When it came time to "Leach" the soil plants that are in flower, I asked the folks here about How to go about this venture. Believe me, if you have never been any kind of gardener in the past, and now you are tasked with caring not only for a special plant(s), but one that keeps you healthy as well, you want to be sure you do this right. GreenPassion has folks that can answer damn near ANY question you have...so just don't be afraid to ask it! (No one could have been "Newbie'er" than I was)
Once I got the idea figured out, I didn't see how you could do it wrong...but then again...sometimes we can get the simplest things wrong!
Here is how I went about it. I'm sure it is not the only method, but it worked for me as best as I can tell. This plant was locked up, and would not hardly take even plain water, and was fading too fast with 5 more weeks of flowering to go...I had to do something to clean off all the crap that had built up around the root structure while I fed, overfed and underfed them nutes for the previous 12 weeks. Now, that plant is responding again to the nutrients and greening back up again, as well as increasing the Cola size and it had a nice growth spurt several days following the leaching.
Since very few of us bend as well anymore, seemed like it would be best if I got the plant up to a waist high level where I could comfortably pour in the water a gallon at a time.
Here is what I started with, and the process used. Please feel free to comment if something was done different, or incorrect based on established processes.
First, I set up a makeshift table across a couple short saw-horses, and made sure everything I might need was together, including 12 gal of clean water.
Flush table.jpg 46.63KB
On the table are the empty bin, with 2X2's on top to set plant on that the leached water will flow into, Ph UP and DOWN solutions, Digital Ph and PPM meters and a 18" ruler that I use as a stir stick.
I use a 4 gal. pot, and wanted to be sure none of the drain holes were blocked in any way...(so water can flow right through). Note the red circles where the drain holes are located on this pot:
Flush plant on bin.jpg 56.59KB
Next, the water needs to be Ph'd to the correct level:
Clean water Ph.jpg 32.66KB
You would also want to check the BEGINNING PPM of the water you will pour through, so that you can compare that to the readings you will get once the water has passed through the plant. You know you won't get less PPM in the drained fluid than the initial water started with.
Clean water PPM.jpg 44.03KB
Now (I think) we are ready to begin!
I took a 1 gal container and within about 5 min. poured 4 Gal. into the pot and let it drain for a few minutes afterwards to get as much of the initial leaching water out as possible:
Then, set the plant aside (It is HEAVY now!) and check the PPM of the water that has flowed through your plants soil:
1st flush PPM.jpg 28.93KB
DUMP that bad water, and re-set the bin/boards back up. Repeat the whole process again, pouring through 4 more gallons of the clean, Ph'd water, and again checking the PPM of the water that has passed through your soil and root structures:
2nd flushing PPM.jpg 41.25KB
By now, the soil is really soaked. Set the plant off and drain the fluid from the 2nd leaching and re-set your boards & plant for the 3rd and final leaching. By this time 8 gallons have already passed through the roots, and 4 more gallons should complete the process. The last 4 gallons are poured through in less than a 5 min time frame, and again, PPM the run off water to see how much the overall PPM has dropped since the first 4 gallons:
3rd and final PPM.jpg 46.04KB
The PPM of the "pass-thru" water has now dropped from the initial 540 PPM to 210 PPM, and we also know that 130 of the PPM belong to the leach water PRIOR to even being poured through the plant. This plant should now be ready to dry out for a few days, and then once again it can accept the nutrients and be able to access the benefits of them
I had never done this process before, so I have no idea if the above is "Gospel", or just the way I choose to do it. Hope you find it helpful,
Edited by ISO2BWELL, 10 November 2010 - 06:53 PM.