Initial Transplant (TAL Pages 17-22)
Q: How important is it to transplant from 1.5x1.5-inch root cubes to 4x4 inch cubes prior to the soil transplant? Will it decrease yields if a 10-12-inch clone is transplanted directly to a 7-gallon flowering pot?
A: The 4x4 inch cube will help the clones establish a much stronger foundation of roots. Transplanting in any medium in between the size of the clone root cube and the finishing container will be beneficial to producing a better foundation of roots.
Q: Do you amend the soil with any additional perlite?
A: We do amend our soil with an additional 15% Perlite. We use the coarse #3 perlite.
Topping and Pruning (TAL Pages 29-38)
Q: How long is a typical veg cycle in the Three A Light methodology?
A: We allocate 14 days for clone, 14 days in 4x4 inch cubes, and 35 days in 7-gallon pots (7 of those 35 days are in Transition.) Then, flower for 63-70 days.
Q: Is the purpose of pruning to increase the light that hits the bottom branches that are not topped, thus forcing lower branches to grow taller and produce more yield?
A: That’s Right! The increase in light penetration allows the lower part of the plant to receive light when it normally would not. The goal is to have no larfy or loose nugs rather, tight and compact flowers that are consistent from the top of the plant to the bottom. Topping and pruning are the precursor for large, compact nugs.
Q: How important is Topping? When are plants first topped? How frequently are plants topped?
A: Topping is a very important process that directly relates to the total amount of flower at harvest. We start topping plants at 8 inches tall and top as often as every three days, dependent on strain. Ideally, plants will be topped 7-10 times prior to the flowering cycle.
Q: How soon before flipping to flower should Topping and Pruning be discontinued?
A: Ideally, Topping should cease five days prior to flowering but at least three days. Pruning can be done up until flower with no detriment to the plant.
Q: What should the distance be from the bulb to the top of the canopy?
A: We refer to the space between the bulb and the canopy as a Halo. Always maintain a 36-48-inch Halo to prevent any burning or bleaching.
Q: Typically, how tall are the plants going into day one of flower?
A: When following the Three A Light methodology, plants will be between 3 and 4 feet from the top of the soil to the top of the plant. Once in flower, the plants will begin to slow vertical growth, begin flowering, and subsequent flower bulking. By the Day 20 Schwazze, the plant should reach its maximum height. Some strains may vary.
Q: When beginning the Transition phase, is it a 12/12 photoperiod for a week, then Schwazze? Or are the plants given the Transition mix in 18/6 photoperiod, flipped to 12/12 photoperiod, then Schwazzed?
A: Plants are given the Transition mix when initially put into the Transition phase under 18/6 photoperiod. After a week, plants are fed the Flush B mix prior to being flipped to the 12/12 photoperiod, then Schwazzed.
Q: Why do my plants structure not look exactly like the pictures in the book in the Transition phase? How many times should the plants be topped and tied down in order to achieve Three A Light?
A: We top our plants very often to achieve a wide rather than tall plant. Good plant structure is key to achieving a full canopy. To clarify, we have pulled a 3 lb. plant indoors, but it was very large and our methods lean towards achieving 3+ lbs./light typically composed of 4 plants. We do not tie our plants down at all, instead we top them to encourage even and full development rather than tall and slender.
When we transplant the clones into a 4x4 inch rockwool cube, they receive the first nutrient feed on the chart. We don’t top them for about a week to allow the plants to adjust because topping too early can stunt growth. Once your transplants have been out of the clone dome for a week, roots should be pushing through the bottom of the 4x4 inch rockwool cube. Topping should only occur once before the plant is 8 inches tall. Once the plant is taller than 8 inches, it will have a strong enough root base to handle aggressive nutrient feeds and bounce back quickly from the topping process.
Day 1 Schwazze (TAL Pages 45-56)
Q: What light cycle do you recommend? When is the light cycle changed in relation to the Day 1 Schwazze?
A: During vegetative growth we recommend an 18/6 photoperiod. The light cycle should switch to 12/12 as soon as the plants are loaded into the flower room. The same day the plants are loaded into the flower room, the day 1 Schwazze occurs, and that night will be the first 12-hour night cycle.
Q: Is it common to have herming issues with plants after Schwazzing?
A: It really depends on how stable the genetics are. More stable genetics will be more tolerant of the stresses that is experience because of the Schwazze method. While you are choosing strains and/or phenotypes that work well for your grow, note which strains/phenos respond well to plant work projects such as Schwazzing and aggressive feedings, then clone from those plants.
