2021 Massachusetts Outdoor Growers

Mari.baba

Member
I'm not sure about the rest of you guys, but I'm so ready to move on from 2020. It was a great season from a growers perspective ... most of us had more time at home to spend in the garden, and we had outstanding fall weather ... but everything else pretty much went to shit, and so I'm excited for 2021.

As usual, I learned a few new lessons from last year...

The first is I definitely need help when it comes to harvesting and trimming in the fall. I tried to do it all myself this year and it was a complete nightmare. I basically spent 6 weeks straight trying to get everything down and cleaned up... and I still probably only got to about 50% of it. I froze the rest, and I'm still working on washing it all.

The second lesson I learned is that I don't need twelve foot plants this year. It's just stupid and too much work. This year I'll probably get them in the ground a little later (about may 15th) and just shoot for ten footers. ..lol

The third lesson is that I don't need any outside inputs whatsoever. Last summer I discovered KNF and I ain't going back. I can basically source every nutritional component my grow needs from my own backyard, or from waste. It may not be feasible for someone without some land to work with, but if you have some room it's a no-brainer.

The good news is that I've been through a few healthy snowfalls so far, and the greenhouse isn't going anywhere, it's still standing strong with the new steel hoops. That was last years lesson... don't ever, ever build a greenhouse with pvc hoops in Massachusetts. It'll be nice not to have to rebuild the entire thing this year, so I can move onto some upgrades. I'll be adding 4 circulation fans in all four corners so I can get the fans off the ground this year. I'll also be adding a watering system for each bed... watering every few days from a hose is kind of a pain in the ass. It'll be nice to just hit a button on my phone and that'll be taken care of. I'm also adding another window at the far end of the greenhouse... I originally framed it for a third window but only had two laying around at the time so I just covered it with plastic.

At the moment I'm pheno hunting indoors to find this years keepers. I have a few of my own crosses I'm searching through and a few new breeders i'm excited about. Everything will be new strains though, I'm not keeping anything around from last season.

What are your plans for 2021?

Here's what it looks like out there today....

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I f ing love you guys man living the best life on god
 

p59teitel

Well-Known Member
snipped some tester buds while doing a pm and rot search. Wizard Punch has been the most susceptible to bud rot and the Bruce’s Ballsack is so dense it makes it hard to spot but so far minimal impact. Did a solo cup peroxide wash and rinse on these. Going to find some thread or fishing line to hang these. View attachment 5006825
I use these to hang branches - not sure how many I’m gonna need for 8 big ol’ hashplants between 10’ and 16’ lol -

 

Poco56

Well-Known Member
I use these to hang branches - not sure how many I’m gonna need for 8 big ol’ hashplants between 10’ and 16’ lol -

Do you get enough air flow between your branches? The clips seem a bit close together for me. I string up some landscape twine and just hang the branches on their own in a row with symmetrical spacing for air flow. Sometimes when called for (maybe this year lol)… I might use metal clothe hangers but always keeping my spacing either way.
 

Warfox

Well-Known Member
I have considered this year's grow to be a total loss. Quite humbling and huge disappointment for this here farmer.
what’s the post-Mortem, so to speak? It looks like a vicious mold problem? Mine are bad, but not that bad? If I may ask, which preventative sprays did you utilize this season?
 

Warfox

Well-Known Member
My disillusioned expectations (whining) are already well documented here, but this is my 1st time outdoors so I’ll continue to learn! I have a question though… Are your strains long flowering? My strains are all supposedly (9) weeks to finish and are looking pretty ready. With the mold/rot issues a real thing (I lost 5 out 8 mainlined colas in some degree to rot on 1 of my girls, burns my butt when I have to toss an otherwise great looking cola bud in the trash… while affecting the overall yield too) . Speaking of learning, I’m working the next 2 ladies for live trimming (still in pot) for cut down and wash, with my 4th under potential consideration (she started flower about a week later than the other 3), I recall seeing you wanted your ladies to go till Halloween. Isn’t done… done? Or am I missing something? It’s to long a grow cycle relevant to indoors to risk losing more than I can save imo. I dropped seed 4th week of April (indoors), a mid-October harvest seems like welcome news to me lol :D My indoors are typically 4 month… 4.5 months at the most and I rarely lose… but the cost of fueling lights really sucks too, so there’s that…
Haha, yea I’ll quit my whining and be grateful to have some harvest. I am going to appraise my gardens’ situation in the AM and go from there. That previous post of mine was a bit off-the-handle, and I’ve since come to appreciate that my mold isn’t as bad as I thought, and that my plants are actually ahead of last year, maturity wise.
 

