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Why is Fox Farm soil SOOO Acidic??

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    SOIL Why is Fox Farm soil SOOO Acidic??

    This is the last time I'm EVER using this shit soil. I put in 7.5 pH water and i get 5.7 out of the bottom??? How acidic is the soil??? They seem soil that's 4.0pH? No wonder why I've been struggling. I bought Espoma organic soil and everything is growing without much attention while the shit in the garbage fox farm soil looks like shit. I put so much baking soda in the soil and it still comes out 5.0pH out the bottom even running through the super soil which has a pH of like 8.5 and STILL comes out 5.0 pH.
    The rest of this bag is going to the garbage I'm not even going to put it out into my garden and risk ruining my garden. Garbage soil garbage product no wonder I've been struggling I'm never buying it again nothing from that brand. 👎👎

    #2
    You could see the seedlings are looking great. They're in the espoma soil. The bigger seedlings are in the Fox Farm soil the one in the back is the one that I'm struggling with the pH fluctuations and all the bad pH in the soil while the one in the front seems to be okay for now we'll see when it starts flowering. I did adjust the soil or tried to adjust the soil before I planted anything but it seems to have been in vain. I put dolomite lime in there I put baking soda in there I don't know what else I could add without screwing up the super soil. So this is the last time never using FoxFarm again.

    Comment


    • SoOrbudgal
      SoOrbudgal commented
      Editing a comment
      But also look at the perilite huge difference too. I like espoma mix i've used it mixed with worm casing an coco coir when i've done a large amount of containers.

    • No3odiesShad0w
      No3odiesShad0w commented
      Editing a comment
      You know me always experimenting and testing stuff. I didn't add anything just used the soil as is from the bag. Just curious to see how they stack up but i think the espoma could use some perlite while the fox farm is loaded with perlite but that wouldn't be causing the acidity.

    • 3Berries
      3Berries commented
      Editing a comment
      The perlite is like diluting the soil, adding inert mass.

    #3
    Oh for those interested I'm growing Northern Lights autoflower. I got on seed supreme. They got that BOGO offer with different strains rotating every single month. I couldn't resist I got 12 seeds for 60 bucks. No more growing seeds i found in weed. No more growing free seeds ppl give me and mystery stains. Trying to do things right. The last blue dreams that I had was absolutely delicious and I want to have good results again.

    Comment


      #4
      I would suggest double checking the calibration on your pH pen.
      I have what appears to be the same pen(but recently upgraded to a BlueLabs), and I was getting wild readings like that once. It was way out of calibration!
      Do you have litmus paper or drops you can compare to side-by-side?

      EDIT: Scratch that, lol.
      Last edited by Blowdout2269; 09-28-2022, 02:31 PM.

      Comment


      • No3odiesShad0w
        No3odiesShad0w commented
        Editing a comment
        Lol yeah i have pH drops and it's positively orange when i put them in. It's def way too acidic

      #5
      It's recently calibrated and shows 7.0 for distilled water so it's def accurate. Also reads correctly for the calibration liquids. I triple checked because i couldn't believe it either but the stress the plants are exhibiting verifies it.

      The other soil (Espoma) is reading correctly it's just the Fox Farm it's way out of wack.... And i been having constant acidity issues and i thought it was my water and i tried changing everything except the damn soil because so many ppl swore by it. Maybe i got a bad batch? IDK ...it was beat to shit when i got the box. But this isn't my first bag of fox farm soil and each time acidity issues and ph issues.

      That's why I'm growing the Espoma and Fox Farm side by side. Same plant same strain. But already i see the seedlings in the Espoma lol healthier than the ones in the Fox Farm soil .... Mind you i pH adjusted the soil before i even planted the seed because i knew it was acidic and still issues. But we'll see.

      I'll post updates as they continue to grow so we can see what's going on.

