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Problem with Peppers in Hydroponics

Hydroponics DWC Pablano Jalapeno Habanero

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#1 CWoodard

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 08:53 PM

Happy 4th Everyone!

 

I've got a problem I'm hoping you smart pepper-veterans can help me with. I'm new around here, thank you all in advance for your help.  And please feel more than free to rip apart my grows/systems/looks/etc.  Thanks again guys!

 

Growing Environment:

• Seeds start in an AeroGarden

• Transplant when I first prune (6" plant) into deep-water culture.  The DWC setup is an 8-plant 4-square foot bin with one 45w (cheap Chinese) LED panel about 8" from the top of the plants. Water is spiked with Hydroguard for first few weeks, pH 5.6-6.0, PPM 800-1200 (now realizing that's too high).  Nutrients are GH MaxiGrow until fruiting, then 2/3 MaxiBloom + 1/3 MaxiGrow.  

 

Known Problems

1)  Need to gradually lower PPM to ~600 from 1200

2)  Culture water is too hot (~75°)

3)  In Florida I have an awful time keeping mold off my grow media (foam sponges and rock wool) which fosters Fungus Gnat Larvae. 

 

Unknown Problem (Help Pepper Veterans!):

1) When my peppers get 12"-24" tall, leaves will begin to turn brown, spotty, between vasculature.  Leaves are affected top→down.  Once it starts it gradually spreads lower and lower to older growth. Leaves and young fruits fall off.

 

2) Pepper leaves flip over :-/. They usually flip back over on their own so I don't mind too much.

 

Thanks a lot guys!

Attached Thumbnails

  • Full Plant.JPG
  • Leaves.jpg


#2 jedisushi06

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 08:55 PM

why are you growing inside living in florida?????



#3 CWoodard

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 08:57 PM

why are you growing inside living in florida?????

It's an embarrassing tiny apartment / Miami situation that forced me to move the peppers inside.  It's a travesty. 



#4 AndyW

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 10:50 PM

No porch/balcony?

#5 solid7

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 11:47 AM

why are you growing inside living in florida?????

 

There are plenty of good reasons.  The real question is, why don't more people in Florida grow hydro?
.
Shit soil. (sand)  Nuclear level UV index.  Torrential downpours, on an almost daily basis.  More insects per square acre than human beings that have ever lived on earth, forever.  People who would rather steal your garden goods, than grow their own.  And unlike you guys north of us, who can just plop stuff in the ground, and watch it grow (while being lullabye'd into thinking that you got master skills) we have to work hard to keep all this stuff in check.  Full time.

.

Do you need any more reasons?  I'm just getting started. :D

.

Hydro in Florida is perfectly legit.  Outdoor plants for when you have a lot of space, patience, and time to devote, indoors when you just want to cut out the BS, and just put in a good grow.  Used to do this, myself, all the time.


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#6 solid7

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 11:49 AM

It's an embarrassing tiny apartment / Miami situation that forced me to move the peppers inside.  It's a travesty. 

 

People who don't, or haven't lived here, will never understand how hard it can be to grow here - regardless of any other factors.
.
It's especially hard to learn, if you've come from somewhere else, and bring your "someplace else" knowledge with you.


Dave2000 - "Problem is, you happened upon the REAL DEAL."

#7 solid7

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 12:34 PM

75 is not really too hot for reservoir temp. It's at the upper end of the threshold, but it's not too hot.  However, are you stable at that temp?  Or are you occasionally going past that?

.

Why are you gradually reducing your PPM, rather than simply dumping your reservoir, and starting over?

.

Are you experiencing pH swings?

.

Are you having issues with the fungus and mold in your reservoir, also? (sludge build-up)

.

There are so many questions here...

 


Dave2000 - "Problem is, you happened upon the REAL DEAL."

#8 CWoodard

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 07:30 PM

75 is not really too hot for reservoir temp. It's at the upper end of the threshold, but it's not too hot.  However, are you stable at that temp?  Or are you occasionally going past that?

 

Why are you gradually reducing your PPM, rather than simply dumping your reservoir, and starting over?

