NJ Bob
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Grow light dilemma

So I'm at the point where I'm doing some serious up-potting of herbs while starting up my veggies. I see a point in the not-too-distant future where I'm going to run out of grow light room. My herbs, particularly my parsley & thyme, are a couple months old and are doing extremely well. Is it too early for me to start searching for window space for me to re-locate some of my plants?

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Grow light dilemma

are they eventually going to end up outside? Then just put them out! They are very cold hardy and stay out all winter in my zone 6 winters. I have had parsley out hardening out for at least 3 weeks already. You do need to harden them, that is expose them a bit gradually, not just plop them out there and forget them.
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applestar
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Re: Grow light dilemma

Yep! That's what I would have said, too. Image
What else do you have under those lights?
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NJ Bob
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Location: Central NJ, Zone 7A

Re: Grow light dilemma

Yeah, I've been sitting them in the big bay window out front for a few hours a day in hopes of getting them out from under the lights altogether.

I also have:

3-4 types of oregano
rosemary
sage
lavender
chives
mint

and have recently just put down

3-4 types of peppers
3-4 types of tomatoes
eggplant

so in another month or so when the veggies are ready to be re-potted I'm really going to have to get creative with my space. This is my first year with the heating mat and grow lights. I'll be a little more organized next year but I'm having a ball!

123
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Re: Grow light dilemma

are you using a artificial grow light or natural light. Im confused by your post.

123
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Re: Grow light dilemma

NJ Bob wrote:Yeah, I've been sitting them in the big bay window out front for a few hours a day in hopes of getting them out from under the lights altogether.

I also have:

3-4 types of oregano
rosemary
sage
lavender
chives
mint

and have recently just put down

3-4 types of peppers
3-4 types of tomatoes
eggplant

so in another month or so when the veggies are ready to be re-potted I'm really going to have to get creative with my space. This is my first year with the heating mat and grow lights. I'll be a little more organized next year but I'm having a ball!

what sort of grow light are you using?

I have 10 years experience in growing under artificial lighting

If I can help let me know.

regards

123

NJ Bob
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Re: Grow light dilemma

Hi. I have 3 fixtures that each hold a pair of 4 foot T8 bulbs. That leaves me with 12 feet of lighting. The lighting is working just fine. My issue is that my plants are outgrowing my available lighting space. A good problem to have really. :lol:

123
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Re: Grow light dilemma

get rid of the T8.

Plant later and grow faster. hps or mh

123
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Re: Grow light dilemma

NJ Bob wrote:Hi. I have 3 fixtures that each hold a pair of 4 foot T8 bulbs. That leaves me with 12 feet of lighting. The lighting is working just fine. My issue is that my plants are outgrowing my available lighting space. A good problem to have really. :lol:

At that density with that type of light.

They are stretching, that's not growing.

Growing is measured by dense nodes not height or length.

What is happening is you have etiolation because T8 is a poor light source.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Grow light dilemma

we don't know that. Pictures would be helpful here, NJ Bob.

T5's are better, but I have grown plenty of seedlings with T8's, without stretching or bleaching (etiolating). You just have to be sure the lights are right down close, just 1-2 " above the seedlings and on 16 hrs a day.

And we don't at all know that high intensity lighting like metal halide or sodium vapor lamps are appropriate for him. They draw intense amounts of power and will up your utility bill like crazy and they give off a LOT of heat, especially the hps, so then you have to have lots of fans/ vents or whatever to deal with the heat. And to have 12 feet of lighting, they are way more expensive than fluorescent tubes.

I grow about 500 or so plants a year from seed with my 16 feet of fluorescent tubes.

But yes being organized about it and knowing what to start when helps. I have been doing this about 20 years now, so I have it all down. I start the cold weather stuff, cabbage and broccoli, etc., very early. So then by the time the warmer weather stuff needs to be spread out (I start the seeds very crowded initially, because I only run two heat mats) and starts taking up a lot of room, the cold weather stuff is already out hardening off.
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123
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Re: Grow light dilemma

rainbowgardener

I take your a advanced Experienced Grower.

