Welcome to a growing 101 Letters to Rev article. As the title implies these questions today revolve around a more fundamental set of cannabis growing issues. Watering, soil additions, and sexing. So, without further ado, we should dive right the hell in.
Alright then earthlings, let’s rock and/or roll with today’s “Letters” to Rev…
Growing 101 Question #1: Vacation Watering Options?
The world is opening back up, and whenever I leave for more than a few days my plants really suffer from drought. I’m using Grow-Pro Plant Warrior pots, your TLO soil, and your TLO water. Any advice for ‘Vacation Watering’, and will those Water-Spikes work?
Rev’s Answer to Q1
Howdy Yadam, that’s an honestly tough one. I have had a trusted friend water my plants for me when I have been away before, and that worked out fine. Let that word trusted really sink in though. A few of my grower friends around the world really love those watering-spike thingies that you fill with water and spike down into your containers’ soil. I believe they use several per container though, maybe even like 4.
Since you use the best growing containers in the world for TLO—Plant Warrior, you can employ the Micropond style, strictly for increased water availability. A larger size catch-tray under each container so they can hold additional run-off water. You could even top the catch-trays off right before you left and using those containers you can almost fill fairly deep catch-trays.
A couple of helpful things here that make some difference in water retention are, more vermiculite in your soil mix and always maintaining a thick mulch layer. If you are setting up or can modify a garden space indoors, automated drip watering can work well—although, I wouldn’t ever want to use automated watering for more than 10 days (max) if in flowering, because needs often change rapidly.
Growing 101 Question #2: Langbeinite in Soil Mix?
“Hello Rev. I run low on potassium input for my soil mix. Greensand, and kelp. I recently added langbeinite to my soil mix per the box’s recommendations for containers and I have read about you being very careful with this stuff. Do I have a justified bad feeling about this, did I just totally fuck up my soil mix?
Thanks man. TUG.”
Rev’s Answer to Q2
Hey TUG, the short answer is yes, you have.
Langbeinite, for those that don’t know, is a Sul-Po-Mag/K-Mag type mineral addition, Down to Earth brand calls it Langbeinite. As this suggests, it contains Potassium (K), Magnesium (Mg), and Sulfur (S). These are all very cannabis friendly (life friendly) minerals—in moderation.
The way I test various soil mix blends is on a smaller scale using clones. I can run 4 different soil mixes fairly easily. Using too much Langbeinite works out very well in the short term. The problem lies in later flowering stage when some salty-toxicity things effect your plants. This is a maximum bummer, and even a little too much can cause death about a week or 10 days before finish—yikes!
First, I would say scrap your soil and save it to ration out into your new soil mix in very small percentages. Like 1-part salty soil mix, to 4-parts new soil mix. Secondly, in the new soil mix you should keep it down to like 1-teaspoon of Langbeinite per 5-gallons of soil and mix in very-very well. However, if you are cutting in your salty soil with your new soil like I recommend, then add no additional Langbeinite this go-around. A surprisingly small amount of Langbeinite goes a long-long way baybee.
Growing 101 Question #3: Sexing Cannabis Plants?
FROM: Johnny B.
“I am at my wits end here Rev. I sure hope you can help me. Recently I read some info from you recently that made me think you actually know your shit. OK, I have had almost zero success sexing my plants. I have read different ways online and in books and now I am on my third run with twice as many plants as I am going to need with no idea how to find the males to remove. They are not showing sex when they are supposed to. I hate randomly reducing my numbers and guessing. I anxiously await your response, thank you.”
Rev’s Answer to Q3
Well Johnny, howdy. I’m going to extrapolate from your post that you are indoors. In case I am wrong, and you are outdoors, get a magnifying glass and a Jeweler’s Loup and simply study your plants closely every day from the time they are 25 to 35 days old. Look the entire length of the plant if you need to. They will show sex, briefly for a few days, they always do. Sometimes it is only in a very small way and can even be lower on the mainstem than you may think.
Indoors this is very easy amigo. First of all, never sprout them on a photoperiod of 24/0 with lights always on. You want to use a photoperiod of 12/12— (12 hrs. ON/12 hrs. OFF) for the first 10 days they are above ground. After those 10 days, change them to either a 16/8 or an 18/6 photoperiod, whichever you use for vegetative growth stage. Pretty much like clockwork when they are 30 days old you can clearly see the sex. I mean for sure here, I have never seen this fail, ever, and I have been using this method for years now.
One caveat here is if you are growing long flowering sativas, like plants that flower for 12-weeks plus. In the event you are using these types of genetics you will need to keep the sprouts under the 12/12 photoperiod for 14 days rather than 10 days. Boom! This is a no-fail methodology my green friend, do it as I say, and you will be a happy sexing camper.
Okay then, I hope you all enjoyed the growing 101 article today. Grab yourself some of those new La Smush beans over at Kingdom Organic Seeds and start your next growing adventure right with healthy genetics. Looking for more of a party-time herb with some energy to her? Check out Fat Tuesday!
To learn more about all naturally growing cannabis in containers, grab a copy of my True Living Organics, 2nd Edition over at Amazon.
Well, my fine green amigos, I’m getting ever closer to finishing the latest TLO book, heh heh. I dig it a lot when I am closing in on the finish, whew! Looking forward to a springtime/summertime without the plague causing all that fuckery—YaY! Not that I am really a social guy—LoL—but I do dig getting out and about now and then. I’m not anti-social, really more socially adjacent.
I hope you are all doing well out there in the world. Keep the shiny side up and the dirty side down my friends, and I’ll catch ya back here next week on Tuesday for another article. 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.