p59teitel

Well-Known Member
Honestly it’s primarily my fault because I chose my strains poorly this time around, but the weather was a nightmare for me as well.
It’s really hard to know what will work in this climate. I’ve had great luck so far with the Tirah Valley hashplants - is that because they are from an area that is subject to the monsoon? The Hawaiian Hashbud X Balkhi cross started to show botrytis on the exact same date as the Balkhi I grew last year (Sept 11) and is coming down tomorrow. I was able to get her mother to go until the last week of October in even wetter weather than we’ve had so far this month (heavy fog in addition to rain).

Another issue is our expectations of getting our crops to produce maximum amounts and for trichomes to make it to amber, which butts up against the plant’s biological imperative to reproduce. In that regard, the plant does not care about suiting our needs to stay free and clear of bud-destroying mold. I’m now realizing that the issue I had with Tirah 10 sporting some rot at the top of the plant had far less to do with rot susceptibility and everything to do with the natural life cycle of a plant whose top was heading into senescence. When I topped her, the embedded leaves in the affected colas were mostly yellow, no longer stiff and effectively lifeless.

Here is more of her that I chopped yesterday that is in the same condition - my magnifying glass shows that only half the trichomes are cloudy, while the plant is saying “I’m done.” Time to listen to the plants more and my expectations less, I guess -

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At least what I took off yesterday cleaned up nicely -
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p59teitel

Well-Known Member
Do you get enough air flow between your branches? The clips seem a bit close together for me. I string up some landscape twine and just hang the branches on their own in a row with symmetrical spacing for air flow. Sometimes when called for (maybe this year lol)… I might use metal clothe hangers but always keeping my spacing either way.
Assuming I can get them to the finish line mostly intact, I’ll end up using the hangers for the 2-3 lbs. of flower I cure in jars but will use clothesline in the attic to dry the majority of it for dry sift to make hash. For large colas I would skip clips and hang four or five branches.
 
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stealthfader508

Well-Known Member
I have considered this year's grow to be a total loss. Quite humbling and huge disappointment for this here farmer.
Lot's of tragic stories on the thread this year, but I'm not sure any of them can top mine. Other than about a pound of premature stuff I was able to salvage, I lost everything to rot this year. I can't really pinpoint any one reason, but the primary reason I believe is neglect. I knew I had rot creeping in back in late August, but life was so busy and I just avoided the problem. By mid september the rot had found it's way to all 8 plants in the greenhouse and pretty much destroyed everything.

But you live and learn, and next year I'll be back at it again. The changes I'll make for next year are as follows:

1) Disinfect the greenhouse... This week I plan to power wash the entire greenhouse with a bleach solution, then again once or twice in the spring before going in the ground. This year I didn't clean ANYTHING from last year in the greenhouse before planting. After harvest last year I just left what remained of the plants standing through the winter. When I removed them in late winter they were all infested with mold and all I did was chop them down and throw them out.... big mistake, I'm sure I had mold spores flying around everywhere all season.