However There is no good use of T8s or T5 today.

It is very old technology, and enough is enough.

Infact HPS and MH is not only cheap as chips they can also be found in 150 watts in america.

The heat is beneficial and if you have ever used a hps the growth is 17 time faster than a forest of t8s.

Im trialling the best LED lights today, to be honest HPS rules and go Metal halide if you need to have a natural light look to rule out cannabis suspicion.
rainbowgardener Flouride and T5 or T8 have never been a good option.

They have just been the option to buy time until sun light.

NJ Bob
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Re: Grow light dilemma

Ok, so I looked up "etiolating" and it's definitely not that. The die is cast as to what type of lighting I'm using this year. I keep the lights a couple of inches from the plants I'm more than happy with how things are progressing. The original question was whether it was too early to move some of the plants out from under the lights.

Thanks!

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Grow light dilemma

maybe the heat is beneficial in a greenhouse. Not so much indoors.

I'm not going to argue all that except to reiterate that I am very successful with what I do. And yes of course the whole idea of starting the seeds under lights is to give them extra time, so that they can be farther ahead when the time comes to get them out and in the ground.

I'm guessing you are a cannabis grower and grow your plants to maturity indoors or in a greenhouse. For that usage, the high intensity lights are appropriate and if you are going to be selling product, the extra expense of buying them and running them doesn't matter.

For the rest of us, who just want to give our seedlings a head start on the season until they can go out, fluorescent lights are still way the cheapest option and as good as anything else. I don't care if my seedlings take a little longer to get to transplant size than they could if I had a big expensive high intensity light system.

Eventually I would like to switch to LED for the energy efficiency, but I am still mulling the purchase expense. Unlike hps and mh, LED's are very cheap to run, they just are still expensive to buy, especially to have 16 running feet of seedling trays.
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rainbowgardener
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Re: Grow light dilemma

and Bob, you are in zone 7, it is not too early to be getting most things outdoors.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

123
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Re: Grow light dilemma

rainbow-gardener wrote:maybe the heat is beneficial in a greenhouse. Not so much indoors.

I'm not going to argue all that except to reiterate that I am very successful with what I do. And yes of course the whole idea of starting the seeds under lights is to give them extra time, so that they can be farther ahead when the time comes to get them out and in the ground.

I'm guessing you are a cannabis grower and grow your plants to maturity indoors or in a greenhouse. For that usage, the high intensity lights are appropriate and if you are going to be selling product, the extra expense of buying them and running them doesn't matter.

For the rest of us, who just want to give our seedlings a head start on the season until they can go out, fluorescent lights are still way the cheapest option and as good as anything else. I don't care if my seedlings take a little longer to get to transplant size than they could if I had a big expensive high intensity light system.

Eventually I would like to switch to LED for the energy efficiency, but I am still mulling the purchase expense. Unlike hps and mh, LED's are very cheap to run, they just are still expensive to buy, especially to have 16 running feet of seedling trays.

LOL

Maybe you should Do your research on me.

Cannabis grower you reckon?

https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/vi ... 31&t=61251

Im a Consultant, Specialising in Nursery Production.


Cheers

Susan W
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Re: Grow light dilemma

NJ, yes, put your herb starts in windowsill, and get them used to outside when you can, weather permitting. I have some that have been out, some in the mini greenhouse that did get down to 20, but not advised now as you you want new growth. In general, once hardened, the new herb starts can go down to 30 easy, and given some protection to 25. By next winter should winter fine for you.
Have fun!
Susan

FuzzNuggetJr
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Re: Grow light dilemma

123 wrote:get rid of the T8.

Plant later and grow faster. hps or mh
Is T8 a brand or size of light? Sorry, a bit confused.

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applestar
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Re: Grow light dilemma

T8 is size of fluorescent tube light bulbs. Diameter in 1/8” increments, so t8 is 1” diameter.
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