Day 20 Schwazze (TAL Pages 57-68)
Q: Do the plants get Schwazzed again after day 20?
A: No, the day 20 schwazze is the final schwazze. By this time the plant has refocused all its energy from rooting and growing taller to flowering and stacking weight. If a Schwazze took place after day 20, it will cause more harm than good. After the day 20 Schwazze, plants are ready to be netted because no further plant work takes place.
Q: When do you apply a trellis to plant(s)?
A: After the day 20 Schwazze, plants are ready to be netted because no further plant work takes place.
Q: (Testimonial) Currently, I am running 6-inch rockwool cubes and am trying to finish one more cycle in order to have enough funds to transition to DE bulbs and Success Nutrients. I would like to know if certain techniques would work with my setup. I am running GH with 4x8 tables and drip irrigation. Would my current feeding schedule accommodate a Schwazze to help me produce more yield? Also, is it necessary to veg under 1000 W or could I substitute for a T5?
A: It is recommended to do a light Schwazze on your garden for both day 1 and day 20. I am sure your current line will do well, but don’t get too aggressive with your Schwazze just in case. I am very confident that Success Nutrients will boost your yields 20%. Many side-by-sides have been run and the results are always exciting for Success and growers alike! We are happy to send you a discounted Success Nutrients Quart Starter Kit (Link) if you haven’t gotten one yet. It is possible to veg under a T5, but it will be advantageous to let your plants adjust to the bulb it will flower to finish under while still in veg.
Netting (TAL Pages 69-78)
Q: What are the pros and cons of caging vs. trellising?
A: Caging works great for low plant counts and trellis net is more applicable for larger, commercial scale operations. The idea behind both is to trick your plants into believing they are stronger than they are. Big yields require a lot of support!
Harvest (TAL Pages 79-88)
Q: What is the average finishing height of strains at harvest after a 30-40 day veg cycle?
A: Most plants will finish between 48-60 inches in height. More sativa dominant plants can finish closer to 65-72 inches in a 30-40 day veg cycle.
Q: My plants are going on week 6 following the Three A Light and Success schedule and my plants are looking good, but the buds aren’t as dense as I expected. Is there anything you recommend me to adjust in the feeding schedule?
A: It sounds like your plants are on pace! If you are following the Three A Light method, most of the weight will stack in the final 2-3 weeks, you’re almost there! Keep following the Success feed schedule and be sure to include 7-10 days for flushing.
Q: Right before harvesting I am noticing that not all the pistols have turned orange/red. I have been letting my plants go a little longer before I harvest them and am still noticing white pistols even though I am waiting longer to harvest. Do you have any tips that could help?
A: Many Cannabis strains will finish in the 70-day timeframe. More sativa dominant strains will take longer to mature. What strains are you growing? Are you running Success Nutrients? Our Game Time (LINK) product helps your plants finish with a big push to swell the flowers as large as possible without sacrificing terpene production. You are right that there are many different factors that play into this. A couple of things you can try is lowering the wattage of you lights, lowering the temperatures, and lowering the CO2 closer to harvest. These factors can help resemble fall weather and force your plant to ripen quicker. (3 weeks left- 2 degrees lower during day and 1 at night. 2 weeks left- 2 more degrees cooler during day and 1 more at night. 1 week left- 2 more degrees cooler and 1 more degree cooler at night.)
Q: How do I calculate my pound per light after harvesting?
A: Add up the total number of dry pounds that you ended up with and divide by the number of lights you used to grow that product. (Ex: 100 pounds of dry product grown with 25 lights = 4lbs/light.)
CO2 (TAL Pages 117-120)
Q: I run a sealed bloom room with CO2 enrichment. When lights are on, the room maintains 1500 ppm. When lights go off, no more CO2 is being pumped into the room, but the room maintains above 1000 ppm. Is there any harm in maintaining CO2 levels above natural ppm’s? Is it beneficial to bring in new air and lower ppm’s at night?
A: 1500 ppm while lights are on is perfect! Since you are maintaining such high levels of CO2 even after the system quits supplying it shows that your room is very airtight. That is great for being able to control outside contaminants. We stop supplying CO2 when lights go off, but we do not bring in air from outside because of the possibility of bringing in contaminants.
