I had the pleasure of interviewing with “Johnny J.”.
We asked Johnny how he grows his own in his home state of Massachusetts. I’m sure this information is applicable to many states throughout the United States.
Johnny has provided visitors with his own unique grow guide. He’s kind enough to offer his insight and he goes into detail about his different and unique methods of growing.
Johnny J Grower Spotlight:
Please tell my readers about yourself and your grow operation.
Johnny J: My name is Johnny I’m from Massachusetts, and I grow indoors only. Mine grow OP consists of a veg room. A flower room and a breeding room. I run a 4x4x80 veg room and a 4x4x80 flower room. My breeding room is a 2x4x72 closet turned grow space. I started growing as soon as it became legal to grow in Massachusetts. Two main reasons as to why I began to grow my own.
The first reason was to treat my wife’s PTSD, depression, and anxiety properly. It became tough to find the proper strains, and when you did find one, it was expensive. The dispensaries cost way too much.
The black market is cheap, but you don’t know what your getting, you can put a name on anything. As stated above, the second reason is cost. Proper meds and the amount needed would cost a couple of car payments a month.
So I decided to grow my own. Best decision I have ever made. With proper meds, we can eliminate a bunch of pharmaceutical prescriptions that zombify, mess with your head and turn you into something your not.
Not to mention these pharmaceutical drugs would be changed around continually causing all kinds of mental issues. So now we can control that. Cutting out these prescriptions one by one, still a ways to go but we will get there.
When did you first get involved in growing your own? Do you do this for a living?
Johnny J: I do not grow to make a living. I work a full-time job. I’m a full-time husband and father of two. However, I dream of having a profession in the cannabis industry.
The cannabis community is exceptional.
Many friendly, helpful, caring, informative and unselfish members.
Many sick people too.
These people need proper medication and can’t get it due to laws and restrictions. They also run into strain issues. Hard to get good quality strains. There are however some people out there with quality strains.
Restrictions and laws prevent people from getting those meds. I am hoping to drop a genetics line in 2020. I’m hoping and praying the laws loosen up to make my strains legally available to the cannabis community by then.
I’m currently working with a group of friends around the country in strain development and seed bank. Jigga Genetics is looking to drop on April 20th, 2020.
What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve faced while growing?
Johnny J: The most significant obstacle I have faced is staying compliant with state law. It is good to have restrictions; however, for a grower like myself, these restrictions can create difficulty. Making sure I always have the proper trains, sex and quality (health, structure) plant is crucial.
Is there a particular season or time of year to grow cannabis indoors?
Johnny J: The good thing about growing cannabis indoors is that you do not rely on mother nature. Essentially, you are mother nature.
You control the environment.
So to answer your question, no, no particular season to grow cannabis indoors.
However, it may be harder to control your indoor temps during the summer months when the weather will get hot and humid.
You will have to figure out a way to bring down the grow room temperatures and humidity. Those problems can be solved with a dehumidifier for the humidity.
A small portable AC unit for the temps. Now, some people may not be able to afford equipment like an AC unit. If that is the case, you will need to think outside the box.
Maybe stick your tent near a window and unzip the side of the tent and open the window to help vent excess heat.
Maybe dim down your lights on the extra hot days. I run my flower room in a room that has a window AC, so I just unzip the tent and let my AC cool it.
I’m using the AC anyway, so there is no need to run extra electricity on a portable unit for inside the tent.
Most vent units and exhaust fans will work when you run them through your lights and out your tent. It’s on the extra hot and humid days where you have to interfere and change a couple of things to get your grow environment under control. Once you figure out what works for you, it’s a breeze.
What equipment do you need to grow cannabis indoors?
Johnny J: The equipment needed to grow indoors depends on your grow area.
Essential Questions one should ask themselves:
- What do you have for space?
- Is it a closet?
- Is it an entire spare room?
- What size is that room?
- Is it a space inside of a room?
- First and foremost where is your grow space and then your light?
- Do not buy a light if you don’t know where or how much grow space you are going to have/use?
Grow tents are very common for indoor grows. People who grow or who want to grow indoors still have restrictions that do not include the law. They may have to keep the grow area stealthy from neighbors, landlords, family, and friends.
