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Old 10-21-2020, 07:28 AM #1
lastmob
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Coco pros, please help me step up my transplanting game

Hello,
After hundreds of hours of reading this forum and several attempts I still cannot seem to get the transplanting/pre-charging of coco right. The plants shoot up 3-4 weeks after transplant so I assume that I don't prepare the coco correct, they suffer from lockouts/deficiencies for a while and after the buffer is filled they recover.
Last time I actually used Canna so I have no excuse I know most people suffer from salt toxicities from fresh coco but I believe I "undercharged it". I always put the coir in a bin with holes on the bottom I check the run off of the solution I run through it.
This last Canna had very good EC levels of 0.6 EC and I poured a balanced solution of Micro/bloom, Silica, Epson and Nitric acid. EC 1.2-1.3 with starting tap water EC of 0.4 (about 170-190 ppm carbonates, 60ppm Ca, 10ppm Mg). pH of 5.8-6.
I only ran enough to get the run off to 0.8-0.9 ... Quite stupid. The plants look pale and weak.
I also must say that after I moisten the coco I squeeze every bit of moisture I can and put it in 4-6l fabric pots trying not to pack it down too much. I also try to water slowly. VPD is relatively good although unstable.
My questions:
1. I am considering the idea that perhaps by just running the solution through the media I am not charging it well enough. Do you think a thorough soak for some time and then wringing it out and using it will be better?
2. In this connection, and this might be a dumb question, but does the speed of watering influence the amount of cation exchange that takes place? In other words, does cation exchange need some time to occur or does it happen immediately as you are flushing the coir?
3. I know bagged Canna is supposed to be buffered but is it worth increasing the Ca and Mg in the nutes for the initial prep just to be sure?
4. How much do you tamp down the coco around the rootball when transplanting?
5. I notice the pH of the solution stays very stable if the rez is covered but increases if it is not. Is it safe to assume that this means it will also gradually increase in the root zone or is it that the coir chemistry might influence it in all sorts of ways?
Any other suggestions are welcome. Thanks for your time
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Old 10-21-2020, 07:45 AM #2
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I feel your pain but you seem to be doing the right thing.
Cann coco is superior but still needs to be charged.
The main thing to do is upon transplant is do a heavy feed of e.c 900 with tap starting at 200e.c on the 500 scale. The important thing for me is the Cal-mag should be applied at 1ml per litre to stabilise the coco. Also if your running different light source upon repotting, stronger lights will require a much stronger feed from the get go.



Good luck man...
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Old 10-21-2020, 09:37 AM #3
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With coco its important to monitor the ec or ppm in the rootzone. Never let the runoff be more than 250 ppm above your nutrient solution going in. Sounds crazy but your runoff ppm will be higher than what you put in and will continue to rise if you dont monitor it. My tapwater is 170ppm, my total solution going in is 300 and my runoff ppm is average 420. I keep as close as I can to those figures the entire grow and get very good results. Are you using a coco specific nutrient?
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Old 10-21-2020, 10:39 AM #4
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Sounds like you may be watering too much and compacting the Coco.

I use canna and I do not pre charge whatsoever.
Just keep it as loose as possible, don't tamp it down.

Fill your pot loosely about halfway ( or whatever size to accommodate what you are transplanting from) stick the transplant in, then fill to just under the top with more Coco.
Water it in with whatever nutrient mix you feed your veg, until slight run off.
Do not water again until the container is light/slightly drying.

You Should be watering every other day for the first week or so, or whenever the Coco is close to dry.

This keeps it aerated and fluffy while the roots go searching for water.

After 7-10 days you should be needing to water daily.

Don't water quickly, to where you see it pooling in top, this compacts the Coco and makes it harder for the roots to thrive.

That's pretty much it, sometimes I like to dust the rootball with great white myco before transplant as well.

Don't tamp, water in until runoff the first water, and have wet/dry cycles the first week or so, and you should be golden.
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Old 10-22-2020, 09:24 PM #5
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@Green81
I believe you are spot on and I think I have chronically underfed young transplants. I have recently found a few posts of some of the most prominent growers on here where they bash this whole 1/4 - 1/2 strength nute thing and advise near full strength. Especially given the fact I put them straight under intense CMH light.
You see, I don't think CalMag will help me, even with quite weak nute solution I easily get to 110-120ppm Ca and I have never seen Ca deficiencies/lockout. I may up the Epson to get Mg to 40-50, always have issues with Mg after transplant.



@bigpeter
Good advice man, I am anal about run-off EC too, even have those custom built metal trays on legs to be able to measure it from every individual pot I have used Canna Coco and 6/9 before, this run I am testing FNB and Maxibloom, I'm happy so far.


@indocult
Another good advice I think, I will deff experiment with minimal tamp down next time. I am adverse to putting a plant first and then watering to saturation. Do you not find that this keeps the coir too wet for too long? Or it does not fully saturate if you only water to slight run off?


By the way, I watered them well with a balanced pHed solution at about 1.4-1.5 and stabilized VPD and they are greening up and perking up nicely. Run off was 1.0-1.2 ...



What do all you think about my idea of soaking the coco for a few hours in a complete solution with a good amount Ca/Mg, then wringing it out and transplanting into it?



Thanks
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Old 10-22-2020, 09:38 PM #6
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Yeah, use more water.
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Old 10-22-2020, 09:53 PM #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lastmob View Post
What do all you think about my idea of soaking the coco for a few hours in a complete solution with a good amount Ca/Mg, then wringing it out and transplanting into it?


Thanks
I personally will not soak it for a few hours.
Are you still using CANNA Coco? I've been playing with CANNA coco for more then 10 years now and not once have i ever "pre charged" it.

Like stated above, for transplanting i open a fresh bag of coco and dump it lightly into whatever container im going to use filling it about halfway.

Drop the clone in and pour the rest of the coco all around it keeping it light, i don't press the clones or coco down hard but i will just a bit to make everything firm and just feed right after.

If your transplant is small compared to the container you are going in then watering lightly around it will get it started but you must give it a few good feedings after so you don't have build up.
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Old 10-23-2020, 12:06 AM #8
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I also only use Canna Coco and have never pre charged it. I also reuse it several times. Canna is buffered and ready to use out of the bag. Go to there site and watch the video on why Canna is so much better than the rest.
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Old 10-23-2020, 01:17 AM #9
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what do you mean by wringing out???
i use cheapest brick i can find, soak overnight in 8g hot tap water to expand and maybe kill any larva. then i fill 5g bucket with paint strainer ( holes in bucket too) and cold tap till almost clear looking runoff. then 3g nutes at 450-500ppm to charge and set ph. i let it sit n drain a few minutes to couple hrs then transplant. water next day n everyday after.
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Old 10-23-2020, 02:30 AM #10
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You may be over thinking this one. I'm using Mother Earth this round. Last time it was CYCO. Before that California Substrates. The grow shop has been low on coco.

I stick the clones into uncharged coco w/ perlite and Mycos and start feeding at 1000ppm including Silica and Mg/Cal. I only use MG/Cal because of the LEDs. I didn't need it under T5s and HPS. I always feed through with about 10%+ runoff.

I transplant to 5 gal bags of the same uncharged coco and perlite and start feeding about 1/2 gal of 950 ppm 4 times a day. I only check runoff if I think there's an issue. If it's more that 300ppm over of my feed I flush.

In flower I inoculate the plants once a week with Mycos and Azos.
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