      Comment


      • 90Gizmo
        90Gizmo commented
        Editing a comment
        Someone told me during my first grow that distilled water isn't a valid calibration (because there's "nothing" to calibrate against) and that you have to use a calibrated non-seven-pH solution for accuracy. My meter calls for two calibrations for very low pH measurements.

      • 3Berries
        3Berries commented
        Editing a comment
        @90Gizmo
        Distilled, RO or even rain water are very hard to get reliable pH numbers from. How reliable they are would be questionable. You should not store the pH probe in any of them either. It does not take much to change the pH of them at all.

        As far as calibration, if the range you are usually testing is 6.0-8.0, then the 7.0 point is all that is needed to calibrate for.

        There have been questions too about how long the calibration fluids are good for. Some mix from powders, I use the bottled General Hydroponics GH1552 PH 7 brand. Buy it by the quart. Last one was in January of 21 and I just got a new bottle yesterday. I calibrated with the last of the old and then read the new, then vise versa. The Apera ph20 read both the same. I expected that as General Hydroponics doesn't mention a shelf life of has a date on the bottle.

      #6
      I just started two Bubba Kush autos on FF OF. I added a quart of perlite and some limestone type material to 3.5 gallons. Going to be fun keeping up with them and now I'm going into high CO 2 season to with the heat on...

      Just finished a OF and another on HF with GranDaddy Purple. It was a struggle but good buds and nice smells.

      Comment


        #7
        Someone argued and swore by that ff ocean forest or there brands dont burn sprouts so maybe its watering light source . Good Luck
        1 Marshydro tsl 2000 @ 300 watt.
        1 sf2000 @200 watts
        2 philzon @230 watts
        2x4x5 tent
        3x6x8 closet
        Fox Farm ocean forest
        Black gold for seedling
        3 gal pot holes in sides and bottom
        RH 40-60
        Temp 70-80
        Feeding with FF trio with molasses
        calmag and a little flower fuel
        Light at 10 -16 inches above canopy
        growing Mazar, og kush, northern lights, alcopulco gold and amnesia haze.

        Comment


          #8
          I’ve had the same problems as the original poster with fox farm soils and will not be using again either. To make matters worse, I found their response to my question about low pH to be ridiculous:

          Thank you for contacting FoxFarm, I would be happy to help!



          Receiving an accurate picture of the pH of soil can be very difficult. We do not recommend testing the soil pH by testing runoff or placing the probe directly into the soil. The pH buffers in our soils, such as oyster shell, will not register on your pH meter if you are testing the runoff or if you just place your pH meter in the soil. The oyster shell works as a pH adjustor once it comes in contact with water.



          All FoxFarm soils come pH adjusted right out of the bag between 6.3 and 6.8, which is the ideal range for plant nutrient availability. In order to ensure that your soil pH remains in the proper range, we recommend that you adjust the pH of your nutrient solution between 6.3 and 6.8, alternate feedings and waterings, and periodically flush your soil of excess salts.



          Make sure that you have a relatively new pH meter that is clean and calibrated according the manual instructions. If you are testing for soil pH, we recommend that you perform a soil slurry test, as described below. This ensures that all of the pH adjustors within the soil work properly and register on your pH meter. It is important to note that the used soil may have a different pH than the new soil from the bag due to the pH of the irrigation water.



          How to Perform an At-Home Soil Slurry Test to Determine Soil pH



          Some gardeners like to be able to check the pH of their soil. Since actual soil pH can be difficult to determine without expensive lab equipment, we recommend a slurry test to determine the pH of your soil. Soil slurries provide a pH of the slurry, not the soil, and is used as an indicator of the soil pH. The soil slurry pH will be more acidic than the actual soil pH, which is to be expected. We recommend two slurries:



          • A 1:1 slurry – mix 1 part soil to 1 part distilled water (by volume)

          • A 1:5 slurry - mix 1 part soil to 5 parts distilled water (by volume)

          • Thoroughly mix these slurries and allow them to sit for about 15 minutes

          • Next, check the pH of the slurry with litmus paper, liquid indicator dye, or a digital pH meter

