Soil Grower trying DWC for the first time

1 week into flower…

I realized rather quickly that a 5 gal bucket just wasn’t big enough.
So I got a 17 gal tote…I painted it with several coats of white paint and a couple coats of clear lacquer…

I’m cutting and painting the top tomorrow…


Got the top cut and painted…

I used a rubber mat to give a little rigidity to the top…also the mat will help to seal the top against light leaks…

I’ll be filling it this evening and putting my Orange Bud into her new home :house:

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I offset the hole for my netpot to make it easier to slide the lid to one side to check roots…

I also cut a small hole, just big enough for me to get my hand inside to check res and to add nutes…
I decided against putting a valve on the bottom of the tote, instead I can remove water from the smaller hole with my 12 gal shop vac.

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Okie Dokie…My Orange Bud girl is in the 17 gal tote…

I veg’d her for 6 weeks and she is bigger than the hemp pots which I veg’d for almost 10 weeks
The growth in DWC is Phenomenal!!
The 2 hemp pots are GG4/DoSiDo and Chemdawg (All ILGM of course :wink:)

I am absolutely experiencing a learning curve, but I haven’t killed her yet.
For my 1st attempt at DWC I am very pleased.
The need for daily maintaince hopefully will diminish using the larger res.
17 gal tote holds exactly 8 gal to keep my pot 3-4" above the solution.

I purchased a " Hydrofarm AAPA15L Active Aqua, 4 Outlets, 6W, 15 L/min Air Pump"
I used a “Y” fitting to run 2-into-1 for the airlines. My thought was when I get a second tote I can disconnect the “Y” and run 2 lines into each tote with 4" blue cylinder stones.

I gladly accept and encourage any and all suggestions, ideas and critiques.
Knowledge is Power…

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How big of a pump are you using?
I’m thinking about getting another 17 gal tote, but I don’t think my pump pushes enough air for 2 totes.
I’m using this pump…ActiveAqua AAPA15L…15 LPM (240 GPH)

I have a pump question…I’m using the “Hydrofarm AAPA15L Active Aqua, 4 Outlets, 6W, 15 L/min Air Pump”
Will this pump be enough to run 2-17gal totes? Each tote holds 8 gal…
Thank You

I can’t remember what the pump size is as I went back to soil after I had issues

Ok thanks…I’m trying to think ahead so I don’t end up with (another) box of collected junk LOL

Thank You and Good Luck

@DirtBug Your pump moves 240 gallons per hour and your volume is 16 gallons if I’m understanding your question. Your system would turn over 15 times per hour which should be fine. My system does 16 times per hour with no issues

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Thank You :+1:

Hey All… Well I’m 5 weeks into Flower and my leaves are looking yellow with the veins still green…

I’m not sure if this is normal for DWC…??

My res stays at 5.8, my ppm is around 850-950. Water temp stays 68-71°f ( I use 2 ml HydroGuard per gal)
I’m using the FloraNova line of nutes.

It looked like maybe a Phosphorus deficiency , so I gave her a shot of Herculean Harvest and CalMag…

Any ideas or critiques???

@DirtBug I see you have two different strains there. Are they autos, or photoperiods? If periods, what’s the flower period? The buds look like they are coming along. Please tag me

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This is my 1st attempt at DWC…I hedged my bets and did 2 in soil in case I killed the DWC girl…:grin:
I have Chemdawg and Gorilla Skittles in hemp pots.
The DWC is Orange Bud…
All ILGM of course…

I’m still learning this Forum so I’m not sure how to tag you…

All photo girls…about 6 weeks into Flower.

@DirtBug thanks for tagging me. How is the Orange Bud doing? I looked it up and it has a flower time of 8 - 9 weeks, so it is getting close. I pulled this nutrient tox / def. chart from this site that was posted by another member. I hope this helps.

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I see you like to grow several different strains at a time just like me. I’ve grown about 12 different strains all from ILGM and what I found is all of them have different nutrient needs. Chocolope did best with a max EC of 1.5 and Critical Mass wanted EC of 2.2.
What General Hydroponics / other products did you use? How much did you add, and what is your res volume?

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I use GH FloraNova series…
I started in a 5 gal bucket… Within 2 weeks I realized :astonished: that 5 gal wasn’t going to be enough…I switched to a 17 gal tote and it made quite a difference.
pH was much more stable, temps stayed about 69-72°f ( I use HydroGuard @ 2 ml per gal—No chiller)
I check my pH, EC, water temp and depth of solution every other day and adjust as necessary.
I’ve only done 2 complete res changes…
I changed between Veg and Flower.
I just did another change a couple days ago.

Sorry about being long-winded, just smoked some California Dream…:grin:

Thank You for the deficiency chart :+1: :v:

What line of Nutes do you use?
I’ve use the FloraNova line, it’s left over from my soil grows.
Now I’m doing DWC I’d like to look around and see if I can simplify my grow by decreasing the bottles of Nutes I have to purchase.
I have been reading about MaxiBloom…Apparently it has enough NPK to run an entire grow using just MB.

I’d like to get your opinion on what you use and any suggestions or ideas.


@DirtBug I use General Hydroponics Flora series that I bought 3 years ago when my local hydro store was discontinuing GH products. I bought a boat load of it for cheap. Now I’m up to about 15 additives and they can be very costly. I’m happy with the results, but the price leaves me wondering if there are more cost friendly alternatives out there.
I looked at the FloraNova products and was surprised that the densities are ~36% higher than the flora series. I added it to my nutrient calculator and can spit some PPM values if you give me amount of product added and total volume of your system. I calculate every nutrient exchange and compare to my measured values, then mark it as acceptable, too weak or strong. Problem is that every plant likes a different EC level and I found myself chasing PPMs. Then I stumbled across this water level, EC, pH chart on 420 magazine and I modified it for hydroponics. I saw the chart on this forum as well.
I would assume Maxibloom would be used for flower phase only and not sure what other products are required, if any. Let me look into it.
I will upload the nutrient data and water, EC, pH chart later today. They are in the wrong format.

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