Even though cannabis is legal in most states, it was still new and viewed as a criminal offense to many. So if you have to be stealthy, then a tent is the way to go.
Even if you’re not going to be stealthy, tents are still a viable option. If you are just going to quarantine off a specific area in a room just for growing but need to utilize that room, then grow tents are the way to go. Grow tents also help keep the area free from contact with pests such as spider mites.
Tents also prevent unwanted light from televisions, same room/other room lighting, street lights, etc. This is vital to your plants dark period. Light during the dark cycle will disrupt the growth and development of your plants during the flowering process. They will not produce a flower, or they will produce a poor quality flower.
Timers are very important.
An osculating fan is also a necessity in all indoor grows. It is mother nature’s wind. The fan helps with air circulation. You do not want stale air. Co2 helps, and we will discuss that. An osculating fan also helps with some heat and humidity. Helps prevent pests, and is very important to help strengthen your stalks and branches on your plants.
This is important as you want a plant that can support its weight, and support your buds. But trust me, we all want buds that we have to help support by tying them upright with ropes and using garden stakes. But the plant needs to hold up most of its weight.
Now you may be asking why an osculating fan? Why not a regular box fan? Windburn is that answer. Keeping your fan in only one spot, even if it’s covering the whole area will severely damage your plant. It is like sustained winds. You want the wind to gently brush across your plants, back off and then come back. Just like being outside in nature. We want to mimic nature. Not trap our plants in hurricane-force winds.
Exhaust/intake fans with carbon filters are required in many indoor grows. This helps with air circulation which promotes growth in your plants. Stale air slows down/stunts growth.
These fans allow fresh air to come into your grow area and stale hot air to exhaust out. These exhaust/intake fans help with temperature and humidity control as well. Some grow areas do not require these fans. Such as one of the mines, as I have the free will to open a window and my tent.
The carbon filter helps prevent odor from escaping out of your grow area. But remember, that smell is being exhausted somewhere.
Temperature/humidity monitors are critical to your indoor grow as well. There are many variations to these, and you can get em cheap, or you can get ones that you can read off your electronic devices so you can monitor while you’re away.
Supplemented Co2 is very common in many indoor grows as well. If you are running a sealed room, then Co2 is a must. Your plant uses Co2 as part of the photosynthesis process. Without Co2 your plant will die. There is plenty of Co2 in most grow areas if you are not doing a completely sealed grow area. It is in the air we breathe. But if you are sealed up, you will need it.
Supplemented Co2 will also help your plant intake more energy from the light and in turn, increase your yields. Your yields can be increased by up to 25%, and this is why a lot of indoor growers will supplement they’re grow with it. There are a few different options for that.
The rest of the equipment needed is your supplies. Such as growing medium (soil, coco, etc.) pots, nutrients, PH kits, timers.Everything pays for itself after your harvest.
Which grow tent(s) do you currently recommend?
Johnny J: I currently recommend the Vivosun grow tent. It is a good quality tent for the price. If you are just starting out, it’s a great tent to start with; it keeps light out when needed, and that’s one of the most important things while growing.
Some of the cheaper tents have many pinholes and/or not constructed well. You want a beefy sturdy tent. Gorila Grow tents are fantastic but can be expensive. Best in the market In my opinion. But you don’t need one of their tents to grow. Find what suits your finances.
What is your favorite fox farm product?
Johnny J: My favorite Fox Farm product is their Ocean Forest soil (find the nearest store). It’s been used for years by many renowned growers. This soil should not be used for clones and seedlings though. As it is too heavy with its natural nutrients, they offer a soil for seedlings. I happen to use Coast Of Maine seedling soil as it is perfect for them. My seedlings and clones love it.
What indoor grow kit do you currently recommend?
Johnny J: I do not recommend any complete grow kits at this time.
I highly recommend you stay local.
Have your local hydroponic store put one together for you. They usually always offer discounts, and/or they can price match and order one for you. I recommend you always read reviews of products online and compare to what suits your specific needs.
What’s one product on the market that’s currently underrated for home grows?
Johnny J: The most underrated products out there for a grow is a PPM meter. This is vital in making sure your plants are getting precisely what they need for nutrients. You don’t want to give too much. Even a little too much can harm your plants.
