a tble spoon or two of ashes from hardwood. Top dress and water in!

Aug 31, 2018

That's a good idea. Wood ash varies in its makeup, but it's always rich in potash right? Sounds solid for flower... and it boosts pH. Way to use what suits you.

Jan 19Edited: Jan 19

Just an update. I ended up using less phosphorus than recommended (1/4th cup), and it was good that I did so. Even with less than a tablespoon of guano, I burnt my plants slightly (indicated by browning of tips on lower foliage). At least in 7 gallon pots with mature plants transitioning to flower. Phosphorus is a tricky element to work with. And I had organic soil and my source of (P) had trace minerals (guano), yet still 1/3rd of the recommended amount by the store burnt my plants slightly. The main thing being, anything with a "true NPK" of 0-4.4-0 can discourage fungi, and so if you are working with fungi you have to pay attention to how the fungi reacts to your highly soluble forms of phosphorus. Some gardeners even notice damage to mycos at 0-3-0 true NPK values with some plants. I am still figuring out how to do this well, but one way is through measuring pH or literally studying the fungi under a microscope which I have not figured out how to do yet. *A true NPK has the (P) value multiplied by 0.44 and the (K) value multiplied by 0.83. So a "0-0.44-0 'true NPK'" is equal to 0-10-0 regular NPK values. A 0-3-0 true NPK would be equal to 0-6.8-0 regular NPK.

So how much bat guano would you use without burning your plant's for top dressing in a 7 gallon pot ?

 

Feb 1Edited: Feb 1

Good question. I reviewed my notes more closely from my grow. Turns out I applied differing amounts to my plants because I was low on the stuff. I applied just under 3 tablespoons (3 TBS=1/4th cup) to Purple Punch (heavy feeding indica), and just over 1 tablespoon to Wedding Cake and Pie Face OG (hybrids). For reference, the NPK of the guano was rated at 0-11-0 (0-4.8-0 true NPK). And my b for saying I used under 1 tablespoon on some plants in my last comment, I used slightly more it turns out. I would use 2 tablespoons next time, at least for heavy feeders. Even less for light feeders. All plants exhibited slight phosphorus burns. However, I got lots of big nice bud sites in the end, so perhaps a small burn is worth it. My plants never got so stressed they stopped growing. All things considered (lighting, environment, BRIX), I would use 2 tablespoons or less to top off the soil. And I would add a product with mycorrhizal fungal spores or hyphae to ensure that all the phosphorus that instantly locks up in the soil upon watering is unlocked later. I also add soluble L-amino acids to my water because it's hard-water (has lots of calcium carbonate etc.) which contributes significantly to phosphorus lock-up unless buffered. About 1 month later, I added 1/2 tablespoon to Purple Punch (heavy feeder), and 1/4 tablespoon to my other two plants, upon suspecting a minor deficiency combined w/ a slight overall NPK deficiency I think. I failed to note why I did it, it's a normal cycle for the plant. I soon after noted that their leaves on bottom exhibited epinasty (downward hooking) and browning of the edges, what were slight phosphorus burns again, the plant being least affected being Purple Punch. However, I also was experimenting w/ dried and ground powdered amendments in my teas at the time, including alfalfa and kelp meal, which contributed to these effects. I suspect my standard compost teas (1/2 cup EWC and 1/2 cup fungally dominated compost to 2.5 gallons of water) would have been enough at that point w/ some added potassium (from soluble kelp) and magnesium sulfate (epson salts) and some biostimulants like yucca etc. The excess nitrogen from the alfalfa and kelp meal ended up making my harvest smell in part like green tea, not what you want. The added guano a month later from the initial dose isn't a bad idea by itself though, just don't over do it at that point in flowering or your buds could get difficult to keep disease free as they will swell more as a result. Done right though, and you will get more nice big tasty buds than without! From this guano schedule recipe, my Purple Punch plant turned out perfect, bud size wise at least. The others didn't turn out fantastic but mostly because of a poor bonzai technique lul, among other things.

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  • Hi all. Below is a recipe for a homemade organic pro-mix taken from SF Gate. I know Chef has passed but I think this is still an excellent forum to gather on and spread research with. I do think someone should comment on if this web page will exist for long though as well just in case so this valuable research is not deleted! I have back ups just in case but I'll make a seperate post for that. Onto the pro-mix recipe: 1/3 peat moss 1/3 perlite 1/3 organic gardening soil 1/4 cup garden lime per gallon of mix I have tried it and it works. Be careful if you have hard water, you will need to add intermediate chelators (AKA L-Amino Acids) to chelate the calcium, magnesium, etc in your water to prevent transpiration issues etc general salt issues that occur with mixing hard water and this fairly sweet and calcium and magnesium rich soil mix. I recommend going easy on the dolomite lime in general and also go easy on the peat moss, peaty soil is known to compact. If you are gonna be moving plants in pots add more perlite than peat moss because this will help with transpiration issues that come from compaction when moving potted plants around. You'll notice how good this mix smells and works for plants! You'll get very fast growing plants because this mix is focused on high porosity for a very high rate of transpiration and therefore plant mass production! Also note that this mix only feeds plants for a couple weeks and then you will need to add some salts for the plant and soil health. Adding a bit of organic matter to the soil eventually will be a good idea as well to continue feeding your organic base in the soil. I personally have a food web with springtails being consumed by a certain antonymous fungi in my soil I try to keep going. The springtails don't leave the pot and the fungi and springtails provide a ton of nitrogen to the plant, potentially CO2 as well! This cycle has successfully infected all the pots in my house interestingly. Sources: SF Gate Guide for peat moss pH balancing: https://homeguides.sfgate.com/balance-ph-lime-peat-potting-33867.html Peat moss to perlite ratio (Also SF Gate): https://homeguides.sfgate.com/recommended-ratio-peat-moss-perlite-46321.html SF Gate's article on the disadvantages of soil-less media (similar to this growing medium (pro-mix) minus the organic gardening soil): https://homeguides.sfgate.com/disadvantages-soilless-mixes-92328.html SF Gate article on composition of potting soil (good place to start to understand potting soils which are often replaced by soil-less pro-mixes). Also ratios of stuff: https://homeguides.sfgate.com/composition-potting-soil-75052.html On the springtail and fungi note, that is harder to source. The certain springtail eating and red hued mushroom producing fungi comes from Host Defence's Myco-Blend all purpose microbial and biostimulant inoculant and I think the springtails followed me via transporting the same compost over a long period of time. On the transpiration topic: Dr. B.C. Wolverton's book "How to Grow Fresh Air" explains that there is an equation that dictates how much air a plant is filtering dependent upon how much mass the plant produces. This has a lot to do w/ the soil medium. High porosity soil makes for the fastest mass production in plants. PS. If you have your own high porosity pro-mix or something similar please post it here. Of particular interest are environmentally friendly mixes, which the above mentioned mix is not due to the unsustainable peat moss component. Coco coir can be used to replace it (and is more environmentally friendly) but then potassium salts should be added at some point although I am less experienced with that mix so I don't know how soon potassium would be essential. I imagine co co coir may cause issues w/ pH because it may not be super acidic and so dolomite lime may need to be adjusted to lesser quantity per gallon. Also this mix may have too much calcium and magnesium due to coco coir and dolomite lime having so much of these elements. Maybe it'd be fine though. A good pH, texture, and an organic base, and magical things can happen with any soil mix basically.
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