2) Get new fans and clean them often ... I didn't touch or clean my 3 circulation fans at all from last season ... you can see from the picture below the back of the fans were covered in gray moldy spooge which I'm sure just continually blew mold spores throughout the greenhouse all season long

3) Filter all of my intake air ... my greenhouse has a 2'x2' exhaust fan that works great... but the intake end of my greenhouse is backed up to thick, swampy woods.... I wouldn't be surprised if the fresh air coming in has all kinds of mold spores in it... I have an opening between the two windows on the intake end that I planned to just add another window to this year, but never got around to it... I'm glad i didn't though, because next year I'm going to fill that spot with two 24" HEPA filters and close the windows ... all intake air will need to be filtered

4) Use my dehumidifier at night ... in years past I would always close up all the windows and run my dehumidifier through the fall nights when the outside RH is almost always 90+ ... I didn't even bother with that this year, just left the exhaust fan running 24/7, big mistake (i think) ... I already have the Inkbird to control both the fan and dehumidifier and next year I'm going to take the five minutes it takes to set it up correctly ... I'll have the exhaust fan run whenever outside RH is below 75%, but when it goes above 75% (at night) I'll have the Inkbird shut down the fan and kick on the dehumidifier

5) Grow smaller (or less) plants ... there is absolutely no reason in the world that I need 8 plants all ten feet +. I don't sell it, and I end up spending about a month trimming buds that I only ever keep about 10% of. It's stupid and a waste of my time. Sure my friends love it when I drop a pound of weed in their laps, but they'll have to get used to an ounce or two. I may either just wait until mid-june to plant in the ground, or plant in pots next year.

6) Better Genetics ... I'm not going to pretend that it's genetics that did me in this year.... because all eight of the plants (all different strains) were pretty much infested with rot ... it was most certainly environmental and it goes to show that there is no such thing as a strain that is completely resistant to rot ... however, I did have one plant that resisted it best, and it's the only one I was able to harvest anything from ... the strain was Salami Leg x Mendo Montage from Big Pond Genetics ... Big Pond Genetics is out of western Mass and I believe most of his breeding is done outdoors ... I'm now a firm believer that genetics that have been bred through generations outdoors, in a similar terroir, will perform best when grown outdoors in that same region ... My seed collection is as vast as they come with all kinds of big name and hype strains, but I'm done trying to grow them outdoors in New England ... a great strain that's been been bred through generations indoors in "lab-type" conditions is just a roll of the dice outdoors ... I'm now on the hunt for a good strain, bred locally, that I can grow out through the winter indoors and then just run all clones of that next season

I wasn't even going to post my tragic story or final pictures from this years debacle.... but I figured I owed it to you all to share the good with the bad ... so without further adieu, here's the giant dick in the ass that was 2021 ... see you all in 2022

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p59teitel

Well-Known Member
The Hawaiian Hashbud X Balkhi cross is being chopped today. Topped her a few days ago and it’s time for the rest to come down. Losing about 25% of what is still on her, probably should have taken her ten days ago but wanted to push longer. 5401F98F-33A1-4368-92E5-56D73670291E.jpeg

Not feeling all that bad for myself over it - like I said above, this is what happens when expectations should be recalibrated against reality.
 

p59teitel

Well-Known Member
“I'm now a firm believer that genetics that have been bred through generations outdoors, in a similar terroir, will perform best when grown outdoors in that same region ... My seed collection is as vast as they come with all kinds of big name and hype strains, but I'm done trying to grow them outdoors in New England ... a great strain that's been been bred through generations indoors in "lab-type" conditions is just a roll of the dice outdoors ... I'm now on the hunt for a good strain, bred locally, that I can grow out through the winter indoors and then just run all clones of that next season”

Amen plus one co-sign. Exactly the same conclusion I’m coming to regarding strain selection - for me the Tirah seems to be working really well so far, other than the plants are freaking huge to the point I had to buy a new ladder to keep an eye on things 15 feet up, and it’s a bit slow to flower (I have one plant that looks like she won’t be ready until December LOL). I did research the climate in that part of Pakistan and they do receive the monsoon every summer.

Sorry for your losses, Stealth. I totally agree with your conclusion that indoor hybrids really aren’t what will cut it around here. To that I’d further speculate that outdoor strains from areas like Northern Cal that have very dry summers and falls maybe aren’t well-suited either. Next year l will be running an Afghan strain like Sholgar or Sheberghan as the primary strain and we will see how that goes, as those areas aren’t exactly in the monsoon belt. Hopefully they will flower early - I’d love to avoid October and the local associated mini-monsoon of rain, fog and occasional tropical storm conditions altogether LOL.
 

