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Potting Up Sizes

Hey guys,

I'm considering going straight from cells to 6in "1 gallon" pots this year instead of solo cups, for the ones I'll keep for myself, to give me a little more room for growth since I can't put them out until mid to late May normally. The last big grow I did, I ran into all sorts of issues due to leaving them in solo cups too long, the roots actually plugged the drain holes in the cups and I didn't notice right away, and almost lost them.

Are there any issues to watch for when going to larger pots initially or just be sure to not over water?

Thanks

T.
 
I don't grow indoors, so I don't really understand the whole notion of potting up multiple times.  My best guess is that it has to do with space constraints.  I want my plants to start sending out roots as far and fast as possible.  The drip line of your plant is determined by the rootball.  So, if you want to pot straight up, I say go for it.  For that matter, start your seeds in the container you plan to finish in, if that works for you.  I do this many times, although I also sometimes start my seeds in solo cups, because it's easier to rack them in an organized manner, while I'm getting my sites prepped, or if I know that I might have a chance of insects cutting off my seedlings in their final container outdoors.
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Maybe I'm missing something, but if it isn't a space constraint, I see no point in needless iteration, and "musical" pots.  You don't have to saturate your containers with nutrient, so even that is a marginal concern.  And of course, it's much harder to overwater a larger container. (especially if you have built your potting mix properly)
 
Thank you. It is a space issue for me. I start indoors and start over 300 seeds (for family and friends) and can fit about 108 in solo cups under my current setup, but I only intend to keep about 60 which is about how many 6in pots I can fit under the same setup.
 
I had a similar issue that required more space than I had so I built a new shelving unit to house all my seeds.  The new set up provided an extra level of solo cups.  I switched my light system to save vertical space. The new lights I chose were T5s which are very thin compared to other grow lights and just as effective when preparing plants for the outdoors.  Not sure if that is an option, but your situation sounds far too familiar for me not to throw it out there! Back to your question about moving the plants straight to gallon pots, that would for sure be fine.  I am in MN and can't usually put mine out until memorial day, surprised you can get them out so early all the way up in the UP!  Good luck!
 
Haha, thanks BA. I'm in a little sliver of zone 4 In the UP, so it's normally late May/first week of June.

I have an ongoing Glog so you can see my setup here...

http://thehotpepper.com/index.php?/topic/61055-U)<now's-2016/2017-Indoor/Outdoor-Glog


I have more room in my basement, but would then need more lights. The madness has to stop somewhere, right? Or does it!? :rofl:
 
Powelly said:
I'd just use the biggest pots you have the room for
I have 5 gallon buckets they will eventually go into, as well as buckets up to 20 gallons I got from a nursery. I have a ton of them, just not enough room to put them straight into the 5 gallons and keep them under the lights. I can only fit 12, 5 gallon buckets under my current lights.

It's ok. I'll just go for 1 gallon so I can fit them under my lights for now. That should hold them over. The 6 inch one gallon are still quite a bit bigger than solo cups.


Thank you for all the input everyone.
 
U)<now said:
I have 5 gallon buckets they will eventually go into, as well as buckets up to 20 gallons I got from a nursery. I have a ton of them, just not enough room to put them straight into the 5 gallons and keep them under the lights. I can only fit 12, 5 gallon buckets under my current lights.

It's ok. I'll just go for 1 gallon so I can fit them under my lights for now. That should hold them over. The 6 inch one gallon are still quite a bit bigger than solo cups.


Thank you for all the input everyone.
 
Yeah, this is what I meant really
 
I do multiple pot ups in a year, though I am in a different situation. My temps are quite cool here right now and I've found that if I go too big too fast, I end up with pots staying wet for longer periods of time. This usually leads to a green sludge on the surface. I've also found that the upper portion of the plant will shoot up poportional to the pot. I have a space limitation all around. I can't go too high or too wide so I need to time things to when I can put them outside.

Neil
 
Same here Neil. It's 12 degrees Fahrenheit here right now. In years past, I've waited til mid March for most of mine and I only end up getting a handful of pods and boom, it's end of September and seasons over. So this year, I planted everything by Jan 31st and I know I'll need bigger containers to make it til May/June, but still small enough to keep indoors. Height is not too big of an issue as I built my stand 4ft high. I just don't want to run into root bound issues again. I think I'll be ok though. Maybe I'll look into 2 gal pots, they aren't that much bigger in diameter
 
Sounds like you have a similar grow season as I do. We're at 5F right now. My plant out date is May 21-ish. Then I have a grow season of around 90 days. It's a short season to say the least. I had used soil and had kept going to larger and larger pots, tried over wintering plants, but never really had much success. It wasn't until I switched to coco that things turned around for me.
 
Blister said:
Sounds like you have a similar grow season as I do. We're at 5F right now. My plant out date is May 21-ish. Then I have a grow season of around 90 days. It's a short season to say the least. I had used soil and had kept going to larger and larger pots, tried over wintering plants, but never really had much success. It wasn't until I switched to coco that things turned around for me.
Are you using coco all year now with better results for growing and pods, or just for overwintering them in and having better ow results ?
 
Blister said:
I do multiple pot ups in a year, though I am in a different situation. My temps are quite cool here right now and I've found that if I go too big too fast, I end up with pots staying wet for longer periods of time.
 
So just water them less...
 
Watering less also has the advantage of making your plants put out deeper roots. Water deeply and to saturation, when your plants are more mature.
 
I use the solo cups because I don't know which plants I am keeping. I start lots of seeds with the plan to use the strongest. Why pot up 5 plants in 1 gallon pots if I am only keeping one?
 
mas_fuego said:
I use the solo cups because I don't know which plants I am keeping. I start lots of seeds with the plan to use the strongest. Why pot up 5 plants in 1 gallon pots if I am only keeping one?
Yeah, I'll be using solo cups for the ones I'm giving away. The keepers will go into 1 gal pots. I stopped and checked out 1 gal pots today at a local store and they will be perfect for my situation I think.
 
U)now said:
Are you using coco all year now with better results for growing and pods, or just for overwintering them in and having better ow results ?
I don't overwinter anymore. I got tired of battling aphids. I start new plants from seed each year and grow entirely in coco. I get larger plants and bigger yields.

This was my second harvest before the season finished.

f29bec80736e23d3e39aad6305c769b9.jpg



solid7 said:
So just water them less...
 
Watering less also has the advantage of making your plants put out deeper roots. Water deeply and to saturation, when your plants are more mature.
Watering less in my climate and with my short grow season equals small plants that don't produce.

I'm also going to go out on a limb and say that deep roots aren't a problem.



Neil
 
I like to keep my operation at 7 months or under. The intermediate transplantings help build root structure and make it easier for me to monitor and control things that might arise while at the same time lessening the time it takes for a small plant to find it's way along in a larger container.
 
Blister said:
Watering less in my climate and with my short grow season equals small plants that don't produce.

I'm also going to go out on a limb and say that deep roots aren't a problem.
 
The deep root issue was in regards to seedlings and small plants.  That plant, while rootbound, will still thrive, if you keep it fed. (of course, you know that)
 
I'm not following your logic, though. We're not talking about dehydrating your plants.  We're talking about not keeping them waterlogged, to the point that they grow slime. (you did say that cooler temps kept water in your pots longer) Your plants will still do just fine, if you water them in smaller quantities, but more often.  I grow some of my plants almost exactly the same way that you do.  My climate is hot and humid, so I too, retain moisture in my containers during both summer and winter months.
 
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