jordanleereynols
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grow lights/shop lights

I know this may seem dumb, but can I ask a few people to post some pictures or links to pics that are similar to what they use for grow lights?

I'm really not interested if it is a real "grow light". I see the word shop light tossed around alot. I just want to see what people are using with success. The lights I have are similar to this:

[img]https://images.lowes.com/product/converted/017398/017398346009lg.jpg[/img]

It just seems if i get them really close to the plant, they don't get enough coverage, and if I raise them to 12" to 16" above, the plants get leggy quick.

Any help would be appreciated.....pics and links mostly. Thank you.

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Kisal
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Well, what you pictured is what I know as a "clip-on work light". If you put a heat lamp bulb in it, then you have a heat lamp.

What most people are referring to as "shop lights" are standard, 4 ft long, 2 bulb, fluorescent lighting fixtures that are suspended by chains, so the height can be adjusted as the plants grow.

There are a variety of types of bulbs you can buy for the fixture, to suit your plants' needs. Some produce light more in the red range, some more in the blue range, some are called "daylight" bulbs and allegedly approximate sunlight. I'm sure there are even more kinds nowadays. It's been awhile since I checked out what was available.

Of course there are much more expensive lighting setups you can buy, if you care to spend your money that way. The standard shop lights I described above are sufficient for starting seeds and keeping plants healthy until they can be transferred outdoors. You'll need more intense lights if you plan to grow your plants indoors only.

Here's a pic:
[img]https://www.jascoproducts.com/products/pc/catalog/10303/10303webd1.jpg[/img]
Last edited by Kisal on Mon Mar 28, 2011 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

jordanleereynols
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Well that explains alot!!!! By shop light I was thinking "trouble light".

I need a complete "re-do" of my setup. It will cost hardly nothing, and only about 60 seedlings, so I am willing to cut my losses and start over with the right setup than try to save whats left of these seeds and have a crappy yield.

Thanks so much

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Halfway
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[url=https://img688.imageshack.us/i/1000713m.jpg/][img]https://img688.imageshack.us/img688/5103/1000713m.jpg[/img][/url]

I bought 3 of these T8 shop lights for less than $9 each and fashioned them together to operate as one 48", 6 bulb fixture of which all are plugged into the same light timer. In effect, I have 6 32W bulbs covering a 48" x 24" growing area. This easily accommodates several standard starter trays or least 3 of the hydro systems. I recommend watching your local big box stores for sales and manufacturers rebates. The lights I bought normally retailed at over $20 each, so wait for the sale.

Since vegetative growth is achieved in the "blue" spectrum, I use 6500k bulbs. A 2-pack of Sylvania T8 6500k bulbs is around $3.50. Since I am growing lettuce, herbs, and my spring starters, the blue spectrum is all I need. If I were to grow plants requiring a flowering stage (peppers, cucumber, tomatoes, decorative flowers etc.), I would need red spectrum bulbs and additional shop light fixtures. At this point, I believe that is cost prohibitive for me as I will grow those type plants outdoors.

I keep them between 2-4 inches above the plants. Touching the bulbs has not burned any plants either, but I keep a fan on lettuce to prevent the small amount of heat from making them bolt.
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hydrolifeCA
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Shop lights work well. I am using a 45watt large CFL 6500k @ 2700 lumens and it works fine for 5 lettuce plants. It's about 3 inches above them.

CFL works good if kept low and it saves on the elctric bill. It also doesn't produce heat.

jordanleereynols
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Ok, I went and bought a 4 bulb shop light. 48". I got 4 identical bulbs...T8 6500K 32W.

I'm hearing more about this red/blue spectrum. Plain and simple.....are my peppers and tomatoes going to grow under these lights?

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Halfway
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Jordan, are you trying to grow tomatoes and peppers to fruit or only as starts to transplant into the garden?

Here is why I ask...

If you are going to try and grow peppers and tomatoes to full maturity and fruit under lights, you are going to struggle with the T8 shop lights. They will not provide enough lumens to penetrate the canopy once the plants get a over a foot tall. T8 are great for starts and maybe leafy greens grown to maturity, but not real good for fruiting.

To the question on "red spectrum", YES. Again, only if you are trying to fruit these plants.

I would recommend T5 HO (High Output) or better yet, high pressure sodium for growing tomatoes and peppers inside.

I would recommend a lot of study on this subject as lighting pros and cons can get extensive and expensive!!
Zone 4a.

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applestar
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I use the clamp on light you pictured as supplemental lights for my indoor plants and have them shining from the side. These lights come with various size hood -- Most of mine are 10" in diameter, some 8". I use 23W and 26W Daylight CFL bulbs. Some have double articulating joints that makes them more adjustable.

