DWC Root Slime Cure aka How to Breed Beneficial Microbes

fartoblue

Well-Known Member
This root rot really is a bugger. I have brand new system (modular flood and drain) and my roots are black, no slime. I don't understand it I have kept my temps very low below 65f/18c. Flooded every 2 hours lights on and once during lights off. Roots were pure white before they went into the new system, has me beat.

I flood, let it sit for 2 minutes then drain. Flood height is about 2 inches from the top of the media.
 
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This root rot really is a bugger. I have brand new system (modular flood and drain) and my roots are black, no slime. I don't understand it I have kept my temps very low below 65f/18c. Flooded every 2 hours lights on and once during lights off. Roots were pure white before they went into the new system, has me beat.
I’ll try paying it forward since I’ve been neck deep in literature and forum posts on this topic for the last month.
  • what nutrients are you using?
  • Is your reservoir well aerated w/ air stones and/or waterfalls
  • How low are your temps? Apparently too low during lights off can invite mold (which could be the black stuff)
  • Are you using any additives aside from basic nutrients?
  • Is your reservoir completely light proof?
  • Are you ensuring your hands and tools are super clean before touching anything?
  • What substrate are you using?
 

fartoblue

Well-Known Member
  • what nutrients are you using? Botanicare Kind-Tea-Silica
  • Is your reservoir well aerated w/ air stones and/or waterfalls Waterfall 200 litre res
  • How low are your temps? Apparently too low during lights off can invite mold (which could be the black stuff) Mmm quite low as low as low as 14/57 on some occasions
  • Are you using any additives aside from basic nutrients? Botanicare Tea-Silica- Yellow bottle Roots (until week 3)- Photosynthesis Plus
  • Is your reservoir completely light proof? Yes
  • Are you ensuring your hands and tools are super clean before touching anything? I don't wash them more than usual.
  • What substrate are you using? They are started in a small pot of 60/40 maybe a litre, then potted up into clay balls 6.5 litre Aquapot
 
The original small pot - what medium? I used peat plugs for a DWC setup and it introduced algae almost off the bat because the peat doesn’t drain.
Think about maintaining a more stable temp at night.
 

zem

Well-Known Member
This root rot really is a bugger. I have brand new system (modular flood and drain) and my roots are black, no slime. I don't understand it I have kept my temps very low below 65f/18c. Flooded every 2 hours lights on and once during lights off. Roots were pure white before they went into the new system, has me beat.

I flood, let it sit for 2 minutes then drain. Flood height is about 2 inches from the top of the media.
What is your source water? Tap, well, RO? what ppm? That's way too much flooding at these temps. I flood just at lights on, then every 4 hours then just when lights shuts and keep it 12 hours without flooding while lights are off. I do that with temps higher than yours. You don't want the roots saturated all of the time. You might want to run some H2O2 or poolshock periodically to help them recover.
 

Tuptup

Member
hi i have a full starter kit from biotabs and voodoo juice and rhizotonic, can i make this tea out of it? The biotabs in the set have mycorrhiza, bacteria and here I'm not sure but I think there is also something to feed the microbes because it resembles caramel, I also have voodoo juice which has a bacterial strain and rhizotonic or vitamins ... will I do something about it for DWC?
 

sven_lordy

Active Member
When a clear snot forms on roots in a DWC, and the normal course of treatment for root disease doesn't work, you probably have something called brown slime algae, which actually isn't algae at all, but a cyanobacteria. It loves oxygen and doesn't need light to grow. It doesn't care if your res is chilled or not.

...

You are not teaching us how to breed microbes, only multiply them.

Correct.
I've posted in this forum multiple times about maintaining a perfect environment, but still ending up with root rot. If this last attempt failed I was going to give up on dwc.

Been brewing a tea for 48 hours, with orca, ewc and organic honey. Had the tell-tale foam which settled down a bit after 24hrs.

When I took my plant out of the res and started to drain it I couldn't believe the amount of root matter floating around and sludge on the base. I've fully sterilised my res, left the plant roots in h202 for 4 hours, gently pulling the roots, many of which came away. There was practically nothing left vs what should have been there for my stage of growth.

I added 4 gallons RO to the res and aerated it while waiting for the aquarium heater to reach 22c. PH was 4.4, but given the tea was reading 3.6 I decided to wait till I add nutes to pH. I added the 4 cups of tea and used a pump to cover all roots above the water line, soak through the hydroton etc, and even gave the foliage a light drench from the trees water. Am now waiting (9 hours left) before reintroducing nutes.

I'm staggered by what I'm seeing so far. The brown roots are whitening slightly and I can already see small new pure white shoots coming through what was once a brown matted mess.

All this time I thought I was fighting pythium, but now I know it was cyanobacteria.

Obviously this is very early days but I'm already truly excited! It looks like your tea was the magic bullet I'd been waiting for. Will update again in 24hrs, but it looks like you've rescued my grow! And if so, I don't have enough words to express my gratitude. Thank you!
 

Lenin1917

Well-Known Member
I've been using bleach at 0.25ml/gal in standalone dwc buckets with pretty good results. Now that it's flower and my climates dialed in I'm dropping to .1ml/gal, might cut it completely since my res stay at 68° now. I'm beginning to think sterilization measures really only needed to be taken till I had a canopy covering my buckets. Biggest difference was adding an AC. Had so many problems before I got room temps down.
 

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