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Tomato Plants are not producing....


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  #41  
Old 06-20-2011, 01:47 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Ok new ?, what size dripper's are you running and how do you keep those booger's from clogging up?

I'm about tempted to not even run dripper's....

Also, it seem's i'm getting flower's but they dont seem to have like the yellow flower part's, just the green outside what's that mean? Mind you i've just got the set up outside about a week and am seem a big improvement and haven't gotten to see what the new flower's are going to do so this might be a premature question.


Last edited by T'Mater; 06-20-2011 at 02:01 PM.
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  #42  
Old 06-20-2011, 08:30 PM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Hey T-Mater,

Personally I run drip stakes, they are pretty much wide open basket style emitter stakes. They do not create any back pressure. I do regular flushes every 4-5-6 days or so depending on how much nutrient my plants are up-taking. (i.e. when the res. runs dry)

Two reasons for this are to prevent nutrient lockout on the plant roots themselves, and to keep my emitters or drip stakes clear.

Give your plants and flowers some time... they are going through a huge change in lighting and getting used to their new non-controlled climate.

Todd
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  #43  
Old 06-20-2011, 09:08 PM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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Hello T'Mater,
I don't use any dippers at all in my drip systems. I just use tubing, and poke holes in it where I want them with a small (hot) paperclip. I just heat the tip of the paperclip with a candle. I know the tubing in the picture is clear, but that was all I had at the moment when I first set up that system. I eventually changed it over to black tubing to block light, and thus algae growth in the tube. I' not sure if you mean the yellow pedals have fallen off and all that's left is the green bud. If so, that's normal. The flower pedals fall off of tomato plants before the fruit begins to grow. If that isn't what you mean, then I would agree with Freshwater, give them a few more weeks to get used to the new lighting and environment.
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  #44  
Old 06-20-2011, 09:54 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Hey Freshwater, i was going back and doing some rereading and i seen where you said you let your tank get to about empty then refill and check EC/PH. How are you keeping your EC down long enough to get it that low?

My EC seem's to keep rising, i'm assuming from water evapurating.

When you flush your system are you just using PH stable water and dumping in each bucket? I kind of think that maybe i'm not cleaning the root's good enough when i flush is why i ask. Might also be why my EC is going up, as my system run's it's bringing back more nute's that have been hanging in the bottom of the bato buckets.
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  #45  
Old 06-22-2011, 12:48 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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It seem's my new flower's are not being flower's but i'm just getting the outside green shell forming, i've taken some picture's to show you what i'm talking about.

And let me know if i'm just being impatient you won't hurt my feelings. It was a week ago today that i changed nutes and moved everything outside. I'm just in that depressed state cause things are not producing and i'm dieing to taste a hydroponic grown tomato that i've grown.

I've also included a picture showing what my new leave's are doing, they are browning at the tip's. And i noticed that i even had a real small flower brown and i guess die before it really got going.

Trying to keep PH between 5.5 and 6.5, seem's to be going up a lot. Think i was reading your's was doing the same thing Freshwater so i'm assuming that part is ok. Unless i'm not getting the PH lowered fast enough and that's causing a problem.

My PPM/EC tends to hang around 1200/2.4ish and goes up real slowly. So i'm not to concerned there.

I've started watering my plant's for 15min every 1hr, i can't water less then 15min cause that's how my timer is set. Thinking i might have been over watering my plant's.
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  #46  
Old 06-23-2011, 12:25 AM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T'Mater View Post
And let me know if i'm just being impatient you won't hurt my feelings.

You are being impatient...sorry, just said that to hurt your feelings...

Ok, seriously... Your plants are going through a major change for their age. They are not babies, or teenagers. They are damn near adults...let's call them 30...lol and they are changing to a new environment, and going through a little shock.

But I agree...something doesn't look right. Give it a little more time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by T'Mater View Post
I've started watering my plant's for 15min every 1hr, i can't water less then 15min cause that's how my timer is set. Thinking i might have been over watering my plant's.
Umm...stop doing that...15 bucks...

HB800RCL -- Intermatic, Inc. Online Store

3-5 min. max for our setup...depending on pump and dead head.

Quote:
Originally Posted by T'Mater View Post
Trying to keep PH between 5.5 and 6.5, seem's to be going up a lot.
Do not let it out of that range...If you know it creeps up, slam the P.h. back down to below 5.8, you will get a rhythm once the system get's established (4 weeks or so).