What size pots do you recommend I use to grow cannabis?
Johnny J: Pot sizes have everything to do with your plant’s growth from seed to harvest. I recommend that novice growers first start their germinated seeds in the plastic party size cups from your local market or convenient stores.
Start your seedlings or clones in there until they reach the vegetation stage of their life cycle. Once they are ready, I recommend you transplant them into a 1-gallon pot until they need to be transplanted again.
Then from the 1 gallon, they should go directly into their final pot size. So either a 3 gallon or a 5-gallon pot. I prefer 3-gallon final size pots as it suits the space I have in my grow areas and my plant count. The larger, the pot the fewer plants I can fit. You can always start your germinated seeds in their final pot right away.
However, most growers do not as you can easily run into over watering issues. You need to know how to water before you start doing that. I do not recommend that to the inexperienced grower.
Are there particular seeds you recommend a grower use indoors?
Johnny J: I do not recommend any particular seed or type of cannabis to grow indoors or outdoors.
Sativas naturally want to grow extremely tall, while Indicas stay shorter and bushier.
Indicas are preferred for most indoor grows.
However, with different grow techniques such as topping, super cropping, scrogging and some low-stress training, you can shape up any plant(s) to fit your grow area. If I had to recommend a perfect plant for indoor grows, I would have to recommend northern lights. Well known strain, a nice perfect little Indica. Does not want to get too tall on you. Very high yields and very easy too grow.
What’s one seed you wouldn’t use indoors?
Johnny J: I will use any seed indoor. Again with all those different techniques to shape up your plants, you can control the growth of your plant. Now, some seeds (cannabis strains) are more fit for indoor/outdoor. However, you can grow any seed in any one of those environments.
What temperature would you recommend for home grow?
Johnny J: Seedlings and plants in vegetation like temperatures between 70-80 degrees with humidity levels between 60-70%. Think spring/summer days.
For plants in the flowering stage think the end of summer/fall. The plants like temps between 60-75 degrees, but with lower humidity. Humidity should be between 40-60%. The lower end of the ladder the closer you get to harvest.
What advice or simple tricks would you recommend to a novice grower that’s interested in home growing? How would you suggest they start off?
Johnny J: Please research as much as you can before you make any purchase. Learn the basics. Do not go and buy a light designed for a 5×5 area and stick it in your 2×4 closet. You will kill your plants. I studied up for a solid two years before I planted my first seed.
If you go in blind, you are going to fail your first grow. If you fail, you will probably get discouraged and stop altogether.
You will continue to purchase unreliable meds. Grow your own medicine. Just research first.
Don’t only watch the good growers, watch bad ones too. I learn what not to do from watching bad growers.
Join the cannabis community!
We are a massive worldwide community sharing knowledge, experience, strain reviews, etc.
The cannabis community is more than growers and smokers. It’s everything there is about cannabis from the inside out.
Cleanliness is vital while growing. What advice would you give to a person that’s cleaning their grow area?
Johnny J: Cleanliness is super important to your grow. You do not want to attract pests, promote mold/mildew. I recommend you always clean your grow space. Always be sure to disinfect your grow area after each grow as well.
How does one properly ventilate a grow area?
Johnny J: With an inline fan and some ducting, you can easily vent your grow room. Grow tents come equipped with all the portholes needed to vent correctly.
The inline fan will suck fresh air into your room and vent out the hot stale air.
What you have to do is set up some ducting through one of the holes on one side of the tent, through your hood (if you are using a vented hood on your light) through the vent fan and out the hole on the other side of the tent.
You will usually want to vent outside of a window instead of directly into your room. Eventually, that same air will just recirculate, so be sure to vent your air out of the room you are in.
If you are not using a vented hood that’s ok. Just use separate pieces of ducting. Run one piece in and the other piece out through your exhaust fan. You can pick up kits that come with carbon air filters to get rid of odor as well.
How does one cool down a grow room?
There are a few ways to cool down you’re grow room. Venting air through your lights helps take the heat from the lamps and take it out your grow room.
The most effective way is a portable AC. Hardware stores have them, and you can easily get them online. These units you just place right in your grow room. However, they are not the most cost-efficient.
Typically how many days does it take to grow cannabis indoors?
