Alrightythen! Comin’ at ya with “letters” to Rev today, about cannabis sprouts. That’s the theme. Today’s edition features questions from Southern California. I answer various correspondences in this series that I have received lately. Reading Q & A type articles have always taught me cool things, and I have gleaned a lot from them over the years. I hope you will too.
Alright then earthlings, let’s rock and/or roll with today’s “Letters” to Rev…
Cannabis Sprouts Question #1: Germination
FROM: Shawn M., Santee, So Cal
“Hello Rev, I suck at germinating seeds, apparently. I have always soaked them in a glass of water for 24 hrs. prior to germination. Then I use paper towels with pure distilled water and put them in a baggie. My last attempt, the seeds popped but the root tips were black, they died. I tried straight in the soil in flats with a heated mat and got actual cannabis sprouts. But they sizzled up a few days later. Please help!”
Rev’s Answer to Q1
Hey Shawn. I see a lot of potential problems, and several definite ones. The glass of water thing I don’t think is a big deal either way, but it just feels wrong to me. Distilled water is NOT what you want here, you want bottled spring water. This allows the roots to find/get water sourced minerals like Ca and Mg. Straight into the soil is my favorite way to germinate. Living soil is highly conducive to germinating seeds. Imagine that.
Never seal your germinating seeds off from the air—no baggies. If any kind of anaerobic microlife gets a foothold, it’s over. Those black root tips were likely mold. Regarding your sprouts in flats on the heating mat… High temps work well, up to a point. One of the things that can happen from heating mats is that the small soil units dehydrate hyper fast. Ouch! There’s a tipping point they can reach very quickly in tiny pots under hot & dry conditions. There’s no coming back from that point.
Cannabis Sprouts Question #2: Specific Deficiencies
FROM: Ritchey Rich, San Diego, So Cal
“Hey Rev! Oh man, I have gotten so much conflicting information online about this issue I am having. If I’m going to take some growing advice here, I would rather it was from you. Here’s a photo of my plant top. All my cannabis sprouts, well, really teenagers as you say, look this way. From my research it seems like zinc or potassium maybe? Please help. I have no idea how to safely add zinc to my plant at this point.
I use some castings/compost tea with molasses about once a week and my water is dechlorinated and 75ish PPM. My temperatures and everything are spot on. I use Ocean Forest soil that has been supercharged with some alfalfa meal. Thank you so much.”
Rev’s Answer to Q2
High Ritchey. Here’s your real issue … ready? 😉 The issue is, that plant is closing in on death. First, let me tell you how to save it…
- Water it well with some bottled spring water. Your regular water source runs a tad too high regarding PPM value, 67 PPM is really what your ceiling should be, PPM wise. Then wait about 2 hours after watering it with the spring water.
- Transplant the plant into a slightly larger container size, use your Ocean Forest without any alfalfa added. I dunno your ratios, or if it was “cooked” (fast composted) or not. If it wasn’t fast composted in, that’s another part of your problem.
- Stop using your teas! Stop using molasses. If your water source is high with Mg, and your adding molasses (also very high in Mg) this could be a big part of your problem.
I call that overall look “Toxic Salts,” or “Salts Toxicity,” and while you can spot a couple specific issues involving nutrients: DO NOT ADD ANY NUTRIENTS OF ANYKIND! You can add a couple cups of alfalfa to your bag of Ocean Forest soil, no worries, it’s all good—as long as it has been composted in, or “cooked” in, as I say, 2 or 3 weeks prior to use.
Longer term, you need to dilute your water source down closer to 65 PPM. To dilute, use rainwater, or distilled water, or R/O water, like the water in those water machines outside stores. No more teas. Your castings will go to better use mixed in with your soil. In about 2 weeks your plant will be much happier amigo. You simply overdosed your soil with too much nutrient value/PPMs/Salts. It builds up and bones you down the line.
Cannabis Sprouts Question #3: Multiple
FROM: Shannon, LA, So Cal
“Two questions Rev… How do you keep track of your sprouts? Like I mean as they show you things you like or don’t like, notepads? Also, does it matter for flowering time which females show sex first, around 30 days old? Thank you in advance.”
Rev’s Answer to Q2
Check out the photos of the craft sticks. You can get them at any big store that has a crafting section, or online as well. These will work outstanding, and you can keep some details on them. Like sex, or key-words letting you know something you want to remember about that cannabis sprout. Other things I use as markers are, colored plastic drink swords for holding olives or whatever. Different colors mean different things, I keep the key to the colors on a dry erase board. My advice? Have a lot of dry erase boards—wink.
You are exactly right Shannon, in my experience. Normally (90%), the females that show sex the fastest within a group will also finish faster to some degree. However, this “race” must be watched at that critical 30 days from sprouting date. Close observation is needed daily, starting at about 24 days old from sprouting. See the photoperiods article link below for easy sexing at 30 days.
Hey hey, time for today’s article to come to a close. I hope you enjoyed the read amigos. I’ll be back next Tuesday right here at SKUNK baybee! For some stellar seeds, check out KOS! Here’s a link to another cool article by yours truly: Cannabis Photoperiods – Skunk Magazine. Also, grab a copy of my 2nd Edition Book and learn the ways of supernatural container growing in living soil.
I love it when it starts to warm up outside. Excellent baked bike rides and weird adventures on the path of life happen when the weather warms up, heh heh. I love just rolling up on random peeps, and tossing a doobie their way. I always say: “Your day’s about to change!” LoL… Catch y’all back here on the flip-flop. L8r G8rs…
- REv 😊
I'm The Rev, and I have been with SKUNK for about a decade now. I hail from Southern California, spent mucho time in Northern California, and now reside in Southern Oregon; always coastal. I am an all natural style cannabis grower and I have written a couple books on the subject - check out True Living Organics 2nd Edition on Amazon - I have been growing for over 45 years, and I have been breeding cannabis for over 30 years. Check out kingdomorganicseeds.com to see some exotic selections. Growing connoisseur cannabis is what I teach mostly, growing it in living soil without using liquid organic nutrients to feed the plant. I am also a highly skilled synthetics grower, hydroponics, aeroponics, DWC/SWC/NFT, Ebb and Flow, and soilless, but I cringe when smoking synthetic grown herbs, so for the last 15 years or so I preach the artisan style of all natural growing, specializing in container growing. Cheers and welcome aboard.