Grow lighting for seedlings

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Randy Rooster, Feb 8, 2005.

  1. Randy Rooster

    Randy Rooster Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Ive started some seedlings about 1 month ago, but its been so cloudy they havent grown much and look lickly. Do I need to buy speacial bulbs for growing plants or do the new light bulbs that are advertised as being a more natural light fit the bill?
     
  2. mistletoad

    mistletoad Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We use regular fluorescent bulbs in hanging shop lights - we use 1 warm and 1 cool bulb in each fitting, but even that isn't really necessary, 2 cool would do just as well.
     

  3. diane

    diane Well-Known Member

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    You can use the regular florescent bulbs if it is short term, just seedlings, and you don't want things to flower. You need the grow lux type bulbs to actually garden inside in the winter. I have done both, but prefer the broad spectrum lights as I thing my overall plant health is better with them. I just use shop light fixtures and buy the gro-lights at Lowe's or Home Depot.
     
  4. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

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    I found that grow lights were essential for started seeds to insure they will be strong, and that they don't get spindly and stretch towards a far light source. The shop lights work fine with fluorescent bulbs and have them hanging about a foot above the tops of your seedlings. Warmth for germination is essential also, or some seeds will rot or be delayed. I set timers to have lights come on in the morning and off later on to simulate about a 12 hours of daylight.
     
  5. Bruce in NE

    Bruce in NE Well-Known Member

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    I hang my shop lights about a half inch from the tops of the plants and they seem to do fine. Had heard of doing that before -- getting 'em real close.
     
  6. diane

    diane Well-Known Member

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    Bruce, I keep mine down real close to the plants also. It makes for much nicer and stronger plants.
     
  7. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

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    Get 40 watt bulbs and make sure they're actually 40 watt ... the 'energy miser' kind are only 32 watts. I bought them by accident last year and boy could I tell the difference!!! :(

    I put screws in the sides of the shelving units I use as plantstands, and suspend the lights from them by chains ... makes it easy to adjust them up as the plants grow by taking up a link the chain.