.

Are you experiencing pH swings?

.

Are you having issues with the fungus and mold in your reservoir, also? (sludge build-up)

.

There are so many questions here...

 

Pretty stable, pretty much a 75-76 when lights are on, 72-73 when lights are off.

 

I try to lower the PPM by diluting with daily top-offs of very low PPM tap water+nutrient+hydroguard (yeah it's a slow drop)

 

pH swing is worst when I change the reservoirs, which I immediately go from 7 to 6 over the course of 5 or 6 hours. other than that no swing more than 0.2/day

 

No mold in the reservoir, just mold on the top of a few of the rock-wool cubes.

 

I appreciate the probing, Solid7, pretty lost for how I'm killing the poor peppers.



#9 solid7

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 07:57 PM

Well, when I hear that you're using Hydroguard, I immediately suspect that you're doing so to combat mold and fungus.  And if you've got that going on, there's a good chance that you can be experiencing pH swings induced by the same.  Even worse if you get any root rot.  Which was my next question.  Any root rot, or is everything nice and shiny white under there?

.

Have you ever tried RO water?  If you haven't, do you have a local hydro shop that would spot you a few gallons? (especially if you bought from them)

.

If your target dilution was 600 ppm, and you've doubled it, it's quite possible that you've locked something out.  To be perfectly honest, I don't like diagnosing individual deficiencies - and even more so with hydro.  It's almost, if not always, better to diagnose root cause, and treat the entire problem, than to do fixes.  I know that wasn't proposed, but if this were me, I think I'd probably flush the entire system, do a complete scrubdown, sterilize, and start back up with a half-strength dose.  Maybe run it a time or two, and monitor improvement.  If you see new growth, then bump back up to recommended full strength.

.

Sorry, that's not the "easy button", but it's what I'd do, if it were (and it has been) my system.

.

The next step after that, is to try different nutrients...  


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#10 CWoodard

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 07:18 AM

Well, when I hear that you're using Hydroguard, I immediately suspect that you're doing so to combat mold and fungus.  And if you've got that going on, there's a good chance that you can be experiencing pH swings induced by the same.  Even worse if you get any root rot.  Which was my next question.  Any root rot, or is everything nice and shiny white under there?

.

Have you ever tried RO water?  If you haven't, do you have a local hydro shop that would spot you a few gallons? (especially if you bought from them)

.

If your target dilution was 600 ppm, and you've doubled it, it's quite possible that you've locked something out.  To be perfectly honest, I don't like diagnosing individual deficiencies - and even more so with hydro.  It's almost, if not always, better to diagnose root cause, and treat the entire problem, than to do fixes.  I know that wasn't proposed, but if this were me, I think I'd probably flush the entire system, do a complete scrubdown, sterilize, and start back up with a half-strength dose.  Maybe run it a time or two, and monitor improvement.  If you see new growth, then bump back up to recommended full strength.

.

Sorry, that's not the "easy button", but it's what I'd do, if it were (and it has been) my system.

.

The next step after that, is to try different nutrients...  

 

I was not aware of pH swings from root rot - while I'm no stranger to root rot (probably 25% chance of getting it per grow when no Hydroguard is used), the roots are nice and white now.  

 

I have not tried reverse osmosis water, I guess I always assumed it was a gimmick... my PPM is pretty low here in Miami, and our public water report isn't notable for any high salts, and I cant imagine introducing any microbes just from tap water. But a side-by-side comparison would be pretty cool when I've got the time.  

 

I was afraid most of the suggests here would be "flush the entire system..." H2O2 the entire thing and start over, which I admit is probably the best option but I'm lazy as hell.  

 

Thanks for all the pointers Solid7, I'll try to find ya when I get to the bottom of all this.



#11 solid7

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 11:30 AM

Acidic pH swings are inevitable when anything dead and decaying are present.  Alkalinity inhibits bacterial activity.   But if you have root rot going on, it will be very hard to stabilize your pH.


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#12 mitchNC

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 01:58 PM

Have you grown with that light before?

I had terrible results with those LED panels.  Once I ditched them for a 600W MH light everything was great.