Room Dynamic (TAL Pages 121-126)
Q: What ceiling height do you recommend for grow rooms?
A: For veg rooms we recommend having at least a 11-foot ceiling and in flower at least a 14-foot ceiling because you want to maintain a 36-48-inch halo.
Q: What is VPD?
A: Vapor Pressure Deficit is always a factor to take into consideration with indoor growing. If VPD is too high, your plants leaves will curl to avoid direct sunlight and reduce water loss. If VPD is too low, the plants will lose their ability to transpire and will be unable to transport nutrients effectively. Temps around 80-82 degrees and humidities around 50% have been ideal.
Q: My plants are taking a long time to grow bushy for the bloom phase. How many lights are you running in your veg room to get them ready for bloom after 35 days in the 7-gal containers?
A: Are you running Success Nutrients? What you feed your plants is very key to getting them on a solid growth path. We have 6-8 plants per light in veg dependent on the size/strain.
Q: Do you suggest Schwazzing an auto flowering plant?
A: The vegetative phase will be key for developing a strong root foundation. Many people believe that you can just start an auto flowering plant under 12/12 light but in reality, it is better to veg for 3 or 4 weeks. The idea behind that is to establish a strong root base before Schwazzing. Once you have a good root base, it is ok to Schwazze.
Q: What is the distance between the top of the canopy and the bottom of the 1000 W HPS bulb when finishing the flower cycle?
A: We refer to that space as a halo. We always want to maintain a 36-48-inch halo.
Q: Do you have any recommendations on the distance from the canopy for different grow bulbs?
A: We always recommend maintaining a 36-48-inch halo but using a PAR meter is a very effective way to measure the light your plants are receiving. During clone, PAR’s should be between 60-100. In 4x4’s 200-500. In veg 500-700. In transition 700-900. During flower 900-1100. When nearing harvest drop slightly to 800-1000. All lights should have the air moved between the canopy of the plants and the bottom of the bulbs.
Q: What is PAR?
A: PAR stand for Photosynthetically Active Radiation. PAR is the wavelengths of light visible to the plant that drives photosynthesis. Lumens are for humans and should not be used to measure light in a cultivation.
Q: Can your Three A Light method be applied in a grow tent?
A: Yes, you can use a grow tent to run Three A Light. Ideally, have two tents. One for veg and one for flower so you could have a perpetual cycle of plants. The flower tent should be at least 4x4x8. An HPS fixture will give you the most production out of that space, but it will take the most cooling and monitoring of your environment to achieve the best results. The veg tent could be the same size or slightly smaller. The foundation for our Three A Light method is healthy plants fueled by Success Nutrients. Timing is also very key in successfully growing Three A Light.
Q: I like to use EC for my nutrients, I was reviewing your feed charts and was wondering if you could tell me what scale you guys use for your PPM?
A: Our feed chart uses ppm500 scale (TDS scale).
Watering (TAL Pages 145-182)
Q: How often are veg plants being fed? Is it every time the plants get watered, they are fed?
A: The plants get fed in different intervals throughout the veg stage. After the initial transplant into 4x4 inch cubes they will be fed Mix 1. Let the 4x4 inch rockwool cubes dry out for 5-6 days, then feed with Mix 2. After 4-5 more days, roots should be pushing out of the bottom of the rockwool cube signifying that your plants are ready to be transplanted into the final 7 gal. container. Once the plants are in 7 gal. pots, a feed-feed-flush regimen will be followed. When watering in immediately after the Final Transplant, always use 5 gal of feed per plant and water in with Mix 3. It will take about 8-12 days for your plants to need to be fed again. The next feed is the Aggressive Mix followed by a Flush B once the Aggressive Mix dries out. Then, an Aggressive Mix, followed by another Aggressive Mix, followed by the Flush B Mix. Then, Transition mix and Flush B Mix once your plants are ready to be flipped into flower.
Q: Can you explain the flowering feed schedule? When looking at the schedule, there are 5-day increments. Is that the total amount of nutrients that should be used over those 5 days?
A: When looking at the Success feed schedule, always refer to the feed based on the day of flower your room is in. The rates on the chart are in mL/gal, so multiply your number of gallons need to feed the entire room by the mL rate per gallon to get the total quantity of mL of a nutrient for each specific feed. If plants require watering on day 1 and day 5, the same mix will be used for both feeds. Always follow a feed-feed-flush regimen once plants are in 7gal pots. After every 2 feeds, refer to the next flush mix. (Ex: 100 plants in 7 gal. pots. 2.5 gal per plant per feed, 5 gal per plant per feed. 250 gal per feed and 500 gal per flush.)
