What is wrong with my hydro peppers? Blooms dropping.
Alright, let me tell you a little bit about my setup first. I am growing in a 2'x3'x4' box that is lined with mylar paper. The box is ventilated very well with case fans at the bottom drawing air in and case fans exhausting out the top. I also have 2 small fans that provide a cross-breeze for the plants to aid in pollination. My hydro setup is the DWC "Emily's Garden". I am growing jalapeno and habanero plants and they seem to be very healthy and have tons of big, dark green leaves. They are about 10" and 8" respectively and they have started to put on tons of blooms in the last few weeks (Jalapenoz have been blooming for about 3 weeks and Habaneros about 2). Now that sounds great and no problems should happen right? WRONG!!!... I have noticed that the blooms keep falling off even after hand pollination. I have narrowed it down to either: the lighting I have is not sufficient, or the nutrient solution is all jacked up.
I have (1) 4x 2ft fixture with (4) 3500K tubes. The fixture is suspended above the plants on yoyo pulleys so I can raise and lower the light as needed. I also have (1) single 2ft fixture with a 6400K tube for the under canopy. I posted in the lighting forum on this issue already, but since this forum directly relates to peppers I will pose my question here as well. Is this a sufficient light set up or do I need to add more light? or change spectrum?
Keep in mind, the reservoir is 3 gallons when full...
I recently changed my nutrient solution because with the big, dark green leaves I figured the blooms were dropping due to an excess in nitrogen (previously using GH "Bloom" solution). I cleaned out the entire reservoir 5 days ago and started with a new solution composed of 4 tsp/gal of Fox Farm "Tiger Bloom" 2-8-4 and 1 tsp/gal Cal Mag Plus. I also have pieces of limestone in the reservoir to bring up my pH naturally with chems on hand if it needs an extra boost. Is this a good solution for hot peppers? The blooms on my jalapeno plants have still been dropping. Do I need to wait longer to see a change from the new nutes or do I still have a problem?
Any help will be GREATLY appreciated. I am afraid I will never have peppers. Oh... one more thing... the temp has been mid 70s at night and 86 top during the day (as my box is in my garage so it still has variable temps). The humidity has ranged from 42% to extreme 72% when it poured down rain the other day.