I have also used them for small number of overflow seed starting containers and up potted seedlings that would fit within the circle of light. Two clamped on back of a chair side by side for an entire nursery flat.

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stella1751
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Just wanted you all to know that I am finding this thread terrifically interesting. I have a shop light downstairs; I've never used it but probably will in the future. My sister gave it to me, and I didn't know what it was until now :oops:
"Imagination is more important than knowledge." -- Albert Einstein

hydroguy
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Lights, gotta love this topic if your an indoor gardner. I've been tinkering with plants indoors for a minute and have 8 different lights.

your basic 4 bulb T8 shop light; fine light for growing some lettuce. covers 2' x 4' well for young starts and full term leaf lettuce

[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/Flood%20Tray/0118111914-01.jpg[/img]

125 watt Mogul base CFL, small concentrated foot print does well for just a few small starts. 1' x 2' max area

[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/plumbing%20lights/0210111947-00.jpg[/img]

(2) 192 watt HO T5, 2' 8 bulb fixture. Quickly becoming one of my favorite light fixtures. Like it so much I bought 2 of them. Perfect fixture for 2' x 2' growing area.

[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/Chairties%20Herb%20Garden/0214111547-00.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/plumbing%20lights/0214111427-00.jpg[/img]

400 watt remote ballasted Metal Halide, covers a 3' x 3' area well but does a better job at 2' x 2'. Penetration into the canopy is the selling point for HID lights. This light preforms realy close to the 2' T5's until plant heigth reaches 12". Draw back is heat and it really needs an exhaust fan to utilize the lumens efficiently.

[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/plumbing%20lights/0210111912-00.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/plumbing%20lights/0210111946-00.jpg[/img]

600 Watt remote ballasted HPS. Now your getting into some serious light. You can't look at this bulb when its burning and the heat produced is high making it a vented light only. You can flower out about any plant you want fruit bearing or not with this light. I run it sealed or bare bulbed in a confined 30" square tent. Either way its vented with a high velocity inline fan.

[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/Peppers/1120101418-02.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/Tomatos/0326111648-00.jpg[/img]

(4) LED panel lights. 225 bulbs each in a 1' sqaure board. I mounted 4 of these panels together to cover a 2' x2' flood tray. Completely and utterly worthless. They sell on Ebay still but trust me they are a waste of money. There are newer and much improved LED's out there and this is the next area of lighting I'll venture back into since technology has improved so much.

The Quantum BadBoy series T5 HO 12 bulb fixture is my most recent purchase. The bulbs are here and the fixture will be by the first of next week. It covers an area of 3.5' x 4' and draws a total of 790 watts. Here's a stock picture of it.

[img]https://i784.photobucket.com/albums/yy130/hydroguy/plumbing%20lights/quantumt5_badboy.png[/img]

Lights, gotta love em!!

hydroguy

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Halfway
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Well done HG.

Love those HO T5's.

red, blue, red, blue, doo deee doooo, doo deee dooooo. 8)
Zone 4a.

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rainbowgardener
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browse around in this section, there's lots of pictures already here. Mine are here:

https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12209&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=120
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Skoorbmax
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Cool thread. I am going to start seeds soon: peppers, tomato, cauliflower, etc.

I was at home depot and phillips has regular circular bulbs that fit in a typical socket intended for aquariums and plants or fluorescents for the same thing.

Would a couple of 40W fluorescents next to each other sort me out for a modest few seedlings or do I need more watts? At 16 hours/day I am thinking maybe $5/month with $.11 kwh.

Are those Phillips bulbs excellent; do I need to worry about any light spectrum if I get these? Since they are pricier, could I get just one of them and then some other regular-joe bulb?

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rainbowgardener
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skoorbmax - I know the stores about now are full of seed starting stuff, just another way they lead people astray. You are actually getting kind of a late start. I planted pepper seeds (indoors of course) in Jan, because they are slow to sprout and grow. You can plant them now, but be prepared to be getting your first peppers about the end of your season. You might want to just buy some pepper plants this year.

I've never grown cauliflower, but it is a brassica, in the same family with broccoli. It is a cold weather crop, very tolerant of cold and frost, but doesn't like heat very well. I planted broccoli also in Jan and transplanted the plants in the ground several weeks ago. They've been snowed on a couple times since then and are fine. I'm a bit south of you, so my season may be a little different from yours.

You are a little behind on tomatoes, but not as badly. Corn and beans you can plant directly in the ground after all danger of frost is past. Squash, melons, cucumbers you can plant directly in the ground after all danger of frost is past AND the soil has warmed up some, or you can start it indoors just a couple weeks ahead of your last frost date.
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wordwiz
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hydroguy,

My experiences with heat produced by MH lights is opposite yours. I have a 600-watt, 72,000 lumen 5000K bulb upstairs that I can hold my hand under (palm side down) a foot away and while I feel the warmth, it isn't enough to warrant using a vent. I'm using it over a 2.5 x 3.5 area with a bunch of hydro toms.

