New Grower- have some basic questions!

Hello everyone- happy to join this community!

I am on my first grow. I had 3 seedlings sprout and managed to kill them all- mostly by my own ignorance.

I have some more seeds germinating now and I don’t want to mess these little ones up.

  1. First time I started in 5 gallon pots, which made it very difficult to water. I now have small pots to start them in. I am going to dampen the soil at first, but can anyone really explain watering 101 for me? How much water exactly; I’ve read water should be coming out the bottom of the pot?
  2. I have a 2000 led vivosun light. It has options to dim the light. On my first attempt I had it at 100% and about 8 inches from the seedlings. Is this wrong? Should I make changes to this?

Thank you in advance for the guidance. I was pretty depressed when I lost my first batch; I didn’t realize I’d get so attached to my little girls!


Forgot to mention, was using a mix of autoflowering seeds from ILGM.

I also watered with a spray bottle every-other-day using tap water. I was very nervous of overwatering and often found my 5 gallon buckets of soil very dry (which is why I’m confused if I overwatered.

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If your new it’s hard to water a 5 gallon pot because your soil should look dry. You can’t wet all that soil or plant will have way to much. If using 5 gallon your better off using a little water around the perimeter of the plant itself and work out as plant gets bigger. Start with just a cup of water every couple days or so. After it gets bigger you’ll work up to 500 ml which is a bottle of drinking water. Autos sometimes don’t take well to transplanting. As the plant gets bigger and you keep increasing the water all soil will be damp


Welcome to the community @Bigbudguy

That is true but only much later after the plant is well established.

I put sprouts directly in to 3 gal fabric pots with pre-moistened soil. They will not see water again for at least a few days. I cover with a clear dome until they are established. That holds enough moisture for them to get 1st leaves. After that the plant basically tells me when to water. That and the weight compared wet to dry.


With seedlings im personality a firm believer in solo cups or bigest 1 gallon pots i prefer transplanting that starting in a final pot out the gate it helps to master watering when its a seedlings i like to start with nice moist soil when i put my seed in then i feel how heavy the cup is and in a day or 2 ill lift the cup again to feel for weight if the fup is lite i moisten it again i personally dont do any runoff till my plant is atleast a few nodes high then ill water to run off and wait a till the cup is lite again but with autos alot prefer to plant into the finaly pot due to any type of stress the plant endures canbset it bavk substantially for new growers i highly recommended feminized photoperiod seed over autos sense with photos you have alot of time to correct issues with autos any stress or mess ups will hender your end result


Hello there - I am also new but some things I’ve observed recently… do not fill to run off for seedling… moist soil tuck it in not too deep and leave her be… I lost one also I feel your loss!! As for the light that seems very close… you don’t need a light until the sprout and which point I believe you should use the recommended setting on the light about 18 I believe?? Don’t quote me on any of this haha… I had mine on but just to keep temp even… also dome helped keep humidity around 75… you can check mine out also if you like I ask lots of questions too :+1:

Excited newbie here! 4x4 indoor


I believe they have you figured out in the soil issue. As for your light you need to download the photone app or get a lux meter so you can properly read your ppfd/umols and get the proper amount. If you use the search bar up top in the site then search start using DLI There is a lot of info on the topic there. Seedlings dont need much light you can raise them up with a desk lamp. Once they get bigger you need about 300ppfd/umols consistent thru veg


Welcome to the community! You have been talking good care of with the response’s. You will do fine! Happy Growing :blush::v:

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Perhaps just to ease your mind take a look at this plant just about to break ground…

That taproot grows really fast. Once they are above ground the root is already down deep in the soil and grabbing water. Like you I premoisten the soil. Not soggy, just damp. If I take a handful and squeeze it no water drips out. But it will form a ball that breaks up easily. I don’t water for at least a week after it sprouts. I only cover with a dome a day or two. One of our best growers here never domes them at all. He says nature doesn’t so neither does he. Point is that it is really hard to kill one by not watering. But you will easily kill one by watering too much.
You light should start out about 24 inches above and then adjust up or down depending on how much the seedling stretches.


Welcome @Bigbudguy. As stated above, solo cups with a clear dome works great for seedlings. I start mine in damp paper towels until germination, then into coco filled solo cups for the next 3-4 weeks. If you don’t use solo cups, just water a small amount around the seedling (like 10 ML small). The roots aren’t developed yet, so overwatering is pointless and deadly. They absorb most of the water from the cotyledons (baby leaves), hence the domes. I mist the domes daily and set the light to the correct intensity using photone app. Here’s the chart I use for light intensity.


Thanks everyone! I’ll use these new tips and report back in a week or so.

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Less is more when it come to seedling lighting. The plants will tell you when the light isn’t enough, if only you know how to listen. When you need more light (closer or up the dimmer) the plants will grow long and stretchy in search of more light. When you post next week include a picture that shows the height of the plant. If you have a 3” plant with 2 leaves… more light please.