Poco56

Well-Known Member
Lot's of tragic stories on the thread this year, but I'm not sure any of them can top mine. Other than about a pound of premature stuff I was able to salvage, I lost everything to rot this year. I can't really pinpoint any one reason, but the primary reason I believe is neglect. I knew I had rot creeping in back in late August, but life was so busy and I just avoided the problem. By mid september the rot had found it's way to all 8 plants in the greenhouse and pretty much destroyed everything.

But you live and learn, and next year I'll be back at it again. The changes I'll make for next year are as follows:

1) Disinfect the greenhouse... This week I plan to power wash the entire greenhouse with a bleach solution, then again once or twice in the spring before going in the ground. This year I didn't clean ANYTHING from last year in the greenhouse before planting. After harvest last year I just left what remained of the plants standing through the winter. When I removed them in late winter they were all infested with mold and all I did was chop them down and throw them out.... big mistake, I'm sure I had mold spores flying around everywhere all season.

2) Get new fans and clean them often ... I didn't touch or clean my 3 circulation fans at all from last season ... you can see from the picture below the back of the fans were covered in gray moldy spooge which I'm sure just continually blew mold spores throughout the greenhouse all season long

3) Filter all of my intake air ... my greenhouse has a 2'x2' exhaust fan that works great... but the intake end of my greenhouse is backed up to thick, swampy woods.... I wouldn't be surprised if the fresh air coming in has all kinds of mold spores in it... I have an opening between the two windows on the intake end that I planned to just add another window to this year, but never got around to it... I'm glad i didn't though, because next year I'm going to fill that spot with two 24" HEPA filters and close the windows ... all intake air will need to be filtered

4) Use my dehumidifier at night ... in years past I would always close up all the windows and run my dehumidifier through the fall nights when the outside RH is almost always 90+ ... I didn't even bother with that this year, just left the exhaust fan running 24/7, big mistake (i think) ... I already have the Inkbird to control both the fan and dehumidifier and next year I'm going to take the five minutes it takes to set it up correctly ... I'll have the exhaust fan run whenever outside RH is below 75%, but when it goes above 75% (at night) I'll have the Inkbird shut down the fan and kick on the dehumidifier

5) Grow smaller (or less) plants ... there is absolutely no reason in the world that I need 8 plants all ten feet +. I don't sell it, and I end up spending about a month trimming buds that I only ever keep about 10% of. It's stupid and a waste of my time. Sure my friends love it when I drop a pound of weed in their laps, but they'll have to get used to an ounce or two. I may either just wait until mid-june to plant in the ground, or plant in pots next year.

6) Better Genetics ... I'm not going to pretend that it's genetics that did me in this year.... because all eight of the plants (all different strains) were pretty much infested with rot ... it was most certainly environmental and it goes to show that there is no such thing as a strain that is completely resistant to rot ... however, I did have one plant that resisted it best, and it's the only one I was able to harvest anything from ... the strain was Salami Leg x Mendo Montage from Big Pond Genetics ... Big Pond Genetics is out of western Mass and I believe most of his breeding is done outdoors ... I'm now a firm believer that genetics that have been bred through generations outdoors, in a similar terroir, will perform best when grown outdoors in that same region ... My seed collection is as vast as they come with all kinds of big name and hype strains, but I'm done trying to grow them outdoors in New England ... a great strain that's been been bred through generations indoors in "lab-type" conditions is just a roll of the dice outdoors ... I'm now on the hunt for a good strain, bred locally, that I can grow out through the winter indoors and then just run all clones of that next season

I wasn't even going to post my tragic story or final pictures from this years debacle.... but I figured I owed it to you all to share the good with the bad ... so without further adieu, here's the giant dick in the ass that was 2021 ... see you all in 2022