Got a 125-watt Red/Blue/Orange LED over my semi-dwarf Cavendish banana and dwarf orange tree plants. They are in a DWC system and seem to love it.

Mike

Skoorbmax
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rainbowgardener wrote:skoorbmax - I know the stores about now are full of seed starting stuff, just another way they lead people astray. You are actually getting kind of a late start. I planted pepper seeds (indoors of course) in Jan, because they are slow to sprout and grow. You can plant them now, but be prepared to be getting your first peppers about the end of your season. You might want to just buy some pepper plants this year.

I've never grown cauliflower, but it is a brassica, in the same family with broccoli. It is a cold weather crop, very tolerant of cold and frost, but doesn't like heat very well. I planted broccoli also in Jan and transplanted the plants in the ground several weeks ago. They've been snowed on a couple times since then and are fine. I'm a bit south of you, so my season may be a little different from yours.

You are a little behind on tomatoes, but not as badly. Corn and beans you can plant directly in the ground after all danger of frost is past. Squash, melons, cucumbers you can plant directly in the ground after all danger of frost is past AND the soil has warmed up some, or you can start it indoors just a couple weeks ahead of your last frost date.
You guys must be warmer :) I guess I must be late on a few things, though. It slipped my mind entirely while watching the snow fall! last year I started seedlings now and it was definitely not too early for tomatoes and cucumbers because they were leggy but perhaps that was more lack of light than anything else (grew them by windows with a mirror). Some of the tomato seedlings in the stores in May were much larger, though.

I'm hopeful that with 2X40W flo lights I could get some better growth. Maybe use the same lights for lettuce throughout the winter...?

jordanleereynols
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I have the exact light as the one in hydro's first picture. I got it all set up and put my first plants under it last week. Some tomatoes and some peppers. They are looking really good. I realized one problem though. It's not warm enough in my basement. Probably about 65 degrees. So yesterday I went and bought some plastic and built an "enclosure" around my table and light. Today, I'm going to buy a timer for the light as I have been running it 24/7. The in-laws gave me a really nice space heater that has a thermostat on it. When i get the enslosure done, I'm going to set the heater for 80 degrees and put the light to 16 hours. I went down there this morning and just the little bit of heat the light puts off already raised the temp in there, and the enclosure isn't even done yet. So I am confident this will work. Planning on moving 10 more tomatoe, 10 pepper, and 30 watermelon plants under the light within the next couple days.

I will try and get some pics this weekend to share. My confidence is really high now that this will be successful. Hopefully I will be picking fruits and veggies a month earlier than usual this year! I am still a good month away from putting anything outside.

On a side note, a good wet week last week followed by some cool yet sunny days, and my 30x50 pea patch is looking awesome. And I dug up one of my potatoes and they seem to be coming along great as well. Should see some germination next week when we should see steady 60's with a 70 degree day mixed in.

Skoorbmax
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jordanleereynols wrote:I have the exact light as the one in hydro's first picture. I got it all set up and put my first plants under it last week. Some tomatoes and some peppers. They are looking really good. I realized one problem though. It's not warm enough in my basement. Probably about 65 degrees. So yesterday I went and bought some plastic and built an "enclosure" around my table and light. Today, I'm going to buy a timer for the light as I have been running it 24/7. The in-laws gave me a really nice space heater that has a thermostat on it. When i get the enslosure done, I'm going to set the heater for 80 degrees and put the light to 16 hours. I went down there this morning and just the little bit of heat the light puts off already raised the temp in there, and the enclosure isn't even done yet. So I am confident this will work. Planning on moving 10 more tomatoe, 10 pepper, and 30 watermelon plants under the light within the next couple days.

I will try and get some pics this weekend to share. My confidence is really high now that this will be successful. Hopefully I will be picking fruits and veggies a month earlier than usual this year! I am still a good month away from putting anything outside.

On a side note, a good wet week last week followed by some cool yet sunny days, and my 30x50 pea patch is looking awesome. And I dug up one of my potatoes and they seem to be coming along great as well. Should see some germination next week when we should see steady 60's with a 70 degree day mixed in.
I bet if you keep your enclosure tight enough the heat from the bulb would heat it up that 10-15 degrees, wouldn't it?

WinglessAngel
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Just a thought...my fiance rigged up on my mini greenhouse two fish tank lights and they work great...also have one stand up very large UV light in the living room lighting my other sprouts....both work great and now that i have half my sprouts in the ground he has been using the greenhouse rigged fish tank lights for his bonsai trees and some wild pea plants we started. just a thought :)



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