Growing Under Lights

cowgurl160(4 SD)November 28, 2012

I would like to grow my AVs under lights, in the past I've just relied on what sun they can get but I'm starting to get a few too many plants and the AVs get pushed away from the window. I'm looking for advice on what to get for a bulb. I have a torch light that has a reading light on in and I want to use the reading light portion for my AVs if possible. The light says 60W type A bulb or smaller, what would be a good bulb for growing plants? And note that the plants do get some ambient light but they are about 10 ft from a west facing window. And then I plan on getting an outlet timer, about how many hours a day is good for the light to be on?

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aegis1000

Get a 60W equivalent CFL spiral Fluorescent bukb to use in your lamp.

Start with 10 hours of artificial light a day ... andmthen adjust as necessary.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 9:29PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

Depends how many is a few too many. If you going to keep them on a windowsill - the supplemental CFL is probably just right - I would go for 100wt equivalent (about 30wt real consumption) and hang it higher. If you are on the way to a large collection - I would go for a shoplight with 2 T8 lights - the 48" ones are the most economical.You can hang it over your windowsill or any horizontal surface you would improve with your violets. (Who uses pool tables anyway)

irina

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 2:59PM
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cowgurl160(4 SD)

Thanks for the tips aegis!

Irina, I wish I still had room on my windowsill but that has kind of been taken over by the 'high light' cactus, succulents, and tropicals. And I live in South Dakota and if we have a typical winter I worry that it gets too cold along my windows, I'm definitely not up for risking my AVs and I'm even a little leary of leaving what I've got along the window. My AVs are in a location where they get some light, its not so low as to kill them but they will probably get stretched out and not bloom over winter so I'd like to try some extra light to help. And maybe if I get a bigger place I'll be able to get some of the tube flourescents and set up the shelving I have planned for plants but due to lack of space in my current apartment my AVs are limited to one of my end tables.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 4:17PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

Depending how much money you want to spend - what you need is a grow cart type shelving unit. It takes something like 2X2' and you can have 3 or 4 shelves - they accomodate 2 trays each - and I would say - use 2 24" T5 or T8s lights. T8 if you have 4 shelves - or t5 - if you use 3 shelves with 23" between the shelves.

The grow cart you can get in IGS - if you are ready to part with this kind of money - ouch!

Or you can build something similar out of ready shelving and lights.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Gardman-4-Tier-Mini-Greenhouse/17447098

this is 4 tiered - you need to make 3 shelves out of it - otherwise the shelves are too close to accomodate the lights. So you need to replace the vertical 1/2" pipes with longer ones. You need 8 pipes - and since you already have 3 of them - it is horizontal shelf support - you can cut 5 more to the size - I think they have them in HD or in Lowes. And get the lights in HD as well.

I buy 2 of these per shelf - they are t5s
GE 23 in. Super Slim Linkable Fluorescent Undercabinet Light
- link them - remove the tubes -and use scotch tape to attach fixtures to the grid above - and put the tubes back, no covers. They last for years. And buy a timer in WM - something like $6.

Good luck - and be creative. You can use the darkest corner in your apt. - and make it shine. You can hang a small lightstick above the shelf in your bathroom!

Irina

Here is a link that might be useful: expensive cart

    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 6:46PM
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