Ask The Marijuana Experts Volume One: Yellowing of Marijuana Leaves, Nutrient Lockout, Disposing of Excess Marijuana

Posted by Lee G. Leissett | 8283 views
By Lee G. Leissett


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If Your Leaves are This Yellow, You May Have Nutrient Lockout.

If Your Leaves are This Yellow, You May Have Nutrient Lockout.
(Click to enlarge)

" The best way for growers to dispose of overages is entirely dependent on the state in which they live and the laws therein. "

Yellow Veins and Leaves?

Hey, how are ya'll doing?

This is my sixth grow and I've never had this before. Fan leaves and other big leaves are turning yellow from the center outward. This is happening from seedling up through vegetation. The nutrient mixture I am using is 20-20-20 N/P/K and 24-8-16 N-P-K.

Any and all answers greatly appreciated!

"Tending in Tennessee"

[Editor’s Note: Nitrogen (N) / Phosphate (P2O2) /Potash (K20) are the isotopes of the chemicals Phosphorus (P) and Potassium (K) that plants can absorb.]


Dear “Tending,”

Thank you for your question. Based the information provided, I suspect you are having a nitrogen lock out; probably due to a pH issue.

I say this because you are supplying the plants with a sufficient amount of nitrogen and the leaf veins are turning yellow -- a key sign of a nitrogen problem. You are also experiencing this problem from seedling which means it is an ongoing issue.

Magnesium and iron deficiencies will cause the same yellowing effect you mentioned but when it occurs, the leaf veins remain green. Nitrogen problems can affect the color of the entire leaf -- including the veins -- and is the most common element to cause problems for the indoor horticulturist (mostly because plants need so darn much of it).

What To Do:

Check the pH of your nutrient solution and your growing medium to make sure they both fall within the desired range (for hydroponics pH should be between 5.5 and 5.9; soil pH should fall be between 6.5 and 6.8). Depending on your nutrients used, the fertilizer itself could be causing the fluctuation in pH. Check out Advanced Nutrients’ pH Perfect® line to eliminate all the hassles associated with pH fluctuations.

If you have a whole system of nutrients already and cannot afford to buy a whole new line of Advanced Nutrients’ pH Perfect nutes, we cannot advocate dumping yours down the drain, unless they are harming your plants themselves.

So let’s say you have a whole line of Advanced Nutrients’ older, non-pH Perfect nutrients. Until you are in a position to afford them (and believe me when I say that you should prioritize nutrients when buying supplies) you can make do with a good tri-meter (that’s water temp, pH, and PPM/EC -- something you should have no matter what kind of nutrients you use) and buffers (like pH up and down), which are very inexpensive and will get you where you need to be -- pH-wise.

Just go easy on them, as they do contain dissolved solids and will slightly affect your PPM/EC reading, and are also extremely caustic (you are basically dealing with straight acid or alkaline (like the inside of a battery). The amount you will need is based on how large your reservoir is, how much nutrient material is in there, and how high or low your pH is getting. Add a small amount, let it settle and mix, then go from there.

If fixing the pH does not fix the (what I think is a) lockout, consider investing in those all-new nutes I spoke of earlier, and make sure that you are cleaning your system often and your reservoir no less than once a week or so to avoid unwanted antimicrobials, fungi, or other assorted muck which may slime up your roots and keep them from absorbing nutrients properly. 

Keep on Growing,

Lee G. Leissett


Disposing of Marijuana Plant Overages


When a grower has overages and has to get rid of it, what is the proper etiquette for doing so? Can it just be thrown in the garbage, does one have to burn it, take it to the police department, or what?

I work for a garbage company here in Michigan and we actually had a customer call to tell us they were throwing their overages in dumpsters owned by a business! We aren’t sure how to handle the situation if you could let me know!


"Pondering Plant Matter in Michigan"


Dear “Pondering,”

Thank is a really important question, and you are most likely not the only reader who questions this.

Determining the best way for growers to dispose of overages is entirely dependent on the state in which they live and the laws therein. In many states with medical marijuana programs a patient or caregiver is allowed to gift medicine (including extra plant material like stems and leaves or bud-containing trimmings) to another qualifying patient as long as no money is exchanged.

In some other states, like Michigan, this is technically against the law. Medical marijuana Michiganders (and patients in other states with similar laws) should probably dispose of overages by way of composting or incinerating their extra plant material.

But before they barbecue or decompose their excess medicine, patients should check their state’s medical marijuana law carefully. Many states define extracts and edibles much differently than actual flower or plant material. In these states patients and caregivers should never dispose of overages in any other way than by making incredible extracts and medibles!

Because the laws of each state differ so greatly, patients must go through their particular state’s medical marijuana law with a fine-tooth-comb or ask the advice of an attorney in their state that is proficient in medical marijuana laws.

Keep on Growing,
Lee G. Leissett


New Organic Nutrients Allow Marijuana Growers To Maximize Their Crop Quality

Fixing Marijuana Nutrients Deficiencies & Fertilizer Burn

Fixing Marijuana Nutrients Deficiencies & Fertilizer Burn: Part Two


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