Johnny J: From seed to harvest it takes 120-150 days depending on the strain. A month as a seedling. 4-6 weeks in veg, 8-10 weeks in flower.
Now, if you take clones, you can cut out roughly a month of the seedling stage as you are taking clones from plants in the vegetation stage.
Running more than one grow room will allow you to run different light rotations, with two grow rooms you can always have plants in veg and in flower. Therefore you can harvest every 60 days.
When the plants in flower are harvested, you simply disinfect your grow room and take the plants from the veg room and put them in the now empty flower room.
With a three-light rotation and you can harvest every 30 days. So depending on what you have for space and how much medicine you need you can then alter the amount of time it takes to harvest.
If a home grower messes up light periods or photoperiod of the growing process, what advice do you recommend that grower do?
Johnny J: This is where research before growing comes in handy.
If you mess up your light periods, it can harm your plant.
If your plant is in veg stage and it gets too much darkness, you will force that plant to flower.
If your plant is not ready for flower, it will yellow put and die.
If your plant is in flowering stage and it gets too much light, it will want to revert to the vegetation stage, and your plants will stop growing its buds.
Some growers will do this purposely after harvest. They will re-veg some of their plants. Kind of like cloning in a sense.
Now, if you make a small mistake and mess up a light period, it can still be harmful to your plants.
If you are in your room during the plants dark period with a flashlight checking them out, you will stress out your plants.
You will stunt their growth; you will stress the plant(s) to the point where they will self-pollinate causing your plant(s) to focus most of its energy on making seeds instead of bud.
This is not good as you do not want seeded bud. The quality of your medicine will suffer.
If you do happen to mess up on a plant’s light period, I suggest you fix whatever the problem was. Leave your plants alone and let them recover. Don’t feed them any nutrients thinking that it will help. Just let them be. Hopefully, everything will work out.
What nutrients should I use?
Johnny J: If you are just starting to grow, I recommend general hydroponics flora nova and flora bloom.
These are basic vegetation stage nutrients and flowering nutrients. Very easy to use. Nothing complicated at all.
As a beginner, it’s easy to get excited about using nutrients. If you give too much, you will kill your plants. Less is more when you are first starting off.
All nutrients are made up of the same stuff, just different ratios. You will eventually move on to different nutrients once you get the experience.
You will find what works best for your strains. Calcium/magnesium is a must have in all indoor grows.
Magnesium is used up by the plant it’s entire life cycle. Cal/mag should be given to your plants during vegetation and half way through flower and mag/sulfur during the last half of flower.
How do I apply my nutrients?
Johnny J: There are different ways to apply your nutrients.
Depending on your growing media and grow system you may be using a reservoir tank, or you may just be mixing your nutrients into gallon jugs of water.
I love being in the garden, so I still hand water, my babies. It’s a lot of work, but you feel terrific after. I use measuring cups (shot glasses with ML markers) to mix teaspoons each of the nutrients I use.
I mix the appropriate amounts of nutrients in my gallon jugs and then I PH my water afterward to make sure my PH is in line.
How much water should I be giving it?
Johnny J: You want to research how to water your plants properly.
Overwatering/underwatering can cause severe issues in your grow. Overwatering will cause severe problems from pests, to root rot.
You want to make sure you water right before your soil runs dry. Stick your finger in the soil, if the soil is dry, then you want to water your plants.
A great way to tell if your plant needs water is by lifting your pot. If the pot is light and your finger is dry after checking the soil.
You will want to water it. After just a short time you will know the difference between water in your pot and no water in your pot by lifting your pots.
Lift your pot after you water and feel the weight.
Lift your pot when it’s dry, lift when it’s halfway. Lifting your pots is a great tool.
When the plant is small, it does not need much water. Container size is essential for appropriate watering. If you have a small plant in a big pot, and you soak that pot, you are going to over water your plant.
Small pots for small plants and transplant as needed. When watering, you want to make sure you water the pot until you have a little runoff water. This ensures all your roots are wet and not running dry and dying off. Lift your pot and make sure it has some weight to it.
How far down do I put the seed to start it germinating?
Johnny J: I recommend you germinate your seed before you plant it. There are a few excellent techniques to use when germinating.
