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thinking of adding lights to winter greenhouse

Posted by joannaqcw NY 4/5 (My Page) on
Tue, Feb 3, 09 at 9:07

I've been growing kale, chard, tatsoi and Chinese cabbage in a greenhouse attached to my house during the last 4 winters. Spring and fall production id quite good, but during the darkest part of the winter the plants recover fairly slowly. (I'm in upstate NY in a Lake Effect area where winter tends to be fairly cloudy.) I'd like to try enhancing production with grow lights next year. I have some shop light fixtures and full-spectrum CF plant bulbs. I have a few questions:
How far above the plant tops should I keep the grow lights?
Is it OK to rotate a couple of grow lights among several boxes of plants (For instance, each box might be under lights for 4 hours/day...)?
Has anyone grown lettuce under lights? Our attempts to grow lettuce in the winter greenhouse have failed so far; I'm guessing it's light not temp. that's the limiting factor.
Does adding white reflectors around the sides substantially enhance the amount of light plants receive?
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: thinking of adding lights to winter greenhouse

No experience with lights in the greenhouse but I do have questions.

Are you going to use lights in the dead of winter in an unheated greenhouse? The purpose of lights is to encourage growth, and I'm wondering if tender new growth triggered by artificial light will withstand the bitter cold temps that established, hardy plants in an unheatd greenhouse will.


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