          • The 1:1 slurry of Happy Frog Potting Soilshould have a pH of 5.0-6.3

          • The 1:5 slurry of Happy Frog Potting Soilshould have a pH of 5.6-6.6

          • The 1:1 slurry of Ocean Forest Potting Soil should have a pH of 5.0-6.2

          • The 1:5 slurry of Ocean Forest Potting Soilshould have a pH of 5.6-6.7

          • If pH values of the slurries are in the ranges provided above, you can assume that the pH of your soil is in the 6.3-6.8 range



          * These pH ranges are based off our testing, which is done with tap water. Your municipal tap water may be different from ours, so your pH may be different as well.



          If your soil pH is not within the correct range according to the soil slurry then you may want to adjust your soil. Dolomitic limestone will raise your pH and soil sulfur can lower the pH. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions and water thoroughly after adding a pH adjustor so that it will be activated. If your pH is outside of the ideal range, your plants will not be able to take up nutrients and you will want to wait to fertilize the soil until the adjustor has taken effect. This can take up to 30 days. However, you can supplement with foliar fertilizers during that time regardless of the soil pH.



          If you have any other questions please do not hesitate to contact us. To learn more about our company, new products, and download our latest feeding schedules please visitwww.FoxFarm.com.



          Caelidh

          Product Support Specialist

          FoxFarm Soil & Fertilizer Company
          Last edited by RetiredGuy; 09-29-2022, 10:04 AM.

          Comment


          • No3odiesShad0w
            No3odiesShad0w commented
            Editing a comment
            That's such a safe company answer, it was painful to read. Lolol. "Our product isn't bad you just suck doing what you do"...... Or maybe your product isn't good and/or not stable. Maybe it is pH'd but by the time you get it the pH changed because of crap quality ingredients.

            But okay less pretend the calibration on there pen is bad..... How do you explain the orange pH test drops? I don't think those need calibration. If water is green, Espoma comes out green but fox farm is orange/red-orange, how do they explain that? The cabbage leaf test might even work the damn soil is so acidic.

            If the pH is of use dolomite lime.... So i guess it's not "ready to use" lolol. Maybe they were good back in the day and now they're just riding on that as long as they can before they have to actually fix something.

          • RetiredGuy
            RetiredGuy commented
            Editing a comment
            Here is how I answered fox farms:

            Thanks for the quick cut and paste answer, but as a retired Chemical Engineer I don’t buy it!

            1. If the runoff is coming out low pH and what is going in is higher, than there is too much acid in the soil.

            2. If the oyster shells were adjusting the pH properly, the run off would not be low.

            3. If the soil pH is right, I would not be seeing Phosphorus deficiencies.

            Guess I will try Stonington blend next time, I have read great reviews.

            BTW, I have read on various forums, that others have had the same issue with your soil.

          • No3odiesShad0w
            No3odiesShad0w commented
            Editing a comment
            RetiredGuy a week written response lol 👍. I was curious and looked at the Amazon reviews and same thing. Too Acidic. Seems like many ppl are having the same issue.
            I've been hearing good things about Roots Organic and Espoma organic.

          #9
          Helps to use hard well water and add perlite. But I've gone to ProMix BX. It has hardly no nutes. Haven't finished a grow with it yet other than my first experimental auto, which is how I found out it has little to no nutes.

          Comment


          • No3odiesShad0w
            No3odiesShad0w commented
            Editing a comment
            I read that autos don't mind poor soils. That's also why any auto flower soil blends always have about half the nutes compared to the normal recipe. It will grow and do it's thing but i think the end result might not be as potent as one that has at least some nutes. .... But i could be wrong

          • 3Berries
            3Berries commented
            Editing a comment
            ProMix BX doesn't have much nutes at all. It got hit with a Ca and other deficiencies from the start. Never recovered but still got 100 grams out of it.