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Stealth I’m shocked and saddened at what your displaying in that sweet greenhouse! I recall I think what was last years blog that you had just finished upgrading to the connected metal fence posts hoops vs pvc with details and pics of the process of using a bender to get the right bend torque down to the dimensions, tarp size, along with where to get the material. The offered support for any and all questions sent your way regrading the knowledge share of the build was incite full… Lots of bro respect from here! 8-) I still keep your “build a greenhouse“ rollitup notes bookmarked for future reference, as I think that size greenhouse as you’ve accessorized it is perfect for what we do. (Finances not withstanding lol) So seeing such posted results is an eye opener that just because your protected outdoors, doesn’t mean your truly protected outdoors… If that makes any sense. On the positive, looks like you got a sound plan moving forward though. Hopefully you can maybe get something going indoors to supplement you till next seasons MA challenge. Good luck and stay the course my new found friend! :wink:
 

G Bear

Well-Known Member
I think I may end up chopping in the next day or two. There was some additional bud rot again today. Not much, but I’m thinking I just want to avoid losing much more. The buds look and smell fantastic. I’m sure they could benefit from another couple weeks but don’t want to risk it.
 

stealthfader508

Well-Known Member
thanks everyone for the condolences .... but don't cry for me argentina, I'm still smoking hash from my 2019 grow, lol

I think my biggest take away from this year is that a greenhouse is great to have, but it's not fail-proof and still requires a ton of diligence. Problems like rot or bugs can increase ten-fold in a greenhouse if it's not managed properly. I believe cleanliness and disinfection to be my gravest missteps this year.

There's also the naturally occurring ebb and flow of outdoor gardening that comes into play ... plants have bumper crops some years and major problems others. For instance, my eggplants and zucchini killed it this year, while my tomatoes and cucumbers were awful. Judging from the reports on this and other sites, rot was a major problem in Massachusetts this year. No matter what skill level or precautions taken, some years mother nature has other plans... sometimes you eat the bear, sometimes the bear eats you

... but on the bright side, chopping was reduced from about a month to about an hour .... and I learned a shitload of lessons to make me a better grower next season.
 

stealthfader508

Well-Known Member
“I'm now a firm believer that genetics that have been bred through generations outdoors, in a similar terroir, will perform best when grown outdoors in that same region ... My seed collection is as vast as they come with all kinds of big name and hype strains, but I'm done trying to grow them outdoors in New England ... a great strain that's been been bred through generations indoors in "lab-type" conditions is just a roll of the dice outdoors ... I'm now on the hunt for a good strain, bred locally, that I can grow out through the winter indoors and then just run all clones of that next season”

Amen plus one co-sign. Exactly the same conclusion I’m coming to regarding strain selection - for me the Tirah seems to be working really well so far, other than the plants are freaking huge to the point I had to buy a new ladder to keep an eye on things 15 feet up, and it’s a bit slow to flower (I have one plant that looks like she won’t be ready until December LOL). I did research the climate in that part of Pakistan and they do receive the monsoon every summer.

Sorry for your losses, Stealth. I totally agree with your conclusion that indoor hybrids really aren’t what will cut it around here. To that I’d further speculate that outdoor strains from areas like Northern Cal that have very dry summers and falls maybe aren’t well-suited either. Next year l will be running an Afghan strain like Sholgar or Sheberghan as the primary strain and we will see how that goes, as those areas aren’t exactly in the monsoon belt. Hopefully they will flower early - I’d love to avoid October and the local associated mini-monsoon of rain, fog and occasional tropical storm conditions altogether LOL.
Agreed. The regional landrace strains probably hold the key to mold resistance for specific regions... it would be wonderful to find (or create) something perfectly suited for our own area... the genetics have to exist

It would be great to be able to use the collective minds at a localized forum like this to identify a strain that performs very well and is resistant to rot. Share that cut out with anyone that wants to grow it and hopefully improve on the genetics through further selection and generational work. I have to believe that an F3+ strain that's been bred and selected over a few generations outdoors in Mass, would continue to perform very well throughout the region...microclimates aside.

There's no reason all us folks in mass shouldn't have a selection of tried and true strains that thrive in our less than ideal conditions. It doesn't even need to be the greatest strain in the world, just not rot up like a wet cotton ball in September. Let's face it, 90% of outdoor growers around here end up with schwag or mids anyway. I'd rather have decent strain that finishes instead of the most fire strain on the planet taken 3 weeks early because rot is creeping.
 
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