Oh, and drop your PPM down a little bit, say 900-1000 ppm. Your plants are a little skinny....no offense....give them a little less ummph...then once they are settled in you can come up if you think you need to.


Remember, these are only my opinions from what I have seen in my garden.

Todd
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  #47  
Old 06-23-2011, 12:46 AM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T'Mater View Post
Hey Freshwater, i was going back and doing some rereading and i seen where you said you let your tank get to about empty then refill and check EC/PH. How are you keeping your EC down long enough to get it that low?
Not sure I understand your question exactly; I let my plants drink up the res. and my ppm goes down slowly, I start at 1100-1200 ppm, and end at around 900ppm. If your PPm goes up over ... lets say 1200ppm you need to add fresh R.O. to lower the ppm.

Quote:
Originally Posted by T'Mater View Post
My EC seem's to keep rising, i'm assuming from water evapurating.
Kinda make sure you res. is mostly sealed off, Mine is a snapped on trash can lid. Enough for air escape from the air pump going in, but small enough not to invite bugs. It could also be, and most likely... you plants are drinking more water than nutrients....probably due to warmer temps, lower your ppm down as I mentioned in the post above.

Quote:
Originally Posted by T'Mater View Post
When you flush your system are you just using PH stable water and dumping in each bucket? I kind of think that maybe I'm not cleaning the root's good enough when i flush is why i ask. Might also be why my EC is going up, as my system run's it's bringing back more nute's that have been hanging in the bottom of the bato buckets.

My R.O. filter is at the res. and I just kinda turn it on until it fills, normally overnight. I check it before first water (7:00 a.m.), and set my p.h.. I let it water pretty much for a day to flush...ppm can go from 35 to 200-300 just from flushing the bato res, and roots. Once a month-ish or so, I "catch" the return-to-res. line, so that the system is just getting pure P.H. set H20.


Todd
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  #48  
Old 06-23-2011, 01:06 AM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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After doing some researching i have a bad feeling i have late blight, i'll take more pic's of the whole plant's and post tomorrow.

I bought new tub's today, for my res. The other one's couldn't handle the pressure of the water, so ya the lid's were not on right at all.

As for the timer's, ya i'm going to have to order online, as crazy as it is, i can't seem to find one that doesn't let me water less then 15min's at a time and that's the one i have atm.

Now that i get how your flushing, i'm not flushing near long enough. So that will change. Are you running it all day straight or keeping it on your normal feeding time?

Last edited by T'Mater; 06-23-2011 at 01:08 AM.
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  #49  
Old 06-23-2011, 04:49 AM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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Hello T'Mater,
I'm not familiar with the the growing medium your using, so I don't know how saturated it gets. But I don't think your 15 minute on cycle needs to be changed to a shorter time. If the growing medium is still too wet before the next cycle begins, I would just stretch out the time between on cycles.

My first thought is that it certainly takes a few weeks for plants to recover and that you should be patient. However looking at the pictures you posted I see quite a few leaves with brown edges, and it looks like the one leaf is definitely becoming abnormally yellow. So my first thought there is a possible nutrient problem. I don't remember what nutrients your using, or how you mix them. Though I also don't know if it's just lighting in the pictures, or if some of those stems are browning as well (which could also be a nutrient problem), but I looked up the Late blight on tomato's for some images to compare with, and have seen images of dark brown lesions on stems as a symptom of Late blight.

Here is a link with many images you can compare with, as well as how to distinguish late blight from other diseases and disorders with similar symptoms:
Disease photos - Vegetable Pathology - Long Island Horticultural Research & Extension Center

I don't know much about late blight, and I would feel uncomfortable saying your plants have it. But from the little I read about it late blight is caused by a fungus, and damaged plant tissue can't be controlled. you should be able to see the fungus with close examination of the leaves and stems if that is what it is, or even any other fungus or mildew either. I don't remember if you started those plants from seeds or not, but I would start some new seeds if so just in case. If you do determine it is a fungus/mildew disease, I would CAREFULLY pull the plants as soon as possible, place them in sealed plastic hefty bags to prevent as many spores from spreading as possible. Then clean an sanitize the entire system, as well as spray the entire greenhouse (inside and out) with bleach water a few times before replanting a new crop. I would also probably spray the whole greenhouse, as well as new crop with a fungicide too as a preventative measure.

