Hempy, T5 48, pH, PPM....oh my. Need some clarification please.

Discussion in 'Hydroponics / Aeroponics' started by TheWifeOfASmoker, Feb 15, 2014.


    TheWifeOfASmoker Active Member

    Ok...I think I've read too much in too many places. I have confused myself.

    Botanicare CNS17, Hempy, from seed, in coco with growstones.

    My tap water pH is 5.8.

    I'm super confused about PPM and nutes with hempy. I read an entire forum post (on another site) where all they did was bicker. The one gentleman was an avid believer of never checking pH or PPM (with Hempy). Many people that subscribed to a different train of thought were hell bent on setting him straight.

    I'm only starting this grow with 2 seedlings: Sweet Dark Devil, and a Royal Queen Northern Lights. (Auto Fems...my Fem Photos aren't here yet).

    Can I get some clarification on what my PPM/pH should be for early growth, veg, flower?
    And guidelines on watering with and with out nutrients? And with and without Epsom Salts?
    I've read about people watering with nutrients at every feeding, and some watering every three days with: nutrients, straight water, straight water. With any number of variations in between.

    I understand that it IS about reading and knowing your plants. I don't understand why I am feeling so overwhelmed with the ppm and feeding schedules.

    Please clarify if you have some advice (or some starting points).

    Thanks Everyone!
    Nizza likes this.

    Bucees Well-Known Member

    Don't let anyone convince you that not knowing your ppm/ph is healthy. Plants in a hydroponic environment are dependent on a specific pH range. You can't properly grow plants in 9pH water with a 3000ppm. It's important. I have been growing in coco/perlite hempy for several years now with different nutes and can offer some simple information.

    I keep my pH in the recommended zone: 5.7-6.2 This range has never failed me. The only def I have ever experienced is calmag and that was from user error. One thing I always support is having more than one option for testing pH. I have my big fancy Hanna meter, but I never rely on the electronic devices and also test with the GH drop test. This has saved my bacon on numerous occasions when my meter was on the skitz.

    As for Hempy well it's just another form of simple hydroponics. The same basic rules apply across all forms of hydro growing.

    I feed my seedlings plain pH 5.8 water for a few weeks. I can't overstate how important this is. If you feed them too much too early the growth will stunt. Ask me how I know...

    When they get hungry I start with 250ppm excluding the 110 ppm of my tap. My end water ppm is usually around 350 ppm. For coco I always add calmag even with coco specific nutes during the early periods. The extra calmag in those nutrients are at the higher doses.

    When they hit full veg i'll up the dose to 500ppm and see how they respond. If they don't start burning ill up it another hundred till I top out around 700 total. I have found that 700ppm is about the sweet spot for me personally. Some of the hungry ass strains could easily handle more, but I generally cap it off there. I am super paranoid about overfeeding my plants because I have before with terrible results. I'd rather slightly underfeed any day of the month than over feed.

    First week of flower i'll transition them to about 800-900ppm and maybe bust a thousand depending on the strain. I'll keep them there until I chop them down.

    I do not flush because after all my research and real world testing I have found it to be pointless. I grow high quality, great tasting cannabis that is properly dried and cured for a minimum of 3 weeks.

    Also to answer your question I feed with every watering. I do not agree with those that use plain water between feedings. Coco isn't soil. Coco is a hydroponic medium. When there aren't any nutrients present the plant has nothing to consume but it's self. Normally I will feed my hempys until I get a slight bit of runoff as not to waste nutrients, but once a week I'll give them a nice juicing and try to get a 20-30% runoff to kinda flush the old shit out a bit.

    The reason you are overwhelmed is because there is so fucking much information and contradictory opinions out there. Honestly my post may serve to confuse you more, but this is indeed my way of doing things. Feel free to ask questions.
    Spacing, Buzz'd, Nizza and 2 others like this.

    TheWifeOfASmoker Active Member

    Thank YOU! I appreciate the time it took. I will start re-researching from the information you have given me.

    (and I knew ppm/pH was necessary...but it was almost comical how he thought it was totally irrelevant)
    Bucees likes this.

    SableZen Well-Known Member

    Just wanted to add one little thing to what Bucees said. Since you said you were using CNS17, if you are using the coco formula it comes with a higher amount of calcium than the regular hydroponics formula. Just mentioning it since Bucees said they always supplement it for coco but you may not need to with your specific nutrient line.