#13 solid7

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 02:42 PM

After I ditched my DIY compact fluorescent fixtures, all I ever used was LED.  Mine worked phenomenally well, at a fraction of the operating cost of MH.   What makes you think this is lighting related?


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#14 mitchNC

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 09:32 PM

Just asking about the lights because I personally had problems with them.

Really hard to see with the purple light.
Can you provide pics without them?

Looks like a deficiency but hard to tell.
Someone else mentioned lockout.

What nutes do you use?
Do you supplement Epsom salts for Mg?

#15 mitchNC

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Posted 07 July 2018 - 09:47 PM

Just to add some info, for my 25 gallon res I use 40 grams of 4-18-38 hydro fertilizer, 2 TBS each of Epsom and calcium nitrate (15-0-0).

This gives me about 750 ppm and I scale accordingly for what I'm growing. I've been doing this consistently for about 3 years and grow ten foot plants. That's how I learned about indeterminate tomatoes. Lol

I believe peppers like 800-1100 ppm.

I'd love for you to solve this... Learning for everyone. Hydro is awesome!

#16 willard3

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 08:26 AM

In aeroponics, I keep nutrient concentration between 400 and 600 ppm, Ph 6.5. This has worked for years.

 

Post fotos with normal light; the purple light is not helpful.


Edited by willard3, 08 July 2018 - 08:27 AM.

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#17 CWoodard

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 03:58 PM

After I ditched my DIY compact fluorescent fixtures, all I ever used was LED.  Mine worked phenomenally well, at a fraction of the operating cost of MH.   What makes you think this is lighting related?

 

Solid7, which LED panels do you use?  I used MH/HPS many years ago, but only have recent experience with the new LEDs from China (Love the fact that I don't need a cooling system or the need to buy those expensive bulbs).  I have no reason to believe these don't do well, and 600w seems like overkill for a ~10 square feet.



#18 solid7

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 05:49 PM

 

Solid7, which LED panels do you use?  I used MH/HPS many years ago, but only have recent experience with the new LEDs from China (Love the fact that I don't need a cooling system or the need to buy those expensive bulbs).  I have no reason to believe these don't do well, and 600w seems like overkill for a ~10 square feet.

 

I have several cheap-o chinese lights from Amazon.  They are all pretty much the same shit, repackaged to keep ahead of the proprietary rights enforcers.

.

Roleadro 400W COB Full Spectrum LED Grow Light with Innovated Chips, 2nd Generation

.

Galaxyhydro 600W LED Grow Light for Indoor Greenhouse Plants Growing & Flowering

.

And I also built a custom panel with a bunch of screw in bulbs, so that I could adjust the spread. (it's completely modular)  It uses these:

.

TaoTronics Led Grow light Bulb , Grow Plant Light for Hydropoics Greenhouse Organic ( E27 12w 3 Bands)

.

I haven't used any of them since 2016.  But they did fantastic for me.


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#19 timegoat

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 07:59 PM

I have a tiny bit of experience with aerogarden peppers and no experience with hydro, but what I can say is, What starts in the Aerogarden, stays in the Aerogarden. I've had no good results starting seeds in an Aero and then transplanting them to dirt. I don't know if that translates to hydro or not but it might.


Note to self: Don't panic till August.


#20 mitchNC

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 09:18 PM

 

 and 600w seems like overkill for a ~10 square feet.

 

Depends.  HID lights don't have to be close to the plants, they're like a little sun.

So you can grow seedlings to mature plants and every stage in between.

 

I grew 16 5-gallon buckets under one bulb.  Grew lots of food for my family for less than a dollar a day.

But that was 3 years ago.  If LED panels have progressed I would  definitely like to look into them.

In a grid-down situation with solar panels (yep, I'm one of those) watts count!  :)

 

The LED panel I bough starting out was too bright to look at, but the actual lumens spec was terrible.  It was a fellow hydro guy that looked up the specs and drew it to my attention.

 

But anyway, if lights aren't the issue I hope we get your problem solved.

Your plants look crispy.  







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