I suggest you research and find what works best for you. They are all very easy, and for all growers, it’s an inspiring moment when you pop your seeds.
You want to plant your germinated seed a few cm’s into your topsoil. Your first knuckle is a useful marker.
How long should the light be “on” in a given day?
Johnny J: During seedling/vegetation stage your lights should be on for 18hrs and off for 6hrs. This is the most standard and conventional ratio for vegetation. Think long summer days.
During flowering, your light should be on for 12hrs and off for 12 hours. Think shorter days in the fall.
Which is the right pot to use?
Johnny J: There is no wrong pot to use. Just don’t expect to grow a pound of medicine in a 1-gallon pot. Your roots need space to grow. More roots more fruits. If you grow a large plant in a small pot your roots will get root bound, essentially suffocating your plant and killing it, so transplanting is very important.
You can start your small plants in bigger pots, but you need to know that you can not water the entire pot. If you over water the pot, that little plant can not uptake that water over time.
That pot will stay wet for an extended period. Your roots will rot, your plant will be overwatered, you will attract pests, and your plants will die. It is imperative that if you start in a large pot that you give just the amount of water needed for the plant size.
How far above the pot should I hang the light?
Johnny J: The distance between the top of your plants and the light source is essential. A plant can thrive, or it can die based upon the amount of light and the distance between your plants. You do not want to burn your plants by having the light source kicking out too many watts right above your plants.
You also want your plants to thrive, so you don’t want too little light and be far away from your plants. I highly recommend you research this before you get started. It’s straightforward to comprehend once you research it and it will also help you decide on what lights you want to buy based on the space you have.
I do not want to recommend a light package that does not suit your grow area. Your lighting is going to be based on your grow space. Your grow space should be the first thing determined before you buy a light.
Will my house stink like weed?
Johnny J: When growing cannabis indoors your house will smell, it’s a beautiful thing. However, that can be an unwanted odor.
Properly venting and using carbon filters will help but may not completely get rid of the smells as you will be in and out of your garden. The smaller your grow, the easier it is to contain those odors.
Do you use any pesticides?
Johnny J: I do not use any pesticides. I want my medicine to be pesticide free. So if I see any pests, I will be ripping up my garden, disinfecting the grow room and starting again.
I have multiple rooms so although tearing up a garden hurts; it’s not a huge setback. There are safe insecticides you can use; I just prefer not to use them.
Do you grow from seed?
Johnny J: I do grow from seed. I introduce a lot of different strains to my grow. It is vital in finding the proper medicine. Just because one strain works for many people does not mean it will work as good for you. One strain does not cure everything. I like to find strains that work for different ailments and breed them together to make better medicine.
Do you grow from clones?
Johnny J: I do grow from clones. This is vital in making strains and/or keeping a great plant in your grows. If you don’t have any seeds of that particular strain anymore, then taking clones will ensure you keep that genetic in-house.
What strains do you grow?
Johnny J: I grow many different strains. I love Indicas the most. My wife loves the Sativa plant as it keeps her motivated during the day.
If you are referring to strain-specific, I have many.
I have Sourburst which I created myself and hope to introduce to the public when Jigga Genetics drops in 2020.
I also have a zero dark 30 crossed with my Sourburst which is very high in CBD and THC. Cherry Pie, Sour Diesel, Zero dark 30, Girl Scout Cookies and Pink Starburst are a couple of other strains I keep in-house.
Are prices (per pound) stabilizing in Massachusetts?
Johnny J: Prices per lb are stabilized in Massachusetts at around $2,000.00 per.
Do you use soil mix? Hydroponic? If not Hydroponic, which one
Johnny J: I use soil as my growing medium. I have done soil mixed with coco coir to allow more air into my roots. There are many different ways to growing your cannabis, and all are effective. Soil just suits my grow style.
Do you have an active breeding program?
Johnny J: I do have an active breeding program. I found it hard to do by myself, so I have a small team of breeders and testers.
It’s not that breeding is hard, it’s the time it takes to find the right phenotypes of specific strains, the amount of time it takes to do alone is very time consuming and takes a lot of space.
The state laws put in place with plant count also negatively affected my solo operation.
Do you develop new strains?
