My first light stand attempt...

frank325September 7, 2008

Okay so I wasn't going for beauty, but affordability. Here is my first attempt. The light is about 12 inches from the tops of my violet. It seems like other pictures I've seen have them so much closer, but then I see people say 12 inches. So is this fine? It's a little bare now, but I have about a dozen little babies coming up in that middle gladware container, so it will be full in the near future.

Also, up until now they've just been in front of that window (south west facing). What would you suggest as far as having these lights on for the first few weeks. Should I have them come on and off a few times throughout the day so it isn't too much at the beginning?

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nwgatreasures(7)

Is it possible to put the stand in front of the window and not use the lights at all?

Good job on the stand itself. I'm not an expert on light placement.

Dora

    Bookmark   September 7, 2008 at 6:30PM
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frank325

That's what I've been doing with another stand (too small to use with the light), and it has worked out okay, but with fall and winter on it's way, the amount of light they'll get will certainly be diminished and I want to allow these babies to grow up big and strong at a fairly decent pace.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2008 at 6:51PM
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curtis0353

Nice stand, Frank. You will now have a lot more control over the amount of light that your plants are getting.

For standard violets 10-12 inches is a good distance to keep the plants from the light. I am assuming that you have 40 watt bulbs and you will be burning them about 12 hours once the violets are acclimated to the lights. Keep in mind that new bulbs will burn brighter at first.
Semis and mini's can be placed a little closer, say 8- 10 inches maybe.

It looks like you are growing other plants as well. AVs are a relatively low light level plant and other plants may have different light needs.

Good luck with the plants on your light stand and I hope that they do well for you.

Curtis

Curtis

    Bookmark   September 7, 2008 at 9:21PM
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frank325

yeah I have those others there just for now to fill up the shelf.

But what should I do for them to get acclimated to the light, per my initial post? Yes, it's 2 40 watt bulbs.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 6:27AM
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dragonfly2008

If your violets have spent the summer in the southwest window, I would think it would not take much to acclimate them to the lights. But just to be on the safe side, I would maybe start out with 7 or 8 hours a day and move on from there until they were on a maximum of 12 hours a day. You will know if they are not getting enough light if the violets leaves start reaching upwards towards the light fixture.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 8:08AM
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lilypad22(7)

Looks like there is room to grow more shelves! tish

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 7:36PM
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fred_hill(6)

Hi Frank,
The stand looks fine except for one minor problem.....not enough AV's. Lets get cracking and fill that shelf and more like it.
Fred in NJ

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 8:17PM
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frank325

Hey I'm workin' on it!! In a few weeks, there will be at least a dozen little bathroom cups on there once I can separate those babies. And a while from then, at least a dozen 4" pots!

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 9:19PM
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curtis0353

Frank

Regarding your question about acclimating the plants to the lights -

What I did when I constructed my light stand and first placed my violets under the lights, to acclimate the plants to the light stand I simply put them under the lights and burned the bulbs for a shorter period of time than what is generally recommended. I think I burned them about 8 hours the first few days and slowly increased the amount of time until after about a month I am now burning the lights for 12 hours.

Also, I have my lights hanging from hooks on small chains, similar to what you have your lights hanging from, and it is fairly easy for me to adjust the height of the lights. For the first couple of weeks I had the lights hanging higher from the plants. I have since lowered the lights to about 10-12 inches over the plants.

Basically, I just slowly introduced the plants to the lights. I can see a big difference in the way the younger leaves look which have come out since the plants were placed under the lights. On all my plants, the new and younger leaves are much greener and healthier looking than the older leaves are. I am thinking that it may take some time for the plant's leaves to all be one color again.

I also am now growing some babies under the lights, and they seem to be doing a lot better, and growing at a faster rate, than the babies that I had raised on the windowsill.

Good luck with growing your plants on your stand. It sounds like you may need to add additional shelves to accomodate the new plants that you will be having soon.

Curtis

    Bookmark   September 9, 2008 at 9:28PM
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