P.S.
Keep us posted
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  #50  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:58 AM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Thanks for that link. I don't blieve its blight. My other guess was my nutes being off. I def. Don't believe I've flushed my system well enough and might have burnt them. I switched to Floramato when I moved them outside. I will keep u all updated.
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  #51  
Old 06-23-2011, 10:30 AM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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If you think it is a flushing issue try this (BTW I just had this issue on a buddies inside grow in a DWC, you could actually see the ssalt built up on the roots).

Empty your res, and or put the new one in place. Fill with R.O. water, set P.H. to 5.8-6.2. REMOVE YOUR RETURN LINE, and place it into a bucket. Run it for one day. Only problem I see with this is that in 15 minutes of "on" time, you will probably empty your res.. I will let you figure that one out. Maybe if you are around you can run 5 minute "cycles" manually.

Want to know when your flush is complete? Check your R.O. water PPM, mine is 35 for my home system, run a flush...remember our little "extra" res. inside our bato buckets? We gotta get that to turn over several times, while that is happening, and for a couple cycles afterwords, the roots will start to get cleaned off. End of day, take a water sample from your return line in a clean glass, not from the return catch bucket, but direct from the return line. If your ppm is above 50, you need to continue flushing. Remember the salts will not break down as fast as you think... kinda like concrete covering the roots.

Nutrient lockout prevents the "good stuff" from being absorbed by the plant roots, that's why I suggested lowering your PPM down till the plants get stable. I agree with GPS, get some new seeds started just in case, but all is not lost. I think you can bring these guys back! You also might be able to clone them, anyone know if you can clone tomato plants? That is if they are disease free.

Todd


Again, this is just what I would do in my garden...

Last edited by Freshwater; 06-23-2011 at 10:32 AM. Reason: Disclaimer - i'm no expert -
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  #52  
Old 06-26-2011, 12:21 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Well the flushing has begun, i do have a problem tho. My RO system is all jacked up and is barely producing and of course it's the weekend so i can't get ahold of my rainsoft ppl till monday.

Soooo i'm flushing with my tap water, i figure it's better then nothing.

EC-520
PH-5.90

My ? is, is my tap water ran through a water softner and having an EC of around 520 to high to allow me to use when i fill up tomorrow and add new nutes. Or do i need to go out and buy some water??

Really thinking with as much rain as we get off and on, to just set up rain barrels so i don't have to worry about RO water, any real problem with doing that?

And if i go by the 520, my return stuff is down to 858. Started at like 1200ish.
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  #53  
Old 06-26-2011, 04:57 PM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Hey Mater,

Everything that I have read says DO NOT USE soften water... and personally I would think if you are trying to remove salts from a system, you wouldn't want to use water that has salts added to it.

Todd
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  #54  
Old 06-26-2011, 05:21 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Well the water softner that i use, i use Potassium instead of Sodium, with my health i have to be as sodium free as i can be. Looks like i'll be buying some water then.

Where did you get your RO unit at Freshwater? Got any pic's of your set up? Mine is kind of a pain in the neck cause it's attached to the kitchen sink so i have to bucket it one at a time.
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Old 06-26-2011, 07:23 PM
GpsFrontier GpsFrontier is offline
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As much as I would like to use RO water to flush my systems, it's just not possible for me to get that much water from our RO system. They do make High volume RO systems, but run about $400. So I use the tap water that's from a water softener to flush my systems. I flush them multiple times. I'll clean the reservoir and pump first, then fill it with fresh (plane tap) water, and let it run through the system for about 20 minuets. Then dump the water, and do it again. Depending on how long it's been scene the last nutrient change, and how much time I have that day, I'll flush the system like that from 2 to 6 times. Then get as much of the "flushing" water out of the system before filling the reservoir with the RO water and nutrients.

As for collecting RO water, our tap is on the kitchen sink as well. I just use a piece of 1/2 inch tubing, and a five gallon bucket (picture attached). Notice the soap bottle against the water lever holding it up (so I don't need to do it). Our system only puts out 2 to 3 gallons at a time before the accumulator (tank) needs to fill back up again. It takes about 20-25 minutes to get that 2 to 3 gallons. Then I need to wait at least one and a half hours before the accumulator tank's full again. If I keep at it and time things right, I can get about 15 gallons a day out of our RO system. So I usually start collecting water the day before unless I only need 5 or 6 gallons, that way I have enough when I do the nutrient change.