Johnny J: I do develop new strains. I am always networking and bringing in strains, sending strains out to be tested and crossed. Bringing those strains back. It’s a form of art, and I love it.
Can you grow cannabis indoors without lights?
Johnny J: Light is a significant part of the plant’s photosynthesis process. You need light to grow your plants. Light is life. You can not grow cannabis indoors without a light source.
Do you grow indoor or outdoor? Or both?
Johnny J: I grow my cannabis exclusively indoors. Right now I use a small 100 watt dimmable T5 light for seeds and clones. I also use a 400 watt dimmable T5 for late seedlings and veg.
I also use MH/HPS lights for vegetation and flower in my other room. I will be bringing in a 315 LEC light in the next couple of months. More efficient with electrical cost and will run less heat in one of the rooms.
What do you think about LED lighting?
Johnny J: I think LEDs are great. They just need to be appropriately used. You can’t have one small LED in a large grow area unless you hook it up to a light mover or purchase more quantities. There is no wrong light to use. It all depends on your grow space and how much you need to grow to ensure you always have your medicine.
Do you cure your harvest for more than a week or two?
Johnny J: I cure my harvest for well over a week or two. The longer, the better. You get a nice smooth, beautiful tasting medicine.
I use aerobic conditions to cure my medicine. I allow my plants to dry upside down in a cool dark room with low humidity. Once my plants are dried after 1-2 weeks, I then cut off my buds, trim them up and store them in mason jars.
I then take those jars and stick them in a cool dark room with low to comfortable humidity, 50_60% humidity. I also place a 62% humidity pack inside my jars to help keep the buds at the perfect humidity.
I also “burp” my jars periodically. Meaning I open the lids on the jars, swish the buds around so fresh air replaces the stale air. You want to burn your jars often at the beginning of the during the process.
Touch your buds, make sure they are not moist. If they are wet leave the jar open for a couple of hrs, replace the lid and repeat as necessary. The humidity pack helps keep the humidity in check and also prevents your medicine from drying out. You don’t want your buds to grow mold on them during the curing process, so all these steps are essential in the during the process.
What contingency plans do you have in place in case there is an outbreak of pests, like Spyder Mites?
Johnny J: As stated previously I don’t like pests. I will chop down my garden and start fresh. Fortunately, I have not encountered this problem. I’m very cautious when I bring in clones; I inspect the plant thoroughly before it enters my garden.
I make sure that the garden and house stays clean. I disinfect all items from hydro stores or any items bought online. Hydro stores have bugs. They are brought in by other growers, and they lurk there.
People go right from their indoor/outdoor gardens and go right to the hydro store. Items will get contaminated. Pets, children, friends, even yourself will bring in pests from outside. So be sure to decontaminate before anything or anyone enters your garden.
Is the water supply RO?
Johnny J: My water supply is not RO. I do purchase and use distilled water for my seedlings though. I am fortunate enough to live in Massachusetts where my tap water ranges from 75-80 PPMs.
The county I live in also has excellent water sources. Very clean, Very low PPM. I do recommend that if you are going to use tap water to make sure you know what is in it.
Don’t use water your plant cannot have. Know your PPM levels out the faucet. You do not want to feed your plants 750 PPMs of nutrients, and then you add that to the 700+ PPMs in the water supply.
Do you have an environmentally friendly way of dealing with wastewater?
Johnny J: I try to reuse all water when I can. I reuse all runoff water from the seedlings as no nutrients are needed for seedlings. I also reuse the runoff water from my plants in early veg as well when I use low amounts of nutrients.
It’s overtime when these salts from the nutrients build up. So when it comes the time just for watering, if you were to use that water, it would be full of salts/PPMs.
If you were to use that runoff water, you would be giving your plants too many nutrients, and they will burn up. You can kill them. This is why feeding regiments become very important.
Do you use solar for any electricity?
Johnny J: I do not use any solar for my grow, but it is definitely something I always thought of even before I planted my first seed. Too help with cost and to help save energy.
What’s your nutrient regimen?
Johnny J: My feeding regime consists of Distilled/RO water for the first 30 days of the plant’s life. I will then begin to feed plants. The amount of nutrients varies on age/size of my plants. I feed the plants, then the next time they need a drink I give them water. Then I will give water again. That is the primary pattern I use. Feed, water, water, feed, water, water.