    Oh by the way, I second that pH is important in hydroponics and it borders on folly to think otherwise for more than one reason. But that isn't worth going into here. In soil growing, pH isn't as important as long as the soil starts at a decently acceptable range and nothing wonky/extreme is going on - but I think that's where some of the confusion comes from (hydro vs primarily soil growers).
    Bucees likes this.

    Bucees Well-Known Member

    Heh. To me at this point in my growing career it almost seems irrelevant. Almost. After a while of mixing the same nutes in the same base water you will generally know the pH and ppm levels without checking. I can tell you straight from memory the exact pH and ppm level that Maxibloom or Canna A+B will end up at any dose in pH 7.0 starting water. I still check it though to make sure that my municipal water supply pH/ppm hasn't been altered. Keeping tabs on this stuff is what keeps your grow in proper working order.

    JohnDee Well-Known Member

    The guy who maintained that you didn't need to test was probably an old guy. Hempy (the guy) strongly maintained that one of the benefits of the Hempy bucket was that you didn't need to test those things. He was an old Curmudgeon, and was very firm about that position. So lots of guys from that era (10-15 years ago) followed though with that.

    Like Bucees, I can pretty much run a grow without testing...but that takes years using the same products. Good luck on your Hempy grow...


    waterdawg Well-Known Member

    Thats until your well changes lol. Testing is very important as i just found out and almost ruined a run (jury's still out)! Also i assumed that its not important to test in the first week from reading some peoples posts, wrong! Thats when the damage was done!!

    Bucees Well-Known Member

    Hah holy crap DalaiHempy. That guy reminded me of that angry old man screaming at the kids to get off his lawn. Every damn thread where he posted ended up being some big confrontation.

    TheWifeOfASmoker Active Member


    Ha. Saw this and thought of you guys.

    Bucees Well-Known Member

    Yeah If you want hempy info from the man himself google it up. Those threads end up being knockdown drag outs that span many pages. The guy seems old, cranky, and slightly uneducated. His spelling and punctuation made me originally think he was 13 years old.

    On a sad note the first clones to reach flower from my newest "mother" plant have the nicest/fastest balls forming I have ever seen. I guess I ended with the 0.01% chance that this feminized seed was male. On the package it says "99.9% feminized seeds"

    TheWifeOfASmoker Active Member

    Awww sorry for the dude Bucees :(

    Bucees Well-Known Member

    Eh it was my fault really. I cloned some lower branches kinda in a hurry before the plant popped any preflowers. Normally I would wait till it hit maturity to clone, but time was a factor. It was also the most vigorous damn plant I had ever grown. I have 2 more clones from him in my veg tent that I plan to experiment with. Lets see if they can handle 1500 ppm veg nutes in a solo cup! Or perhaps I can cross his mega indica genetics with my beautiful staple white widow...?

    Nizza Well-Known Member

    anyone mention the world of hempy thread here? All are welcome!

    Liddle Well-Known Member

    id keep the male if it was a nice one man. esp since it came from a fem seed stock.

    TheWifeOfASmoker Active Member

    I'm slowly but surely reading the W.O.H. thread. Taking notes.

    P.DIZZLE Member


    P.DIZZLE Member

    I see this is old thread I just started Hempy n I think I'm screwed dam thing won't grow its a rooted p.e clone its been a week any advice please ppm n pH are at 150 n 5.7 wtf it just won't grow lol

    P.DIZZLE Member

    I have a p.e s week in my first Hempy 3 part perlite 1 part rock wool tiny pieces pH 5.7 ppm 150 n it simply won't grow any advice i will appreciate just can't figure this fuckin hempy bucket to save my life lol thanx

    Streft New Member

    Did u ever figure out the problem?

    yankeetransplant Well-Known Member

    I realize this is an old post (8 mo or so), but check out recent 'world of hempy'...I have been trying to get that more active and have been posting a bunch of info and pics..including a modified bucket design with explanations...I went back to hempy after 15 yrs of water cultures....been growing hydro since 1980..yeah, just about 38 yrs now!!!...would love to see more activity in that forum...Quick pic of MY hempy bucket design and a quick pic of last harvest...got some Bomb Seeds going this time...can offer a ton if advise if your still having hempy problems...regards, Y.T. IMG-ce6a64ce-41df-44ac-b709-4147b225aaba.png 20170723_034754.jpg

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