Young plant with rather long stem

Hi everyone,

I’m an absolute beginner from France (yes I grow in secret lol).

May I ask for a little advice ?

My little plants are 1 week old, all seems alright, they look very healthy with new leaves coming, except for the stem : during germination they grow a pretty long stem, and when I planted the plugs in the 11L pots, I didn’t add substrat to « shorten » and consolidate the stems (I didn’t know it’s possible to do that).

Do you think I can do that now (add substrat) ?

Thanks a lot,

The term used to describe plants that have tall stems is that they are "leggy”. Typically, that’s caused by the plants not getting enough light. The idea is that they’re not getting enough light so they’re “stretching” to reach the light source.
The solution is to increase the power of the light or move the light closer to the plants.

Thank you for your answer.

The legging occurred while germinating, now that they are in the tent the light is OK I think (I’m using a 200W Lumatek ATTIS on 40 %).

My concern is will the stem support the weight of the leaves as they seem to grow very well ?

Got it.
I read a tip over the weekend about this and you’re correct - just add additional soil and, voila!, that stem is shorter! :slight_smile:

Oh that’s great !
I was wondering if the fact of surrounding the stem with substrat wouldn’t make it rot…

In your opinion, how much of the stem should I left uncovered ?

I wouldn’t think so but I’ve never grown anything in soil. To my way of thinking, the part of stem that you cover up will have a little more moisture around it and won’t be receiving any light. I don’t see how that would cause any issues.

Seedlings normally have a stem of, what, 4-6 cm?

Another approach is to support the stem with by putting a piece of plant tie around a toothpick and putting the toothpick in the soil.

Thank you very much for the tip.
Will try asap this technique.

What is the substrat used in the photo ?

That’s hyrdoton rock in a 3” net pot in a recirculating deep water culture (“RDWC”) reservoir. The seedling didn’t start out too well but ended up OK. She’s the fourth plant on the right.

That’s great to know that the plant goes well.

Thanks again, I will post here the follow up.


Just some quick questions about watering and lighting my 1-week plants, if you don’t mind.

When should I water them ? I mean, during “daytime” or “night time” ?
I can’t find information about that… difficult also to define the amount of water I will give them for the first time.

My ATTIS 200W is on 40%, would you say it’s ok to continue like this for the 2nd week ?

Thank you,

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Always water at first light, and don’t over water in the seedling stage. A couple squirts from a water bottle a day at most and your gold. Your light wattage (if that is the true wattage and not bs inflated numbers) is perfect till flower. Keep the light on your seedling close maybe 18" from the top, and as she gets into a veg state (about 4 weeks from popping up from the ground) run your light at 20" to 24". You will need a lot more light for flower, keep that in mind.

A great place for grow advice -

Thank you for your answer.
So I must water them as the light’s on, right ?

I did put additional soil as advised, which worked well. (Next run I’ll make sure to avoid long-stemmed plant).

I did just that, adding squirts now and then.
Then I added more and more water, only when soil is dry.
Yesterday they get half a liter each.

Also did some light LST on 3 plants, with no problem.

So far I think all is going good :slight_smile:

Yes only water when light is on, and preferably right when it comes on (within first hour). If at all possible it is best to use ro water and water ph’d to your soil type you are using.

If you are hand watering, try and get the water as for away from the stalk as possible. Doing this causes the roots to search out for the water and makes for a bigger root ball. Remember, “The bigger the roots the bigger the fruits”!
When you flip to flower you should be in 5 gal pots and I stress using fabric pots.

Also, contrary to what many say an 11 on 13 hours off light cycle is the best cycle for indica and hybrid strains. If growing a sativa dominant strain then use a 12/12 not an 11/13.

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Thank you for the valuable tips.

I forgot to mention that I run 4 autos plants… so they are under 18/6 light cycle until the harvest.

Regarding watering, I understand that different growers use different techniques…
I learned that some prefer to give a little at a time, increasing the volume as the plant grow.

On the other hand I watched a Mr Growit video and I was shocked to see him adding a full gallon to a young plant lol

To say the truth I don’t really know what to do exactly.
So far I avoided over or under watering, I don’t want to mess things up !
They got 500 ml each 2 days ago, as the light switch on tonight I plan to double this amount.

Will see !
Thanks again.

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Every plant will soak up different volumes of water.

The rule is - If it’s not dry, don’t apply

I like to pick up my plants and feel the weight. I use a super coco mix and when they are dry you can definitely tell.

I gallon of water for a plant in flower in a 5 gal pot is pretty normal. When I used to run bottled nutes, I would water till run-off and that usually took about 1 1/2 gallons in a 5 gal. Now that I’m in super coco 1 gal gets me to just a few drips from the bottom of the plant.

Today I had a surprise : one of my autos which is only 19 days old seems to show some white pistils… is she starting to flowering ? So early ?
Well I don’t know what to do…

Are you seeing these on the stem? If you are it is an indication of a female plant. These are viewed at nodes/bid sites


That’s 2 days now that I think 2 plants are flowering.
I checked the stem as you suggested, but there is nothing there. The white pistils are right at the bud place.

Should I skip to flowering nutrient on these two ?
Also, I may have a problem with my RH : I need to go down for flowering, but what about the other two ?

Here are some pictures of them :slight_smile:

That’s the beginning of flower, some strains flower sooner then others. This is when you start to slowly ramp up your P&K to your desired ec/ppm which ever scale you use.

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I forgot to mention, your soil medium you are choosing ultimately dictates what your water ph should be.

For coco users a pH range of 5.8-6.2 is the desired range. For soil users 6.0-6.8 is desired.

When doing compost teas always pH water first before adding in your microbial products. Everyone has a different makeup for teas, but the rule is pH up or down kills of microbes, so it’s always best to pH first for teas.