I will use a range of nutrients. I am currently using the emerald harvest line for the first time in a specific room. Certain plants prefer precise amounts of specific nutrients. So for me, I keep a small surplus of nutes in-house. You will learn what your plants thrive on when sometimes a particular strain may prefer very low amounts of nutrients and thrive really well.
I do not want to recommend any nutrient to anyone grower. If you are just beginning, I recommend a straightforward, very light diet for your plants until you research and get comfortable with feedings. A TDS/PPM reader is also a must.
What do you use for veg and flower?
Johnny J: For veg, I use nutrients to help promote growth and structure for my plants. A higher nitrogen diet helps with that.
I also try to focus on the root zone so I will always add microbes, and I will also use silica to help build cells.
In veg, you should shapen, and strengthen your plant for the flowering stage. The silica will also help protect your plants from environmental stress from cold/heat, will help prevent pests as well.
In flower, I use nutrients to help promote bud building, aromas, and taste. I back off of the nitrogen and give it more potassium and phosphorus. That is pretty much the conventional way of growing with nutrients.
You don’t need nutrients if you are going to grow indoors. Good soil can take you from seed to harvest.
Just be sure to start in small pots and transplant into larger ones. By replacing the soil during transplants, you are adding vital nutes back into the pot where they have been drained from after each watering.
I also highly recommend you get a bottle of Cal/Mag. The most common problem in every garden is calcium/magnesium deficiencies. These are very common in everybody’s grow. They are easily fixed with the Cal/Mag supplement.
Do you trim buds manually with people or via a bud trimming machine with people just doing the last cleanup trim before packaging?
Johnny J: I trim buds manually. I do not use any machines.
Should the lower leaves be turning yellow?
Johnny J: Your leaves should not be yellowing during veg. All growth should be green. You will see some yellowing, but you will identify the problem and fix it.
Unless you run into a serious issue, in flower, it is ok to see yellowing more towards the second half of flower.
This is natural with plants as your buds are taking the nutrients from the leaves to promote building and ripening. Your plant will naturally die out. Turning yellow first.
Should the tips of the leaves be curling?
Johnny J: Leaves that are curling and taco-ing are also common problems. Usually caused by stress such as heat. If the tips are “clawed,” it’s a sign of nitrogen toxicity. All these issues are easily fixed if you research first.
How are you addressing the carbon footprint and environmental issues of your operation?
Johnny J: When it comes to the carbon footprint I try to be as environmentally friendly as I can. I use runoff water when I can; I am aware with electricity so I will cut back on other electrical uses when I can.
I use T5 lights instead of all MH bulbs for growth stages. Remaining completely eco-friendly is tough. Solar panels are expensive, and I do not know how to build one.
What is your optimum pH for your grows?
Johnny J: My optimum PH is right around 6.5. I’m happy with that PH all day. It’s vital that you PH your water supply even on water only days.
Do you use any products or techniques to boost yield and terpene production?
Johnny J: I do use products to help boost yields and terpene production. I use a range of products at different stages in the life cycle. I will flush my plants completely at the two weeks mark.
For the last two weeks, I give straight water. The wastewater from the flush period is dumped outside in our compost pile where we put all our yard trimmings, grass clippings, harvested plants, etc.
Do you believe the industry is over regulated?
Johnny J: I do believe the industry is over-regulated. It is good to have regulation, but that regulation varies state to state. People should be allowed to have their medicine on them at all times. Carry it state to state if they need to.
In Massachusetts, I believe we should have more plant count. Especially when growing from seed, if a person plants 6 to 12 seeds, you don’t know how many are going to be female. Only females will produce proper medicine.
I also believe seedlings should not count toward your total plant count. It’s possible to have plants die on you, infestations. I think by always having seedlings around you won’t be set back on your meds as bad as if you didn’t.
For me, residing in Massachusetts. The most significant restriction is the plant count. I would like to see that increased.
For our country. We need to be able to carry our meds openly from state to state. If you can pop a Xanax anywhere, you should be able to take your CBD capsule as well. Such significant restrictions on the most powerful and efficient natural and safe medicine in the world.