Even though I don't want to, I have used tap water (from the water softener) for my nutrients in emergency's. Like when there was an unexpected leak or overflow that dumped my nutrients on the ground, and I didn't have time to collect enough RO water before the plants would die. Then I would use just enough tap water to allow the water and nutrients to cycle through without running the pump dry, and then finish filling it with RO water and nutrients the next day.
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Last edited by GpsFrontier; 06-26-2011 at 07:27 PM.
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  #56  
Old 06-27-2011, 10:32 AM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T'Mater View Post
Well the water softner that i use, i use Potassium instead of Sodium, with my health i have to be as sodium free as i can be. Looks like i'll be buying some water then.

Where did you get your RO unit at Freshwater? Got any pic's of your set up? Mine is kind of a pain in the neck cause it's attached to the kitchen sink so i have to bucket it one at a time.
No idea about using potassium, any way to bypass the softener and just get straight tap? Does it need to be de-chlorinated first?

I have a little G.E. Profile R.O. mounted under my NFT system. I only used the filtration unit, no storage tank, spout, or hardware. I take the output line and put it into my res. and turn on the hose bib. I fill my household drinking water 5 gallon glass bottles with it too. One of these days I will get my water storage system up and running (= money).


Being in the trades I got it from a buddy's job-site, freebie/trade. Not sure if I would have ponied up 280 for it. Look around, sometimes you can find them on Craigslist and ebay. But I gotta say, even at that price it's cheaper, and easier in the long run, when you start going through 40-50 gallons a week.

Todd
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Old 06-28-2011, 06:12 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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I got my R.O system fixed in time, silly me forgot to flip a switch back. So started fesh with new batch of nuts.

EC-900+
PH- 5.85

Plants are getting buds all over, and they are flowering. Pic soon.
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Old 07-09-2011, 12:19 AM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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Well since the last post i made a lot has happend. Remember Fresh when you looked at the area i live and commented about my storms....well one got me.

Blew over my little greenhouse, pulled the tomato plant's from there bucket's.

Man do i love Sure To Grow. Cause they came out so easily, i was able to crawl in my flipped over house. Unhooked all my plant's, had them laying in the front yard like they were on display. Only way i could take pic's tho was with my daughter's XL DSI so until i can figure out how to pull pic's off of it you just have to use your imagination.

My son and i rebuilt the greenhouse, rehung and put the plant's back in there bucket's and everything is good. Have several little mater's popping up everywhere.

It take's me awhile but have been using strictly RO water. I do believe at one time i was starting to burn the leaves with to much nutes. I've been keeping them no more then 1000ppm and start every morning at around 5.5PH.

Just wanted to say thanks Freshwater and GPS. For all the great tip's, and answering my ?'s when you could. Soon as i get my camera back from the wife(left it in my Excursion) i'll get some pic's up asap.

I couldn't be any happier, short of wishing now i would have boughten a bigger more commercial type of greenhouse and went for it.
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Old 07-09-2011, 12:52 PM
Freshwater Freshwater is offline
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Yo 'Mater,

Sorry to hear about getting hit by that storm

Did the main Sure-to-grow cube stay together (i.e. the main root mass)? Was it a 4x4 or a 6x6, can't remember. I am going to be very interested to get your feedback on the "Hail" further down the line. Everything I have read is all-good.

Awesome to hear that this little setback isn't causing you to scrap the plants and system, and that the plants survived. Any way you can tie your greenhouse down to the ground? I use portable 10x10 pop-ups as a workshop space at customers homes. I set heavy stakes (when I can) and use heavy duty tie down ratchet straps to "hold" my work spaces down to the ground. My 10x20 has been up for 3 months now, in a higher wind area, and (knock-on-wood) no problems so far.

Todd
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Old 07-09-2011, 04:00 PM
T'Mater T'Mater is offline
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What i did with my plant's is put them in the 6x6 cubes and they fit 2 in the bucket's perfectly IMO, diagonal. Then i filled the rest of the bucket with the hail.

Ya when they were laying on the grown the block's were solid so to speak, had plenty of root mass through out the blocks, matter of fact several of the plant's had grown into each other's block. And then most of the plant's had started going through the little hail cubes. Seem's they get plenty of air movement through them.

Well it was sitting in my driveway. So what i did was take my 2 home built steel saw horses and strapped it to those. Also attached multiple cynder blocks to both the house and the saw horses. Would take a tornado to move it now.

Tomorrow i'll get some pic's taken of the set up. Might even pull a plant out so you can see what the root's look like.

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