          #10
          Update!
          So .... First thing still having pH issues (Fox Farm soil) with the one on the right. Even though it's showing stress, it's growing taller faster and bushier than the one on the left. Curious why the one showing stress is growing faster?

          The 2 seedlings in the Espoma soil both look equally healthy. I regret not adding perlite to the soil but i really wanted to test the soil straight out of the bag, unadulterated. No pH issues. The seedlings look nice and healthy and they look like they have rooted since the leaf growth has increased. They should rapidly increase in size over the next 5 days.

          All the plants are getting 20 hours light. Water pH 6.5 -6.7
          Autoflower Northern Lights

          Comment


            #11
            So the acidic soil is growing the best plant so far? An I reading that correctly? Maybe FFs response is correct. Super interesting. Btw, the curl in your leaves suggests over watering and/or too much light to me. Probably over watering. Very interested to see what happens

            Comment


            • No3odiesShad0w
              No3odiesShad0w commented
              Editing a comment
              Well IDK about growing the best... It's just taller but doesn't look as healthy as the others. When it starts flowering it's really going to show. All the leaves will fall out within the first month. The buds won't grow well etc etc. I'm not sure why it's growing faster than it's counterpart but that's why I'm experimenting. I'll keep posting updates.

              As far as the watering goes. Yes you're correct. It has been wet because i needed to test the soil pH so i had to water enough to get drip out of the bottom. I was worried about it as well.... Hopefully the pH is close enough. I don't want to water log it again. I even tried to flush it a little bit the last time. No more FF. I don't need these problems. The seedlings in the Espoma look nice!

            #12
            Not to mention my last plant, the soil was so acidic it started to grow bananas on me. First Time i got a herm plant and it might even have seeds. ... I don't need pollen in my grow room!
            it's also why i bought seeds for the first time instead of relying on free seeds. The ones i bought sprouted in 2 days and they're growing much better than all the mystery seeds i got.

            Comment


              #13
              A couple of graphics to show what nutes and what pH is best for their uptake.


              Click image for larger version

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              Click image for larger version

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              Comment


              • No3odiesShad0w
                No3odiesShad0w commented
                Editing a comment
                Nice! I actually have a nice printed chart on my wall because this isn't the first time I'm dealing with overly acidic soil . At first I thought it was the water so I started buying gallons of water from the store.... But the problem continued. Eventually i tested the soils I've been using and that's when i discovered the issue was the FF soil

              #14
              21 days and i see the first flowers! The height difference is wild. You would think the one with the nice green leaves would have grown better instead the one with the pH stress and acidic soil grew taller. We'll just have to see

              Comment


              • RetiredGuy
                RetiredGuy commented
                Editing a comment
                Interesting, looks like two completely different strains.I see a purple stem in one photo. Curious if you see more purple stems in the low pH soil. I had a lot of purple which I understand may or may not be signs of a phosphorus deficiency ( could also be normal in some strains).

              • No3odiesShad0w
                No3odiesShad0w commented
                Editing a comment
                Yeah the red or purple stems is a first sign that something isn't right. Everytime i had acidic soil, the stems would all be red. Then it started showing on the leaves. I know now it was my soil

              #15
              That's exactly why i wanted to do this side by side grow. The shorter one might be stunted. It was going well at first and the soil pH was okay, now i think the pH went down again because it's really growing slowly all of a sudden....

              I had to raise my light because i noticed the tops growing really small on the bigger one. I might have to put raisers under the others to keep them the correct distance of this one keeps growing so fast.

              The shorter one has a bit of heat stress but that's going away. The color and the leaves look great.. you'd think it would grow faster....

              Not sure what they put in the soil that makes it get so acidic because even after adjusting the pH, it seems like it's back to being acidic. Crazy how acidity can make plants look so different. With all the pH issues I'm sure there's nutrient deficiencies. Everything will be revealed now that it started to bloom
              I'm scared to test the pH. They've had it wet for some time now. I need to let the roots breathe. It's possible the stunting can be because of the persistent wet soil in trying to get the pH right.

              Comment

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