Q: Can you use other nutrients in conjunction with the Three a Light methodology?
A: Success Nutrients was devolved by our team. We never followed the application directions on the nutrients we used prior to Success. When we had the products tested to see what it was, we were feeding our plants, we found most nutrients only had 60% of what they claimed was in the bottle. Knowing this, we couldn’t promote these brands any longer, so we built Success Nutrients.
Q: My plants are in 10-gallon pots, I have been giving them 3 gallons per feed. Should I increase the amount of water per feed?
A: The trick is to be sure you have plenty of water leaching out, 15-30% is ideal run-off levels. In addition, make sure you are using double the amount for a flush, in your case around 6 gallons.
Q: What type of medium do you recommend? Have you ever used Success Nutrients in coco?
A: We recommend a coco/peat blend with mother earth perlite added at about a 15-20% ratio. As far as using coco we have had customers achieve great yields with coco and hydro regiments. Our feed schedule is based on the plant needing certain nutrients at different stages of veg and flower. You have to listen to your plants and how they are performing in their environment.
Q: Is Success Nutrients organic?
A: Success Nutrients is a naturally sourced, highest grade salt and mineral based line that is complete nutrition for your plants.
Q: Where is Success Nutrients produced?
A: Success Nutrients complete line of nutrients inputs and packaging are sourced, produced, and shipped from the USA.
Q: Is it possible to achieve Three A Light without hand watering? I have 5 gal containers with drip irrigation. I see that you guys place 8 plants per tray and 2 lights per tray. So, you are getting 6 lbs. from 8 plants and 2 lights?
A: Yes, you will be able to achieve Three A Light with drip irrigation. The key is determining the frequency of watering and always watering until there is 15-30% runoff. We run 7 gal containers and 8 plants per tray with 2 lights and are yielding upwards of 4 lbs. per light.
Q: As far as I can tell your nutrients are not available at any of my local hydro stores, is Success available in my state?
A: While Success may not be available in your area, we ship direct to many growers across the country. Success is registered in all 50 states. We are happy to work with your local hydro stores, just point them our way!
Q: How do you translate you’re feeding schedule to fit another nutrient line? Is there another line you recommend?
A: It would be incredibly tough to suggest an alternative line as we never followed the application directions on the other lines we have used in the past. In addition, most (if not all) mainstream nutrients are packed full of food coloring and are incredibly watered down.
Q: I have a question based on the feeding schedule. The chart runs through 70 days, but I am running 8-9-week strains. Where do I shorten the feeding schedule and start flushing if I am running something that finished before 70 days? On the flip side, where would I add mixes to accommodate a 12-week strain?
A: If you are running an 8-9-week strain, we would recommend eliminating the Day 41-45 feed and the Day 36-40 feed. Always maintain a feed-feed-flush regimen. Essentially you will do the Day 31-35 feed, then the Day 46-50 feed and mix a flush in after every 2 feeds. On the other hand, if you are running a 12-week strain, add an additional Day 36-40 feed and Day 41-45 feed. Same as before, always maintain a feed-feed-flush regimen.
Q: Do you guys use the ppm500 (.5) or ppm700 (.7) scale to measure PPM’s
A: We use the ppm500 (.5) scale.
Q: When during the day should plants be fed?
A: We feed plants in the morning. They are just like us; breakfast is the most important meal of the day so they should be fed ideally within an hour of lights coming on. The frequency is determined by how often the medium is drying out and should be monitored daily. One effective method we recommend are lifting your pots multiple times per day to get an idea of how quickly your plants are drinking.
Q: What order should you mix Success Nutrients? When should you pH your feed? Before or after adding the nutrients?
A: Your nutrients should always be mixed in the order they are on the chart, Silica first and Bud Strength last. Always use a pump or air stones to circulate the mix. Always pH the feed after mixing all of the nutrients and letting the nutrients mix for a few minutes prior to pH’ing.
Q: How do I plan on how much water to include in a feed and a flush?
A: If you are following the Three A Light method and using 7 gal pots, you can plan on using 2.5 gal per plant per feed and 5 gal per plant per flush. (Ex: 100 plant room- 250 gal/feed and 500 gal/flush.)